We always look forward to a new installment in the School Yard Breaks series, and with 25 more vintage gems on here, they haven't let us down. It's the same drill - obscure original tunes that provided famous samples - but with new thrills. Highlights include Bobby Byrd's raunchy groover "I Need Help I Can't Do It Alone" (best known for its "I know you got soul!" line), the '70s cop show grit of "E Colition Alpha" and Rabbit & Carrott's classic "Express Yourself" (famously reworked by N.W.A.).
To paraphrase the great Jay-Z, it's time to brush that dust off ya fingers! The 26th time in fact, as the tireless Strictly Breaks label take another voluminous trawl through the archives of past library and funk for a 25 track edition of the Dusty Fingers series. As with previous volumes, perhaps the most valuable lesson from this Dusty Fingers compilation is the manner in which it educates and introduces the curious listener to the sizeable canons of the artists featured. So sink in and enjoy the samplealicious treats on offer from Piero Umiliani, KPM, Iris, Inoue Takayuki Band and oh so many more.
Supreme boogie business from longstanding German beat operator Jayl Funk; taking a classic Herbie Hancock/WAR style bassline, laying it gracefully over a series of bolshy big beats and massaging it with flutes, cowbells, horns and party noises, it's an instant party starter that people will recognise without ever hearing it previously. Looking for more of a 80s electro boogie twist with subtle shards of early Guy Called Gerald? Jump on Caz's version. You got the funk!
Freestyle is a label that always goes that extra mile. The previous two installments of the Black Feeling series featured a glut of uber-rarities 'culled from their musical explorations around the globe'. A lot of music featured on the albums was sourced from unreleased master tapes, private-press vinyl recordings and tiny, forgotten local releases. There's a similar wealth of rare talent on their forthcoming third installment and here's a two-track teaser, with the dizzying piano cascade "Futebal De Bar" and the rolling 70s funky back beat of "Latin Strut".
Forever to be considered a spelling mistake, re-edit hero Timewrap handles creative duties on the latest installment of the Katakana Edits series. With just two tracks on this 32nd volume, it's a short and sweet affair, but hey, it's the holiday season. Timewrap certainly has holidays on his mind here with both tracks having a dubbed-out and rum-soaked sunny atmosphere, based around the riddim from the Willie Williams classic" Armagideon Time." The chunkier version wins it here.