Review: Multifaceted, multitalented Lance Ferguson fires up the "Rare Grove Spectrum" machine ahead of his new album next year. As always with the man behind Aussie groove troopers The Bamboos, the deep funk message is plain, simple and devilishly moreish; "Egg Roll" plays the consummate lead with its flavoursome swing horns and big riff that builds up with guitar and organ refrains while "The Dump" fixes our focus more on the guitars as a big crystal clear riff takes the lead plays a cool toe-to-toe with the trumpet. Watch out for that crisp break on the breakdown too. Bring on the album!
Review: Melbourne-based Kiwi Lance Ferguson is a jack of all trades really: producer, songwriter, guitarist, radio broadcaster, DJ and recording artist. His latest offering entitled Raregroove Spectrum is a collection of newly recorded versions of classic funk, soul, jazz and latin vinyl rarities. It features some of Melbourne's finest musicians across the album, including past and present members of local acts The Bamboos, The Putbacks and Hiatus Kaiyote. Ferguson explains that some of these versions can almost be looked at as re-edits: extending/teasing out the elements in a song to make them work on the dancefloor - except he went the extra step and re-recorded them with a live band.
Review: Freestyle seem to be in a retrospective mood of late! Hot on the heels of June's bumper Afro & Latin compilation comes this 40-track collection showcasing the best of the label's output when it comes to straight-up funk and soul, and with the likes of Speedometer, The Fantastics!, Soulive, The Perceptions and The Apples all representing, fans of the 'new old' sound will be more than satisfied. From the The Mighty Show-Stoppers' drum-tastic 'Shaft In Africa', to Baker Brothers' dreamy, jazzy 'Space Funk', to the slo-mo boogaloo of Deep Street Soul's 'Soul Loco Suite' and beyond, there's enough variety to ensure it never gets boring, making this an essential purchase - for funkateers on a budget especially!
Review: For the second volume in their ongoing "Disco Funkin" mix series, the Bomb Strikes crew has handed over the controls to former Tru Thoughts artists Flevans. While his DJ mix is naturally superb, it's the quality of the 23 unmixed, full-length tracks included in the package that makes the compilation a must-check. There are naturally a few recent disco-centric club hits present - see Lance Ferguson's terrific cover of Pleasure's "Joyous", Dimitri From Paris and Cotonete's remix of Izo FitzRoy's "I Want Magic" and Purple Disco Machine's warm and toasty revision of Kraak & Smaak's "Alone With You" - alongside lesser-known nu-disco, boogie and disco-funk treats from the likes of ATOA, Hotmood, Fouk, Michael The Lion and, of course, Flevans himself.