Review: There was a time when Balearic meant "play what you want, as long as it makes people dance"; then, somewhere along the way, we fell into a bit of a rut and it came to mean "lots of achingly lovely soundscapes replete with fey, wispy female vocals, wave sounds and fluttering flamenco guitar". This collection from Rare Wiri, then - ranging as it does from Jerome La Souris' disco-fied take on MAW classic 'To Be In Love' to the proggy throb of Cuz Electric's 'Polly', and from the nu-boogie strut of Sauco's 'Get Off' to Rayko's 'Drive', which comes on like coldwave meets yacht rock - is a good chance to remind ourselves of what 'Balearic' was originally meant to be about!
Review: After 12 years in the game, Spanish nu-disco stable have reached the 100-release milestone, and they're celebrating with an imaginatively titled compilation packing eight brand new tracks that have been handpicked by label boss Rayko. Obviously, with eight tracks from as many artists there's a fair degree of stylistic variety on offer, but the emphasis generally is on heavily electronic grooves - sometimes veering into Balearic/coffee table pastures, sometimes served with a darker, more leftfield twist. It's really more of a home listening album than a collection of club cuts, but for dancefloor purposes start with the contributions from Ilya Santana and Sauco...
Review: Spain's Rare Wiri serve up four disco/nu-disco cuts that aren't actually as Latin-leaning as the title may lead you to believe. Label boss Rayko and Fran Deeper join forces on a cover of The Steve Miller Band's classic 'Abracadabra' that has a few flamenco guitar flourishes at the start, sure, and the panpipes that grace Hotmood's 'Rapture' (NB: not the Blondie track) hint at South/Central American influences, but elsewhere Cuz Electric's 'Got The Feeling' is a sleazy electric disco-funker with an early 80s feel while Monsieur Von Pratt's 'Tonight' is sheer late 70s NYC exuberance. So check for this whether you're a Latin lover or not!
Review: Going by the volume of tracks on show, it would be fair to say that Masterworks Music's "Bag of Tricks" is not a little handbag, but more like a Mary Poppins style bottomless carpetbag. The label's latest rummage through its seemingly endless contents has been a successful one, with the 20 showcased cuts including a wealth of fine fusions of disco, house, boogie, electro and 80s soul. It's uniformly dancefloor-focused, with highlights including the Afro-house/disco-tech fusion of JB Dizzy, the driving, spaced-out disco-house grooves of Mike Woods, the loose-limbed, off-the-wall edits of Chewy Rubs, the sweet disco-soul bounce of RocknRolla Soundsystem, the delay-laden synth sing-along styles of Rayko and the hot-to-trot brilliance of Downunder Disco.
Review: Every 12 months, Fingerman's prolific Hot Digits imprint serves up an epic compilation entirely made up of exclusive, previously unheard re-edits, reworks and original productions. They're invariably excellent and this year's edition - the fifth in total - is even more epic than usual. There's naturally plenty to set the pulse racing amongst the dancefloor focused 32-track selection, from the throbbing Italo-disco style electronic sleaziness of Peza's "I Gotta Little Love" and the bouncy, acid-flecked cheeriness of Limpdisco's "Rush Hour", to the angular nu-disco heaviness of Andy Kidd's "The Dope Cube", the sparkling 80s boogie goodness of LUP INO's "Don't Stop Fooling" and and disco-funk-goes-house pump of Fingerman's "Family Ties". Keep an eye out too for rock solid rubs by Dr Packer, Chuggin Edits, Rayko and Andy Buchan.
Review: Producer Rich Hall and singer/instrumentalist Megan Jones, AKA Cuz Electric, have previously released on labels such as Midnight Riot, Paper Recordings and Katakana Edits, so it's little surprise that housed-up nu-disco and discofied deep house are the order of the day on this five-tracker for Fingerman's Belfast-based Hot Digits Music. 'It Came Fast' features sprightly pianos and a very 80s-sounding bassline, 'Where Is It?' veers into electro/boogie pastures, 'Gravitate' is a Nang-esque nu-disco gem before being remixed into an Italo-tinged throbber by JB Dizzy while the label boss's Acid Beatdown remix of 'Where Is It?' brings the Ha?ienda '87 vibes.
Review: Fresh from a recent outing on Rare Wiri, sometime Midnight Riot and Hot Digits duo Cuz Electric (AKA Rich Hall and Megan Jones) bring their brand of disco revisionism to Alpaca Edits for the second time. They begin by putting their spin on an elastic, P-funk influenced electrofunk jam (the body-popping brilliance of "Elevate"), before cannily re-arranging and re-EQ'ing a mid '80s new wave disco jam on the big studio grandiosity of "Help Myself". They skip their way through a Hugh Masekela style mid-'80s South African bubblegum track on "Too High", while "To Moira" is a deliciously muscular, string-laden chunk of camp disco celebration just crying out for peak-time plays.
Review: Rayko's Rare Wiri label bring us a five-track EP from Rich Hall and Megan Jones, better known as Cuz Electric, a nu-disco duo who've also appeared on Midnight Riot, Particle Zoo and more. Opener 'Blurred Vision' has something of a Crazy P-ish feel in its Original form. Ilya Santana sprinkles some 80s disco dust over his remix, while Rayko himself takes the track into more dreamy, downtempo pastures. 'Gurvitz Dreams' is a druggy, chuggy affair with a Moroder-ish throb, while 'Polly' completes the EP on a livelier note with house-y pianos and soaring strings a-gogo.
Review: Spain's Rare Wiri label bring us their second retrospective label comp, which follows on the heels of last year's Vol 1, and just a quick glance at the artists involved - who include Ilya Santana, Rayko, The Beat Broker, Yam Who? and Ziggy Phunk - will give the initiated a pretty good idea of the quality on offer! Gazeebo's 'Soul Dance' is rooted in the deep funk of the early 70s, Phunk's 'Let It Move You' is a brass-spangled disco-house groover, Rayko's 'B-Nano' has an 80s Italo vibe, 'Whishbone' by Parissior channels late 70s Euro-disco, and so it goes on for six more very playable nu-disco bullets.
Review: Rich Hall and Megan Jones have already taken their Cuz Electric project to Midnight Riot, Particle Zoo, Thunder Jam and Katakana Edits, amongst others, and here make their bow on another popular disco-leaning stable: 80s Child's Masterworks Music. What we get is arguably their strongest EP of original music to date: a four-track fusion of synthesizer-powered nu-disco, Balearic boogie, revivalist electrofunk and, in the case of driving, solo-rich closing cut "Good Laard", low-slung disco-funk. Highlights are naturally plentiful, with Jones' sweet and well-judged vocals on "Deamons" [sic] and "You're A Mover" - both attractive nu-disco dancefloor workouts with plenty of musical detail - giving Crazy P's Danielle Moore a run for her money.
Review: The third edition in Midnight Riot's White Isle-friendly compilation series arrives right on time for the summer and brings back a huge package full of sublime cosmic & spiritual soundtrack from around the globe. No surprises from the label, it's packed with hypnotic delights with touches of blue eyed soul, slo mo disco and tropical low slung groovers. Upping the standard it contains unreleased tracks & Balearic revisions from many of the Midnight Riot crew featuring Shalvoy & Hifi Sean, FSQ, Jack Priest, Northern Souls, Chewy Rubs, Dim Zach, Chuggin' Edits & Steve Cobby (Fila Brazillia) plus loads more all curated by label boss Yam Who?
Review: Following a lauded appearance on Particle Zoo Recordings, Rich Hall (no, not the grizzled American comedian) and Megan Jones bring their Cuz Electric project back to Midnight Riot. As label boss Yam Who is a big fan of their work, it's little surprise to see him deliver a brilliant remix of "Wonda's Revenge" that sounds like a nine-minute tribute to Odyssey with added kaleidoscopic synth flourishes. The duo's original version of the same track - an electric guitar sporting, arpeggio-driven nu-disco throb-job - follows, before we're treated to two versions of "Holding On". While the duo's original version is a dreamy, rush-inducing Balearic disco treat full of spine-tingling '80s synth-pop chords and jaunty piano riffs, it's Bachgenaur's slap bass-boasting boogie revision that hits home hardest.
Review: To kick-start a fourth year of disco-fuelled madness, Hot Digits chief Fingerman has put together this sizeable compilation of previously unheard exclusives. As you'd expect, there's far more killers than fillers to be found amongst the 28-track deep selection or re-edits and original productions. Highlights include the clarinet-laden electrofunk-meets-disco bounce of Frank Virgilio's "It's Your Boogie Baby", the disco-goes-hip-hop flex of Tony Disco's delicious "Rolling Paper", the sparkling nu-disco goodness of "When It Comes To Funk" by Stephen Richards, the driving disco-house bump of Ash Reynolds' "Cold Girl" and the fuzzy electrofunk wobble of Don Dayglow's "Many Things". Throw in fine contributions from Chewy Rubs, Le Visiteur, norse man Jarle Brathen and, of course, Fingerman, and you have a must-buy collection of cuts.
Review: More from prolific duo Cuz Electric (AKA producer Rich Hall and vocalist/multi-instrumentalist Megan Jones), who have previously released material on Paper Disco, Alpaca Edits, Midnight Riot and Spincat Music. "Santa Cuz" (chuckle) marks their first release for Particle Zoo. There are two original cuts to choose from: the classic electrofunk/gentle piano house fusion of "Mother's Ruin", which features a particularly strong vocal from Jones, and the dreamier nu-disco flex of "Dea's Gone Dancing", where decidedly Balearic musical touches wrap themselves around a synth bass-propelled groove. The package also contains a trio of tasty remixes, of which Stephen Richards' rubbery and percussive dub disco take on "Dea's Gone Dancing" and Don Dayglow's dubbed-out, acid-flecked revision of "Mother's Ruin" - made in tribute to Boyd Jarvis - are our picks.
Review: 62 collections deep and still blazing up any party in a 1000 mile radius; Katakana deliver yet another fun and funk-fuelled package. All laced with a heavy rhythmic theme, attention to groove detail is paid throughout as we're treated to range of classic and deeply dug edits. "Galaxy" sets the tone with a sleazy strutting war cry before we're hurled into a Latin frenzy on both the sultry "Camina" and the bull-fighting "Descarga". Elsewhere "Leroy Loves Ya" brings the soulful touch and "JB World" closes with a little psychedelic mystique.
Review: Paper Disco's Trash The Wax compilation series certainly offers a lot of bang for your buck. This fourth installment continues the trend, serving up 22 tried-and-tested dancefloor jams for disco-loving DJs. As usual, the selected tracks are a mixture of killer edits (Ed Wizard & Disco Double Dee, Solid State, Electric Pendergrass, DJ Rocca & Chris Massey), sparkling remixes (a tasty '80s electrofunk rework of Reggie Got Beats' "It's On Tonight" by Norwegian eccentric Ralph Myerz), and stellar original productions (see 2 Billion Beats' "Bob", Daco's Gladys Knight-sampling throb-job "I Heard It", Picotropico's decidedly Balearic "Time Will Tell"). There's possibly a little more Italo-disco on this edition, but that's no bad thing - especially as the arpeggio-heavy cuts showcased here are universally excellent.