Review: Though known mostly for jazz- and swing-infused grooves, French producer Minimatic takes a detour into hip-hop pastures here, albeit there are also noticeable bossa/lounge influences in play. 'That Golden Bossa Hop' brings to mind the output of Bristol crew The Allergies, 'Drop It Like It's Hot' reworks the Snoop Dogg classic of the same name in a Latin jazz stylee, 'Cognac Wanksta' is a laidback, blunted affair, 'De La Bossa' recalls vintage Galliano from the early 90s, and bonus cut 'Ladi Dadi Doo' has a rawer, demo-like feel. If you love both golden age hip-hop and jazz, you'll dig this EP for sure.
Review: Drop your pants, shake ya hair! Smoove's ode to thy has landed (RIP Phife Dawg). Replete with vocal snippets from both Dave's Letterman and Chappelle, to all matter of rappers, talk show hosts and MCs, Smoove's two-part A Quest Called Tribe EP cuts a stroll through the funk and sample-based pastures of instrumental hip hop and beatmaking. Acid jazz and mixtape progressions to boot!
Review: Resense serve up two tracks that owe a clear debt to party-style hip-hop from the 90s: think A Tribe Called Quest, Arrested Development or more specifically Jurassic 5, whose vocal from 'In The House' forms the basis for Lord Funk & Moar's 'Hip Hop Control' (even if that track did come out in 2006), with the original's electrofunk backdrop replaced by a jazzier groove complete with breathy flutes. Gelatine Thugs' 'Do The Don't Stop' then takes us into jazzier pastures still, while biting a snatch of vocal from a certain Mr M. Jackson. Floors that move to the likes of The Allergies or Speedometer will lap these two cuts up.
Review: Phibes has a track record of repeatedly delivering merciless mayhem and this latest jam on the aptly named Bomb Strikes is no different. Each of the three new tracks featured here is produced to be loud and party demolishing. "Raw 2 The Floor" is bonkers, with a demented build-up and vintage Timbaland-style proto trap beats. "Ain't That Fresh" features the classic eponymous hip-hop sample (as made famous by Les Rhythmes Digitales) getting chopped up and sprinkled over an edgy breakbeat. Lastly "Come To Get Down" riffs off classic daisy age hip-hop - all funky drummer beats and that party vibes "Whooo, yeah!" sample.
Review: Brand new to the Bomb Strike block, Swiss duo lay down two stupendously cheeky bootlegs: "Dirty Banger" antes up with a sweaty MOP / Redman fusion over a greasy, sleazy glitch groove while "Rock Me" goes right back to 1975 and dusts off your dad's favourite Doobie Brothers album. Complete with a stripped back dub version, "Rock Me" works so well you could be convinced it's a totally original production. Rocking.
Review: After the immediate success of his high profile collaboration with Dynamite MC, Bazza Ranks returns with another box of breakbeat goodness on "That Stuff" in collaboration with Imagine This. This one if for the singalong fans, combining funky breakbeat riffs with catchy lyricism to great effect.,On remix duty The Allergies rework the track with some soulful backing, whilst WBBL throw together a complete dubstep infused electro refurb.
Review: Vandal's Modern Soul compendiums are now a summer essential. Writhing in the softer focus hazier feels of their family's output, it's a chance for guys who usually roll out, roll up instead. And no one's rolling looser than the fast-rising Shield who's "Skippy Vinyl" is a horn-squeezing, day dreaming neo soul, bottom-heavy jam of the highest order. Lenzman, meanwhile, adds a little Dutch magic to "What She Wants" by re-focusing the vocal and adding a little more weight behind the harmonies. Good for the soul.
Review: Breakerz Banquet switch the feast to a BBQ flex with a quartet of laid back summer vibes. Fresh from fronting the label launch, El Bomba takes the lead with "Party Your Ass Off". A refreshingly honest ode to smoking, drinking and fun times, it's an instant smiler. Knuckle Fingerz plays the spot-the-sample game with a whole range of well-known lyrical hooks and a Tribe Called Quest level groove. Cris Crucial plays a similar rap homage with added Dee-lite and Maars. Finally the whole team collide for the 'banger' of the bunch... Muscular drums, a clinically obese groove and party chants a-go-go, if you're not popping within 30 seconds, your volume function is faulty. Yummy.
Review: Famed for their Stank Soul Edits vinyl series, Mako & Mr Bristo return on Funk Blasters with the mightily titled, Electric Bongo Disco. The name captures the vibes on here pretty well - four vintage cuts loved for their breaks gently souped up for modern dance floors. Opener is "Sugar Hill Bongos", which lovingly updates a Sugarhill Gang classic. Elsewhere "Hype Fresh Mine" is poppy disco meets hip house, "Refried Beans" is a sweet vintage B-boy gem and "Electric Ruffneck" really goes there, sampling Edie Grant and somehow making it actually sound cool! Now that's talent.