Review: Known for his cheeky sample art, Mr Bird has delivered serious party vibes with every release so far. The cheekily titled "Champignon Sound" is less of a floor jammer and more of a mood setter with what could quite possibly be a low-swung, head nodding homage to Mark Farina's Mushroom Jazz project. The end result is a super smooth vibe that's perfect for headphones and warm ups alike. If you need more pep then jump on Jayl Funk's slapbasstastic remix that comes complete with a flutter of flutes. DJ Tzinas' remix pays respect to Bird's original vibe but with more jazz sensibility. There's plenty more we could write about this release but there's not mushroom left to fit the text!
Review: We've not heard from German funkateer Freethinker Funk Essence since March. Perhaps he was as his own song goes, Too Drunk To Funk. Anyway its great to have him back rustling up three slices of steaming retro pie, with grooves excavated straight from the 70s. "Haight Ashbury" is all night walkin' in old San Francisco to the strains of wah-wah heavy funk, the stomping "Walk In The Park" incorporates bluesy slide guitar riffs and a brooding Tex Mex atmosphere, before "Saturday Morning Traffic" is more of a rolling jam with vintage organ chugs and layers upon layers of live instrumentation.
Review: Hanzee is a Budapest-dwelling 'funkbreak, breakbeat, ghettofunk and glitch-hop' DJ (amongst other genres). Here he delivers his second EP, HaleLuisa, which contains three slices of what he does best. The title being a groovy slice of breaky electro funk: all moody synths pads and tough drums, "American Dream" adds more retro guitar licks and raw vocals to the funky mix and "Jive Step" is an intriguing mix of dubsteppy production and swingy rhythms. Scottish master of the live remix, Andy Taylor, also pops up to give the title track a delicious acoustic Balaeric overhaul.
Review: Swiss funk and breaks star Pulpfusion reloads for another banging collection of raw funk drums and wicked bass on this second edition of "Headbanger Funk". Tracks to watch out for include the fast-paced and hectic psych-funk of "All Hell's Breaking Loose", the sublime mix of dub and rock on "Cockaine" and the heavy rumpshaking bass of "Fat Ass".
Review: Budapest beat conjurers MustBeat tether up 21 of the finest remixes they've commissioned over the past four years. The end result is a widescreen romp that explores - and consequently tickles - every nook, corner and cranny of funk's thick-shag underbelly. From the swampy glitch dub of Sammy Senior's remix of "Unreality" to the sunshine skanks and crisp nylon string plucks of Niles Philips' take on "Cop Dat Shit" via the midrange squiggles and sweaty swagger of Trotter's twist on "Supernature", there's a clear consistency and clarity on this package that's seldom seen on a remix collection. A neat testament to the label's toil and great opportunity to fill any gaps in your collection.
Review: The Funky Fury steps out of the pan and dive straight into the fire with this new three-tracker for MustBeat. What you see is what you get here, and what you get is a trio of dance-friendly, DJ tools that span house, two-step, and pure breakbeats. "Like" rolls forwards with its easy, house-fuelled groove and hummable bass tones, while "Birdy" is deeper, more sensual, and something of an r&b crossover, and "Baw Baw" makes use of a placid, psyched-out synth to tie its chunky breaks together into a tight groove.
Review: A veteran of labels like Timewarp, Carnibal and Booty Fruit, quirky producer Vida G now settles in with Mustbeat for remix EP Moonshiners. The original version sees KRSA laid a feisty rap over a catchy electro-swing/breakbeat mash up. On remix duties, J-Sound, adds some serious dubstep muscle, whilst Hanzee injects a little bit of electro-funk into the tune.
Review: Freethinker Funk Essence takes his time, never rushing to release stuff, nice n easy, totally chilled in a 70s sort of way. Unsurprisingly these 70s attitudes don't stop there, with the music firmly planted in the era of giant flares, chopper bikes and polyester shirts. Pretty every song on this here EP sounds like incidental music from classic cop show Starsky & Hutch: "The Spy Of Mrs Lee" is a suspense-filled shuffle with chiming keys, echoey wah-wah and baggy drums. Elsewhere "Record Store" is swaggering boogie strutter and "Quentin's Lost Movie" is a soft n' sensual see-through-negligee of a tune.
Review: Bristol's Steppin' Tones has achieved more success in Europe than he has here in his native country. He supported Mustbeat in Budapest back in '05 and now they team up for the Shadow Of A Trout (that's a pun btw). There's three vintage sounding jams featured, beginning with "70s Beach Break", which is a cheeky novelty tune with filtered break beats over a retro sing-along. Elsewhere "Wombat Shuffle" chops up and loops an old skool soul-rock jam for a distinctly retro British sports TV theme vibe and chirpy 90s big beat style stomper "Freakin' N Tweakin" wraps things up nicely.