Review: Britain's premier disco wookie, Chewy Rubs, has decided to launch his own label, Bandolier Records. Here, he delivers the debut release, an enjoyable mixture of original tracks and sneaky, peak-time re-edits. He begins with the mid-tempo throb of "Baby Get Down", a colourful, bass-heavy fusion of hip-house, boogie and warehouse-friendly deep house, before charging towards peak-time via the classic disco/sparkling nu-disco fusion of "Disco Chicago". "Strange Love" is a pulsating, mind-altering re-edit rich in heavy bass, rising orchestration and cut-up freestyle vocal samples, while fine closer "Watch Out" (co-produced by Charles Christian) sits somewhere between hypnotic, Afro-tinged house and Clavinet-sporting disco-chug.
Review: Like fictional super-spy James Bond, Chewy Rubs prefers his re-edits "Shaken Not Stirred". "Took My Love Away (Chewy Rubs Deep Disco Vox"), the opening cut from the Star Wars-loving producer's latest EP, is every bit as potent and tipsy as a pint of Vodka Martini, with deliciously glassy-eyed female vocal snippets rising above a loopy disco-house groove. Similarly impressive is chugging, mind-altering throb-job "Love A Groove (Chewy Rubs Extend-it)", where spacey synthesizer arpeggio lines and quirky vocal samples rise above a pulsating, mid-'80s dancefloor groove. Elsewhere, "Garage Disco III" is a electric piano-heavy revision of a mid-80s NYC house jam rearranged in cahoots with pal Moke, while "Rake The Moon (Chewy Rubs Space Dust Rub)" is a creepy, ever-growing, house-friendly tweak of a weirdo space disco workout.
Review: Since launching the Bandolier digi-label earlier this year, hairy scalpel sort Chewy Rubs has served up some seriously fine cuts. Predictably, there's plenty more dancefloor gold to be found on the rework Wookie's latest four-track missive. "Garage Disco II", a rolling peak-time sequel that wraps new synth parts and sampled disco orchestration around a seriously muscular, shirts-off peak-time groove, sets the tone, before our hero joins forces with Moke for the disco-fied deep house roll of "Control Z". He returns to straight re-edit pastures on the fiendishly heavy, low-slung dub disco pump of "I Didn't Know", while "Hanging By A String" is a wonderfully cheery and sun-kissed exploration of orchestral disco pastures.
Review: Hirsure, Star Wars-loving scalpel fiend Chewy Rubs is one of the disco scene's more reliable re-editors. Over the years, he's delivered superb floor-friendly re-rubs for most of the scene's most checked labels, often prioritizing percussive grooves and low-slung basslines. That's exactly what you get with "Garage Disco (Chewy Rubs Dub)", the opening gambit from the disco Wookie's latest EP. The track is built around heavy, rubbery punk-funk style bass, dense pots-and-pans percussion and some mind-altering dub effects, but retains a strong link with peak-time dancefloors throughout. Elsewhere, Moke lends a hand on the driving, dub disco-meets-disco-house bounce of "Keep Improving On (Bubble Dub)", while "Somebody That Loves You (T&B Perc Dub)" is low-slung, bass-heavy dub disco delight.
Review: The ever-prolific Chewy Rubs issues forth four more re-edited vintage dancefloor nuggets from his secret underground lair. The funk-fuelled boogie of 'Furry Mover' (a rework of One On One's 'Body Music' from 1981) opens proceedings, followed by 'Get Up Off Your Arse' (original source unknown), which has another big PHAT bassline, dramatic synth stabs and a western movie-like trumpet/bugle line. 'Love Your Glow' has an early 80s feel and much use of filters and FX, while completing the EP is 'Get Enough', a more smooth-rollin' affair that harks back to first-generation disco-house of the mid-90s.
Review: Hairy heroics: Chewy returns to the controls of his own new label Bandolier with four more expert edits. "Here Comes The Law" struts with brilliant momentum that's both gradual and dynamic before paying off with big funk sleaze. Elsewhere "The Game" is more of a hip-slinker with its trouser dropping slinky bassline, alluring percussion and sexual come-from-nowhere sax antics while "Get Some Lovin'" is the ultimate soaking wet chugger with lolloping slap-bass and classic loopy discoid vocal shots. Finally "Doing It Tonight" goes back to the source with brazen orchestral blasts over an addictive stripped back groove before dropping into a very well-known hook mid-way. The perfect tool for the best creative DJs, Chewy's got you covered.
Review: Tom Vine AKA Chewy Rubs fires forth four more salvoes from his disco machine gun. 'Disco Hook' gets the ball rolling, a lively affair that sports some killer space disco stabs and a looped "disco music" vocal, and that recalls Joey Negro's work with The Trammps. 'Party Tool (Chewy Rubs G-Funk Disco Dub)' is another one that doesn't take much explaining, given that the relevant keywords are right there in the title; ditto 'Garage Disco IV', which rocks a super-infectious bassline not dissimilar to last year's 'Sombrero' and old-school "jack!" vocal samples, while finally 'Hypnotizin', as you've probably already guessed, borrows from Raw Silk.
Review: UK-based Bad Barbie teams up with Chewy Rubs to deliver more of her disco re-edits here on the 'Locked In' EP, with forays into funk, house and reggae. She's known for her radio show on Kane FM, where her love of music and lively personality get a chance to shine, not to mention maintaining a rather curious Instagram account. Partner in crime Chewy Rubs is no stranger to the scene either, and heads up this very label: Bandolier Records. Get utterly hypnotised by the funked-up disco loops of "Breakout" which is sure to turn up the heat on the dancefloor, while the deeper and more low-slung groove attack of "Normalism" is reminiscent of the Chicken Lips/Bearfunk style - perfect boogie down vibes to play at sunset!
Review: For those who didn't live through the '90s, it was once the done thing to refer to ravers by their rhyming slang title: "Quavers". Therefore this collaborative EP from Chewy Rubs and Fingerman is aimed fairly and squarely at disco ravers. The title track brilliantly sets the tone, peppering a low-slung disco-house groove with intergalactic electronics, echoing spoken word samples and delay-laden string stabs. "Theory Funker" is a lesson in disco-tech heaviness - all swirling samples and acid-fired electronics - while "Maintain the Groove" is a lolloping dance into hazy dub disco territory. The most "disco-rave" cut of all, though, is closer "Maintain The Acid", a mind-altering re-make of the above cut smothered in psychedelic TB-303 acid lines and echoing disco samples.
Review: In between promoting the latest Star Wars flick and fighting the evil Empire, hairy re-editor Chewy Rubs has somehow found time to join forces with old pal North Laine for a second collaborative EP on Bandolier. They begin by offering a punchy instrumental take on Deodato's horn-heavy jazz-funk era gem "Night Cruiser" (here re-named "Night Cruising") before successfully looping up a soaring, over-the-top disco classic ("Second Chance"). "Biological" is a fine, floor-friendly revision of a lesser-known swamp funk gem, while closing cut "Lovin'U" is a slightly tooled-up version of a glassy-eyed '80s soul sing-along. As the old saying goes, this EP is "all killer, no filler".
Review: The Chuggin Edits crew is renowned for serving up, well, chugging disco reworks. We were a little surprised, then, when we discovered that they've pushed up the tempo a little on this latest Bandolier excursion. This is not a criticism, though, because all three tracks hit the spot. We're particularly enjoying "I Get Satisfied", a bouncy, brilliantly edited and subtly tooled-up version of a jazz guitar and Hammond organ-powered funk workout slightly reminiscent of Mr Scruff's "Get a Move On". Elsewhere, "Boogie Business" is a densely percussive, trumpet-heavy jazz-funk-neets-disco-house slammer, while "Funky Music" is a hazy, flute-heavy chunk of summery, mid-tempo bliss.
Review: The force is strong in this debut E.P from Double F.O.G, a debutant nu-disco Jedi operating from Bandolier's hidden base on Tatooine. The intergalactic action begins with "Death Star Express", which is the kind of all-electronic, synthesizer-heavy nu-disco workout that would get storm troopers hot under the collar at Darth Vader's bi-weekly discoid rave-ups. Despite the presence of chunkier, house style beats, "R2 Disco" has a more classic synth-disco feel, with swirling electronic strings and Clavinet lines combining to impressive effect. "Who's Your Daddy?" is an even more driving, funk-fuelled affair full of elastic synth-bass, vocoder vocals and bubbly melodies, while the heavier but similarly minded closer "It's Time To Go" sounds like it was created to get Ewoks break-dancing at their regular forest jams.
Review: Bandolier presents a second salvo from fast-rising disco Jedi Double F.O.G, whose label debut last autumn remains one of the nascent imprint's strongest collections of cuts. Pleasingly, there's plenty to set the pulse racing this time round, too. Check first the hypnotic, mind-altering bump of "Hot & Wet", where punk-funk style sax loops and mangled vocalizations ride a rubbery mutant disco groove, before turning your attention to the electric piano-laden reggae-nu-disco fusion of "Who's Afraid of Disko Dreng", a wild but hugely attractive affair that defies easy categorization. Finally, the mysterious producer reaches for the cowbells on druggy and driving closer "I Do Anything", a throbbing late night fusion of angular arpeggio bass, mind-altering motifs and dreamy chords.
Review: "Shall we go to the disco?" asks opener 'Do The Disco', but it's a fairly rhetorical question because after hearing the four tracks here, resistance to such an idea is gonna be pretty much futile! 'Do The Disco' is a looping affair but with a sound palette that's wide-ranging enough for things not to get boring. 'No Strutting' is a more contemplative, introspective kinda cut (albeit still very struttable, despite the title), while the instrumental and fairly self-explanatory 'Pianomania' takes us down a housier route before 'The Starlight' plays us out on a more chilled note - one for the Balearic jocks.
Review: Some records take a little longer than others to really sink in. Take 'Sunken Ship', for instance: why, it could well be a full 30 seconds or so before it has you on your feet! But that simple looping, chugging bassline is a call to the dancefloor if ever we heard one, and once the matching keys come in, at around the two-minute mark, it's game over. Coming a close second to the title track is 'Flower Press', an urgent, pulsating jam with an organ line that's positively straining at the leash, while disco-funker 'Like Electricity' and the slightly housier 'Shifting Sand' complete a very fine package.
Review: We were genuinely impressed by Ian Upfold's first outing on Bandolier last December, so hopes are naturally high for this relatively speedy follow-up. There's a wonderfully languid but elastic feel to opener "Secret Combination", a jolly fusion of Italo-disco style bottom end and cheery nu-disco melodies. Upfold wraps his distinctively lo-fi synthesizer motifs around a slightly wonky, chugging mid-tempo groove on "The Mover", before moving towards breezier nu-disco/disco-house territory on the unflinchingly sunny "Bouncy Castle". If that's not enough to wet the whistle, the Brighton producer offers up a superb climax in the shape of the "Bladerunner"-era Vangelis inspired nu-disco bounce of "Lone Wolf".
Review: Synth-y, squelchy contemporary disco bordering on slo-mo house is the order of the day on this four-tracker from rising Brighton producer Ian Upfold. '30 & Rolling' itself foregrounds a hefty walking b-line and Flat Eric-ish wobbles, while 'Sick Day Jam' contains nods to both early prog ? la Guerrilla Records and 80s electro. 'Love's Gonna Get You' then delves into the mists of time for inspiration and comes out clutching a famous Jocelyn Brown vocal from 1987, before 'Natural High' adds a little Balearic flavour with its Italo-house piano and sampled, spoken self-help vocal.
Review: Ian Upfold's first two solo EPs on Bandolier were both rather impressive, so it's no surprise to find that his lasting outing is also packed to the rafters with synth-heavy, left of centre dancefloor treats. We're not quite sure whether they're re-edits or original tracks, but it many ways it doesn't matter; regardless, what you get is superb. Check first the off-kilter broken house beats, double-tracked bass (guitar/TB-303 style acid) and sparse but positive melodic elements of "Second Chance", before admiring the throbbing Italo-style arpeggio bass, droning electronics and heady chords of "Burning Sun". "Two of Everything" sounds like a bubbly Balearic cover of M's "Pop Musik" minus the vocals, while "Rounded Corners" is a chunky bounce through disco-house/deep house/gospel fusion.
Review: The nu-disco scene's favourite Wookee, Chewy Rubs, has dedicated much more time to collaborations of late. He's already joined forces with Fingerman and North Laine, and here shares the results of studio time spent with the previously unheard M.O.K.E. There's much to set the pulse racing throughout, from the rolling nu-disco warmth of EP opener "Echo The Love", where bubbly electronic motifs and surging synth lines ride an elastic groove, to the weirdo vocals and disco-tech vibes of the rather ear-pleasing "Silent Caller". Best of all though is title track "Beam", a fine chunk of 21st century Italo-disco/house fusion full of sparkling refrains, sleazy analogue bass and dreamy, sun-kissed melodies.
Review: Four more vintage gems get a 21st Century makeover on this joint EP from North Laine and the ever-prolific Chewy Rubs. First up is a faithful refresh of Sharon Redd's Prelude classic 'Love How You Feel', which lets Redd's spirited vocal do the heavy lifting. Then there's 'DehctiwS', a beefed-up take on an unknown disco/boogie nugget, followed by 'Let's Take A Ride', wherein Fat Larry's Band's 'Center City' gets a glitzy, shmaltzy reboot. But the MVP award goes to 'Sombrero', which is as infectious and irresistible a slice of stomping, piano- and flute-sprinkled Latin disco as you're likely to come across this year.
Review: Previously best known for offering up a handful of tasty singles on Sleazy Deep, Skeleton Keys pops up on Bandolier with a first solo single in almost 12 months. First up is "Barrio Fever", a wonderfully dubbed-out, bass-heavy and dancefloor-friendly revision of a much-loved disco-era chunk of Latin funk headiness. Skeleton keys has wisely retained many of the key original elements - think glistening guitar riffs, layered percussion and ear-catching horn motifs - while beefing up the bass and adding plenty of delay effects. "Not Whom You Seem" gives a similar sonic treatment to what sounds like an early 80s synth pop/AOR disco workout. It's good, though we still prefer "Barrio Fever".
Review: The clue's in the title with this latest from UK label Bandolier, as Irish producer Richards serves up three slices of Latin-tinged disco. 'Disco Habana' itself is a midtempo, shuffling affair with a fluttering, insistent flamenco guitar line by way of a lead, augmented by female "yeah-yeahs" and the occasional space disco stab. 'Nuances', which follows, is more of a straight-up looping funk groove with a spoken male "I just finally feel I belong somewhere, you know?" vocal sample. Label boss Chewy Rubs then completes the EP with his Breakers Dozen Rub of the latter, which is a little more in-your-face sonically.