For this, their inaugural release, Beatnik City round up a pan-international squad (including British, Italians and Brazilians) in what proves to be a great homage to 'the world's sexiest city'. There's seven tracks here - all of which look back to the hazy golden 1960s and conjures up vintage Copacabana vibes through a combination of salsa and Latin loungey sounds and melodies all welded to tougher modern breaks for a contemporary slant.
Formed in 2012 in Sardinia, Italy, Sound Exhibitions self-proclaimed mission is "to celebrate the joy of modern urban life through rhythm and sound". They entertain a variety of styles including house, downtempo, jazz, and salsa, however here they deliver three slices of authentic and rare Afro-funk. These tunes dub-out some killer vintage sounds - adding some loungey organ and strings to the title track, the wah-wah and brass heavy "Paradise Funk" is pure Huggy Bear 70s pimp music and "Funk Small" wraps things up nicely with some old schools breaks, tense bass work and cop chase piano.
Guynamakut's belated moved to digital download continues. This edition contains three particularly heavy, dancefloor-ready reworks that previously slipped out on vinyl a few years back. Opener "Shake It Up" is particularly strong, breathing new life into a synth-heavy P-funk jam. The Guynamakut version rises and falls in just the right places, concentrating on the original's hustling groove and urgent vocal. There's more rubbery synth bass to be found on "Lord of the Gospel Funk Groove", whose winding sax, clipped guitars and hazy horns feel deliciously celebratory. Finally, "Low Slung Disco (Parts 1 & 2)" slows things down considerably, delivering an intoxicating blend of heady vocals, shuffling percussion and intergalactic chords.
Pure Ghanaian gold, Disco Documentary: Full Of Funk was a rare private press released in 1979 never to be released again... Until now. Dusting off the long lost tapes with due care and attention, BBE have kindly reminded us that disco had much wider impact than the US and Europe. Nana Love's slightly nasal tones are instantly alluring, but it's the clam-tight musicianship that really bites. Big Bernard Edwards bass, shiny guitar twangs, extensive organ noodling and vibrant Afrofunk horns galore, this is a truly stunning document.
Nope this ain't a long lost '70s record by Princess Leia's dad, it's by the veteran American south guitar player of the same name. Originally released on Sylvia 'Sugar Hill' Robinson's Stang label in 1977, Hot Lunch originally wowed people with its 'unique' album cover as much as the music contained therein. Now it's remastered with its 10 Sly Stone-esque tracks sounding better than ever. The jury's still out on the sleeve though.
Acid Jazz has been in a nostalgic mood lately, re-releasing much of their back catalogue to mark the label's protracted 25th anniversary celebrations. The Brand New Heavies maybe not so new these days but they're still pretty heavy and here, on their eponymous 1990 debut, we get to revisit them at the start of their journey. The original nine tracks are all present; their raw blend of funky drummer beats, rare groove melodies and jazzy keys still impressing today. Also included are three bonus tracks too, all of which feature the vocal talents of the inimitable N'Dea Davenport. Top!
In May of this year the 'godfather of Go-Go' sadly passed away. However, before he left this mortal coil he bravely managed to finish one final album and here it is. Recorded with his trusty Chuck Brown Band and featuring contributions from many artists influenced by his blend of '70s Washington groove including Wale, Faith Evans and Doug E Fresh, "Beautiful Life" is a beautiful coda to the great funk axeman's life. Highlights include the synth-drenched title track, the tropical party romp "Lighters" and the smooth old school vibes of "You'll Never Find Another Love Like Mine". RIP.