Review: Presenting another collection of the best nu-funk and ghetto breaks from the Breakbeat Paradise label, volume 2 of Paradise Breaks contains a killer selection of hip-hop, funk and bass work from artists at the top of their field such as Badboe, Morlack, Breakbeat Junkie and Jazz K Lipa. Among the 15 tracks, look out for Pimpsoul's low-slung remix of Badboe's "One of Those Days" and the re-energised Southern soul of Jiggy Joe and Prosper's "Sweet Home Smoke".
Review: Following hot on the heels of the Lindstrom reissue, the Late Night Tales digital remasters series continues with a typically eclectic and atmospheric selection from Four Tet man Kieran Hebden. Like many other Late Night Tales selectors before and since, Hebden used the opportunity to cram in many weird and wonderful choices as possible, digging deep into his impressively left-of-centre record collection. So, we get American classical minimalism from Terry Riley, a smattering of spooky jazz numbers, the psychedelic folk-rock of Manfred Mann and Fairpoint Convention, off-kilter experimental hip-hop from Gravediggaz and Madvillain, and some clicky electronica from Manitoba. Predictably, the included DJ mix joins the dots in fine style.
Review: The Bristol brothers Tom & Ian aka Icarus are riding on the success of recent hits like "Trouble" and "King Kong". Now the Fly Boy head honchos (responsible for some awesome tunes of late by Mark McKenzie, Monk and Swan & Cotis) return with "No Sleep" - an evocative, breakbeat driven groove featuring sombre pads and bittersweet vocals which is sure to create proper dancefloor drama wherever it is played.
Review: Icarus has burned brightly in a very short amount of time. However as long as Icarus continues deliver the quality tunes this flame ain't burning out. This year saw a shift in sound for the act, with King Kong marking a move towards more upbeat and lighter vibes than the atmospheric moodiness of yore. Here we get two more mixes, with Secondcity turning in a meaty prog-house roller and Felon dropping some perky disco-tech pop
Review: Like UKF and Eton Messy, SubSoul started life as a YouTube channel dedicated to promoting "new and exciting electronic music". This year they've released two acclaimed compilations, and here round off a successful 2014 with a split EP featuring hot new tracks from a range of well-known and fast-rising producers. Icarus kicks things off with Annie Mac favourite "Missing You", a glassy-eyed chunk of melodious, bass-heavy UK house. There's more of a late night, big room flavour to N69's fluttering "Take You There", while Toyboy & Robin continue their adventures in garage and deep house with the pretty "Motions". Finally, De$ignated and Pistol Pete join forces for "Hey Papi (Dub Mix)", a thrillingly heavy trip into shirts-off bass-house territory.
Review: Flip the switch and get with the program: evergreen party purveyors Breakbeat Paradise have commissioned a whole bunch of reversions and each one is an instant booty-buster. Highlights abound throughout this raucous bass-bizzled nu-funk adventure but only a twit wouldn't pack Badboe's rub of Kool Hertz En Vouge sampling sizzle-up "Whatta Joint", JiggyJoe's orchestral disco-strung halfstepper rub of Calagad 13's "Back To The Power" or Badboe's take on Rudd's Supremes-slicing "Shake It Out". Paradise found.
Review: Easily one of the most prolific labels in the nu funk field, Stex's Young NRG Productions dish up another smorgasboard of party pieces. The third in the "Breakbeat Associates 8" this year, this collection of previously released tracks and newbies runs the groove gamut from madcap Ray Parker Junior bashing "Ez Ghost Busterz" to Jazz K Lippa's barn-storming electrobreaks reversion of "Don't Stop". Other highlights include the fuzzy low-fi funk of Alpha1's rub of "Lost In Spacefunk" and the hardy horn work on Stex's own "WLTF". Get associated.