Review: On the 25th volume in the ongoing Phonica White series, long-serving nu-disco don Ron Basejam (AKA Crazy P co-founder Jim Baron) delivers three more musical reasons to be cheerful laden with colourful synth sounds, authentic disco instrumentation and dub disco inspired bass. Opener 'The Hurt Inside' is the epitome of deep, organic nu-disco - think two-step electro-soul beats, intergalactic synths, Nile Rodgers guitars, arpeggio-driven electronics and crunchy Clavinet licks - while 'Don't Bus My Aus' somehow manages to be deep, stripped-back and extra percussive, sounding a little like his take on Boyd Jarvis style early NYC house. Title track 'Music People', meanwhile, is humid and feverish, with distant vocal snippets, foreboding strings and darkened Italo-disco bass rising above evocative tribal beats.
Review: Since launching on vinyl in 2019, the Ron's Reworks series from Crazy P co-founder Jim Baron AKA Ron Basejam has consistently delivered high-quality reworks that tend to shy away from the obvious and over-played. The standout on the series' fourth missive is undoubtedly 'They Speak Colour', a loopy, soft-focus disco-house jam whose relentless grooves, synthesizer splashes and simmering orchestration make it sound like Soundstream after a bong full of Marijuana smoke and several disco biscuits. Elsewhere, 'The City' is a canny revision of an unusual disco-boogie number that builds through sections of drums and cut-up, scat style vocals before finally flourishing late on, while 'The Cull' is a deep and meandering head-nodder tailor-made for warm-up sets and sit-down bar gigs.
Review: The fact that the previously vinyl-only Ron's Reworks edit series has finally landed on digital download is a very good thing indeed, especially since the man behind the project - nu-disco don Ron Basejam AKA Jim Baron of Crazy P - has been responsible for some fine re-edits over the years. There's plenty to get the blood pumping on this third instalment, starting with 'Revelation' - a sparkling rearrangement of a life-affirming, piano-laden number that sits somewhere between jazz-funk, Latin jazz, spiritual jazz and disco. 'Games You Playing' [sic] is a synth-sporting slab of disco-funk heaviness rich in punchy horns, mazy sax solos and thickset grooves, while 'Bada Bongo' is a percussive, break-driven, drum-heavu workout guaranteed to get limbs moving on the dancefloor.
Review: Almost 12 months after the vinyl version hit stores, the second volume in Jim Baron AKA Ron Basejam's Ron's Reworks series finally lands on digital download. The real killer here is 'Your Brain On Music', a slightly beefed-up and tooled up version of an Italo-disco-era chugger rich in driving bass, spacey synthesizer lines, proto-acid sounds and almost symphonic electronic chords. Elsewhere, 'Be Bizarre' is a tight, mostly instrumental revision of an electrofunk era big studio rock number - all squelchy synth bass, glistening guitar riffs and heavily edited, effects-laden drum machine beats - while 'Call Me' is a fine scalpel edit of a sparkling boogie jam. If high-grade, club-ready re-edits are your thing, you need this EP in your life.
Review: After debuting them on vinyl a couple of years ago, Crazy P man Jim Baron AKA Ron Basejam has finally decided to make his popular Ron's Reworks re-edits available on digital download. That's a very good thing indeed, because there's some genuine gold amongst the three tracks on show. For peak-time play, the pick of the bunch is probably lead cut 'Flight of the Eisenberg', a rolling, house-ready revision of a swelling, orchestrated, easy listening-goes-jazz funk affair onto which Baron has added subtle electronic flourishes and plenty of excitement-building percussion. Elsewhere, 'Heads' is a fine revision of a piano-laden Bob James jazz-funk jam, while 'The Jubes' adds subtle, house-style drums to a lilting, heart-aching gospel-soul number from the Supreme Jubilees.
Review: If a week is a long time in politics, then a decade is the equivalent of a lifetime in dance music terms. It's for this reason that so many labels are keen to mark their tenth birthday with a special release, just as Wolf Music - one of the UK's most reliable deep house imprints of recent times - has done here. Instead of opting for all new material, the imprint has decided to gather together some of their favourite "Wolf slammers" - cuts that have always done the business on the dancefloor. There's naturally plenty to set the pulse racing throughout, from the loopy R&B/disco/deep house fusion of Fantastic Man's "Look This Way" and the fabulously analogue Chicago retro-futurism of KRL's "Nothing You Can Teach Me", to the sample-heavy, riff-happy bounce of Red Rack'em's "Do Or Die" and the bass-heavy stomp of K98's warehouse-ready revision of Thrilogy's "Heaven".
Review: ISM's tenth anniversary celebrations tend towards the epic, with the Yam Who-helmed label serving up a series of bulging retrospective compilations stacked to the rafters with imprint highlights, dancefloor hits and overlooked gems. This second selection boasts 24 more tried-and-tested ISM classics, from the rubbery disco-funk bounce of Birdee's "Chemistry" and the synth-laden electrofunk revivalism of Qwestlife's D-Train style revision of "Streetlife" by Natasha Watts, to the spiraling Balearic disco throb of Pete Herbert's killer remix of Gemini Brothers' "Jeckermich" and the piano-powered nu-disco-soul of Rocco Raimundo's "Higher Lovin", featuring the smooth vocals of Stee Downes. Other highlights include the boogie-soul revivalism of Sweetooth's "Make Believe" and the hypnotic deep house/electrofunk fusion that is Mark E's fine revision of Heion's "Follow Me".
Review: Crazy P main man James Baron returns under his Ron Basejam alias, with more liquid nu-disco jams. Started as a casual side project 12 years ago, Baron wanted to 'capture the more diverse and quirky sides of his musical tastes', creating underground music that he incorporates with character, personality and humour. The After The Rain EP sees him return to Bristol institution Futureboogie, for the first time since 2016's "The Carrington Spirituals". Featuring the very soulful and near spiritual title track, the lo-slung funk attack of "The French Exit " and the late night acid express of "Raise" (featuring some vocals reminiscent of the legendary Daryl Pandy) among others - each one is a a sure shot and will light up the dancefloor.
Review: Nottingham based Ron Basejam is the anagrammed alter-ego of Crazy P co-founder James Baron who creates music with feelings on labels such as Futureboogie and Wolf Music and now for Freerange sister label Delusions Of Grandeur. On the fittingly titled The Sound Of A Feeling EP he serves up the charmingly titled "Shit Wizard" a soulful, nu-disco boogie-down jam. "We Walk To War" in its original form is the kind of lo-slung/slo-mo disco that really floats our boat, but the remix up next by Tee Mango really injects it with some Stevie Wonder style soul-funk that'll help get your shine on. The title track is the deepest and most emotive offering here, with its sublime and hypnotic qualities being pushed along by a tight groove.
Review: Crazy P man Jim Baron once more dons his Ron Basejam alter ego, delivering a strong virtual double A-side for Bristol's Futureboogie Recordings. Opener "Time" not only features some decidedly cosmic spoken word vocals from Vern, but was also co-produced by PBR Streetgang man Bonar Bradberry. In typical Baron fashion, the track is a loose, warm and inviting affair that effortlessly blends live instrumentation (guitars, bass, Clavinet) with a rolling dancefloor groove. "The Carrington Spirituals" is an altogether more urgent affair, and sees the experienced producer offering a typically attractive, horn-heavy take on loopy disco-house.
Review: Here, Aaron Dae and JKriv gather together some highlights from the first three years of their popular re-edit imprint, Razor 'N' Tape. Given the label's infamously high hit rate, it's little surprise to find that Disco Cuts Volume 1 is full of tried-and-tested dancefloor smashers - the kind of dub-flecked, handily compressed jams that work wonders in both disco and house sets. Highlights are naturally plentiful, from the dubby pulse of Deep&Disco's ace Chic rework "Feel The Rhythm", and the cheery '80s soul revivalism of Ron Basejam's gospel boogie cut "Someday", to the undulating grooves of Luvless' "Castles In The Sky" (you can guess the identity of the original source material) and head-nodding pulse of Only Children's chugging "Falling".
Review: If you weren't aware already, Yam Who? is one ambitious, tirelessly active chap. First emerging at the turn of the century with some superb edits of poppy R n'b (anyone remember his boogie take on "Frontin" by Pharrell?) the Yam master has gone on to build quite the empire with his Midnight Riot label. The latest MR release reflects his nature, a new mix featuring 20 killer rollerskate jams from friends as well as some outright classics. Highlights include the glistening, chrome-plated funk of George Kelly's "Turn It Up", the sleek and synthy 80s jam "Living A Lie" by Freekwency and the slammin Linn drum freestyle action of "On The Upside (High Drummer edit)" by Wonkar.
Review: Here's a treat for fans of Crazy P's brand of rich, disco-tinged deep house: a return to solo action from founder member Jim Baron (under his now familiar Ron Basejam alias) after a four-year absence. Predictably, he hits the ground running, expertly fusing Italo, disco and baggy deep house influences on opener "When I Hear That Music" (check the Reprise mix, too, for a sparser, chunkier version). The sample-heavy "Kag" is slow, sensual and typically delicious, while fellow Crazy P member Danielle Moore adds her distinctive vocals - ratcheted up a notch in true Prince style - on the killer nu-disco jam "You Know How To Work It". Speaking of Prince, there's more than a little of the Purple One about the synth-laden "The Fire".
Review: Yam Who is a man who is on a mission to uncover the coolest cult re-edit guys around and make sure the public hear them. This is usually through his own ISM imprint and it's also usually via the medium of the EP. Here, though he's gone all out to present this huge compilation album, bursting with party goodness, and boasting 24 tracks. Highlights include the '80s Child's rework of power-snare soul anthem "Let Me Be The One", the neon glow of arpeggiated synth boogie gem "Jeckermich" and Ron Basejam's deep and sensuous take on the sultry electro-soul of "Changes".
Review: There's a touch of the Clash Of Titans here, with prominent Brooklyn re-edit label Razor N Tape recruiting James Baron (Ron Basejam/Crazy P) for a heavyweight nu-disco release. Baron doesn't disappoint either, delivering three tough disco housers that touch on 80s electro-boogie ("Love Don't Wait"), soulful gospel ("Someday") and loopy, filtered funk ("We Supply").
Review: ISM Records' two Futurism EPs have proved so popular that label boss Yam Who has decided to use them as the inspiration for an expansive compilation of previously unreleased gems. Unlike the label's other popular strand, Midnight Riot, there's always been a bit more of an open-minded, eclectic feel about the Futurism releases. This is no different. Whilst rooted in nu-disco and deep house, Futurism: Shades of Space also touches on 21st century jazz-funk (Manmademusic), bongo-laden spiritual house (Nu Ak's "Fly Away"), fluid garage (Nega Tiv's excellent "Liquid Call"), woozy Balearica (Ben La Desh and Plan DAqua), block party boogie (Questlife feat Wildstyle, Freekwency) and nu-jazz (Hamish Balfour). More importantly, the quality threshold remains high throughout.
Review: Yam Who?'s ISM label come through with a four track slice of disco centric Futurism, featuring the man Yam himself alongside PBR Streetgang and Ron Basejam. It's the latter who takes the lead with a remix of Alena's "Changes" that sees her sultry vocal teased by a most excellent of analogue synth leads that splurges brilliantly across the crisp mid tempo chug. Yam Who? teams up with vocalist Natasha Watts for the similarly bottom heavy bump of "I'm In Love" which has a certain warehouse appeal to it. Up next, PBR pay respect to the godfather of soul James Brown with the gritty flex of "J2thaB" with the sadly departed Mr Brown strangely sounding at times like he wants to go to Tesco. We always took him for a Waitrose man, but regardless this is probably the track you'll reach for most! Finally Brothers Young do their thing to a Trammps classic, with little more than the bassline retained. Big tip!
Review: Following Ron Basejam's excellent Deep & Meaningless album comes this extra special remix package, crammed full of goodies from some of the most respected names in disco. As the production brains behind Crazy P, Jim Baron has crafted some sublime midtempo disco boogie beats in his day, and his new Ron Basejam project has been just as rewarding. For this set of mixes, ISM label boss Yam Who teams up with Ashley Beedle to smooth out "For The People, By The People" into a spacey slow-grooving jam, with drums that bring the old-school boogie flavour right up to date.
The Revenge gets the chance to string out the sublime and languid "No Jose" over nine epic minutes, building on a bedrock of shakers and the faintest taste of bass to give a masterclass in minimal arrangements. Crazy P's own Chris Todd takes on "Spirit" and makes the popping bassline (similar to Harvey Mason's "Groovin' You") the focus of the track - working perfectly with the laidback and sultry vocals. His Dubbed Out mix takes the track even deeper, adding superb congas and arranging the track to give it a strong and driving momentum. Killer Whale's Italo mix of "Is The Word" rounds things up perfectly - yet again another perfect midtempo beat with some crackling sine-synths that sparkle over the top. A great companion release to an already much-loved album, the remixes really do justice to the material.
Review: Ron Basejam is the alter ego of keyboardist James Baron of Crazy P and Secret Stealth fame. Here he drops his superb full album for Yam Who's ISM label. Fans of Ron include the likes of Gilles Peterson (who put the charismatic ''Into My Life'' on the recent Brownswood Bubblers 5 compilation), DJ Harvey, Dam Funk, The Revenge and Greg Wilson, and it's easy to see why. The album trips through musical genres effortlessly taking elements of the past and fusing them with modern day production techniques. Ron's influences are all represented here, with touches of deep house, disco and melancholic dreamscapes set against jazzual synth funk-fired treatments and vocal sample snippet production. Definitely one to check.