Review: In what could be seen by some as a slightly bizarre turn of events; DJ Deep and Romain Poncet's harder edged EBM project Sergie Rezza surfaces on Heavenly Sweetness - a label outta Paris known for its taste in spiritual jazz, world music and contemporary reissues. For others though, it makes complete sense. Deep and Poncet have just come off remixing the Parisian jazz-funk ensemble Cotonete individually, who in duality give "Layla" a 'hell'l and 'heaven' of a time. Lifted from Cotonete's Super-Vilians album (2019) Sergie Rezza delve into their hardcore style of electronic drums and basslines with a gnarly, acid-biting rework in the 'In Hell' version, with a percussive and equally effective alternative hit in the 'In Hell No Kick' mix. Find an ethereal, ambient cutting room floor bonus version in Rezz'a 'Heaven' mix. Heavenly hotness.
Review: French eight-piece Cotonete, a cult 00s phenomenon who reformed three years ago, serve up a second EP featuring remixes of tracks from their 2019 long-player 'Super-Villains'. Up first are two takes on 'Layla' (nothing to do with the Derek & The Dominoes rock classic): Alex Attias's pass is a summery, lounge-y affair, while DJ Deep & Romain Poncet's Dub reinvents the track in actual, proper dub style. The EP's then completed by the Alex Notal Remix of 'Last Drink', an unhurried shuffler that sits somewhere between funk, house and lounge. The perfect soundtrack for a summer BBQ, even if it is on Zoom!
Review: Where to start with this one? On their first album proper (not counting a collaborative effort with Simone Mazzer in 2017), French duo Cotonete push jazz-fusion in directions that would have progenitors like Stanley Clarke, Weather Report or Morrissey-Mullen shaking their heads in wonder. With tracks ranging from the languid melancholy of 'Layla' and 'Super-Vilain' to the scorching jazz-funk of 'Last Drink', and from the more traditional jazz stylings of 'Escola Frances Dos Tubaroes' to the Afro-inspired 'Guarani Kaiowa', Super-Vilains is just dripping in invention and musicianship, and likely to find fans right across the jazz community.
Review: Heavenly Sweetness is a Parisian label spreading colourful music for the soul. They're able to do this by singing such tremendous acts as local 10 pieces jazz outfit Cotonete - fresh from a killer collaboration with the French don of disco himself: Dimitri From Paris. Their new single for the label is the epic "Cabo" which receives an on-point remix by none other than Phil Asher - the UK house music extraordinaire behind such seminal projects like Restless Soul and Focus who merges exotic syncopated rhythms and a cosmic aesthetic that works wonderfully on this euphoric rendition.
Review: Cotonete have a reputation for fooling even the most discerning ears, with their deceptively authentic 70s funk sound. They were actually formed in Paris in 2005, but don't let that fact (we're post fact now, right?) get in the way of the fantasy. This nine-piece outfit will have you believing that you're living in the time of purple flares and lime green polyester shirts before you know it. Here we have their latest jam, "Inside Outside", which is a seven-minute brassy, sassy psychedelic mellow meander. Phil Asher meanwhile pops up to lead the Acid Jazz revival on his supremely sick "Soul Fun Band" mix (also comes in instrumental form).
Review: Here's something to set the pulse racing: a hot and sticky, two-track collaboration between 10-piece Parisian disco-funk outfit Cotonete and disco-house survivor Dimitri From Paris. "Parribean Disco", a Latin-tinged take on Caribbean disco rich in expansive jazz piano solos (think "Strings of Life", and you're close), pressure-building grooves and rousing horn lines, is undoubtedly the star of the show, though the high octane and fiendishly heavy disco-funk slammer that follows, "The Hustle Parisian" - all "Spank" electric piano stabs, mazy synth solos and layered trumpet riffs - arguably boasts more dancefloor weight. Both are superb, though, and sound like peak-time anthems in waiting.
Review: French compilation label Nova's output has ranged from reggae to jazz to world music, and this club-oriented collection ploughs a similarly eclectic furrough. There's a strong African flavour to much of the album (check Onipa's 'Open My Eyes', in particular, for some fine contemporary Afrobeat), but there's plenty of variety on offer too: Polymod's 'No Other' comes on like an early Orbital off-cut, Folamour's 'Can't Live Without You' is a dusty slice of 70s-style soulful disco, Zerolex's 'Paradise', Puzupuzu's 'Treo' combines Afro-house beats with some fine acid squiggles, and on it goes. Dive in and explore!
Review: Happy birthday Heavenly Sweetness! 10 years deep into their explorations, excavations and curations, French label Heavenly Sweetness look back over the decade and hand pick some of their favourite moments. With such a fine ear for timelessness and vibe, the whole collection runs with a soul and spiritual fluidity as one cohesive body of work; from the incredible-yet-so-gradual momentum of Chickenwing All Stars "Celestial Blues" to touching homages to the one and only Coltrane from both Patchworks and Byard Lancaster via slick spacebound feminist hip-hop from Sly Johnson and a stacks more, this is the type of collection you can lose entire weeks of your life to. Here's to another 10 years.