Review: A soundtrack for the contemporary 'Vinti' (defeated) with its dark and at the same time sparkling flavour of the '80s sounds. Between cold wave, synth pop and imaginary electronic atmospheres. This record with its horror-framed and dystopian scenario ("Slot Machine") reveals a content of social criticism healed through the warm and evocative indulgence of "Che Male C'e'. Courtesy of Naples based imprint Early Sounds Recordings.
Review: Two top names from the contemporary Italian scene go head-to-head here, as nu-disco don (and sometime Dimitri From Paris collaborator) DJ Rocca shares a studio with one half of Claremont 56-signed cosmic disco duo Almunia, Leo Cecanti. It seems to be a match made in heaven. Certainly, it's hard to dislike the breezy and sun-kissed A-side "Every Changing Bubbles" [sic], where rolling acoustic guitars and fluttering flute solos seemingly dance atop a rolling cosmic disco groove. Over on side B, the experienced duo adds some epic jazz guitar solos to a blazed jazz-funk/jazz-rock groove on the rather fine "Estate", before reaching for their Clavinet on the dancefloor-ready, Baldelli style, rock-influenced cosmic strut of "Mbira Funk".
Review: There's something a little Air-like about Parisian combo Poom. The male/female duo shares that legendary outfit's obsession with smooth, lounge-influenced grooves, gentle psychedelia, and atmospheric compositions. Of course, they're no tribute act, with this debut album drawing on a far wider set of influences in pursuit of Balearic-minded, Gallic pop perfection. Check, for example, the piano-laden, soft-focus disco hustle of "Les Voilles", the Phoenix-ish fuzziness of "Toi Et Moi" and the Sebastian Tellier style AOR pop shuffle of "Qui Bon", which comes complete with some particularly wide-eyed guitar solos and dreamy Rhodes riffs. As debut albums go, it's quietly impressive.
Review: The Magic Forest dwelling record collectors better known as Psychemagik return to Claremont56 offshoot Leng with a new compilation Magik Sunrise which is essentially a vinyl shaped sequel to last year's well received Magik Cyrkles. Though equally well presented as that compilation, Psychemagik refreshingly adopt a different sonic direction here, trading in the obscure Balearica and funk in favour of a wonderfully enlightening blend of African reggae, jazz-funk, prog rock, folk and New Age curios. Think David Holmes classic Essential Mix then crank up the weird factor to eleven and you'll have a good idea of what to expect from this fifteen track selection. The sensual twilight boogie of "The Juggler" by Fox is a particular highlight.
Review: DC chill dons Thievery Corporation first released this LP 18 years ago. And, like all classics, it still sounds as timeless and immersive as it did when it first hit our ears. From the swooning chords and easy-groove bedrock of "2001" to the heavy tabla-induced meditation of "Transcendance" via the ever-delicate breakbeat lullaby of "Incident At Gate 7", Sounds From The Thievery HiFi spawned the first generation of hippies the 21st century ever saw. This album is many things; a lesson in chill, a lesson in sample magic, a lesson in long and languishing grooves. If you haven't got this in your collection yet, you know what to do.