The Andy Tolman Cartel captures the spirit and musical excitement of TV and film soundtracks from the 60s and 70s (think Lalo Schiffrin or Alan Hawkshaw) with a collection of epic tunes, composed, arranged and recorded for Big Band by bass player, composer and bon viveur, Andy Tolman and produced by the projects drummer, Nick Van Gelder. As a taster of sounds encompassed within their forthcoming full length album, there's a cover version of Janis Joplin's "Move Over" (with award winning singer Jo Harman on vocal duties) that is absolutely stunning. The second offering, album title track "Cypher" is a right epic and is reminiscent of golden oldies such as "Theme From Shaft".
David Hanke is a man known for his wild and illustrious array of aliases. Through the years, he's appeared under the names Black Soyls, Madball Scientists, Mankoora and Rengades Of Jazz, among many others. Dem Juju Poets is his latest creation and, needless to say, it is perhaps his most accomplished and mature project to date. We don't want to take anything away from his previous productions but there's just something utterly fluid about this latest reincarnation. Matasuna is the new label to launch this new Liberated Thoughts album, and we're sure this will go down a storm with all the jazz-funk crew, particularly the followers of Giles Peterson's DJ sound. Hanke's approach is playful and diverse, branching out into all sorts of jazzy vibrations that are tied together by funky, off-kilter outernational vibes. Plenty of breaks, bass bumps, and party moves for all sorts of vinyl playaz - oh boy, check those horns on the masterful "People's Republic"!
In and out with a bang; that's Duct Tape. The Berlin duo are one of their city's few artists who are making truly outstanding broken beat and, while everyone else is busy churning out techno on a regular, these two like to cut up samples and vibe out on a certified jazz flex. This new LP sees them return to Giles Peterson's rarely disappointing BBE label, and it's clear that the duo have matured yet again, their beats now sublimely fluid and arranged with the upmost care and dedication. What's more is that this new LP, The Thirteenth Floor, is everything that an album should be; each tune flows into the next with utter ease, never leaving the listener with a sense of detachment. It sounds like Duct Tape have taken notes and done their best to replicate the timeless arrangements of giants like Gaye or Muhammad. Endlessly pleasing...
Favourite Worry was born from the difficulties that everyone feels as they move through life, the dreams that falter, the friendships that struggle or the love that falls away. Each song was born from this very personal atonement that each of the band has had to reconcile themselves with. It was vital that the record demonstrate the many years the members have played together, the blood harmonies and sibling rhythm section. Just as importantly the need for the sound to reach deep into the guts of the listener, as so many of their influences supposedly do. Fuelled by a rediscovery of the music and artists that originally inspired their formation, the four walls of their studio were ablaze with a soundtrack of Bill Withers, Isaac Hayes and the Isley Brothers throughout the songwriting process for their new album. From the swagger of symphonic opener 'Wanderlust' to heartfelt ballad 'Lose That Way' to the thunderous blues of the closing title track; The Milk's confidence in these songs and their execution is clearly audible. Captured in a tireless outburst of creativity at the end of 2014, 'Favourite Worry' is The Milk at their soulful, honest and engaging best.
For the 48th instalment of the popular Katakana Edits series, the shadowy figures behind the rework stable have turned to Mister Vagz, a producer who has previously contributed to a couple of other label EPs. It's pleasingly varied, with Vagz effortlessly switching between spaced-out, bass-heavy mash-up pastures (the reggae/hip-hop/funk-rock hoedown of "Stopper Wayz") and echo-laden electrofunk-rap business ("Get Ice On It"). Throw in the pitched-down soul meets classic hip-hop shuffle of "Supernatural Soul" and the heady soul breeziness of "Wondrous Regulate" and you've got a fine EP of grown-up mash-ups. In three words: mature party-starters.