Review: Beatnik City is one of the chief exponents of the Northern Soul sound and its crate digging culture. Here they present what they dub "BarBeat", which is a good way to describe the non-purist approach of the edits featured - perfect fodder for bars rather than big room clubs. Perfect examples of this approach include "Finti Cents" where In Da Club gets taken back into time to a shimmying Motown backing groove or the 90s-hip-hop-goes-retro-big-beat vibes of "Jurassic Jive".
Review: Brazilian beat fetishists, Beatnik City, are back proudly presenting a long player from Rio De Janeiro's best kept secret, Dr. K. They claim he's literally the city's best-kept secret - having tirelessly produced sizzling hot bossa nova infused beats for almost 15 years! this new album should change all that, boasting 17 fresh jams that fuse samba rhythms, a pinch of big beat goodness, a smidgeon of brass and lashings of carnival-friendly retro Latin vibes.
Review: Rising stars Groovy Joy and Sebastian Roser have already made an impression on the pant-swinging scene with remixes of the likes of The Puppini Sisters and Vassili Gemini. Levelling up once again they make their debut on Beatnik with two stamp-happy prohibition party pieces: "Fe Fo Fu" is as giant as its name suggests with R&B vocals, tight doo-wop backing vocals and firing bluesy horns. "Meeny Mo" is equally pleasing thanks to its deep driving 4/4 and infectious playground vocal that will have everyone singing along in seconds. Holy mola.
Review: International funk barons Beatnik City invite new member Kuhjo into the fold: the Cuban heel-clicking samba swinger "Habanera Swing" is heated enough to keep you warm throughout the coldest of months while "Lazy Fighter" reminds us of the lyrical majesty of Doug Lazy over a super-swinging horn-based breakbeat groove. Instant classics.
Review: Newcomer Ree Keen has slowly been building a solid rep for his edit skills over the course of a handful of releases. This latest missive, "EP1" features four new cuts: the loose and sloppy hip-house jam "Like That", the party breaker (featuring an appearance from The Beatles!) "Get Break", the Missy Elliot meets Mungo Jerry jive of "Summerwork" and Afro-breaks shuffler, "Calypop".
Review: Re Keen's arrival onto the broken beat scene has been a breath of fresh air, and has undoubtedly made even the most cynical of dance enthusiasts into converted followers. With an opening tune like "Makeeni", however, it's easy to see why: there's funk and good vibes spewing from every corner of its seductive little groove, and it goes so far as being able to appeal to both the jazz heads and the disco deviants. It's an excellently executed piece of dance oddity. Now, for the second slice of slapped-up funk, "I Say I Love You" offers a sweet, hummable groove that pays homage to the 60s rock and roll sound, sprinkled with a bit of vintage surf soul for that extra bit of boogie-woogie.
Review: For this, their inaugural release, Beatnik City round up a pan-international squad (including British, Italians and Brazilians) in what proves to be a great homage to 'the world's sexiest city'. There's seven tracks here - all of which look back to the hazy golden 1960s and conjures up vintage Copacabana vibes through a combination of salsa and Latin loungey sounds and melodies all welded to tougher modern breaks for a contemporary slant.
Review: Two months have passed since their inaugural volume and Beatnik City return with another chop-walloping, swash-buckling party frenzy. Their emphasis remains fully focused on the big beat vibe as each of the contributors boil down myriad genres from blues to rock to roots to classic b-boy hip-hop and recode them around swinging mid tempo breakbeats. Each cut will massage any gathering you perform to, but stand out cuts include The Captain's Toots-tweaked skank-slammer "Feel Alright", the slower, almost Todd Terje style blues stomp of "Beatbox Baby" and the unabashed sing-along feels of Rory Hoy's "Runaway Again". Unfettered booty business aimed directly at the cheeriest parties.
Review: Crate digging in the Northern Soul scene is the gift that keeps on giving - an endless quest for rarer and rarer gems. Here Beatnik present a new collection that features nine classic Motown and Northern Soul cuts which have been sensitively retouched by some contemporary talent. Highlights include the celebratory, fizzy soul jam "Soul On Fire" by Shaka Loves You (yes, the one sampled by Beyonce), a Junkie XL-style makeover of Martha & The Vandellas on "Nowhere To Go" and Mak & Mr Bristow's muscled up take on The Rascals - "Olympic Lovin".
Review: Should you want to turn your place into a swinging cantina let Beatnik City's first release of The Latin Leaks be your soundtrack, and slam those tequila's to "Uhh! Ahh". There's some sampled Wu Tang thrown in among a clamour of drums in "Shimmy Cumbia", while tempos are lowered in "Lift Ma Soul". For some electro-swing vibes check out "Golden Boy" and get tropical on "Real Smooth". Consider your next fiesta sorted!
Review: Destination 60s as Beatnik City follow up last year's breakthrough compendium "The Rio District" with an exploration of pop roots, contemporised by swinging breakbeats and premium party signatures. Instantly recognisable jams include the ill behaviour of Ree Keen's take on "Louie Louie" and the ongoing beat mischief of Fab Samperi's homage to Sonny & Cher but the slightly less obvious versions shouldn't be overlooked either... The frenetic harmonica-snapping of Leygo's "Loose Wheel" and the lounge-writhing slipper jazz of Mad Doc's "Nori's Gem". Authentic big beat business.
Review: Almost one year ago exactly, 'international funk barons', Beatnik City introduced us to their first selection of sensitively retouched northern souls gems on the first volume of this occasional series. Now having fully ingested all the goodness contain therein, we're ready for the next helping. There are ten new wonders to get lost in here. Highlights include hearing The Spinners' timeless melodies given a light and breezy Latin makeover on "Disco Shame", BadboE's smokin' breaks rework of a Velvelettes classic on "Breaking Down Motown" and finally Leygo's percussion-lead stomper, "Feels Good".