Warrington's Danny Worral has carved out a niche for himself delivering robust, floor-friendly re-edits that specifically rework synth-laden '80s electrofunk, soul and boogie jams. Here he presents his first album of reworks for regular home Midnight Riot. The source material is a mixture of the well known and slightly obscure, with the likes of the Whispers, Prince and the Aleems under the scalpel. Worral keeps the feel of the original tracks - including, in most cases, the vocals - giving them a little more contemporary dancefloor swing, largely thanks to extra-fat beats, subtle house rhythms and thick synth basslines. It's an attractive proposition for anyone who enjoys synth-laden '80s jams. Highlights are plentiful, from the glassy-eyed fun of the title track through to the soulful house shuffle of closer "In Your Life".
Prolific, filter-loving disco re-editor KS French returns to action with another quintet of floor-friendly revisions. The experienced Parisian impresses with opener "All My Life", a sumptuous, string-laden anthem with just the right amount of contemporary production trickery. There's more spine-tingling fare in the shape of the soulful shuffler "Do For Love", while "Supernatural" turns a disco-funk smasher into a smooth head-nodder. A Motown staple goes under the knife on the sinewy "Take Me Back", while "Think Over" is the kind of grandiose, uplifting disco fare that makes 30-something men want to whip off their shirts and pretend they're dancing in the Paradise Garage.
Dave Gerrard has cut his teeth on the mighty Chopshop label, but for his latest EP he's opted to move to Sound Exhibitions. Perhaps this explains the poppier choice of edit material as this one's straight up party fodder. The lead track is a tasteful, if quite restrained version of David Joseph's classic 1983 funk-meets-proto-house anthem "You Can't Hide Your Love". Then it's back to the '70s and the familiar hustle flute rears it head on the beefed up grooves of "Bump N Hustle". Finally "Tom Tom Boogie" goes for the jugular - speeding up "Genius Of Love" to a feverish pace.
Given the rising popularity of contemporary house records influenced by classic Italian house, it's perhaps unsurprising that Dave Lee has chosen to release a collection of classic Italo house cuts. Here, three of that compilation's best-loved cuts get the re-edit treatment. Lee dons his familiar Joey Negro alias for two perfectly pitched reworks; a shuffling and melodious rendition of Shafty's deliciously wide-eyed 1991 cut "Deep Inside of You (Soul Trance Mix)", and an undulating, electric piano-laden tweak of D-Rail's breakbeat-driven "Bring It On Down". If that wasn't enough to get you salivating, there's also a rolling, piano-laden rearrangement of Keytonics Ensemble's 1990 anthem "House of Calypso" (not to be confused with the record's better known flipside, "Calypso of House").
Alien Disco Sugar is the production alias of Leonidas DeeJay, a veteran Greek DJ with over 30 years experience behind the decks. He uses that dancefloor experience to craft disco and boogie re-edits that consistently hit the spot. This latest re-edit four-tracker is an excellent example; on all four tracks, he makes liberal use of filters and delays, while tightening up the grooves a little. Our pick is probably the head-nodding shuffle of the dancefloor soul cut-up "That Gold Old Love", though the synth-laden deep disco jam "Coco" is also impressive. As for "Keep On Moving" and "You Got Me Burning Up", they're both certified dancefloor killers - celebratory edits that will easily slip into both disco and house sets.
Here's something rather special: the long-await debut album from Bison, Paul 'Mudd' Murphy and pal Ben Smith's collaboration with vocalist Ursula Major and krautrock legend (and all round fruitcake) Holgar Czukay. Recorded at Czukay's legendary Cologne studio and featuring mix-downs from Conrad Idjut, Travellers is a particularly dubwise trawl through hazy, krautrock-influenced disco and horizontal Balearica. By anyone's standards, it's a deliciously intergalactic concoction; a fearlessly atmospheric blend of low-slung grooves, delay-laden horns, quirky percussion, stargazing electronics and mesmerizing, eyes-wide-shut vocals. Given the talent on show, we shouldn't have expected anything less.
Marco Dionigi tends to give buyers a lot of bang for their buck. That's certainly the case here, with seven decidedly cosmic disco jams to choose from. The title track - a chugging, exotic chunk of atmospheric dub disco with lashings of Indian style instrumentation - is available in three different flavours. Of these, it's a toss up between the Dub and the Original Mix for us, with the former just shading it. Elsewhere, "Roccia Antica" layers backwards effects and pianos over a spiraling, wall-of-sound groove, while "Malinconia" is slow, dubby and pleasingly out-there. "Onde", a hazy ambient excursion featuring more droning sitars and "Tomorrow Never Knows" style backwards loops, is also worth a listen.
Big release for both artist and label here as London-based Australian producer Francis Inferno Orchestra comes through with A New Way Of Living, a debut album on the Voyeurhythm operation, which doubles up as its first full-length project. Having first surfaced in 2010 and dropped numerous 12"s along the way, you feel now is the right time for Griffin James to show what he's capable of over the length of an album and this is a very confident set. The dusty, sample laden house sound Francis Inferno Orchestra is known for is very much in evidence here but there's plenty of diversity shown over the seven cuts to keep you coming back for more. The daisy age goes house vibes of "The More You Like" and the weighty beat down "Rap Beef" are immediate standouts.
Funk/hip-hop mash-up maestro Quincy Jointz is a staple act on the roster of Greek imprint Timewarp. Following a recent project that saw a lot of his back catalogue remixed and retweaked, Jointz is now back with some new party ammunition. "Rock On" is a short and sweet, poppy breaks-driven hoot that gets a jazzy house makeover by Diesler. Elsewhere Mister T goes to town on the organ and tough beats whilst and Tobe Tronic ends thing on a heavy electro-breaks tip.
The disco missives from Serbia are coming thick and fast courtesy of on-fire nu-disco buccaneer, Tonbe. Released by Disco Fruit, the West Side EP is his most bumper packed release yet, boasting five new cuts to choose from. The G-funk vibes of his previous releases are absent, with this single veering more towards soulful retro disco/funk with housey beats. Highlights include the smooth soul shuffle of opener "New Life", sleazy piano-beat brooder "Written Off" and the floaty, orchestrated, cloud nine bliss of "Sea Love".
It's been a fair few years now since Italian producer Massimiliano Pagliara, famed for his analogue-heavy blends of bright synthesizer melodies, pop hooks, Chicago house grooves and robust acid lines, relocated from Italy to Berlin. It's obviously been a fruitful move, as this second full-length - his first dropped in 2011 - is mostly made up of collaborations with locally based producers. Norwegian exile Telephones lends a hand on the deliciously Balearic "Long Distance Call", with one-time NYC resident Lee Douglas recalling his TBD work with Justin Vandervolgen on the murky acid assault that is "Fall Again". Elsewhere, you'll find a range of moods, ranging from the enveloping power house of "Native Tribes of Jupiter" (a hook-up with Credit 00), to the dreamy synth-pop of "With One Another".
Roisin Murphy's Mi Senti EP, released earlier this year on Vinyl Factory, was something of a surprise. It saw the former Moloko chanteuse cover a range of classic Italian songs. It's already been remixed once by Psychemagik, The All Seeing I and Severino, and here gets a second rework treatment coyrtesy of JD Twitch and Daniele Baldelli & Marco Dionigi. The latter duo do a particularly good job in turning "Ancora Tu" into a crunchy, guitar-laden chunk of out-there space disco brimming with Cosmic Club attitude. Twitch tries a different approach, recasting "In Sintesi" as an atmospheric, string-laden torch song, albeit one blessed with analogue-sounding electronics and soft focus acid house beats.
Melbourne's Benny Badge proved himself to be something of a master of synth-laden, soul-flecked boogie revivalism some years ago. Confirmation of his mastery of the genre came earlier this year, with the release of the Seal The Deal album earlier this year. Here, a selection of cuts from that inspired set get the remix treatment. There's much to admire, from the sharp synths and rolling electrofunk grooves of Ruf Dug's reinterpretation of "Midnight Rise", to the Boogie Cartel's superb NYC synth dub style rework of the same track. Badge himself provides a superb deep Dub of "Living a Lie", while label boss Yam Who steals the show with a fantastic, Loose Ends style tweak of "Something Else On Your Mind".
XL are always 100 per cent on the money when it comes to remix duties. This time, Hot Chip's Joe Goddard turns in a splendid, house-driven remix of Jungle's now infamous "Time" tune. Whereas the original is more sparse and less floor-centred, Goddard heads straight to the DJ booth on this one - sweet atmospherics, tense beats and one hell of a bassline make this into an all-out weapon for all you head-nodding record spinners. It's great to see Goddard back on top form, too!
Midnight Runners are a boogie-obsessed duo from Indonesia whose releases and electric live shows have led to a deal with DJ Nelue's label, Groove Democracy. The Heat U Up EP is the first fruits of this hook up and it's impressive stuff. Boasting four slick slices of early '80s sequin-funk, it's hard to tell what's an edit and what's a live boogie jam - the best of which includes the raw, throbbing guitar stomp of "Mint", the power drums and synth washes of "Make It Worth" and the go-go meets Jam & Lewis bass jam of the title track.
A bit of a coup here for the Hot Shot Sounds label as former Virgo Four producer Merwyn Sanders teams up with that man Inkswel on a heavy hitter featuring a pair of killer remixes. Quite how this collaboration came about is unclear, though it's nice to see Sanders back on the mic after the somewhat contentious circumstances surrounding his departure from the Virgo Four project. Those familiar with Inkswel's productions will know what to expect here, with three cuts of prime Australian drum machine music that is lent further dashes of soul by Sander's distinctly fragile tones. GB and Linkwood step up with some great remixes of "Eternal Freedom" - the former's ascendant take is a highlight.
The release notes for Joel Hood's debut on International Feel quote label boss Mark Barrott as stating they have "released just about every style of music (cos we're Balearic) except Dreamy Pop....which of course is well Balearic, so here's Joel Hood to bliss y'all out". There's certainly a whimsical quality to the four tracks that make up Gone, with the vocals of the North Yorkshire-based newcomer a key element, weaving in amidst the tropical landscape of his productions. Mixed up with a multitude of samples and some decidedly heady '80s dance pop production, the results feel gloriously removed from current trends and at times really sublime, as on the somewhat humorously titled "Pissholes In The Snow". If you can imagine Caribou going Balearic you will love this.