Review: Shockingly, 11 years has passed since Dave Lee released his sole album under the disco-powered Doug Willis alias, "Doug's Disco Brain". The two CD set featured versions of cuts he'd released under the pseudonym over the previous 15 years. Here it comes to digital download in newly expanded form, with the original set - a mixture of tidy instrumental re-edits, sample-fired disco-house cuts and typically boisterous peak-time groovers - being accompanied by various new, rare and forgotten remixes. With 32 high quality tracks to wade through, picking highlights is tough, though our favourites include the percussion and horn-heavy "You Should Be Dubbing", the soaring disco-house brilliance of "Doug's Place", the silly-but-sensational "Disco Owl" and the Clavinet-happy brilliance of the Re-Tide & Moon Rocket Remix of "Crystal Lover".
Review: Montenegran producer Sasha Mitich returns to Serbia's Disco Fruit with his second album proper, which follows 2018's 'Disko Adriatiko'. We're in nu-disco/disco-house territory as opposed to straight-up 70s pastiche - in fact it's 80s boogie/electrofunk, rather than 70s disco per se, that's the most obvious influence, particularly on cuts like 'Pray For Another Day'. But the album's perhaps at its most interesting when it crosses over into other musical pastures: there's some fine jazz-funk playing to be heard on Ronnie Laws/Incognito cover 'Always There', for instance, while the standout for this reviewer is jazz-fuelled deep houser 'Sound Of The Rain' - think St Germain jamming with the Average White Band!
Review: Headed up by Munich machine Alkalino, Audaz returns to bring the heat with another scorcher under the Lolita alias. Hot off last week's volume, '29' brings more respectful edits to the table, which are all expertly engineered for DJ use by the ever reliable label chief and his many associates. Go deep down into the cosmic hole on "281" which is sure to get your hands jiving, get down (and sporty) to the low slung funk of "283", enjoy the long hot sexy nights of summer from as far and wide as the Bavarian capital all the way to the 'Windy City' on "285", while elsewhere the timeless classic disco vibe of "287" will get you on the right track. But if that doesn't, the words of wisdom from a right music legend certainly will on "289"
Review: Audaz returns with this week's installment in their impressive Lolita series, taking the razor to the tape and presenting some respectful edits for maximum dancefloor impact. Munich-based Alkalino & Co. are up to number 30 in the series now, and it's jam packed full of disco goodies. Go deep into the outerzone (with bells on) with "291", then you'll definitely feel alright on the sexy vocal classic "293", or, you can get seriously cosmic (like a love machine) on "295". Elsewhere, feel the native love on the euphoric "297", or get low slung towards the end - with some good ol fashioned soul classics on "299" and "300" respectively.
Review: There's something impressively "matter of fact" about Audaz's "Lolita" series, which offers up numbered, untitled re-edits with no information about their origin or the producer behind them (it's most likely label boss Alkalino, but that's not been confirmed). This fifth selection brings offers up another 10 slabs of dancefloor heat that ranges from sneaky revisions of well-known party anthems (see Prince re-rub "042" and the vaguely familiar 80s soul goodness of the D-Train style synth warmth that is "043"), to strong rearrangements of lesser known boogie, Italo-disco and AOR disco workouts. Highlights include the breezy disco-funk of "044", the end-of-night haziness of "046" and the snaking sax lines and Latin rhythms of "047".
Review: This latest installment in Audaz's 'Lolita' re-edit series opens with the Soul II Soul-biting '101', and also reworks cuts from reggae legend Little Roy (his take on Nirvana's 'Come As You Are' provides the basis for '107'), electro pioneers Freestyle (1985's 'Don't Stop The Rock' becomes '108') and 70s soul outfit The Moments ('110' revisits 1974 jam 'Girls'). The source material for most of the rest of the EP has us beat, but this time out it's mostly actual soul, funk and disco tracks that have come in for re-editing (rather than rock or pop classics), which means that while that fuzzy warm feeling that comes with the familiar may be in short supply, dancefloor appeal certainly isn't!
Review: Over the course of his 18-year career, Partyfine founder Yuksek has been moving steadily towards a musically rich, mature and detailed sound that draws much from his vintage influences (think disco, boogie, jazz-funk and so on). "Nosso Ritmo", his new album, is arguably the logical conclusion of his journey so far. Rich in warm live instrumentation (bass, keys, synths etc), crunchy disco/electrofunk beats and a wealth of stylish lead vocals (provided by a string of guest singers), the set sees the French producer deliver an attractive, ear-pleasing collection of cuts that strike a near perfect balance between radio-friendly disco-pop hooks, peak-time dancefloor weight and celebratory afternoon cheeriness. The result is a hugely impressive album that could well propel Yuksek to genuine crossover success.
Review: Alongside the likes of DP, DJ Falcon, Bob Sinclair and Etienne De Crecy during the height of the French Touch sound (heavily filtered disco loops set to tough house beats) were the mighty Cassius. So invested in the late '90s zeitgeist were they, Cassius went so far to name their debut album 1999! This album was huge that year and here were revisit it in remastered form (plus some extra goodies too). Highlights include the urgent shuffle of the title track, the awesome 808 electro jam "Crazy Legs" and the legendary Les Rhythmes Digitales 'Dreamix' of "Feeling For You." C'est bon
Review: The prolific Fabiolous Barker gets his eager little re-edit mitts on a further 16 vintage cuts as he serves up the 99th EP in the long-running 'Katakana Edits' series. Among the tracks getting the treatment this time around are Prince & The New Power Generation's 'Push', Chris Rea's 'Josephine', The Michael Zager Band's 'Let's All Chant' and Perucho Conde's 'La Cotorra', an evergreen Latin funk nugget from 1980 that was penned as a Venezuelan "answer" to Sugarhill Gang's 'Rapper's Delight'. Some fairly obvious choices there, but the rest of the EP draws on more obscure disco/funk/boogie sources, so dive on in and enjoy!
Review: They've been teasing it for a while, but finally New York disco fusionists Phenomenal Handclap Band have finally released the new album we've been promised for some time. Somewhat remarkably, "PHB" is their first full-length excursion for nine years. Bringing together recent club hits ("Remain Silent", "Judge Not" and "Jail") with a string of similarly ear-pleasing songs, the set's 11 tracks mix a loose-limbed NYC disco sensibility with nods towards arpeggio-driven nu-disco, chunky funk-rock, summery electrofunk (see the rather delicious "Do What You Like"), dreamy pitched-down pop ("Travellers Prayer"), gospel and Daft Punk-ish cheeriness (the radio-friendly goodness of "Riot"). As you'd expect, the arrangements, performances and production are all top notch, with even the more sanguine songs coming laden with DJ-friendly percussion breaks and heavyweight sections guaranteed to rock dancefloors.
Review: Jan Schulte aka Bufiman drops his debut album on Dekmantel, and it's a thing of cosmic beauty. There's the odd ball groove of "Galaxy", on "Sara Sara", he tackles electronic boogie with great flair and "Hoolock Rock" is a superb slice of spaced out disco. However, Schulte's project is not just concerned with revisiting existing styles, and he seems to be just as content when teasing out weird and wonderful new hybrids. These are articulated most impressively on the frazzled acid and steely drums of "Blow Your Mind", the dreamy down tempo drums and tropical sounds of "News From The Treetops" and the sludgy electro funk on "Langsam Aber Slowly".
Review: When Bruno "Patchworks" Hovart sets his sights on creating an authentic tribute to a vintage style, the results are invariably excellent. That's certainly the case with this debut album from his Violaa project, which utilizes a swathe of live players - and vocalists of African and Caribbean origin - to successfuly replicate the hot and sticky sounds of Afro-disco and tropical disco. Most will already know the brilliant single "Spies Are Watching Me", but there are plenty of other standout cuts throughout On Te L'avait Dit. Check, for starters, the Trinidadian disco hustle of "Vampire", the William Onyeabor-goes-disco flex of "Tomowa", and the lilting Afro-funk brilliance of "Jungle Fire".
Review: Audaz certainly seem keen to get these 'Lolita' re-edits out there: this third installment follows hot on the heels of Vol 2, which only landed last week! Once again there are 10 tracks to choose from, with the source material once again ranging from vintage funk, soul and disco to 80s pop and beyond. '021' is based on an unknown cover of the Timmy Thomas/Sade classic 'Why Can't We Live Together' and '022' reworks The Floaters' mellow soul classic 'Float On', while '026' (source familiar-sounding but unidentified!) has an EBM/Italo kinda feel and '025' loops up The Detroit Emeralds' 1972 funk/soul gem 'Baby Let Me Take You (In My Arms)'.
Review: If you've been following Audaz's "Lolita" edit series - thought, but not confirmed, to be the work of main man Alkalino - then you'll already know that you get a lot of bang for your buck, as well as some inspired reworks of unlikely, overlooked and lesser-celebrated tracks from across the musical spectrum. Volume 25 continues in a similar vein, with highlights including the rushing 130 BPM disco hedonism of "241", the colossal percussive builds and heavy dub-disco bass of "243" (a stripped-back, all-action revision of a leftfield NYC disco classic), the tactile wonder that is the loved-up disco niceness of "246" and the wild electric piano solos of "248", a largely instrumental revision of a breathy, sought-after disco classic that's been stripped of its' wide-eyed female lead vocal.
Review: Over the years Daniele Baldelli has released quite a few albums, though it would be fair to say that none are anywhere near as good as this terrific collaboration with fellow Italian scene legend Marco Fratty. The genius of "Oil Painting" lies in the pair's ability to fuse chugging, typically cosmic grooves and mind-altering synthesizer motifs with the hot-to-trot grunt of funk-rock and disco-funk. It's a template that guarantees a string of high quality cuts from start to finish, with our favourites including the arpeggio-driven throb of organ-heavy smasher "Steam Engine", the melodious dub disco flex of "Jasmine Flavour", the Cymande tribute "Slinky Funk", the eye-closed rock guitar solos and trippy cosmic disco grooves of "Column", and the Nu Guinea-on-steroids flex of "Positive Flow".
Review: Rhode Island-based Katakana Edits bring us the 98th installment in this long-running series, and once more we're in the hands of Morlack, who's contributed no fewer than 14 previous volumes. The French DJ/producer has dug pretty deep for source material: 'Cali Style' bites Eddy Grant's 'California Style', the Jimmy Castor Bunch's 1975 novelty funker 'King Kong' gets a light-touch refix and 'L.Cats' gives The Cure an unexpected breakbeat makeover, but that's about as much as we can tell you! The rest of the EP draws on unidentified soul, funk and boogie nuggets, many of them with non-Anglophone vocals.
Review: Album number six here from the northeast of England's finest neo-soul combo Smoove & Turrell. Coming like all five of its predecessors on the mighty Jalapeno Records, 'Stratos Bleu' sees the Gateshead gang exploring a slightly wider range of musical territory: 'This Time', for instance, operates at a soulful house tempo, while 'E.P.' has an almost Underworld-ish, indie-dance kinda feel. Synths n' samples play a more prominent role than on previous albums, too - though John Turrell's distinctive tonsils remain front and centre at all times, so existing fans needn't worry too much!
Review: Sasha Mitich is a native of Kotor in Montenegro, and for the past decade he's been delivering a stream of re-edits and original material drawing on his love of classic disco, soul, funk and boogie. Seven such cuts are gathered together on this EP/mini-album, no fewer than three of which - 'What Have You Done For Me', 'Think Of You' and 'Doesn't Know That' are very playable Janet Jackson re-edits. Elsewhere, 'Rising Sun' features some fine cheesy sax work, 'You're My Kind Of Woman' borrows from Sho Nuff's 1980 boogie gem 'It's Alright', the title track has an 80s Miami feel and 'Superstar' reworks Amadeo's 'Moving Like A Superstar' from 1977.
Review: No 19 in the series and Audaz's team of hard-working re-edit elves show no signs of slacking off just yet! This latest instalment is very much the proverbial game of two halves, with the first four tracks looking to 80s synth-pop and Italo sources for inspiration: Visage's 'Move Up' provides the basis for '181' and '183' is all Moroder throb and vocodered vocal, while '184' throws us a Dire Straits-shaped curveball that leads nicely into a second half drawing on some very eclectic source material, including Johnny Cash ('189'), Roisin Murphy ('190') and Cheri's 1982 disco/boogie hit 'Murphy's Law'.
Review: Audaz serve up a second set of re-edits by the mysterious Lolita. Whether label boss Alkalino or an anonymous backroom boffin are to thank we couldn't say, but whoever it is they take on an impressive range of source material, from Gene Pitney ('020') to 80s synth-poppers Alphaville ('013') via Talking Heads ('019'), Stargard ('016'), Laura Branigan ('014') and even a cover of Hank Williams' country classic 'Kaw-Liga' by new wave weirdos The Residents ('017') - all of which are given a druggy, chuggy makeover for today's nu-disco floors, with '015' (a take on 1979's 'Marathon Runner' by August Darnell and Bob Blank's Aural Exciters project) a particular standout.
Review: Ten more re-edits from Audaz's mysterious Lolita here. No idea what the source for opener '071' was but it's ended up as bluesy, organ- and harmonica-driven house stomper in the vein of Lemon Interrupt's classic 'Big Mouth', and sets the tone nicely for an EP that packs some killer dancefloor grooves, including a sterling re-edit of Geraldine Hunt's 1980 disco gem 'Can't Fake The Feeling' ('076'), a throbbing, Balearic take on 'Another Brick In The Wall' ('073'), the white-socked boogie of '077' and the driftaway space-lounge loveliness of '078' - though a beefed-up take on 'Oh What A Night' ('075') is probably one for the wedding jocks...
Review: With a trademark sound that gleefully joins the dots between fuzzy New York "no wave", heavy mutant disco, dubbed-out space disco, Afrobeat and percussion-rich South American styles of music, The Mauskovic Dance Band is a unique proposition. That much is clear from this eponymous mini-album on Soundway, which wraps weighty dub disco basslines, densely layered percussion, spaced-out vocals and meandering 1970s style Moog synthesizer lines around heavy rhythms that variously doff a cap to Afrobeat, Cumbia and other indigenous South American styles. The plentiful musical highlights include the stripped-back percussive intensity of "Percussione & Spazio Sounds", the intergalactic Afro-disco throb of "Space Disco Machine" and the chugging, hallucinatory heaviness of closing cut "It's The Wrong Goodie".
Review: At the time this review was written it's 12 hours until the official release of Cantoma's second studio album! Released on Highwood Recordings, Into Daylight presents the fourth studio LP for Phil Mason's project and second for the label following others on Leng and Horizon before that. With warm touches of Spanish guitar gracing tracks like "Solando", "Road Home" and "Verbana", you'll find cool pop, folk and jazz in numbers like "Another Place" to disco strings, smooth brass sections and African percussion throughout "Kasoto" and "The Mountain". Best enjoyed at Sunset!
Review: A veteran of esteemed edit labels like ChopShop, Sound Exhibitions and Hot Digits, Dave Gerrard is back on Masterworks Music with the Chorley FM-style EP "Sounds Of The 80s". Going straight for the party jugular, he tackles some megahits of the decade of excess - dubbing out Belouis Some's sleaze-popper "Imagination" and speeding up Sly Fox's pounding electro funk stomp "Lets Go All the Way". Then it's time for a subtle tweak of The Pointer Sisters much loved "Automatic", Depeche Mode's "Just Cant Enough" gets a percussive makeover and The Art Of Noise's proto industrial chaos is intensified on "Who's Afraid".
Review: It has been quite the musical transformation of Australian west coast legend Greg Packer. A veteran of Perth's electronic music scene, who long time championed the sounds of drum & bass/jungle for a couple of decades, he created the the Dr. Packer alias as an outlet for his new found love of disco and has since enjoyed some of the biggest success in his career thus far. Ahead of a full-length album coming on Glitterbox Recordings, the reigning king of disco re-edits presents four of his versions of soulful dancefloor favourites old and new, giving a flavour of what's to come from the LP. From the uplifting soul power of LaTrece's "I Want To Thank You" (Dr Packer Re Edit), a downright electrifying slo-mo take on a funky house classic to "Bad Habit" by ATFC featuring Lisa Millett, and Soul Rebels powerful 'I'll Be Good" featuring Lisa Miller.
Review: Second time around for John Talabot's brilliant debut album Fin, an expansive exercise in woozy dark-pop, off-kilter dream house and inventive IDM. This time round, the album has been padded out using a mix of previously released remixes, unheard versions and previously unreleased bonus cuts. There are some real gems among the nine additional tracks, from Bullion's breezy, off-kilter pop take on "Destiny" and the shimmering electronica of "Tragedial", to a hitherto unheard 'album version' of Talabot's seminal breakthrough cut, "Matilda's Dream". The droning synth-pop of "I Want Tonight" also impresses, as does the skittering rhythms and bold synths of "Zanzibar (80tapemix)". In truth, it's all pretty hot.
Review: Although Ludovic Llorca has released albums under his other production aliases (the most recent being 2017's jazz-funk set "The Garden" under his longest-running pseudonym, Llorca), "Unbalanced" marks his first full-length outing as Art of Tones - some 13 years after he launched the project on 20:20 Vision. It's naturally a wonderfully warm and positive set, with the veteran French producer making great use of dusty jazz, soul, funk and disco samples throughout. There's plenty of breezy, feel good club tracks to be found dotted throughout - see "Keep On Having Fun", the electric piano-fired drive of "Where One Is", the hypnotic "Grow" and classic gospel deep house of "Grow", for starters - alongside a handful of hazier downtempo cuts that recall the early days of his production career in the mid 1990s.
Review: Given the quality of Session Victim's 2012 debut album, Haunted House of House, expectations are naturally high for this follow-up. Like its predecessor, See You When You Get There takes a widescreen approach to deep house, with the German duo drawing on a myriad of influences, from jazz ("Hey Stranger"), soundtracks ("Crystal Maze") and evocative downtempo beats (the impeccable title track), to Atmosfear-ish jazz-funk ("The Most Beautiful Divorce In The World") and, most notably, classic Balearica (see the druggy pop of "Hyuwee" and deliciously slow "EOS Place". Best of all, though, is "Never Forget", a glorious blues-house epic laden with smoky vocal samples and thrilling piano motifs.
Review: Bam: 15 massive edits from Alpaca crew all in one hefty, hairy hit. How many can you spot? How many can you play in one set? How many more of these words are you going to read before you press play and hear for yourself? If you know Alpaca, you'll know the deal; deep digs and big faves all respectfully beefed and tweaked for your DJ pleasure. From the roxy foxy yearning of "This Is More" to the upbeat glory of "Don't Call Dr Nick" via "Labour Of Love", an edit so percussive and funky it'll have you crying out loud. That's barely scratching the surface... You're going to have a lot of fun with these this Christmas.