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05 May 13
Played by: The Groovers
Review: Given his encyclopedic knowledge of music, you'd expect any compilation put together by Bill Brewster to be full of unlikely gems and lesser-known anthems. That's certainly the case with After Dark, the first in a new DJ-focused series from the Late Night Tales camp. From start to finish, Brewster's selections are spot on, from the lowdown, slo-mo disco oddness of Sheffield chanteuse Marti Caine's "Love The Way You Love Me" and wide-eyed, acid-laden kosmiche of Coober Peder University Band's "Moon Plain", to the dirty electrofunk of Zed Bias's "Koolade" (featuring Toddla T, of all people) and mid'80s percussion fest of Martin Kershaw's "Keep On Pokin". If that wasn't enough, Brewster has also unearthed a decent Jamiroquai record. The wonders never cease.
18 Mar 13
Review: This might be the strangest release of classic Chicago label Trax yet! The clue's in the title - it's Daft Punk brassified. We get four classics by the world's most famous Gallic robot duo: "Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger" gets turned into a 1940s Dick Tracy-style riff-off with every form of trumpet imaginable, "Around The World" mixes wind instruments with that famous vocal mantra, "Da Funk" features plenty of sassy brass and "One More Time" wraps things up on a swingin', jazzy high.
08 May 13
27 Feb 12
Played by: DJ Rudd, Prosper, DJ Goodka From The Groovologists, DJ Stex, Chudy, Manmade / Cmc-Silenta, Djp, DJ Aka (Funk Moguls), Mooqee, Actual Sounds, Hidden Riddim, Funk Ferret, Juno Recommends Breakbeat, Tim Livingstone, B-Dub, Dastardly Kuts, Killer Funk Records Usa, Badboe, Rory Hoy, Morlack, Telephunken, Hero Records, Tosses & Varvez, Juno Best Sellers 2012, Leo Leonardi Aka Funky Brothers, K. Sabroso
Review: The tenth release from the Manmade staple sees their crew of excellent NuFunk producers and remixers eager to please, with CMC & Silenta dropping a very tasteful edit of Mariam Makeba's classic calypso-funk gem "Pata Pata", Badboe & Prosper giving the Wu Tang a radical funk overhaul, while Cat Nip Tuck slams in the classics on the schizo-boogie of "Cat Nip Tuck".
01 May 13
06 May 13
Played by: The Groovers
Review: Joey Negro's Z Records have a remarkable knack for knocking out vintage compilation after vintage compilation. Here though, they've really discovered a rare niche of unmined gold courtesy of Nuphonic's David Hill who acts as selector. As Hill explains "gospel music has often followed trends in secular music" and this album captures 24 attempts of gospel getting on the disco and boogie trains. Highlights include the hiNRG longing of "I Need You", the electro-soul of "Love Is The Message" and the piano & strings frenzy of "Awake O Zion".
15 Apr 13
Played by: Zamali, Juno Recommends Funk/Reissues, Basement Freaks, Cayetano, Leo Leonardi Aka Funky Brothers, Miles Reverse, Superpendejos
Review: Although hailing from Germany, DJ Umbo is now running his disco breaks empire from Croatia. Having developed a cult following with a series of remixes on labels like Goodgroove, now he appears to have settled with Greece's Timewarp. His latest release for the Hellenic funk crew features two tracks - the funky sax workout "Sunday Jam" and the urgent groove attack of "Keep That Beat On". Basement Freaks remix the former into a pulsating disco banger, while on the latter Caytaro deliver a sizzling live jam version.
09 May 13
26 Nov 12
Review: Dave Lister, sorry Craig Charles, isn't holding back when he says that his new compilation 'contains 19 rip snorting tunes guaranteed to tear the roof off any venue festival or house party in the known universe'. He's not far wrong either as, much like his popular 6Music show of the same name, he delivers a booty-shaking selection of vintage and modern, soul, funk and blues music. Highlights include The Bamboos' high energy banger, "Amen Brother", the everybody-knows-it "Clap Hands Song", Nostalgia 77's remarkable take on "7 Nation Army" and Al Wilson's beguiling "The Snake".
13 May 13
Review: Hoorah! It's been a long time coming, but the album from this Canadian act is finally here. We got a taster for their new retro/contemporary jazzy sound with a single in August. The EP featured the breaks-driven "Soul Sugar", the 70s funk indebted "Driving To Montenegro" and the jazzier "Blow", all of which made it to the album. Now joining these tunes are the likes of the fretlessly rhythmic "Blues For BL", the crazy flute frenzy of "The Kelly Affair" and the gentle piano intricacies of "Snowfall".
30 Nov 12
Played by: Clairvo (Mustbeat), Timewarp, Trotter, Jayl Funk, Sol Power All-Stars, Killer Funk Records Usa, The Funk Hunters, Ez Icarus, Tosses & Varvez, Manjah
Review: Fresh-faced funkateer Manjah steps up to the party-hardy Katakana series, and does so with distinction. It's a game of two halves as the first two cuts are dedicated to chanteuses Smokey Robinson and Donna Hightower. Both powered by swashbuckling 60s funk riffs, these are authentic edits done with true creativity. Later on in the EP we head West to the Caribbean as Manjah gets his skank on with Dancehall Queen. Those with a penchant for Greek taverna flavours should hold tight for the rustic groove on "Orienta Patria". Nice work.
10 May 13
Review: In a break from their high quality re-issue campaigns, Hot Casa switch focus to the contemporary for their newest release. Fourteen-armed Parisian Latin-funk combo, Setenta, are back with the highly anticipated follow up to their 2010 debut Funky Tombao. Boasting as many tracks as they have arms, "Latin Piece Of Soul" sees the band really fine tune the fusion sound they always sought to achieve, particularly on tracks like the wah-wah and organ freak-out of opener "Colorblind", the Afro-electro-funk of "Guapeta" and the disco influenced "Mambo Machine".
02 Feb 12
Played by: DJ Rudd, DJ Goodka From The Groovologists, Minimatic, Voodoocuts, Juno Recommends Funk/Reissues, Tim Livingstone, Killer Funk Records Usa, The Funk Hunters, Nappy Riddem, D-Funk, Basement Freaks, Juno Best Sellers 2012
Review: It's a mark of the quality of Mad Mats' A&R skills that GAMM has managed to notch up almost a decade of releases without really resorting to releasing the sort of stinky cheese that usually plagues bootleg and mash-up imprints. This EP from newcomers The Reflex continues that record, offering two excellent, funk-laden bangers that get just the right balance between anthemic pomp and heads-down stomp. First up is "ABC", a stretched-out re-take of The Jackson 5's most famous hit that boasts a completely different (but very good) musical backing. "I Feel Good" is even better, turning a loose funk classic into a tight dancefloor bumper thanks to snappy new beats.
19 Feb 13
Review: Here's a challenge to all you crate diggers out there, according to Jazzman's DJ Fryer they always dig deeper! The results show in this excellent double LPs-worth of vintage prime cuts that sound surprisingly dance-floor friendly rather than quaint. Highlights include the intense funk assault of "Wake Up", the classy, shimmering "Teacherman", the emotional "Lost In The Crowd", the puny "Rollercoaster" and Ashley Beedle's re-edit of "Keep Her Happy".
15 Oct 12
Played by: Clairvo (Mustbeat), Timewarp, Straightoffthefloors.com, Los Charly's Orchestra, Andrew Allsgood (Free Association), Voodoocuts, Jayl Funk, Sard Boogie, Danny Massure, Hidden Riddim, Sol Power All-Stars, Venice Beach, Disco Tech, Juno Recommends Disco, Juno Recommends Brokenbeat/Nu Jazz, Juno Recommends Funk/Reissues, Killer Funk Records Usa, Alessandro Otiz, The Funk Hunters, Karim, Ez Icarus, Nick Bike, Dirty Mckenzie, Get Down Edits, Leo Leonardi Aka Funky Brothers, Mr Doris, Nu Disco Fever, Manjah
Review: For the uninitiated, The Gaff is a Canada-based DJ, producer and prodigious maker of "party breaks" - shorthand for re-edits and reworks that should appeal for those DJs for whom loose rhythms are of more interest than a straight 4/4 pulse. This first contribution to the digital-only Katakana Edits series is full of funk and soul-laden jams with heavy but snappy drums. There's a global feel, too, with excellent forays into afro-funk ("High Life") and Latin beats ("Mambo Number 5"). While all four tracks are carefully tuned to the needs of dancefloors, the afro-flecked disco-funk grooves of "Funny Saga" stands out.
21 Feb 13
Review: Midlands funk peddler Totalcult isn't one for looking on the past with rose-tinted glasses (boom, tish). Instead he likes to take the vibes of grooves past and weld them to sturdy modern production techniques. This album is full of vintage flavours married to tough beats, deep bass and a fair share of rapping to boot, as evidenced on the breaky "Tica Tok Rocker", the bouncey "Bob Ya Head" and the splendidly-titled "Undisputed Banger".
05 Mar 13
Played by: Voodoocuts, All Good Funk Alliance, Juno Recommends Funk/Reissues, Killer Funk Records Usa, The Funk Hunters, Miles Reverse
Review: Canadian "party breaks" DJ, The Gaff, is back with more retro mash-ups. This EP features five chopped and spliced vintage classics, including the loopy siren funk of "Do That Thing", the shuffling and retro "Tribute To Hank" , the cheeky extended bonus beats and lastly , the remarkably percussive "Do Those Drums".
14 Mar 13
Played by: Spinforth, Roast Beatz, Voodoocuts, Mr Bird, Juno Recommends Brokenbeat/Nu Jazz, Leo Leonardi Aka Funky Brothers
Review: Mr Bird follows up his Bird Bird Bird album from last month with a fresh quad of nu-funk/hip-hop hybrids. "Monkey Funk" clicks some serious Cuban heels over an obese breakbeat, "Don't Say Nothing" gets all LL Cool J over an early Fatboy style guitar swing, "Glad To Be Free" goes on a more whimsical 60s jam with added flute and glockenspiel twists and "Ufo" sees Bird adding a deeper, more cosmic feather to his bow. Not a monkey in sight, but very very funky. The Bird is indeed the word.
19 Mar 13
Played by: Jm Jackmaster, Spinforth, Chudy, Juno Recommends Breakbeat, Basement Freaks, Essex Groove
Review: One of the scene's most consistent and unabashed funkers Skeewiff follow up their 'sensually inspired' EP with a sweaty clutch of respectful remixes. It's a vibrantly international affair too as Fab Samperi polishes up the sexy French tones of "Mr Debonair" and Omegaman turns his Cuban heels into a pair of Cuban stilts on "No Puede Esperar". Elsewhere we find Jiggyjoe giving "Heatwave" go-faster stripes and Skeewiff going head-to-head with Shawn Lee on a live, organic D&B slammer rub of "I Got Soul". Unleash the animal in you and grab this today!
29 Apr 13
Curtis Hairston - "I Want Your Lovin' (Just A Little Bit)" (John Morales M & M mix) - (7:42) 119 BPM
Radiance - "You're My Number 1" (feat Andrea Stone - John Morales original M & M mix) - (8:05) 118 BPM
Review: Barely Breaking Even know that if you're going to release a series of remixed classic underground New York house, you better get the right remixer. Veteran Bronx DJ John Morales is one half M&M productions, who were there at the time and remixing all the greats and the very goods too! Here's 21 unreleased cuts from their vaults, highlights including the deep and percussive "Always There", the synths-meets-funk-meets guitars of "Do What You Want To", the raunchy growler "If You Know Like I Know" and their ragtime-indebted version of stone cold classic "Is It All Over My Face".
22 Oct 12
The Quantic Soul Orchestra - "Take Your Time, Change Your Mind" (feat Alice Russell) - (6:45) 74 BPM
Played by: DJ Drm (Bastard Jazz / Bstrd Boots), Mr Chombee, Juno Recommends Hip Hop/R&b, Killer Funk Records Usa, The Funk Hunters, Barrio Jazz Gang, Mr Doris, Double Yellow, Superpendejos
Review: Tru Thoughts have been around since the late 90s, championing all things modern with a soul, jazz and funk edge. Now their A&R dude Robert Luis has decided to compile their best disco-style releases, and why not? The Quantic Soul Orchestra's "Pushin On" is cinematic foot music built around an infectious loop, Zed Bias revisits 1980s Minneapolis with the help of Toddla T on the downright nasty groove of "Koolade", Bonobo remixes Nostalgia 77's "Quiet Dawn" in a downtempo jazzy style, Hint's "Aliens Enter" is as close you can get to 80s synth-soul without a time machine and Natural Self's "In The Morning" is a killer, off kilter jazz-meets-funk-and-dubby-house oddity.
18 Mar 13
Played by: Bmd, Chudy, Actual Sounds, Juno Recommends Breakbeat, Killer Funk Records Usa, Badboe, Turntill, Ez Icarus, Warson, Essex Groove
Review: Tru Funk have taken the nu-funk ball and run so far with it they're in a stadium four towns over. This debut full lengther from fellow Polish party starter BMD is a fine example; a collection of his previous buzz-rubs and a few newies thrown in for good measure, it's all about the booties and beef-ups. All presented in a bulbous mid-tempo breaks style, highlights include a respectfully muscular reboot of Jamie Lidell's "Feels Good", a heads-down 80s synth funk shuffle ("Off The Catwalk") and a salacious twist on Scissor Sisters with Bootsy-level slap bass freakiness ("Yo Mama").
15 Apr 13
Review: Germany's Tramp are at it again, the little er, tramps! The 'it' of course being tirelessly digging for, and re-releasing, vintage long-lost soul gems. There's a whopping 19 in total here, with plenty of highlights including the smile-inducing "Soul Chicken", the trumpet freak-out of "Funky Screw", the hip jazz of "Behind The Face", the equally sublime and nasty "Pat's Rubber Band" and the intense, wiry funk of "Tend To Your Business (Pt2)".
20 Jun 12
29 Apr 13
Review: A special dedication to his formative days praying at the good church of hip-hop, cutting and pasting in Sunday school, Venice Beach member Moar gets down and does the caterpillar. An eclectic ensemble of loops and compositions, this lick shots from Senor Coconut to Bambaataa and back again with its frenetic arrangement of swinging drums, cheeky samples and crafty editing. Highlights include the bongo and fuzz box fusion of "2 vs 2" and low-swung bass shuffle and swing of "Bump On". Moar please!
10 May 13
Review: Here we have two rare-as-hen's teeth cuts from disco-era boy/girl duo Aurra. They largely released on Salsoul and had the likes of Larry Levan remix them, so you can kind of guess what to expect. "Satisfaction" is classic early 80s electro-boogie that recalls the sleazy glamour of Prince proteges Vanity 6. "My Lovin Is For You" is more the kind of jheri-curled smooth ballad that the likes of Champagne were known for.
28 Sep 12
Played by: DJ Butcher (Chopshop Music), Homegroove Project, Chubb Nice (Hoglodytes/Marisco), Los Charly's Orchestra, Mr.dero, Jayl Funk, Roberto Rodriguez, Vladislav Moustache Love, Mr Doris
Review: Gamm is an established re-edit and mash-up label that's managed to repeatedly dig up new-old gems since the early Noughties. Having previously tackled Marvin Gaye's back catalogue, The Reflex return with a new EP and this time they've gone Stevie Wonder crazy; providing re-workings of three of the great man's tunes. First up is "I Wish", a nine minute elaboration of the one people think is called 'Sneakin' Out The Back Door...' and one which does a lot to reverse the damage done by Will Smith on his "Wild Wild West" tune. "Higher Ground" is teased out and into a more DJ-friendly format and finally things on high with "Sir Duke" (the one everyone thinks is called 'You Can Feel It All Over'), which gets embellished with a subtle 4/4 beat and big, splashy and celebratory cymbals.
22 Oct 12
Played by: Clairvo (Mustbeat), Bmd, DJ Stex, Chudy, All Good Funk Alliance, Jayl Funk, Actual Sounds, Sard Boogie, Juno Recommends Breakbeat, Dastardly Kuts, Killer Funk Records Usa, DJ Axe, Rory Hoy, D-Funk, Ez Icarus, Telephunken, Barrio Jazz Gang, Mashed Up Funk, Leo Leonardi Aka Funky Brothers
Review: There ain't no party like a Tru Funk Nu Party! Seriously now, not even S-Club could match the supersize funk flavours this label have been dishing up this year, and this latest compendium is no exception. Highlights include Sammy Senior's overhaul of Nelly's "Country Grammar", Lakeshore Drive's super laidback Q-Tipper "Funk'n Outta Bounds" and DJ Axe's percussion heavy sample-fest "Funky Town". Tru Funk have excelled themselves on this package.
11 Mar 13
Played by: Juno Recommends Brokenbeat/Nu Jazz, Killer Funk Records Usa, DJ Jimi Needles, Spilt Milk, Cayetano, Cocaine On Her Dress
Review: Parisian funk and soul producer Guts claims that he has always been a fan of the music of spaghetti westerns, Luis Bacalov in particular. Now in the wake of Tarrantino's recent remake, he claims that Quentin has handed him a creative baton to tackle this gem by his hero Bacalov. Not wishing to meddle too much, he has left most of the twangs and strings untouched, merely adding some tweaks and tougher beats to great effect. Elsewhere we also get the loungey "Technova", the vintage sounding "Mambo Flying Party" and the perky "Music For Fun".
15 Nov 10
17 Feb 12
Played by: B-Jam, DJ Butcher (Chopshop Music), DJ Agent 86, Jeff Daniels, Chudy, Voodoocuts, Jayl Funk, Disco Tech, Juno Recommends Disco, Killer Funk Records Usa, The Funk Hunters, Trujillo, Joseph Terruel, Matthew Kyle, Juno Best Sellers 2012
Review: Having previously delivered both chunky disco edits and cheeky, bootleg style reworks, the usually reliable Chopshop crew offer up an EP dripping with soul and funk. Included is a loose, hip-hop tempo rework of deep jazz-funk standard "Nautilus" from Copycat (ideal for those bar sets/warm up moments), a head-nodding, heavy 4/4 tweak of an odd electrofunk record from DJ Raw Sugar, and a dubbed-out take on James Brown ("The Boss") by Discotech. Best of all, though, is DJ Agent 86's "Give It To Me Baby", a cheeky, horn-toting rework of freaky 80s funk legend Rick James.
01 Jan 09
11 Mar 13
Played by: DJ Butcher (Chopshop Music), Gazeebo, Fingerman, Superbreak, Juno Recommends Disco, Shota Tanaka (Beaten Space Probe), Vladislav Moustache Love, Disco B, Joseph Terruel, Get Down Edits, Dynamicron (Los Grandes/Our Nights), Ramsey Hercules, Vinyladdicted, Albacore
Review: Nope, this ain't the return of mulleted 80s duo Black Lace, it's the latest comp from Dynamicron's Latino-centric nu-disco label Los Grandes. Once again they've searched high and low to gather the hottest re-edits. Highlights this time include Brevil's sultry sweaty "Sexy", Vinyladdicted's shocking percussion-led rework of 'cough', Jimmy Nail's "Ain't No Doubt", PCJ's baddass 70s disco rock freakout "I Like The Sound", DJ Butcher's faithful take on Mister Flaggio's Italo disco masterpiece "Take A Chance", and Craxi Disco's seductive and proggy synth-disco epic "Jerusalem".
13 May 02
Played by: Killer Funk Records Usa
14 Mar 13
Review: Afla Sackey is a man with a vision, and that vision is to fuse African rhythms with big band horn action. Now together with his new orchestra (Afrik Bawanta) the Londoner is realising this vision. This single boasts four excursions into the genre he's dubbed Afro-funk: the almost acid-jazz of the title track, the laid back 70s funk of "Life On The Street", the urgent and upbeat "Old Lady" and the gorgeously lilting "My Lady".
17 May 13
24 Jan 12
05 Apr 13
Review: For their next trick, classic cult label Honest Jon's serve up a collection of field recordings of the Mijikenda tribes, made in different spots in and around Mukunguni village, coastal Kenya. There's 14 in total, and it proves a fascinating listen: first track, the creepily percussive "Ndema" is played to sound like a bat, with shrill frequencies intended to heal