Review: Here's a devilishly simple but nevertheless inspired idea from Yam Who's ISM label: a 21st-centrury update of Imagination's legendary 1983 remix album Night Dubbing. While this version is nowhere near as dub-influenced as the original (which, after all, contained contributions from Larry Levan), it does contain some rather sublime new interpretations of Imagination's greatest hits. Highlights include an epic version of "Just An Illusion" from John Morales, an anthem-like version of "Flashback" from Kon, a deliciously atmospheric reinterpretation of "Music & Lights" from Sleazy McQueen and a typically deep, warm and synth-heavy re-shape of "Burning Up" from Soul Clap. Best of all, though, is J Kriv's nu jack swing-influenced remix of "Body Talk", which simply oozes the authentic feel of late '80s electro.
Review: Following fine outings from Fort Knox Five, the Allergies, Smoove and Marc Hype, amongst others, Bomb Strikes' reliable Funk N' Beats compilation series returns with rising star X-Ray Ted at the controls. In keeping with the series' heavyweight, funk-fuelled style, the Bristol-based DJ and beat-maker has gathered together a killer collection of soul, hip-hop and funk club cuts, with a smattering of more laidback numbers to keep things fresh. Highlights are plentiful throughout, with our picks including the boom-bap brilliance is Aldo Vanucci's tidy remix of 'All Down' by Mr Doris and D-Funk, the dancefloor jazz heaviness of Nostalgia 77's 'Changes', the cut-and-paste craziness of Double Dee & Steinski's 'Jazz' and the disco-funk masterclass that is X-Ray Ted's own 'Party Time'.
Review: It's been an exciting ride for both group and listeners alike since Dark Sky first emerged some four years ago on Black Acre, with ever more impressive musical feats getting signed up to ever more respected labels, and now well and truly in the Modeselektor fold on both 50Weapons and Monkeytown, they offer up their debut album. It's an expansive listen, from the rich synth orchestrations of the title track to the catchy band-in-the-room groove of "Vivid", with the focus very much on home-listening interest over club dynamics. There are still some kicking moments such as the rushy arpeggio drop of "Odyssey", but on the whole this is an album of carefully composed melodies and finely chiseled sounds to accompany you in more personal, introspective moments.