Katakana Edits is a label that’s been editing and re-editing disco, funk, breakbeat and broken beat with pure soul and groove since 2012. ‘Made in Earth’, the label has seen dusty and delicious edits from the likes of: Disco Funk Spinner, The Gaff, DJ Laurel, Timewrap, Voodoocuts, Manjah and more.
Review: Katakana Edits regular Morlack steps up to the plate for the latest in the series, bringing with him four reworkings of (at least semi-) forgotten gems from the boogie era. First to get the treatment is T-Connection's 'Groove City' from 1981, swiftly followed by Leon Haywood's 'If You're Lookin' For A Night Of Fun' from 1980. The source material for the other two cuts remains sadly unidentified but 'Musica Americana' has a Mexican or Latin American flava while 'Ready Ur Your Love' is another early 80s-sounding jam with a growling, almost Tom Jones-esque male vocal.
Review: Another week, another episode in the re-edit series that just keeps on giving. Getting the razor-and-tape treatment this time around, courtesy of Brighton's Adam Billingham AKA Fray Bentos, are Evelyn 'Champagne' King's 'Shame' (1977), Class Action's 'Weekend' (1983), George Benson's 'Love X Love' (1980) and Johnny 'Guitar' Watson's 'Superman Lover' (1976). There are tracks on that list where you might think, "It's a brave producer who thinks they could add anything to THAT" - and you'd be correct. All credit to Mr Billingham, then, because he pulls it off with plenty of aplomb and absolutely no sacrilege in sight! Some useful little bullets here.
Review: Hope you've got your soul shoes on because it's time to do some dancefloor struttin' in the company of DJ Laurel, as for this latest installment in the long-running 'Katakana Edits' series he turns to the 60s and 70s for inspiration. Tracks getting the treatment this time out come from Lou Rawls, Gladys Night & The Pips and most notably The Four Tops, who crop up twice - with 1965's 'I Can't Help Myself' and 1972's 'Jubilee With Soul'. Start with 'I Can't Help Myself' if you're of the Northern persuasion, or 'Let Me...' if you're looking for something a lil' funkier.
Review: After a couple of excursions into Latin and world music pastures on recent Kakakana releases, we're back in more straight-up funk/soul territory for Vol 117, which is helmed by Brussels-based Lee Zamah. The source material for these re-edits will have to go sadly unidentified, but 'Body II Body' is a low-slung, sensual groove that's vaguely reminiscent of Salsoul Orchestra classic 'You're Just The Right Size' (despite not actually sounding much like it), while 'Doo Dah' is a livelier, more uptempo funker with layered percussion and some fine keyboard trills. If your floor likes it funky, these two should keep 'em grooving, no question.
Review: Chalk up two 'Katakaka Edits' outings on the bounce for El Paso, as hot on the heels of the soul-flavoured '115', released just a fortnight ago, he brings us four re-edits that look to vintage Latin music, and particularly 60s boogaloo, for inspiration. Leading the charge for this reviewer is 'Spanish Butterfly', which pairs the lead male vocal with melodic female BVs to die for. Elsewhere, pianos and trumpets take centre stage on 'Nuevo Boogaloo' and sparkling vibes/marimba (?) augment the sunny 'Brother & Sisters', before 'Supimos Callarnos' plays us out in far more laidback, lounge-y, almost melancholic style.
Review: Remember that tape/DJ mix/playlist you made - the one where you cobbled together all your most sensual and seductive tracks, to put on when you finally got That Special Someone back to yours? I bet you even called it 'Lights Down Low' or 'The Passion Parlour' or something, didn't you? Yes you did. Well, that's basically what this latest 'Katakana Edits' EP sounds like, as El Paso reworks two soul grooves from days gone by. 'Sociedad' (origin unknown) is a bit Latin-y, while the Joe Bataan-biting 'Cali Woman' is (oddly, given the source) less Latin-y, but with a bit of luck no one's REALLY listening anyway...
Review: DJ Turmix helms the good ship Katakana Edits on this, its 114th voyage. Proceedings open with the raw, percussive 'Together', a reworking of Ray Barretto's 1969 barrio funk cut, before we move on to revisit first Timmy Thomas classic 'Why Can't We Live Together?' from 1972 and then, more bravely, Modern Romance's 'Ay Ay Ay Ay Moosey' from 1981. Next to come under the re-edit scalpel is 'Spooky' - not the Dusty Springfield recording, but an unidentified, male-sung take that's neither Classic IV's original nor Chris Montez's 1968 cover. The EP's then completed by the laidback, tropical-leaning 'Take Trip & Groove With Me'.
Review: There's a distinctly Latin/tropical feel to this latest instalment in the long-running 'Katakana Edits' series. Opener 'Chant Of The Isles' is a languid affair with mournful, Mexican-sounding trumpets and an almost 1940s crooner-style vocal, which a little tactical Googling reveals to be a rework of a 1968 recording for Fania Records by New York-based boogaloo congo player George Guzman. The livelier, spanglier 'Ritzy Mambo', meanwhile, revisits the Salsoul Orchestra cut of the same name from 1976, before closer 'Rumour' (source unknown) plays us out on a similarly shuffling, sunshine-y tip. Ai carumba!
Review: For the 112th edition of the fantastic 'Katakana Edits' series, DJ Turmix is back inside for another fabulous display of international music fusion and intricate sampling displays. We begin our dive with 'Cocinando', a bubbling combination of lively drum arrangements, percussive pulses and groovy brass riffs, followed by the more jungle-like drum designs and smile-inducing melodies of 'Latin Soul'. The whole project lets off a smooth feeling, with each track being processed to absolute perfection, including the old school bass moogs and more hectic breaksy sampling of the next track 'Pow Pow'. The pace then increases to it's most rapid as 'Yeah Baby' delivers a super-sonic display of jungle-drum work and distant LFO warbles to round the EP out with a hectic landing and putting the finishing touches on a masterful display.
Review: The ever-dependable 'Katakana Edits' series rolls on, and while this latest installment might not win PECOE any deep diggin' brownie points, it does pack some very serviceable dancefloor-friendly reworks of classic cuts from days gone by. Leading the charge for this reviewer is 'Ice & Snow', which does unspeakable but very satisfactory things to Led Zeppelin's 'Immigrant Song', but elsewhere you get a fresh take on 'Jingo', 'Grandmaster Mash' fuses 'White Lines' with chunks of the rap from 'The Message', while 'Bold Sister' revisits James Brown's 'Bold Soul Sister' - leaving only the 60s deep funk source for 'You Can't Hide' unidentified.
Review: The unstoppable behemoth that is the 'Katakana Edits' series reaches Vol 110, with regular contributor DJ Laurel back at the controls. The EP opens with 'What About You' and 'Asking For Trouble', both of which draw on sadly unidentified sources - but think 60s soul/deep funk (Georgie Fame, maybe?) for the former, and blues/country-infused 70s soul for the latter. We then fast-forward to the disco and boogie era, with Melba Moore's 'You Stepped Into My Life' (1978) and the Michael Zager Band's 'Don't Sneak On Me' (1980) both getting the Laurel treatment. All four are very playable, making for a strong addition to the Katakana catalogue.
Review: French producer Morlack is at the controls for this latest installment in the 'Katakana Edits' series. On 'Way Out' he reworks a 1982 Steve Arrington track of the same name, while 'Anticipation' mines Mtume's 'Anticipatin'' from 1980, so that's your boogie lovers covered, while those in search of rawer funk pleasures can head for 'Some Dues To Pay', which revisits a 1971 cut from Little Beaver AKA Willie Hale. Elsewhere, 'Zouk La Se' draws on the 1984 track by Guadeloupean band Kassav' which spawned the 'zouk' dance craze in Latin America and the Caribbean, while 'Zoulous' was originally a 1988 French pop hit for female duo Les 36'15.
Review: Usually, Katakana Edits releases have us furiously Googling lyrics to try and identify the source material, but for this latest volume Fray Bentos saves us a job, opting to work his magic on two very well-known tracks, Linda Clifford's 'Runaway Love' (1978) and Rick James' 'Give It To Me Baby' (1981). 'Linda's Marathon' is aptly named, as Bentos stretches out the original to a full 12:39, making for a sultry groove that'll go down a treat at Horse Meat Disco, while on 'Give It To Me (Unity Edit)' he goes for a struttier approach with a tech-house style "some Rick James, some Rick James" vocal loop for an intro.
Review: The latest in the long-running 'Katakana Edits' series features five funk reworks, three of which we can identify the source for: Timmy Thomas's 1972 classic 'Why Can't We Live Together', Billy Paul's 'People Power' (1975) and The Four Tops' 'Are You Man Enough?' (1973). 'Stomp The Floor' has us beat, though, and as for 'Don't Stop The Music' - well, it isn't the Yarbrough & Peoples one, and nor is it any of the tracks of the same name by K.I.D, Cascade, Bugz In The Attic, Supermax, Bits & Pieces or Brecker Brothers! But it's a decent lil' funk/boogie groove all the same...
Review: The latest in the 'Katakana Edits' series sees GreySkoolEdits reaching back to two different eras in the long and storied evolution of Da Funk. In the red corner there's 'Trouble In My Mind', a reworking of Sir Joe Quarterman & Free Soul's '(I've Got) So Much Trouble In My Mind' from way back in 1973, while there's more "trouble" to be found in the blue corner, where we find the Greys revisiting Troublefunk's 1982 go-go fave 'Pump Me Up' - this time, somewhat unusually, augmenting the source material with some brand-new scratch shenanigans courtesy of UK turntablist The Incredible DeeJay Random.
Review: The mysterious Crateditors is the man (it IS one man, we know that much!) at the controls for this latest in the long-running 'Katakana Edits' series. 'Jump Up Shake Down' (source unknown) finds us in party-hearty reggae territory with its lyrical homage to "a Kingston party in New York City," while 'Spaceship Love Affair' reworks 'Spaceship Lover', a space disco cut that was recorded in 1977 by Canada-based British singer Laurice (AKA Laurie Marshall) but not actually released until 2015. 'Memories' closes out the EP - again, the source has us beat but think torchy, hi-camp disco from the Grace Jones/Eartha Kitt school of thought.
Review: The long-running 'Katakana Edits' series rumbles on, with regular contributor DJ Laurel back in the driving seat for #104. He's got us beat when it comes to source material for a couple of the tracks, but 'Ha Chica' is a tropical-style funk/disco cut sporting lively brass flourishes and an infectious sing-song vocal, while 'Strugglin' Together' has a mid-70s funk-soul vibe (think Curtis Mayfield, Bill Withers or even Gil Scott-Heron). Elsewhere on the EP, Laurel revisits William Wilson's raw, Ohio Players-esque 1978 funker 'Up The Downstairs' and Leon Ware's superb 1979 Minnie Riperton cover 'Inside Your Love'.
Review: The unstoppable juggernaut that is the 'Katakana Edits' series rumbles ever onwards, with Parisian label regular Morlack (AKA Funk Blaster) back at the controls for Vol 103. 'Going With Sadness' is a lively, late 70s-style disco number - original source unknown - with a Spanish-sounding female vocal and sunny sax, while 'Love Is Really My Game' revisits Brainstorm's Sylvester-esque 1980 Tabu cut of the same name. 'Our Time' plunders Roy Ayers' 1982 barrio funk fave 'Our Time Is Coming' (as previously reworked by MAW and Joey Negro), while finally 'Right Back' is a low-slung, lower-tempo groover with more of an 80s boogie feel.
Review: The 'Katakana Edits' series dives headlong into its second century with a five-tracker from label stalwart DJ Laurel, and the Belarussian re-edit don has dug nice and deep this time out. 'You Are My Everything' is based on The Real Thing's 'You To Me Are Everything' (1976) and 'Everybody Needs Somebody' and Ann Margret's 'Everybody Needs Somebody Sometimes' (1983) gets reworked as 'Everybody Needs Somebody'; the source material for the rest has our disco detectives beat (despite the nagging familiarity of that main riff on 'Take Me'), but that surely just makes these tracks even more effective as DJ weapons!
Review: Over the last few years Fray Bentos has proved to be one of Katakana Edits most reliable contributors. Here he hits the mark once more with another double dose of pie-eyed reworks. The pastry-loving producer begins with "Lose Your Love", a gloriously meaty and celebratory re-edit that successfully tools-up and stretches out an Emotions classic for guaranteed extended dancefloor pleasure. It's really rather good, all told, though the accompanying "Soul Casserole Edit" of "Grapevine" (yep, you know the original) is arguably even better, in part because it builds tension via an extended instrumental section before unleashing the song's oh-so-familiar verses and chorus. Whether either track needed tampering with is debatable, but these are undeniably excellent alternative edits.
Review: Katakana Edits first compilation, 2017's "Crate Diggin", was an epic collection of high-grade re-edits, mash-ups and reworks packed to the rafters with tried-and-tested dancefloor treats. This belated follow-up is even more epic, with the popular label squeezing in no less than 50 tracks that variously touch on riotous disco-funk, dub disco, new wave, disco-rock, deep funk, Afro-boogie, swamp funk, Latin beats, boogie, pitched-down chuggers, boogaloo, hip-hop and everything in between. You'd expect that standard to be high - it is a "best of" collection after all - and it is. If you need an instant armoury of scintillating club cuts, look no further.
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: 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: The latest in the 'Katakana Edits' series comes once more from label regular DJ Laurel, who delivers six soul/funk/disco cuts that, as a rule, seek simply to update the source material for contemporary floors rather than rework anything too radically. That source material this time out includes Herbie Mann's 'Hijack' from 1974, Millie Jackson's 'Never Change Lovers In The Middle Of The Night' from 1979 and Arthur Prysock's 'When Love Is New' from 1976 on a straight disco tip, as well as the lounge-y, Latin vibes of Carmen Costa's 'Bateu, Doeu' from 1973 - the other two have us beat, but all six cuts are very playable.
Review: The unstoppable juggernaut that is the Katakana Edits series rolls on. Regular contributor Padcore is back at the wheel for this latest three-track instalment, which kicks off with 'Mexico', which conjures visions (in glorious Technicolor(TM), of course) of 1950s westerns set during the Mexican-American War. That's followed by 'What They Do', a mid-paced ballad that recalls the likes of Dusty Springfield, Julie London or Bobby Gentry while completing the EP is 'Wanna Hear', a low-slung, slow-burning funker that packs enough sleaze into its three-minute lifespan to give Times Square in the 70s a run for its money!
Review: The long-running 'Katakana Edits' series reaches #94, with Parisian funk and disco producer Morlack at the controls and bringing us four tracks. Opener 'Wipe Mo' (source unknown) has a soca-ish feel, while 'Dance Dance Dance' feels like it's been reworked from an old African disco record. 'Wonderful', on the other hand, revisits Kid Creole & The Coconuts' 1982 hit 'I'm A Wonderful Thing Baby', while 'Whip' is a slowed-down, Temazepam disco reversioning of the Dazz Band's 'Let It Whip' from the same year. The EP as a whole will suit those who like their disco on the more leftfield side.
Review: Under the DJ Laurel alias, Lavr Berzhanin has proved to be one of Katakana Edits' most reliable re-editors of recent times. We've lost count of the number of EPs he's delivered for the prolific imprint, but they're all rather good - as is his latest expansive effort. There's much to get the blood pumping across the six-track salvo, with our favourites including the rubbery, bouncy and glassy-eyed disco bliss of "All I've Got", the soaring, horn-heavy soundscape disco-soul shuffle of "Battend Ships" [sic], the blue-eyed soul goes drum and bass bounce of "Cookie" and the wah-wah guitar sporting two-step soul goodness of closing cut "Annie Mae". In other words, it's another rock solid collection of tried and tested reworks.
Review: Known for his work on Midnight Riot, Sound Exhibitions and Disco Fruit, among other labels, here London-based Argentinian producer Fabiolous Barker comes to the Katakana stable with three very fine re-edits. 'Only Fools Fall In Love' is a midtempo groover with female vocal harmonies, subtle guitar chops and an overall early 80s boogie vibe, 'Sending My Love' centres around a full-phat funk bassline and the Cameo-esque male "sending my love from me to you" vocal, while finally 'Weakness' has a male scatted vocal and tinkling keys. The source material has our disco detectives beat this time out, but all three are eminently spinnable.
Review: Serious scalpel fiends Rockandrolla Soundsystem first came to our attention via a 2017 debut release on Springbok Records. In the same year they contributed to a killer compilation on Katakana, so it's little surprise to see the Dutch collective return to the label with a suitably strong two-track offering. Opener "Culture" is a mighty chunk of swamp funk/disco fusion where bluesy guitar parts, gruff soul vocals, alien synthesizer chords and bubbly synth-bass rise above rolling drums. "Caminho" continues on a similar vein, subtly scrubbing up and dubbing out a bluesy disco-rock number that sounds a little like JJ Cale after a night on disco biscuits in the company of Boz Scraggs, Eric Clapton and David Mancuso.
Review: To our mind, Fabiolous Barker is one of the most dependable re-editors around. For proof, check his previous releases for the likes of Midnight Riot, Alpaca Edits and Disco Fruit, and of course his latest outing on regular home Katakana Edits. "Let's All Chant (Everybody Move The Body Mix)" sees him making merry with a bold, sing-along disco workout rich in electronic bass, Chic style guitars, energy-packed handclaps and rolling beats. It sounds like a peak-time anthem in the making. On the virtual reverse you'll find the "Nobody Move The Mix" version), which strips out a lot of the vocals, offers a stripped-back and heavy build-up, and surprisingly showcases a clarinet solo. It works well, of course, though it's not quite as spine tingling as the other mix.
Review: Parisian man of mystery Morlack is at the controls for this latest installment in the long-running Katakana Edits series, bringing us four more reworks of dancefloor cuts from days gone by. 'Terapeutica' tops a lolloping funk groove with brass parps and James Brown-like shouts, while 'Que Pasa' revisits Coati Mundi's 'Me No Pop I' from 1982. 'Manyoma' is a frothy, party-tastic cocktail of Latin, lounge and Afro influences, while completing the EP is 'Hot 4U', a more struttin', stripped-back disco jam with a late 70s kinda feel and, as the track nears its end, some scorching sax work.
Review: Lavr Berzhanin (DJ Laurel) returns with five more re-edited dancefloor nuggets from days gone by. Or perhaps four because, confusingly, raw funk-soul jam 'Hot Pents' comes in two near-identical versions, one 4:06 long and credited to Heavy Funk, one 4:26 long and credited to DJ Laurel. Go figure! Elsewhere, 'Windy City' reworks Lou Rawls' 'Dead End Street' (a 1967 spoken word cut that predated both Last Poets and Gil Scot-Heron), 'Stop Your Teasing' draws on an unknown disco source for inspiration, while finally 'I Don't Need Nobody Else' adds a little more dancefloor oomph to Eddie Kendricks' 1981 soul jam of the same name.
Review: Three very serviceable re-edits here from the ever-prolific Katakana stable. It's a brave man or woman who thinks they can improve on a Prince track, but 'Push It!' makes a surprisingly good fist of 'Push' all the same, beefing up the beats 'n' bass for the house/disco floors while keeping the original's Sugarhill-like funk intact. Not sure where 'La Cotorra' is sourced from but its disco bassline, energetic hand percussion and frantic, almost angry-sounding Spanish-language vocal will rock floors without doubt, while 'I'll Send You All My Love' closes out the EP on a Balearic note, looping up Chris Rea's 'Josephine' to hypnotic effect.
Review: The unstoppable Katakana Edits series rolls on, with Vol 85 coming from label regular(s) Padcore. First to get the Katakana treatment is the Beasties classic 'Intergalactic', while 'Sweetback' revisits Viola Wills' 1969 ghetto funker of the same name (which predates Melvin Van Peebles' Blaxploitation flick by two years, fact fans). 'All The People' cuts up an unidentified, lounge-y soul take on Blues Magoos' 1967 garage/psych nugget 'The People Had No Faces', while Esther Phillips' 1971 cover of Gil Scott-Heron's 'Home Is Where The Hatred Is' provides the basis for the EP's standout cut, heartbreakingly melancholic closer 'Home'.
Review: You could never accuse the Katakana Edits stable of sitting on their laurels - they deliver a seemingly endless supply of re-edit action on an almost weekly basis. This time out, the man at the controls is FL, who takes us into beats/leftfield territory with four edits that draw on film soundtracks by way of inspiration. 'Bloody Dance' is scratch-tastic, 'Last Monk' majestic and sweeping, 'Broken Days' jaunty yet delicate and 'Forgotten Tearz' ponderous and melancholic, with all four tracks featuring western movie strings/brass (think our gunslinger anti-hero riding slowly into a deserted Mexican village) and/or martial arts vocal samples prominently.
Review: The chopper king himself Morlack returns here to the legendary Katanaka Edits imprint here with four stunning recreations, showcasing just why he is held in such high esteem by all of us here at Juno. The first track 'Here Comes The Hook' combines soulful, uplifting horn melodies with punchy drum moves for with fantastic results, whilst 'Here I'm' applies a similar format to some classic disco vocals. Next, 'Sossego' leaps to the forefront with some smooth, bluesy guitar riff, which is followed by the psychedelic grooves and twists of 'Lucy On Skate' to see out the EP in style.
Review: Five more vintage cuts get a 21st Century refix from the ever-prolific Katakana camp, this time with DJ Laurel at the helm. The Chi-Lites' 'You Don't Have To Go' from 1976 is first to get the treatment, followed by Razzy Bailey's 'I Hate Hate', a 1974 country-soul gem that was something of a northern soul anthem and here gets served up in Disco Rework and Funk Rework flavours. Those first three rubs are all quite faithful to their respective originals; more liberties are taken with Benny Golson's 1978 rare groover 'I'm Always Dancing To The Music', which gets a boogiefied makeover and an added rap vocal, before finally Sam Cooke gets funked up and just slightly retitled on 'Stay By Me'.
Review: Just under six months on from his last outing for the prolific rework label, tinned pie enthusiast turned hotshot re-editor Fray Bentos returns to Katakana Edits. He starts in typically strutting fashion, offering a slightly heavier and beefier version of Wild Cherry's funk-rock classic "Play That Funky Music" that subtly shifts from dubbed-out dancefloor stomp to full-throttle party madness over the course of six sizzling minutes. "House of Bricks" does a similar job on a hazy, horn-heavy chunk of flash-fried disco-funk goodness. This is perhaps a little more reverential than the producer's Wild Cherry revision, though it still boasts house-friendly beats to appease those who can't be bothered mixing records with live drums.
Review: Five more assorted re-edits from the ever-prolific Katakana stable here, this time coming from Gary Shepherd, the Brit-in-Amsterdam better known as Streamer. Opener 'ID' rather cheekily bites the ghetto-fabulous, attitude-y female vocal from Riton & Kah-Lo's 'Fake ID' - we say "cheekily" because the original only came out last year. 'Sex Machine' takes the James Brown classic into Latin-tinged territory, while 'On & On' drags Erykah Badu onto the deep/soulful house danceloor, before the EP's completed by two different (5:30 and 8:06) reworks of 'Legba Nan Baye', a track culled from Jacques Schwarz-Bart's 2014 voodoo jazz album 'Jazz Racine Haiti'.
Review: Since making his bow on Katakana Edits last April, Amsterdam-based Brit Gary Shepherd AKA Streamer has become a reliable source of cheeky re-edits and reworks. Unsurprisingly, the producer's latest outing - his first of any kind since July 2018 - contains four more high quality revisions. He begins by joining the dots between stab-happy funk, hip-hop heroes House of Pain and acid funk on "Pain Around", before turning a Cajun style hoedown into a skittish, rap-sporting drum and bass roller ("The Fastest Gumbo"). Arguably even better is his punchy, horn-heavy bossa-boogie take on Beats International classic "Just Be Good To Me", while "Feel Good (Funksploitation Version)" is a dub-wise workout rich in James Brown samples and fuzzy horns.
Review: We can usually identify the source material of Padcore's re-edits, but he's got us well and truly stumped with the four cuts featured here, though the overall cinematic vibe leads us to suspect he may have been rummaging in bins full of soundtrack albums! In any case, 'Kayne' is a slow, looping affair with a vaguely western-ish feel, both of which are qualities it shares with 'Play With Fire', while 'Track 02' is a livelier number with what sounds like a mariachi brass section. 'Track 04' completes the EP on a more straight-up funk/soul tip. File under 'obscure esoteric pleasures'.
Review: The ever-prolific Katakana Edits stable bring us four more repurposed funk gems. 'Nina's Dance' has something of a kitsch, lounge-y feel to its lazy, looped-up beats and melancholy sax. 'Se Peisma' is a raunchier cut whose original source, though unknown, must surely have come from somewhere along the James Brown/JBs axis, while the more soulful 'J5' would soundtrack a late-night cab ride through Harlem in a 70s Blaxploitation flick perfectly. 'Break7', a percussion workout laced heavily with squelchy, sleazy bass, completes an EP whose overall vibe sits somewhere between 'new old' funk and dusty, lo-fi west coast hip-hop ? la Cold Busted Records.
Review: Chopshop regular DJ Laurel returns to Katakana Edits - an imprint he's graced a number of times before - with a five-track selection of tried-and-tested revisions. He begins with a rolling revision of a full-throated disco-funk slammer ("Jam, Jam, Jam") before whipping off his shirt and dancing towards peak-time disco release via the spiraling madness of "I Will Get You Some Help". Those seeking loopy, piano-driven peak-time insanity should head for the bluesy brilliance of "Going For Another One", while "Just A Matter of Time" is an epic, everything-but-the-kitchen-sink slab of synth-laden AOR disco. Fittingly, he finishes with a bustling, tooled-up take on Evelyn "Champagne" King classic "Shame".
Review: Okay, Katakana, you got us this time! Where Padcore have found the source material for this latest batch of re-edits from has our finest disco detectives beat, suggesting they've dug pretty damn deep. Still, 'Bird Up In The Sky' tops a sleazy, 'Fame'-ish funk groove with a sweet, looping female vocal, 'Pride' is a rawer, 60s-sounding funker with a James Brown-ish feel, 'Funk You' has a heaver, druggier late 60s kinda vibe about it, while closer 'Soulfunk' has the sound palette of brassy Southern soul, only run through an MPC for that lo-fi hip-hop feel. All four are should prove eminently playable for a wide range of jocks.
Review: For their latest two-track trip into peak-time party territory, the Katakana Edits crew has recruited a couple of break-digging artists from Greece: MCurdit and former Timewarp sorts Funkin' Basstards. It's the former who kicks things off with the low-slung, head-nodding, hip-wiggling bounce of "Brooklyn Bount Sq.", where aggressive (sampled) rap vocals rise above heavy bass and chunky beats. Funkin' Basstards, meanwhile, jet to sunnier climes via a funky and chunky, slightly tooled-up mid-tempo breaks revision of a Tito Puente style mambo workout. It's really rather good, all told, with jaunty and memorable horn lines, timbales and Cuban vocals all emphasizing the track's party-hearty Latin mood.
Review: Paris-based Ben Morlack is the man at the controls for this latest addition to the ever-growing Katakana Edits series. 'Rainbow Mash' is just that: a mash-up of styles with house, big beat and P-funk influences thrown into the pot and serve up as a gloriously energetic dancefloor romp topped with a "party down!" vocal and a rolling, house-y piano riff. 'That Girl', meanwhile, beefs up Maxi Priest and Shaggy's 1996 ragga hit for modern dancefloors, while leaving the 'Green Onions' riff on which it's based intact. Both tracks can be safely filed in the box marked 'party-starters'.