This latest offering from the shady Katakana Edits crew makes their previous offerings seem positively anemic by comparison. Boasting a whopping 22 tracks, it's almost certainly guaranteed to provide decent ammo for every house party imaginable. Highlights include the chugging electro dub sing-along "Shakka Boom" by DJ Clairvo, the p-funk meets disco of vibes of "Miami Freaks" by Lee Zamah and Timewrap's pumped up version of The Velvettes's perennial Motown classic, "He Was Really Sayin' Something".
Nope, "Music For Adverts" is not a long lost '70s Eno LP, but the new album by neo soul producer Adam Gibbons, aka Lack Of Afro. Kicking off with raucous opener "Freedom" (featuring the vocals of Jack Tyson Charles, son of Craig), we are taken on a 12-track journey into the vintage soul of Mr Gibbons. Highlights include the funky '70s grind (is that Ron Burgundy on flute?) of "One For The Trouble", the 4/4 disco funker (with a sprinkling of hip-hop) "Brown Sugar" and menacing Latin jam of "No Guts, No Glory". Classy.
Often, a lot of questionable feats and skills are retrospectively foisted upon music legends by the nerdier music fans amongst us. Classic DJs like Ron Hardy are regularly claimed to have seamlessly mixed the one copy of the same record for five hours with his toenail, whilst stood upside down and blindfolded in the booth. The sleeves of "School Yard Breaks" do nothing to change this, but for the most part we'll never really know what is truth and what is myth. However we do know what they played and here are another 25 b-boy breaks to play 'air mix toe' to.
In a broadening of signings for Deep Medi Musik, A Taste Of Struggle (to give them their full title) are a fresh duo with a distinctive cocktail of R&B, dubstep and trip hop that manage to channel the strongest facets of all those genres and arrive at something distinctly leftfield and utterly sensual at the same time. A blunted haze hovers over the low slung beats and woozy chord tones, the heartfelt vocals cutting through the mix with bittersweet tales of modern urban living. Managing a classic approach whilst being surprising at the same time, the wildly fractured piano funk of "What I Need" says all that needs to be said about what a strong debut album this is.
Shantisan - real name Herbert Bachhofer - may live in Vienna (where he also hosts a weekly radio show), but his heart seems to be in Rio. Both of the original tracks here - the wonderfully breezy, samba-meets-broken beat jam "Avienda Atlantica" and chunkier (but no less jaunty) "Conexao" - have a strong Brazilian flavour, with live chords, guitars and electric pianos complimenting Bachhofer's summery production. There's a similar Latin feel to the remixes, which range from samba-house (DJ Farappo's version of the title track) and glassy-eyed deep house (Stefan Obermaier's rework of "Connexao") to straight-up, early noughties style bruk (Frolocker's brilliant, electric-piano heavy revision of "Connexao").
It's a proper Celtic hoedown with Scotland's Capitol 1212 teaming up with Irish Moss for "Worldwide Echo". It's a match made in heaven as the in yer face D&B of the former blends perfectly with dubby vibes of the latter. There's plenty to choose from on the remix front too, from the classic dub of Tuffist & Max Powa to the breaky funk of Funkanomics via the pumpin' UKF beats of Juice Forever.
Argentina's Doctor Stereo has been quiet for a few months now, but he's resurfaced with this, his first release of the year. He's clearly been working hard on his productions as his two new tracks "Zangano" and "Angelitos Negros" display a real maturity to his retro Latin sound; the former fusing familiar sounding brass with shuffling beats and 1960s organ licks, the latter a South American classic given a more percussive rejig. Good to have him back.
Formerly known as Natureboy back in the late '80s, veteran DJ Milo Johnson has resurfaced as DJ Nature in the last few years. Here he delivers a mini album of sorts, that's packed full of his kind of thing. It's deep, thoughtful and jazzy - just like old times. It's a varied bag, highlights of which include the throbbing pulse of "Dance", the free flowing jazz guitar jam "No Talk" and the mellow disco stomp of "Fool 4 For Love". Smooth!
The last time Ray Lugo & The Boogaloo Destroyers dropped some bossa nova-loving heat like this was back in 2011 with the Swingy Boogaloo 7". And following their Mi Watusi album of the same year they return to the Freestyle label with the Latin- flaired and horn-heavy "El Ritmo De Nueva York" and ""Let Me Tell Ya 'Bout The Boogaloo". The former sweats a sultry Spanish vibe with quick piano-playing and an impressive sax section, while the latter is a little more broken beat with an infectious vocal you can sing along to.
Digest Music is the label run by Mr Goju, whose Migrations Radio show beams the finest in nu-disco, modern funk, soul, swing and jazz from his base in Montenegro to every far flung corner of the earth. Here he compiles a new EP with Mr T delivering the tight piano, guitar and flute lockdown of "Nova Style", the jazzy and beguiling slo-mo R&B of Loop Maffia's "Happy Daze", the deep synth-washed heaven of Elpierro's "How I Feel" and the laid back electro funk jam "Super Nova" by Echolocation. A hazy, lazy joy of a listen.