Review: Sicily's Fab Samperi returns, following up 2010's Power Bossa LP with "The Big Swing (feat Lil Hardin Armstrong)". First up is a friendly radio edit of this infectious electro swing number that will be an absolute hit on the dancefloor. The club edit up next though is definitely more optimised for the club and we'd certainly recommend this one for the DJs. Finally "The Gangster Blues" featuring the additional talents of Geo Johnson and Chantal gets more of a hip-hop/funky breaks flavour happening which will rock any credible block party in true style!
Review: Any (of the many) fans of luscious lounge lizards Mo' Horizons currently tearing their hair out with anticipation of their new album can now whet their appetite with this stop-gap treasure trove courtesy of Agogo. Divided into two halves, we initially have the Hannover duo (Ralf Droesemeyer and Mark Wetzlar)'s latest LP, The Banana Soundsystem, overhauled and remixed before being treated to a further selection of the pair's most impressive remixes of other artists. Mo' Horizons like to celebrate 'the art of musical cross fertilization' and it's never been more true here, with 21 tracks overflowing with international influences.
Review: Here we have Timewarp Inc, the in-house production team at Athenian funk/nu-disco label Timewarp, and they've decided to delve into their mighty back catalogue and well, remix it. Hence, "The Remix Session Vol 1" - a collection boasting 14 prime cuts including the moodily hypnotic funk loops of "Anti Pop Song" by Ancient Astronauts, the forlorn Two Tone vibes of "Smile On Your Face" and the machine-like breaky funk goes synthy disco sizzler "Da Gypsy Groove" by Leon.
Review: 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.
Review: Crate digging in the Northern Soul scene is the gift that keeps on giving - an endless quest for rarer and rarer gems. Here Beatnik present a new collection that features nine classic Motown and Northern Soul cuts which have been sensitively retouched by some contemporary talent. Highlights include the celebratory, fizzy soul jam "Soul On Fire" by Shaka Loves You (yes, the one sampled by Beyonce), a Junkie XL-style makeover of Martha & The Vandellas on "Nowhere To Go" and Mak & Mr Bristow's muscled up take on The Rascals - "Olympic Lovin".
Review: Two months have passed since their inaugural volume and Beatnik City return with another chop-walloping, swash-buckling party frenzy. Their emphasis remains fully focused on the big beat vibe as each of the contributors boil down myriad genres from blues to rock to roots to classic b-boy hip-hop and recode them around swinging mid tempo breakbeats. Each cut will massage any gathering you perform to, but stand out cuts include The Captain's Toots-tweaked skank-slammer "Feel Alright", the slower, almost Todd Terje style blues stomp of "Beatbox Baby" and the unabashed sing-along feels of Rory Hoy's "Runaway Again". Unfettered booty business aimed directly at the cheeriest parties.
Review: Destination 60s as Beatnik City follow up last year's breakthrough compendium "The Rio District" with an exploration of pop roots, contemporised by swinging breakbeats and premium party signatures. Instantly recognisable jams include the ill behaviour of Ree Keen's take on "Louie Louie" and the ongoing beat mischief of Fab Samperi's homage to Sonny & Cher but the slightly less obvious versions shouldn't be overlooked either... The frenetic harmonica-snapping of Leygo's "Loose Wheel" and the lounge-writhing slipper jazz of Mad Doc's "Nori's Gem". Authentic big beat business.
Review: Jalapeno Records present a 17-track V/A collection of contemporary funk grooves, all of which have been given a makeover by Smoove, of Smoove & Turrell fame. There are some big names from the 'new old' funk scene represented (Haggis Horns, Nicole Willis, Smoove & Turrell themselves) but as you might expect from the label it's on, the emphasis is more on party-hearty funk breaks/funk-hop than out-and-out 60s/70s revivalism. Renegades Of Jazz's 'Fire' with its wukka-wukking geetar and guest rap vocal from The Allergies is one standout, King Bee's O'Jays-biting 'Money Gone' another, but dive on in and find your own faves...