Review: Ubiquity's super-collectable Luv N Haight series continues with immaculate aplomb. Here we find Kon applying his crafty edit knife to Twilight's 1986 soul boogie smoocher "You're In Love". The remix carries the full honey-coated vocals while the dub switches the focus to the groove with subtle flourishes of the vocal. A spotless contempory rework.... And, as the seventh volume, it's fittingly the first in the series to be served on 7". Nice touch.
Review: Turbotrax was an intermittent curio that belched out of the Bristol underground in a fit of tongue in cheek edits and samples back in the '00s. Someone's clearly rebooted the mainframe and brought this elusive collective out of hiding for another bout of cheeky lifts from more esoteric corners of culture. Library Vultures says it all - this is the work of dedicated diggers pulling forgotten bits n' pieces out of retirement, such as, on the A side here, the storming theme to a Commodore advert, and giving it a buff up more extended retro-pleasure. "Whatever Happened To The Hippies?" on the flip is a more light-hearted affair with a jaunty lilt and a message of positivity for all.
Review: Tramp Records' latest vital reissue delves into the back catalogue of the Reggie Saddler Revue, a largely little known funk combo that released a handful of 45s at the start of the 1970s. This double A-side brings together two killer cuts that originally appeared on different 7" singles, both of which are now near impossible to find. A-side "Raggedy Bag" is raw, weighty and impassioned - a scorching slab of deep funk that more than lives up to its high reputation amongst collectors. Over on the flip you'll find "Love Is Just Like A Baseball Game", a sweeter and more loved-up affair blessed with superb vocal harmonies that's nevertheless impressively fuzzy.
Review: Tramp Records has stayed close to home for this release, reissuing two killer cuts from the 1981 album "Mittwochs In Marl" album by Tyree Glenn Jr. While he is American - his father, Glenn senior, was famously Duke Ellington and Louis Armstrong's trombonist - Glenn Jr had moved to Germany (where he still resides) around the time that the album was recorded. Lead cut "Superbad" is a genuinely heavy, full-throttle funk beast, with Glenn Jr doing his best James Brown impression over an insatiable groove and rousing sax solos. "Ma(r)l Sehen", on the other hand, is a much more breezy affair - an instrumental jazz-funk outing rich in dueling sax and electric piano solos.
Review: Feeling lucky? With grooves as raw, sizzling and energetic as these, there's a strong chance you might be. Hot on the heels of their "Mesquite Beat" 45 comes this equally earthy and frank doublet. "'Bout To Blow" is a big pant swinging blues affair while "Saints & Beggars" takes us up a notch with a whirling 6/8 signature whirling waltz where the horns and drums take the lead and we follow in their every dreamy footstep. Look out for the album Mesquite Suite coming on Tramp very soon.
Give Me Something Better (feat John McCallum - Werkha remix) (4:00)
Review: Northern collective The Haggis Horns have been at the forefront of the UK funk scene since they came to prominence as a horn section on the legendary album "Keb Darge Presents The New Mastersounds" in 2001. They then went on to form their own full band in 2004 and have three albums under their belt: "Hot Damn!", "Keep On Movin" (First Word Records) and recently released "What Comes To Mind" (Haggis Records). They've been rocking crowds the world over for years winning fans with their signature sound that crosses over with breakbeats, afrobeat, soul and hip-hop. The seven piece band call upon John McCallum on vocals and guitar for the absolute funk explosion that is "Outta My Head" while on the flip their track "Give Me Something Better" gets a lovely rework by Manchester's nu-jazz broken beat wunderkind Webkha.
Review: Timed to coincide with the upcoming 2016 Olympics in Rio, the $tateside label comes through with a 7"-shaped celebration of Brazilian music featuring two classic cuts from the archives of Airto Moreira and Gilberto Gil. Even if you don't know it by name, Moreira's "Celebration Suite" should be instantly familiar, a jazz-fusion/samba batucada anthem that truly lives up its joyous name!! Flip it over and Gilberto Gil is on hand for a more mellow accompaniment in the shape of bossa samba standard "Maracatu Atomico," lifted from his 1975 album Viramundo. Comes as a yellow and green samba seven special!
Review: More recently spotted with The Georgia Soul Drifters or The Coasters, Early Clover's recording history can be traced back almost 40 years with this previously super-rare 45. With his soft-but-arresting tones, his yearning vocal style is comparable to Stevie Wonder, especially on the slow and dreamy Innervisions-esque "Who Are You?" Meanwhile on the B, "I Wanna Take A Chance With You" switches dreams for funk reality with a Kool & The Gang style feel-good throw down. Silky.
Review: Fresh from 68: Atlanta family trio Scott Three only ever recorded two singles and remained something of a local sensation thereafter. It's a shame as there's a real Jackson Five feel to their delivery, especially on "Running Wild" where the session band breaks down and each member pops above the dense music bed. "Gotta Find A New Love" takes a much bluesier tact with rougher instrumentation and an almost rocky build on the choruses. Spotted passing hands for sizeable sums on one bidding site, this is the first time it's been pressed in over 45 years.
Review: Long-serving Japanese band QASB tend to have two musical modes. Their releases are either sweet and soulful or funky and fulsome. This 7" definitely sits in the latter category. A-side "Get Down" is a cheery, up-tempo workout full of rising orchestration, bouncy disco-funk grooves, jazz-funk flourishes and a vocal from A Yu Mi urging us to shake our stuff on the floor. The party continues on the mostly instrumental flipside "Double Decker", a sumptuous, all-action affair full of sparring instrument solos, sweaty disco drum breaks and dreamy freestyle vocal improvisations. It reminded us a little of Pleasure's "Joyous", which is no bad thing.
The Temptations - "I Can't Get Next To You" (Wonderlove re-edit) (3:54)
Jack Hammer - "Swim" (Wonderlove short re-edit) (3:55)
Review: Wonderlove is the re-editor at the controls for the latest edition of the Soul Flip reworks series, which this time boasts tidy rearrangements of killer cuts from the Temptations and Jack Hammer. It's the former's 1969 single "I Can't Get Next To You" that gets the rework treatment first, with Wonderlove making merry with the track's jangling piano riffs, hybrid rock/soul groove, insatiable vocals and much-sampled drum breaks (which get extended for added dancefloor pleasure). If you're in the mood for something heavier and fuzzier, the "Short Re-Edit" of Jack Hammer's insatiable, spiraling funk workout "Swim" will have you dancing like you've got ants in your pants.
Review: Legendary singer songwriter Barbara Mason is represented in the finest fettle on this 1974 reissue. "World In Crisis" first appeared on her Transition album. Complete with warm harmonies and soft cinematic orchestration, her honey-toned sermons cut through the mix with a cool sense of dreaminess. "Give Me Your Love", meanwhile, is a fantastic cover of the Curtis Mayfield classic where here surging emphasis coats the groove with silky come-to-bed whispers. Stunning.
Review: Soul Brother present two sublime cuts by Carolyn Franklin, younger sister to Aretha, for their debut appearance on the seven inch format. On top of her significant body of work as a songwriter and background artist for Aretha and several other acts of the 60s and 70s, Carolyn Franklin record four solo albums and several singles for the RCA label. Rare groove heads favour Franklin's fourth LP If You Want Me in particular, issued in 1976 but originally recorded three years earlier, and Soul Brother have licensed two highlights for this 7" which demonstrate Carolyn's range for anyone not familiar with her work. "Sunshine Holiday" is a psyche delight akin to Linda Lewis' "Reach For The Truth" whilst "Deal With It" is pure funk.
Review: Only 300 copies pressed of this classic Gil Scott-Heron heavy double sider on a limited dinked 45. "It's Your World" is Gil Scott - may he rest in peace - at his funkiest best with an upfront vocal over a driving sax and rhodes- those of you who have seen one or two Gilles Peterson's DJ sets down the years will remember this fondly. "Winter In America" showcases Gil's legendary poetic prose in a meandering, melancholic manner offset by rhodes and flute. Essential.
Review: 40 years young: Wood, Brass & Steel's eponymous debut album enjoys a highly timely reissue and it still sounds every bit as funky ("Theme Song"), soulful ("Working On A Dream") and emotional ("My Darling Baby") as it did in 76. Complete with cult dancefloor hit "Funkanova" and the crossover disco hit "Always There", this LP has aged with real maturity and clout. Considering what the members did next (Tackheads, Sugarhill and Fats Comet) Wood, Brass & Steel was something of a supergroup in hindsight... And this album is where it all began.
Review: Straight form the heart of London via the mind of Detroit, the ever-consistent Soul Brother crew have laid down another stellar reissue here through Dee Edwards' gorgeous "(I Can) Deal With That". Originally out on the much-coveted De-To label in 1977, the original mix is a delicate, whaling soul monster that'll melt your heart from its first guitar riff - Edwards' voice is truly magnetic over the slow-burning percussion. There's a more stripped-down 'Strings' version to act as the cherry on the cake - you just gotta.
Review: Legendary bandleader Eddie Palmieri took a rare groove excursion from his Latin legacy in the early 70s for two albums as Harlem River Drive. Criminally overlooked, Soul Brother have dusted off two of the many highlights from his self-titled debut; "Idle Hands" is a sleazy, Gaye-style message with an almost spoken word quality to the vocals and a smoky wooziness to the horns while "Seeds Of Life" is a real end-of-set belter that rises and rises with tight orchestration between the guitar, horns and drums. Incredible... This can't be slept on this time round.
Review: The Voices Of East Harlem were an ensemble of vocalists who for Just Sunshine Records recorded two albums under the direction of Leroy Hutson and Curtis Mayfield. "Cashing In" is one of their most classic songs, a highly sought after track on original 7" fetches a small fortune on the collectors market. First recorded and released in 1973, it has all the hallmarks of a Leroy Hutson composition and an established audience that crosses the boundaries of northern, crossover and modern soul. The song is coupled here with "Take A Stand', another highly regarded and sought after modern soul room dance floor tracks, never previously released on 7" single until now
Review: Powerful belters from soul supernova Baby Huey. The only solo 45s he cut for Curtom Records before he passed away aged only 26, this was released posthumously and OG copies regularly go for over 200 pounds. Now reissued on Soul Brother, the two sides give you the full fat Huey; "Hard Times" hits with a raw Lee Fields style gravelly, story-telling delivery while "Listen To Me" shows Huey's deft ability to band-lead an all-out rock jam. Raw and emotional, Huey left this world far too soon.
Review: Earlier in the year, Kutiman took his brand of psychedelic fusion to Wah Wah 45s for the very first time. Here he returns home to Siyal Music with Turkish vocalist Melike Sahin in tow. "Sakla Beni" is wonderfully odd and exotic - a spaced-out psych-funk affair that wraps mazy, Moog style motifs, mind-altering orchestration and Sahin's wide-eyed vocal around a skewed, low-slung groove. It's brilliantly hallucinatory, as is the accompanying "Karaoke Version" - a superb instrumental take that allows listeners a chance to revel in the intricacy of Kutiman's arrangements. In this context, "Sakla Beni" sounds like it should be gracing the soundtrack of a particularly odd late 1960s Turkish film