Elkin & Nelson - "Abran Paso - Ahoa (Enrolle)" (4:08)
Van McCoy & The Soul City Symphony - "Spanish Boogie" (3:33)
Review: Soon, DJ Harvey will release The Sound of Mercury Rising, a compilation themed around some of the music championed at his summer residency at Pikes Hotel, Ibiza. This four-track taster 12" not only acts as a sampler for the CD version, but also offers the chance to own four excellent and hard-to-find gems. You'll struggle to find a more Balearic disco cut than Danish outfit Tore's 1979 killer "She's a Lady" - think the Bee-Gees with Flamenco guitars - while Elkin & Nelson's "Abran Paso - Aboa (Enrole)" is a spiraling chunk of flamenco-psychedelia fusion. Elsewhere, Van McCoy & Soul City Symphony's "Spanish Boogie" is a jaunty disco number full of crunchy Clavinet lines and rising horn lines, while Tony Esposito's "Danza Dell'Acqua" is as eccentric and wide-eyed as they come.
Review: Eagle-eyed readers may have spotted a number of other 12" singles bearing remixes of this track. According to Gerd Janson, it's because he got a bit overexcited when commissioning club-friendly revisions of the cut, an "outsider pop" gem that will be featured on Feater's forthcoming album "Socialo Blanco". It would be fair to say that the mixes featured here are suitably big. Pepe Bradock handles the A-side, wrapping dubbed-out synth stabs, watery melodies and fireside-hot bass around a skittish, techno-tempo rhythm track. It's one of the French producer's most accessible and peak-time ready revisions for some time. On the reverse, Ricardo Villalobos offers up a suitably percussive, off-kilter minimal techno take that makes great use of short vocal and guitar sounds lifted from Feater's Balearic-minded original mix.
Review: Given their deep-rooted knowledge of the re-edit scene, it was probably only a matter of time before the Razor 'N' Tape crew turned their attention to Colombian scalpel fiends Felipe Gordon & Vagabundo Club Social. This outing on Aaron Dae and JKriv's imprint could well be the South Americans' finest work to date. We're particularly enjoying A-side "Shakala", a gently tooled-up and dubbed-out revision of a dusty, tropical disco-funk treat rich in Fela Kuti style Afrobeat grooves, rising horns and flanged guitar riffs. That said, we've also got a lot of love for the fiery horns, bustling rhythms and warm bass of "Los Bareteros" (a revision of a well known, boogaloo-era Afro-Latin jazz dancefloor classic), as well as the similarly minded - but altogether heavier - "El Cateter".
Review: For their latest dive into the depths of funk history, Athens of the North travels back to 1978 and the debut of John Hawes and Velma Bunch's obscure Hard Drivers project. The record initially appeared on Hawes' own short-lived imprint, and his since become a sought after 7" amongst serious collectors. "Since I Was A Little Girl" is a disco-era funk gem, with guest singer Vivian Lee providing a brilliantly confident vocal to compliment Hawes and Bunch's driving, horn-heavy backing track. On the flip you'll find original B-side "Straight Talk", a touching torch song full of harmony backing vocals, impassioned builds, and lyrics capable of melting even the stoniest of hearts.
Ed Wizard & Disco Double Dee - "Love Me Too" (5:28)
Will Buck & PRTMNTO - "I Need Your Love" (6:40)
Vagabundo Club Social - "Sonico Amor" (7:41)
Review: Perhaps we should think of Whiskey Disco's Small Batch series as their attempt at "artisan disco". Certainly, the re-edits on show should have a few hipsters - and plenty of disco DJs - stroking their hirsute chins in appreciation. Dubtribe Soundsystem's Sunshine Jones kicks things off with the mid-80s synth-pop-goes-acid-house brilliance of "Lovergirl", while regular collaborators Ed Wizard & Disco Double Dee doff a cap to Sly & Robbie and Larry Levan on the dub disco vibes of "Love Me Too". Those after some high tempo jazz-funk-meets-disco-house thrills should check Will Buck and PRTMNTO's "I Need Your Love". As for Vagabundo Club Social's "Sonico Armor", it's a hazy, dub-flecked Balearic disco delight.
M&M Vs Andrei Swipe - "Analog Express" (Don Carlos remix) (7:29)
Review: There's an undeniable air of quality that lingers over the 12"s emerging on 14th Level Of Paradise, the mysterious label presenting originals, edits and repressed tracks for true house devotees. First up is a little known track from Sasha Makin and Suntetic, given a shimmering polish by Don Carlos and Steven Perri to become a heavy funking masterpiece, before Joe Claussell drops in a percussive dub delight on Monday Michiru's "Higher". On the flip, Vincent Inc and LA get things pumping with the slow but chunky, jazz-licked "Red Room", before Carlos returns for another deep house reverie as he remixes M&M and Andrei Swipe's "Analog Express".
Review: At long last! The 15-strong collection of nu-disco, boogie, cosmic and deep originals and edits landed digitally last November. Finally the vinyl's arrived with four of the many highlights all pressed to vinyl and sounding all the richer for it. Highlights among these highlights include the dubby rumbles of Saine's "You Can Count On Me", the velvet funk chugs of "Singapore Sling", the undeniable Cathy Denisisms of Robjamweb's "You Know How" and the soft focus mid tempo synth sleaze of "Chief Inspector".
Review: Four years deep into its disco, beatdown and edit adventures, Smokecloud's status is nigh-on impeccable. Here we find them uniting four of their most creative craftsmen for four straight-up dancefloor pacifiers. Highlights include the sludgy slo-mo Edwin Starr on acid flavoured "Caught Up" and the Diana Ross homage that is the sun-skanked reggae party jam "CC Tribute" by VinylAddicted & SMQ. Instant smiles.
Review: Katastrofa EP is an Ex-Yu Edits release which transforms forgotten gems from the former Yugoslavia. Russian Valique and Serbian veteran selector Funky Junkie are behind this project. Opener "Katastrofa" offers a delicious blend of heavy, synth-laden '80s boogie, punchy afrobeat horns and bold, chant-a-long vocals, while the slower, more chugging "Frka" is an Adriatic delight - all lazy, sun-kissed synths, sugary-sweet vocals and sloppy kisses. As for closer "Yugoslavia" , it sounds like a disco-house anthem in waiting, as the duo adds bumpin' beats to a rising, horn-heavy chunk of starlight disco.
Review: Whiskey Disco sublabel Lovedancing now presents Amigos Vagabundo Club Social, who have truly found their voice with this terrific EP. Comprised of Jaime Tuiran and Juan Pablo Pinedo, they combine the best electronic grooves and Carribean flavour on the Pambele EP - three tracks that commemorate their musical heritage and upbringing in Barranquilla, on the north coast of Colombia. The groovy and sun kissed title track with its creamy Rhodes notes is a perfect homage to a certain Colombian boxing legend, while the lo-slung and funky swagger of "Esclavo 29" is a go-to track to work the dancefloor on a long, hot summer night. Finally on the flip is a sultry deep house groove in the form of "Angayusa" with some super sexy sax action.
Review: Since launching last year, the Act of Sedition label has specialized in releasing "double-pack" gatefold 7" singles - a format rarely seen outside of indie-rock circles (and even then, it's hardly commonplace). Naturally, this third missive is another double-disc affair, stretching four tasty reworks across a pair of dinky discs.
Review: For the latest volume in their ongoing Brazil 45s series, Mr Bongo has decided to change tack. The two tracks showcased here are from the golden age of Brazilian boogie. On the A-side you'll find Marcos Valle's "A Paraiba Nao E Chicago", a largely overlooked cut from his 1981 full-length Vontade De Rever Voce. While not as instantly as infectious as some of his better-known singles, it's still superb; a breezy, blue-eyed soul cut full of rising horns and sweet Portuguese vocals. On the B-side, you'll find Don Beto's 1978 disco-funk jam "Nao Quero Mais", a superb track that was seemingly inspired by the Doobie Brothers' "Long Train Running".
My Body (Louie Vega remix/Synth Bass instrumental) (8:58)
My Body (Louie Vega radio version) (3:46)
Review: Luther Vandross originally wrote and recorded "My Body" in 1979, though his version was never released; instead, the song was re-recorded by Stephanie Mills and included on her 1983 album "Merciless". Here we finally get a chance to hear Luther belt it out himself, with Masters At Work man Louie Vega providing production and a dizzying number of remixes. There are two bumpin' and life-affirming "Soul House" mixes (the second replacing Vandross' lead vocal with some mazy Rhodes solos), a fluid and positive "Remix/Synth Bass Mix" that packs plenty of dancefloor energy, and warmer "EOL Mix" and "EOL Dub" versions that utilize a warm bass guitar part and some tasty chord progressions. Throw in a couple of edits and instrumentals and you have a suitably epic set of reworks.
Review: Wah Dubplate cannot and will not be stopped. The incorrigible little bootleg unit marches on with its usual mishmash of funky, disco-friendly edits from the most improbable of producers out there and this latest outing is another minor success in what is a whole catalogue of hidden gems. Italy's Aldo Vanucci and Del Gazeebo turn up sounding wild and soulful; the farmer's opening edit of "Bobby's Grapevine" does the Mo-Town tricks, while the latter's re-visioning of "Billy's Missus" gives the original 'hey, Mrs.Robison!' a nice little dance makeover. Sweet as a nut.
Mahogany - "Ride The Rhythm" (Rahaan LDF remix) (6:58)
The Chuck Davis Orchestra - "Spirit Of Sunshine" (Rahaan LDF remix) (6:24)
Billy Nichols - "Give Your Body Up To The Music" (Rahaan LDF remix) (8:37)
Brenda Taylor - "You Can't Have Your Cake & Eat It Too" (Rahaan LDF remix) (8:08)
Review: In cahoots with the annual (not to mention excellent) Liverpool Disco Festival, celebrated editor and remixer Rahaan has been let loose on the West End Records catalogue. Happily, his new versions are rightfully respectful to the chosen disco and boogie classics with the Chicagoan simply adding choice effects here and there as well as some cranky old drum machine beats and occasional synthesizer flourishes. This is particularly evident on his raw but deep and slightly dubby take on Brenda Taylor's "You Can Have You Cake It Too", but also comes to the fore on the standout remix of Mahogany's spacey boogie jam "Ride on The Rhythm". String-laden disco bliss is provided via a bass-heavy re-arrangement of the Chuck Davis Orchestra's "Spirit of Sunshine", while Rahaan's Billy Nicholls rub is a high-octane, shirts-off treat.
Review: Having dazzled disco lovers via a trio of sold-out 10" singles, the shadowy VEDIT crew delivers their first hand-stamped 12". This time round, the publicity-shy scalpel collective is focused more on left-of-centre synth-pop cuts from the new wave era. Our pick is undoubtedly the epic flipside revision, which takes a particularly wayward and intoxicating mid-'80s cut - think early Chicago house bass, discordant synth horns, experimental dub effects and half-spoken vocals - and turns it into something of an inspired beast. In contrast the two A-side cuts tamper with two slightly better known (though still relatively overlooked) left-of-centre synth-pop gems from 1984 and '85 respectively. They will no doubt get more rotations, but lack the insane thrills of the B-side edit.
Barely Breaking Even (Louie Vega Boogie mix - radio edit) (3:33)
Barely Breaking Even (Louie Vega Boogie instrumental mix - radio edit) (3:31)
Review: Here's something to set the pulse racing: an all-star re-recording of Universal Robot Band's boogie classic "Barely Breaking Even" that brings together Masters At Work man Louie Vega, original vocalist and arranger Leroy Burgess, iconic disco producer Patrick Adams and an impressive backing band of hired musicians including Michael Kelley (better known in electronic music circles as Metro Area collaborator Kelley Polar). While there are plenty of audible nods towards the early '80s original - extensive use of cowbells, that oh-so familiar synth sound - the re-recording is altogether warmer, fuller and a more contemporary sounding affair rich in sweeping orchestration and tactile synth bass. Both the edited vocal and instrumental versions are superb.
Rebel Nation (Felix Da Housecat vs Chris Trucher remix) (6:10)
Review: One of the musical highlights from Louie Vega's NYC Disco album, "Rebel Nation" is a collaboration between grammy award winner Louie Vega, legendary multi-platinum producer Patrick Adams, and Nulu Records president, international DJ and artist Anane. Patrick initially had the idea for the song after seeing a recent Star Wars movie. Louie saw the vision of what it could ultimately be with live music additions, and Anane added the inspired lyrical content and vocal performance. In Louie's own words, "I call Anane a chameleon, because she transcends so many different sounds with her voice. She gave the track just the right feeling vocally. It's a very punk-rock approach; the kids speaking out, all kinds of people making the statement, Get Up! Stand Up! Let's Rise! Rebel Nation."
Lauded critically and on dancefloors worldwide in its original album version, the track has now been given the all-star remix package treatment with contributions from Danny Krivit, Carl Craig, Soul Clap and Felix Da Housecat X Chris Trucher.
Review: Love Circle returns for a second release, digging deep into the misty past of golden era disco and finding rare gold for the reissue market to rejoice at. This time it's the work of Barry Blue and two projects he produced in the early 80s, lovingly re-edited for maximum dancefloor pleasure by Velvet Season & The Hearts Of Gold (aka gerry Rooney and Joel Martin). First up is surefire party starter "Breakin In" by Javaroo, and on the flip it's low down seduction workout "Love The Way You Love Me" by Marti Cane getting a fresh airing for all vintage-minded dancers and DJs.
Review: Having released over fifty records since their foundation back in 2009, Dark Entries use the widened exposure afforded by that excellent Patrick Cowley compilation released in the last quarter of 2013 as a springboard to launch a new dedicated 12" series. Retaining their archival approach, the first release focuses on the short-lived Italian act Victrola; formed as a four piece combo in Messina, Victrola slimmed down to the synthesizer and guitar-based duo Antonio "Eze" Cuscina and Carlo Smeriglio and moved to the fertile music scene growing in early 80s Florence. In 1983, the pair issued their one record-shaped contribution to the early 80s Italian synth scene in the shape of Maritime Tatami, a two-track 12? issued on the Electric Eye label. Recorded using the Roland TR303 and TR606 at a time when these models had only been made available, so this reissue of Maritime Tatami from Dark Entries offers a chance for people to assess a slice of analogue experimentation at its most nascent.
Vincent Inc - "Rayskoye Mesto" (Vincent Floyd remix) (6:43)
Lola Allen & Vincent Inc - "Gonna Be Alright" (5:00)
Lola Allen & Vincent Inc - "NuDisco Book 1" (7:25)
Vincent Inc - "Time Machine" (Julian Sanza remix) (6:22)
Review: 14th Level Of Paradise come good with another stunning selection of high grade jams from core members of their crew. Vincent Floyd drops a remix of Vincent Inc that leans in heavy on a wistful early 90s sound that splits the difference between B12, Stasis and Larry Heard. Lola Allen and Vincent Inc's "Gonna Be Alright" takes things slower and spacier, while their "NuDisco Book 1" locks into a classic slice of disco funk to set the floor ablaze. Julian Sanza remixes Vincent Inc's "Time Machine" to close out the EP, taking a sophisticated, sweet natured approach to disco house.
Review: The 1 Life crew had a strong start with the likes of Kerri Chandler, DJ Spen & Karizma and Joey Negro contributing to a disco-fied house sound. Volume two on the label is no slouch either, ranging from Vincent Inc & LA's smoky "Cafe Tropical" before launching into Rico De Almenda's sassy, joyous take on "Watermelon Man". Venus Attack Project get into a deeper, percussive mood on the incendiary "Grass Culture" before Vincent Floyd completes the set with the heartfelt acid bubble of "Trail Of Tears". From organic sounds to box jams, these tracks speak directly to the foundations on which house music was built.
Brown Curls (feat Khalil Anthony - Patchworks remix) (4:48)
If You Like (Alma Negras's Wisdom Of Oz remix) (7:38)
If You Like (feat Tim Jules - instrumental) (3:09)
Review: Marcel Vogel's latest on Lumberjacks In Hell welcomes the mighty leftfield NYC MC Sensational to flow over his learned disco house grooves. Sensational sounds right at home on "If You Like," and Vogel gives him a slightly freaked groove to riff on that works just fine. "Brown Curls" taps up Khalil Anthony, one of the finest UK house vocalists in operation right now, and Patchworks remixes it into a dreamy disco funk jam for the boogie brothers and sisters to shake it to. Alma Negra gets busy with "If You Like," creating a tumbling Afro-centric re-rub par excellence, and then Tim Jules comes on board with an instrumental version that nudges into tightly wound funk territory.
Review: The unstoppable Vogel machine is back on Lumberjacks with another serving of soul-soaked house goodness to warm the cockles as we step into Spring. This time around he's called on one of the great house vocalists of our times, Khalil Anthony, to lay down a vocal on "Brown Curls" that melts over Vogel's peppy, organic production. Nebraska bring a deeper, chunkier flavour to the track with their remix, and the results are just as captivating. Anthony's also on hand to croon over "You Are A Star", an equally simmering jam with more of that dusty house pressure from the deep end of the pool, while "Those Moments" finishes the record off on a funky, instrumental tip.
Review: On the latest Lumberjacks missive Marcel Vogel invites one of the strongest house vocalists of modern times, Khalil Anthony, to lend his distinctive croon to a loose-limbed slice of low-riding funk. "Dance The Blues Away" is a gutsy, full-bodied production that shows off Vogel's instrumental skills at their strongest, and Anthony's vocal rolls on in the many-layered mix perfectly. BB Boogie injects a little disco stomp to the track for the first remix on the 12", while Julien Dyne gets to turn out a remix and a dub. Both Dyne's efforts tap into a Detroit house feeling, all dusty sample loops and a laid back, smoky mood. It's a record made up of killer soul-soaked house music from start to finish.
Review: Sounds like it came out of Lagos in 1971, actually written and recorded in Lyon in 2015: Voilaaa is the brainchild of Bruno Hovart whose long relationship with Favorite goes way back to his days as Patchworks, Mr President and The Dynamics. Recording on a whole host of vintage machines and calling upon local African singers both cuts have a real authentic sense of realness; "Spies Are Watching Me" drives with big horns and swooning strings which isn't dissimilar to the work of The Movers, while the TY Boys-esque "Le Disco Des Capitales" is a heavier, more concentrated slab of floor-minded disco where the groove takes more of a forefront role. Apparently there's a whole album of this cooking... We can't wait to hear it.
Review: The second installment of Multi-Culti's Moon Faze Sun Gaze series is a typically psychedelic affair, with an impressive cast of producers delivering a quintet of trippy workouts. Von Party & Dreems join forces to present "Wet Raga", a spaced-out combination of delay-laden drums, space disco electronics, and Eastern mysticism. The ever-reliable Red Axes fuses heavy post-punk bass, with punchy percussion and minimal wave melodies on the excellent "Boosha Gdola", while Dreems go solo on the weirdo acid-electro bubbler "Sine O'The Tymes". Nick Murray and Kris Baha underpin psychedelic disco electronics with the heavyweight throb of house on "Say Something", before Cocolo draws proceedings to a close with the pitched-down shuffle of analogue wobbler "F33lings".
Review: If you're in the mood for some cosmic grooves, wayward disco and pagan psychedelia, Multi-Culti's Cult Edits series is always worth checking. The imprint's latest offering is packed to the rafters with mind-altering goodness. Inigo Voltier sets the tone with "Ti Amo", a Fairlight-powered bounce through post-Italo oddball electro territory with added mix-80s power-pop guitars, before Angelina Amor reworks a sludgy slab of European industrial/new wave fusion. Youkounkoun's throbbing "Cosmic Yoyo" sounds like post-apocalyptic Italo-disco after a fist full of downers, while Asa Moto's "When The Funk Is On" is a funky but undeniably weird electro-industrial cut rich in delay-laden vocal snippets and metallic percussion hits.
The One O Ones - "Radio Cosmos 101" (Bals edit) (4:27)
Gemini - "Take A Chance" (4:34)
The Clean Hands Group - "Night Fly" (4:24)
The CVQ Band - "Whatever You Do" (instrumental) (4:38)
Miss - "Hip Hop" (3:06)
Metal Voices - "At The Banks Of The River" (3:44)
The Clean-Hands Group - "Shake It On" (4:03)
Gigi Flag - "Nymphomaniac" (instrumental) (5:58)
Eddy La Viny - "Havan' Hamac" (3:43)
Review: BeachFreaks Records co-founder Charles Bals is a man who knows about records - and obscure European ones at that. Club Meduse, his first compilation for Spacetalk (a label with a track record for producing these kinds of killer, crate-digging comps), is loosely designed as the soundtrack to life around a mythical (IE imaginary) Cote D'Azure resort. Musically, it gathers together the kind of hazy, soft-focus and life-affirming cuts that you would have heard at resort discos in the mid-to-late 1980s. Suffice to say that Bals' selections tend towards the rare, magical and undeniably Balearic, from the glassy-eyed, cascading jazz-funk of the Keyboys and loved-up post-boogie sweetness of Gemini's "Take a Chance", to the sparkling Euro-electro of Miss' "Hip Hop" and pitched-down drum machine chug of Gigi Flag's "Nymphomaniac (Instrumental)". Essential.
The Klub Family - "When I Fall In Love" (feat Sybil - Knee Deep Disco club mix) (6:35)
Whitney Houston - "I'm Every Woman" (Clivilles & Cole House mix 1) (10:43)
Review: The glorious Defected affiliated label land party Glitterbox continues to bring back some of the colour, gloss and glamour that made early house and disco so great with this second edition of their Hotter Than Fire series. Melvo Baptiste once again selects a load of fantastic tracks that brim with soul, diva vocals and timeless basslines. Highlights are plentiful throughout, but our picks of the bunch are "Chic Mystique" awashed with serious 90s New York vibes, all out Soul Train groover "Gotta Keep On Trying" by Tenderness and Jungle Brothers who bring some of their street wise hip house styles to the throwback "What 'U' Waitin' 4?".
Alex Simon - "Runnin' Out Of Time" (instrumental) (5:27)
Mark Goddard - "Tiny's First Journey" (4:26)
Foe - "Blow Up Girl" (Beautiful Swimmers Big Head Self mix) (4:26)
Nature Love - "You Turn Me Around" (Karu mix) (6:11)
KW Griff - "Be Ya Girl" (4:15)
The Horn - "Whiddon On Down" (4:29)
Hieroglyphic Being Presents Analogous Doom - "Living In A Zome" (4:35)
Spirit Garden - "Electra City" (6:44)
Review: Gatto Fritto set the bar high with his selections for last year's first "The Sound Of Love International" compilation, so it's a thrilling surprise to find that this follow-up - featuring cuts selected by Max D (Andrew Field-Pickering) and Ari Goldman AKA Beautiful Swimmers - boasts an even more inspired track list. The Washington DC-based duo evokes the spirit of the Croatian festival behind the series via the synth-heavy Afro-Balearic bliss of Plunky's "Africa Sunset", the new age dancefloor shuffle of Svend Undseth's "Aquilla Aquela", the vintage deep house dreaminess of Mark Goddard's "Tiny's First Journey", the pitched-up R&B vocals and hot-stepping B-more beats of KW Griff's "Be Ya Girl" and the sparkling piano riffs and smooth New Jersey house grooves of Spirit Garden's "Electra City".
Review: The first installment of Late Night Tales' After Dark was that rarest of things: a DJ mix that retained a smoky sense of early morning, home listening atmosphere while retaining an open-minded focus on the dancefloor. This follow-up - once again compiled and mixed by Bill Brewster - offers more of the same. Musically it's pleasingly varied, moving from the string-drenched downtempo beauty of Typesun's "Last One Home", to the heady Balearic rock of General Lee, via Justus Kohnke, the soulful post-bruk smoothness of As One, and the sprightly analogue electronics of Emperor Machine's remix of Paqua's "Late Train". There's also a bunch of previously unreleased tunes to enjoy, including killer contributions from the Mang Dynasty (AKA Ray Mang), The Gino Fontaine (Chicken Lips man Andrew Meecham) and - most surprising of all - The Grid and Robert Fripp.
Wojciech Karolak - "Discopus Nr 1" (part 1&2 - If Music extended edit) (7:55)
Alojz Bouda - "Random (Naslepo)" (2:31)
Polski Jazz Ensemble - "Song For Ewa" (7:22)
Prince Igor Yahilevich - "Double Sun" (7:19)
Andrzej Korzynski - "L'Arme Du Milicien - Patkarz" (3:07)
Binder Quintet - "Sirato (Dirge)" (feat John Tchicai) (6:42)
Review: If Music duo Jean-Claude Thompson and Adrian Magrys head up this fine six-track forage through the '70s and '80s archives of Eastern Europe. Stylistically, there doesn't seem to be an over-riding theme, it plays out more like a diverse selection of archival cuts spanning Poland, Hungary, Russia and Slovakia that will delight the more adventurous dancefloors. Thus you get infectious Polish disco grooves from Wojciech Karolak and Andrzej Korzyn?ski nestled alongside the break-laden jazz bustle of "Song For Ewa" of the Polski Jazz Ensemble. Similar styles abound with Russian-born "Prince Igor" Yahilevich and Hungary's Binder Quintet, whilst Alojz Bouda delivers our personal favourite in the shape of "Random," a suitably-titled oddball synth banger that originates from the Slovakian's 1980 album Synthesizer Sound
Take Three - "Tonite's The Night (All Right)" (7:22)
Brandon - "Suzy Hijack" (6:37)
Henning - "Arrival/Departure" (4:22)
Dam Funk - "Believer" (7:51)
Moon Moon B - "Oof"
Nicci Gable - "Close To Who?"
Randell & Schippers - "Love Jam"
Verticle Lines - "Theme From Beach Boy"
Brandon - "Suzy Hijack"
Take Three - "Tonite’s The Night (All Right)"
Index - "Starlight"
Uncle Jams Army - "Dial-A-Freak"
Gemini - "Log In"
Nexus - "Stand Up" (instrumental)
Reggie B - "Poison Candy"
L33 - "Keepin It Tight"
Gaussian Curve - "Broken Clouds"
Tony Palkovic - "True To Yourself"
Henning - "Arrival/Departure"
Nite-Funk - "Can U Read Me?"
Dam Funk - "Believer"
True Design - "I Wanna Break"
Crystal Winds - "Funk Ain’t Easy"
Review: Dam Funk has been foundational in crystallising Stones Throw's undisputed leadership in the nu-school funk and boogie scene, and he's up there with the great J Dilla in our books. Naturally, he's been asked to mix up the latest series of DJ Kicks and, ladies and gentlemen, it's a real masterclass - one of those comps you can safely leave on and let it do its thing on you. The mood is personified by a fine blend of electronics and tougher, funkier rhythms by artists such as Index, Moon B, and Dam himself. There are also a few rare cuts by Chicago house legend Gemini that fit in perfectly, and a whole heap of wavy, Cali-inspired electronic funk. Badass.
Pamela Nivens - "It's You I Love" (instrumental mix) (4:07)
Hugh Mane - "Real Sucker For Your Love" (6:36)
Switchdance - "Arabian Ride" (6:11)
Mr Marvin - "Entity" (Jazzy mix) (4:22)
Review: Almost two years on from the release of his brilliant "The Sound of Mercury Rising" compilation, DJ Harvey returns with another brilliant selection of tracks he's championed at Pikes in Ibiza. As with its predecessor, volume two offers a giddy skip through the dustier corners of his notoriously eclectic and off-kilter record selection. Along the way, he offers up chiming, synth-heavy Balearic classics (Mandy Smith, Hugh Mane), weirdo European disco (Marta Acuna), evocative electronic soundscapes (System Olympia), blue-eyed synth-pop (Pamela Nivens), drum machine-powered Middle Eastern madness (Switchdance's sublime "Arabian Ride") and a swathe of tasty contemporary cuts (the jaunty jazz-funk of Midlife, Das Komplex's ace "Slap", Nu Guinea's splendid "Je Vulesse" and Peaking Lights remix of Land of Light being the highlights).
The Jacksons - "That's What You Get (For Being Polite)" (DJ Reverend P edit) (9:00)
Harvey Mason - "Till You Take My Love" (original 12" mix) (3:16)
Marvin Gaye - "Rockin' After Midnight" (DJ Reverend P edit) (6:16)
Michael Wycoff - "Looking Up to You" (DJ Reverend P edit) (6:14)
Gladys Knight & The Pips - "Love Is Always on Your Mind" (9:08)
George Duke - "Brazilian Love Affair" (7:20)
The Isley Brothers - "So You Wanna Stay Down" (DJ Reverend P edit) (4:45)
Review: Sony BMG is, as one would expect, a pretty reliable source of all things music-related. This becomes especially true if we're talking edits, seeing as there is just so much of the stuff coming out at all times. The empirical label have recruited the fast-growing DJ Reverend P, one of those producers who manages to find little nuggets of greatness in every track he touches. There's plenty of party-ready hits being given a makeover here; The Jacksons' "That's What You Get (For Being Polite)" is tuned up for the dance floor, "Rockin' After Midnight" by Marvin Gaye is made even sexier, but the special moment lies in "Love Is Always On Your Mind" by Gladys Knight & The Pips. Big up, Reverend P. Hot soul edits comin' at ya!
Review: After a quintet of volumes dedicated to exploring 1970s and '80s yacht rock, blue-eyed soul and pitched-down disco, the Too Slow To Disco Crew has decided to bring the story bang up to date. To do this, DJ Supermarkt has put together a compilation showcasing contemporary French music that draws huge influence from the lazy, sun-kissed retro sounds that has always been the series' trademark. There's much to admire from start to finish, from the sugary sweetness of Poom's "De La Vitesse A L'Ivresse" and the sensual throb of Catastrophe's "L'Amour Tout Nu", to the lolloping nu-disco cheeriness of DJ Supermarkt and Jack Tennis' rework of Bertrand Burgalat's ""Les Choses Qu'On Ne Peut Dire A Personne", and the fluttering synth-pop breeziness of Bleu Toucan.
Rinder & Lewis - "Gluttony" (Dompteur Mooner edit)
Barbara Norris - "It's Heavy" (Dompteur Mooner edit)
Tambien - "Quedarte" (vinyl only bonus track)
Equip - "XXXO"
NAD - "Distant Drums"
Dopplereffekt - "Infophysix"
Review: Inaugurated back in 2006, the frustratingly sporadic Elaste compilation series from former Zombie Nation man Dompteur Mooner arrives at it's fourth edition and offers another telling demonstration of his crate digging skills. Whilst the double CD edition features a few well-known cuts, this pared down double LP edition focuses on the lesser known gems - Mooner's own edit of Barbara Norris's "It's Heavy" aside. From the mystical disco of Charanjit Singh and Rinder & Lewis's unusual "Gluttony", to the deep analogue house of Disco D's "Beat It" and C Cat Trance's druggy "Shake It", Elaste Volume 4: Super Motion Disco comes across as a compilation from days gone by, when DJs were diggers and entrusted with the responsibility to guide the general public through unchartered sonic waters.
Songhoi Band - "Africa Africa" (Faze Action edit) (4:50)
Stylus - "We All Need One Another" (3:29)
Oscar Perry - "Body Movements" (8:31)
Spats - "Hot Summer Madness" (3:25)
Review: For the latest volume in their crate-digging disco series, Under The Influence, Z Records has turned to long-serving British brothers Simon and Robin Lee AKA Faze Action. In keeping with the series' dusty-fingered ethos, there's plenty of brilliant rarities to set the pulse racing - see the smooth '80s boogie of Leston Paul's "All Nite Tonight", the up-tempo hustle of Oscar Perry's "Body Movements" - as well as a smattering of obscure versions of classic dancefloor hits (check Michele Claire's version of "In The Bush"). You'll also find a smattering of killer Faze Action edits, too, with their version of Midway's "Set It Out" and Mikki's freestyle-era boogie ham "Dance Lover" standing out.
Second Wind - "Free For All" (Serge Gamesbourg rework) (5:19)
Dreamflight - "Feel The Music" (Serge Gamesbourg rework) (6:16)
Royale - "I Want Your Body" (Serge Gamesbourg edit) (5:58)
Carrie Mims, Herb Lee & White River Junction - "I'm Gonna Get You (Meeow)" (original 7" version Spliced parts 1 & 2) (7:14)
Dreamflight - "Feel The Music" (original 7" version) (4:40)
The Christopher Michael Band - "You Make Me Happy" (Serge Gamesbourg Slight edit) (4:07)
Gypsy - "Keep It Comin' On" (Serge Gamesbourg edit) (3:41)
Review: Bostonian DJ, producer and crate digger Serge Gamesbourg has spent much of the last two years slavishly digging into the history of Massachusetts' little known underground disco scene. Here, over mixed and unmixed discs, he presents the results. Naturally, there's little you'll have heard before, and plenty of high-grade dancefloor fire, much of it re-edited or subtly reworked by Gamesbourg himself. Highlights include the fuzzy, lo-fi funk of Gypsy's "Keep It Comin' On", the turn-of-the-'80s, synth-laden disco-funk dazzle of Portable Patrol's "Cop Bop", the celebratory release of "Fire Funk" by Hypnotics and the smooth, blue-eyed soul shimmer of "Wait Until Dark" by The Chris Rhodes Band.
TB Funk - "Free Blow" (the dub version - G&D edit) (5:01)
Kenny Pierce - "Done Been" (5:13)
Those Good Intentions - "We Know How To Boogie" (6:50)
Sherman Hunter - "Dance To Freedom" (8:12)
Gospel Keepers - "Never Gonna Give You Up" (5:38)
Living Color - "Plastic People" (G&D edit) (4:57)
Roller Disco - "Stone Luv" (4:15)
Carol Meriwether - "Love Ain't Just (A Physical Thing)" (9:35)
William Barlak - "Ain't No Doubt About It" (3:42)
Review: The Grasso is greener in Bologna: home to two of the most well-connected collectors in Italy. Suppliers to the likes of Kenny Dope, Phil Asher and Dimitri, Gino and Federico have carved their crate craft to insane levels over the last 30+ years... As shown on this detailed, widescreen boogie, funk and disco collection for BBC. Splattering the vibrant collection with a handful of their own edits (TB Funk's salubrious struts on "Free Blow", fly-by boogie falsettos on Living Color's "Plastic People"), the Grasso bro's have put together a package that's eye-opening, enlightening and damn fine to party to. See you on the other side.
Johnny Dynell & New York 88 - "Jam Hot (Rhumba Rock)" (7:22)
Art Zoyd - "Sortie 134" (part 2) (3:45)
Adiche - "Chuka-Ja (Get Ready)" (6:56)
Class Action - "Weekend" (Larry Levan mix) (8:15)
Gray - "Cut It Up High Priest" (4:23)
Golden Flamingo Orchestra - "The Guardian Angel Is Watching Over Us" (6:50)
Extra T's - "ET Boogie" (5:30)
Fab 5 Freddy - "Change The Beat" (7:31)
Convertion - "Let's Do It" (6:40)
Yoko Ono - "Walking On The Thin Ice" (5:55)
Review: Curated as part of the iconic street artist's Tate exhibition this year, The World Of Keith Haring unites many of the talented souls Keith knew, or was inspired by, during his prolific rise as one of the most vital cultural spokesmen through the 70s and 80s. Soundtracking the gritty downtown NYC streets he made his first mark on, this limited collection captures the whole melting pot from b-boy culture with cuts such as "E.T Boogie" and "Bump N Grind", raw boogie and soul ("Over & Over") and pure drama ("The Guardian Angel Is Watching Over Us"). A powerful collection as striking and relatable as his own signature.
Jah Wobble & The Invaders Of The Heart - "Invaders Of The Heart" (Exotic Decadent disco mix)
Yello - "You Gotta Say Yes To Another Excess" (UK promo 12" version)
Naked Lunch - "Slipping Again"
SPK - "Metal Dance"
Review: Having recently mined the post-punk/new wave vaults of Factory Records' 12" releases, it's little surprise that the latest Strut Records release shines more light on the clanking, far-sighted world of the 1980s' most revolutionary genres - namely industrial, post-punk and EBM. This time, former Output boss, Playgroup man and all-round hipster Trevor Jackson is at the helm. His two-disc selection touches on many different strands, from bleak synthesizer jams and crunchy punk-funk to twisted industrial disco, mutant electrofunk (Nitzer Ebb's "I've Lost Control") and almighty percussive workouts (SPK's thrilling "Metal Dance"). Highly recommended.
Review: The Spacetalk label returns with this fine compilation by French house shotter, Jeremy Underground. We know him, and you surely know him, though his My Love Is Underground label, an imprint that has produced some of the best deep house in the last five years. He's not in house mode today, though, and instead the DJ shows us his soul roots. Ron Rinaldi's opener "Mexican Summer" is a real peach of a song, then there's some Brazilian disco-funk through Leila Pinheiro's "Tudo Em Cima", and the supremely deep and sensual "Superstar" by NCCU. Other favourites include Maureen Bailey's bittersweet anthem "Takin' My Time With You", and June Evans' "Hardly Need To Say", a tune that we could just leave on repeat. A highly recommended comp!
Sandy Barber - "I Think I'll Do Some Stepping On My Own"
Bill Avery - "Disco Fever" (re-edit)
Spooky & Sue - "I've Got The Need"
Vessie Simmons - "I Can Make It On My Own"
Scarbrough - "Make Love To You"
The J's - "When Did You Stop"
Larry Brown - "Breaking Training" (parts 1 & 2)
Review: In recent years we've become accustomed to disco compilations appearing at a furious rate. While many of these compilations are undoubtedly worthy of attention, the volume of releases can sometimes be bewildering. This eight track selection from Al Kent, the second in his Disco Love series, ticks all the right boxes, however. Even by the highest crate digging standards, these tracks are pretty obscure; many won't have had much of an airing since their original release. Those into the rich, soulful side of disco - that brand of string-laden dancefloor material most associated with the Philadelphia International label and studio -will find much to enjoy. Perhaps the most noteworthy is Scarborough's delightfully sweet "Make Love To You", an epic of biblical proportions that lasts longer than most drunken one night stands. See also Valerie Simmons' super sweet "I Can't Make It On My Own" and the rousing orchestral manoeuvres of "I've Got The Need". This luxurious gatefold double album also comes replete with extensive track notes from compiler Al Kent.
Clear - "Equal Love Opportunity" (feat Lee Edwards - Al Kent re-edit) (4:17)
Barbara Jean English - "If It Feels This Good" (3:49)
Genobia Jeter - "Things Got To Get Better" (4:54)
Emanuel Laskey - "I'd Rather Leave On My Feet" (full lenght disco version) (5:43)
Hazel Rambaransingh - "I Wanna Give You Everything" (Al Kent re-edit) (7:18)
Mary Mundy - "Love Is Gone" (Al Kent re-edit) (6:43)
Marva Hicks - "Looking Over My Shoulder" (3:38)
Old (M) Pressions - "Right On" (2:15)
Lee Edwards - "I Found Love" (2:49)
Symbol 8 - "Call Me" (3:02)
Joe Casey & Fresh Heir - "Let Me Hold You" (Al Kent re-edit) (6:57)
Perfect Touch - "Keep On Loving You" (Al Kent re-edit) (7:40)
Betty Everett - "Prophesy" (3:13)
Skip Mahoaney & The Casuals - "Running Away From Love" (Al Kent re-edit) (9:54)
Fresh Fruit - "A Song For You" (4:06)
Review: Aside from releasing his own tunes and edits on Million Dollar Disco, Al Kent also dabbles in the fine art of compiling for the BBE crew, and this time he's been picked to pull together cuts for the label's fourth outing of the Disco Love series. As you'd expect, this is choc-a-bloc with odd, hard-to-find B-sides from the late 70's through to the early 80's, and his own edits are the perfect thing for the DJ who own the originals, but who wishes them to be that lil' bit straighter and kick driven. The opener itself, an edit of Clear's larger-than-life "Equal Love Opportunity" is a bit special...what a tune, and look out for the rest; all killers here. Tip for the disco heads, for real!
Donny McCullough - "From The Heart" (Kon's Multi remix) (6:33)
Taxie - "Rock Don't Stop" (3:32)
The Mazyck Project - "More Power To You" (4:39)
The Edge Of Daybreak - "EOB (Edge Of Daybreak)" (4:01)
Shake - "Lost In Space" (5:12)
Oby Onyioha - "Enjoy Your Life" (6:18)
Bomp - "Disco Power" (4:57)
Christy Essien Igbokwe - "You Can't Change A Man" (3:57)
Harry Mosco - "Sexy Dancer" (6:37)
Goddy Oku - "Dont' Ask Me" (5:37)
Review: BBE unearth another batch of rare and underexposed disco cuts on Off Track Vol 3. Compiled by the crate digging New York/Boston based duo Kon & Amir, the release gives an authentic representation of Brooklyn’s ghetto, funk and afro music scenes. Sophisticated tracks for real music heads
Robert Cotter - "Everything I'm Living For" (4:41)
Carol Ray Band - "Quelques Mots Gentils" (4:58)
Bobana Petrovica - "Prepad" (4:08)
Byrne & Barnes - "Love You Out Of Your Mind" (3:17)
Review: Archivist, historian and dedicated crate digger Maurice continues his exploration of global AOR, a genre whose spotlight is usually hogged by successful US and UK acts. Focusing on the era's peak between 75-83 this second edition finds him striking gold in Australia (Renee Geyer Band's jazz-tickled "Two Sides"), Yugoslavia (Boban Petrovic's disco-licked "Prepad") Hawaii (Greg Yoder's Balearic Cat Stevens strummer "Things Were So Easy") and his native France (Carol Ray Band's yacht-primed boogie "Quelques Mots Gentils) Crisp production, stylistic melting pots and soft of the soul; AOR really was a global language.
Jonathan Jr - "Hangin' On To You" (12" version) (5:33)
Isabelle Mayereau - "Orange Bleue" (2:27)
Oro - "Sasa" (3:42)
Fernando Toussaint - "Recuerdos Del Abuelo" (3:04)
Todd Mcclenathan - "High From Our Love" (5:08)
Mario Acquaviva - "Notturno Italiano" (4:22)
Special Occasion - "Flyin' To Santa Barbara" (12" version) (6:36)
Parenthese - "Come Back" (4:03)
Russ Long - "Never Was Love" (4:35)
Pacific Dreams - "Mellow Out" (4:19)
Miller Miller Miller & Sloan - "Key To My Heart" (2:39)
Scott Cunningham - "Blues Take You Over" (3:31)
Review: On his fourth exploration of the world of global "Adult Oriented Rock", French crate-digger Charles Maurice focuses on the period between 1977 and '86. That means a greater emphasis on synthesizers, dusty drum machines and the kind of sparkling melodies that would once have drifted from daytime radio at an alarming rate. There's much to enjoy throughout, from the dewy-eyed synth-soul of Arlana's "When You Call My Name" and the breezy boogie of Omega Sunrise's "Too Hip", to the sparse Balearic bliss of Isabelle Mayereau's "Orange Bleue", the flute-laden easy listening hum of Fernando Toussaint, the sax-happy '80s sleaze of Special Occasion's brilliant "Flyin' To Santa Barbara" and the jaunty Latino jazz-funk of "Mellow Out" by Pacific Dreams.
Judy Carter - "Listen To The Music" (12" version) (5:57)
Janet N'Diaye Lokamba - "Funky & Fire" (4:53)
KKE - "Money" (4:03)
Caramel - "L'amour Toujours L'amour" (12" version) (5:56)
Yannick Chevalier - "Ecoute Le Son Du Soleil" (instrumental) (4:06)
JEKYS - "Looking For You" (4:26)
Silence - "Un Peu D'amour" (3:40)
Wally & Shane - "Give Back My Song" (3:47)
Zorgus - "Flash" (3:36)
Joel Dayde - "Qu'est Ce Que Tu Fais Par Amour" (3:29)
Review: For those intrigued by the distinctively Gallic but authentically American-sounding world of French disco-boogie, Charles Maurice's ongoing compilation series should be essential listening. Here he serves up a third instalment that's every bit as good as its' acclaimed predecessors. Highlights naturally come thick and fast throughout, from the mid-80s dreaminess of Maya's undeniably Balearic "Lait De Coco (Dub)" and the Brenda Taylor-ish bounce of Judy Carter's brilliant "Listen to the Music", to the Leroy Burgess style piano stabs and Patrick Adams-ish disco production of Caramel's "L'Amour Toujours L'Amour". Oh, and the late night radio warmth of NST Cophies' "Segregation", a sweet, undulating workout that will no doubt find favour with Balearic selectors.