Review: As the title suggests, this fantastic - and let's face it, pleasingly epic - compilation showcases some of the many disco-centric cuts in the Z Records vaults, throwing in a few exclusives (see Dave Lee's fantastic, hybrid disco-boogie rework of Firefly's 'Love is Gonna Be on Your Side') for good measure. Such is the high-quality threshold that picking stand outs is tough, but our picks of a very strong bunch include the slick, boogie-funk brilliance of Crackazat's 'Sensationalized', Larry Levan's vintage, delay-heavy synth dub of Johnny Dynell's 'Rhythm of Love', the stomping disco-house release of 'Gotta Thing (2021 Remaster)' by Foreal People, Taana Gardner and Dave Lee, and John Morales' epic rework of Sean McCabe's 'Love For Life'. As the old saying goes, this is all killer and no filler.
Review: Following on from his recent Fast Funfzig EP on Rekids, Mark Broom now unveils a superb album for the label. Drawing on a range of styles and sounds, it sees the veteran producer deliver house music in the form of the organ-led "Mover" and disco-sampling, good time vibes of "We Gonna Dance" which features Ella Fleur's uplifting vocals. However, this isn't a case of Broom mellowing out with age/. The album is peppered with straight up bangers like the dynamic, filtered "Let's Roll" and the epic builds of "Memories" that sit alongside crisp, minimal grooves such as "EFX" and more experimental jams like the stepping "Stark" and the evocative shanty of "Dub Me Good".
Review: Here's something of a rarity: a full-length excursion on Dam Swindle's usually EP-focused Heist Recordings imprint. It comes courtesy of talented twosome Makez, who last featured on the Dutch label two years ago. There's much to enjoy from start to finish, with the pair blending loose-limbed house rhythms, head-nodding hip-hop rhythms, and sumptuous downtempo grooves with subtle disco instrumentation, colourful electrofunk synth sounds, layered percussion, squelchy analogue bass, and occasional vocal snippets. The results are uniformly vibrant, atmospheric and musically rich, without ever becoming overly fussy or self-indulgent. There's plenty of floor-friendly material for DJs to savour and champion, but the album sounds just as good when listened to at home. Stellar stuff all told.
Review: There's much to enjoy about the ninth volume in Toy Tonics' ongoing Top Tracks series, which showcases much played, sought-after highlights from the label's rapidly growing catalogue. The standard of material on show is uniformly excellent, from the warming and organic broken dancefloor soul of Cody Currie's compilation opening 'Moves' and the sparkling piano house retro-futurism of COEO's 'I Can Never Be Yours', to the Amp Fildder-esque deep house soul of Rhode, Brown & Kosmo Kint's 'Through The Night', and the good-time, carnival-ready dancefloor sunshine of Sam Ruffilo's disco-tinged 'Es Buena'. Throw in a couple of killer cuts from jazz pianist-turned-deep house don Joel Holmes, and you have a seriously good compilation.
Review: If it's authentically 70s-sounding disco grooves you seek, then know that nothing in this reviewer's Juno inbox this week has come closer than this five-tracker from Sunner Soul. The rest of the world may currently be obsessed with all things cosmic and Italo, but the St Petersburg native (here, at least) is still all about the handclaps, whoops, strings, cowbells, and jive-talkin' vocal snatches. All five near-instrumental cuts are quite similar in approach, but check out 'Smooth Surface' for a full-phat bassline and fine Moog-y sounds, and 'Body Groove' for a lil' boogie-esque squelch and some excellent 'pyoww! pyoww!' stabs.
Review: Glitterbox resident Dr Packer is a leading light of the contemporary disco scene, while Dave Lee was arguably THE key architect of the whole post-house disco phenomenon in the first place. So when the former helms a compilation on the latter's label, you'd expect great things, and suffice to say you're very unlikely to be disappointed. Hell, for this writer the deep n' sultry JN Revival Mix of early 90s classic 'Do What You Feel' is worth the price of admission on its own, but with Packer's own remixes of label favourites making up over a third of the tracklist, the collection as a whole is pretty much unmissable.
Review: With the catalogue that the Cuttin' It Fine team have both assembled and keep adding to, it's hard to expect anything less than exceptional with every release. They deliver another set of four breakbeat belters, courtesy of both El Bomba & Roast Beatz. First up, El Bomba delivers a dancefloor-ready funk out in 'Take A Break', a lively combo of sharp drum slaps and lip-curling basslines, before Roast Beatz the energy with the groovy guitar plucks and singalong vocals of 'Party Over Here'. Back to El Bomba next as the classic sounding guitar melodies and unpredictable drum shakes of 'Bronco Funk' tone down the madness a tad, before rounding off with anthem-like arrangements of 'Get On Down' from Roast Beatz, boasting a showstopper of a bassline, draped in pleasing horn switches and tidy vocal chops for good measure.
Review: With summer finally kicking in, Faze Action Records has decided to unleash a fine retrospective of some of the label's most summery, Balearic-minded sounds. It's a bumper collection of cuts - mostly from founders Robin and Simon Lee under a variety of different pseudonyms - which effortlessly drifts between piano and synth-laden Afro-Balearic (Faze Action's 'Chiiko'), tongue-in-cheek Gallic disco (Face Action re-editing Micky Milan), new age ambient ('Windchimes' and 'Secret Garden' by Rudy's Midnight Machine), Andreas Wollenweder-style Balearic synth-pop (Faze Action's 'Hapana'), slo-mo goodness (Max Essa reworking Faze Action's 'Vamos Pinter') and colourful dancefloor cheeriness (the vibrant Baleaaric nu-disco wonder that is 'Body Wave' by Rudy's Midnight Machine). In a word: excellent!
Review: Birdee is a rising star of the nu-disco and re-edit scenes, so it makes perfect sense that Bomb Strikes has recruited him to curate and mix the latest volume in their excellent Disco Funkin' compilation series. As you'd expect, it's a thoroughly and joyous affair, rich in colourful synth sounds, funky disco basslines and beats that flit between housed-up heaviness and more organic-sounding, less pumped-up grooves. There are tons of essential cuts amongst the 25 unmixed tracks on show, with highlights including the sun-bright rush of Pete Herbert's remix of Da Chick's 'Chick a Boom', the crunchy Clavinet-sporting disco-funk of Shaka Loves You's 'Let's Move (SLY Disco Rub)', the slick French Touch style warmth of Birdee's own 'Thinking About You' and Ray Mang's celebratory revision of Smoove & Turrell's 'Do It'.
Review: The Breakbeat Paradise Recordings team very rarely disappoint, with this latest four tracker from Boydex once again showing why they are such a dominant force in the Breakbeat sphere. We kick off with the complex combination of wah wah guitars and trumpet flickers on 'Hey Guys', which gives us an energetic start, before the more mellow basslines and affected vocal slices of 'Ride With Me' take control. Next, Alize & Sully Sax get involved with a couple of fantastic additions on 'The Good Love', a sultry display of vocal majesty and guitar grooves, before the super crunchy drum punches of 'Do Your Thing' helps into a wavy finale. Wavy stuff indeed!
Review: Impressively, no-one has yet to unmask the identity of the "well known contemporary disco producer" behind the Magou project, despite some quite high profile releases on labels such as Toy Tonics. The producer's now trademark sound - think elements of disco, acid, synth-pop, boogie, deep house and Italo-disco blended in a classy way - is much in evidence across his or her latest four-tracker. 'Pas Jolie' is a fine chunk of deep house/Italo-disco fusion powered forward by a nagging TB-303 acid line, while 'Dejart' is a weightier and hazier slab of dub disco with added lounge music flourishes. Elsewhere, 'Sos Remo' is another subtly acid-flecked disco-tech number, while closing cut 'Round Round' is quirky Balearic synth-pop of the sort that record collectors would be salivating over if it had been released in 1984.
Review: A decade ago, New York band Midnight Magic delivered arguably THE greatest disco anthem of the 21st century, the sing-along classic that is 'Beam Me Up'. Fittingly, Razor 'N' Tape has decided to mark the record's anniversary by delivering a trio of fresh remixes. Full Pupp boss and Scandolearic disco king Prins Thomas leads the charge with a richly percussive, constantly building peak-time revision that adds wriggling acid lines and delay-laden horn solos whilst retaining the original's core elements (think walking bass, celebratory vocals and cheery piano stabs). Elsewhere, Kim-Ann Foxman re-imagines the cut as a sleazy, mid-tempo acid disco chugger and Each Other re-frames it as a surging, arpeggio-driven dance through camp Italo-disco pastures. Ace!
Review: Fresh from dropping a pair of fine fusion EPs with Dele Sosimi on Wah Wah 45s, Medlar returns home to Wolf Music Recordings with his most expansive release since 2013 debut album Sleep. In keeping with his musical evolution since then, Aerial is a thrillingly eclectic, colourful and imaginative affair, with Medlar flitting between the Wally Badarou-on-acid vibes of the undeniably cosmic title track; the acid-fired, cowbell-rich strut of 'Iguanadon'; the percussion-rich Dinosaur L mutations of 'Elephant Bingo'; the downtempo jazz-funk of 'Elv'; the late-night, drum machine driven weirdness of 'Cr78-108'; the '89 NYC garage-meets-New Jack Swing flex of 'Phoenix Lights'; and the slow-motion, bass-heavy Balaearica of 'Sin Prisa'. In a word: ace!
Review: This suite of reworks of SunPalace's much-admired early '80s jazz-funk obscurity 'Rude Movements' may well be the biggest remix package we've ever seen, thoagh it should be noted that many of the reworks are available in short and extended takes. Either way, there's much to enjoy, from the warming, solo-laden deep house brilliance of Moodymann's revisions and the sparkling, kaleidoscopic Opolopo takes (proper dancefloor jazz-funk for house-heads), to the 11-minute, synth-heavy bliss of Francois K's SATS Dub Extended Version and the sun-drenched Latin house of Frankie Feliciano's delicious rework. Elsewhere, the 'Atmosphere' mix is a starry ambient delight and Kenny Dope's various revisions boast the toughest, bounciest percussion programming.
Review: Discobeta bring us two very solid nu-funk workouts that are served up in a total of seven mixes to suit various tastes. 'Down The Block' itself foregrounds the classic 1979 Spoonie G "one for treble, two for the time" sample (as used by Grandmaster Flash on 'Adventures...' a few years later), and comes with re-rubs from Fort Knox Five (pacier and jazz-tastic) and Ross Go (cut-ups and scratches galore). As for 'Yoobie Doo', the first three rubs are mostly aimed at hip-hop/funk-hop floors, but if wigged-out funk with a hint of jazz is your bag, head straight for the Pecoe Remix - it's a killer.
Review: The Hoom Side of the Sun compilation series has previously delivered two expansive volumes of soul-warming, tech-tinged deep house goodness, each packed with tracks that tend towards the exotic, emotive and intoxicating. Volume three, which lands 12 months after its predecessor and presents a similarly sunny and atmospheric blend of high-grade cuts. For proof, check out the clips of Hreach's hypnotic but stirring 'Blue Road', the percussion-rich deep-tech loveliness of Lucien's 'Lluvia', the fluttering summer breeze beauty of 'Virtue' by Hermanez, and the psychedelic, trance-inducing dancefloor psychedelia of Luka Sambe's 'The Juggle'.
Review: Unlike many of its rivals, Fingerman's Hot Digits label doesn't fill its' obligatory annual compilation with back catalogue cuts. Instead, we're offered a vast number of previously unheard re-edits, remixes and original productions. It's a successful blueprint and one religiously adhered to on Hot Digits: Year Seven, the popular imprint's latest must-check collection. There's not enough room to single out every sonic highlight, but our current favourites include the breezy boogie squelch of Ross Fitz's 'I Miss Your Love ('85 Mix)', the driving deep house haziness of Fingerman and Henri Le Blanc's 'Leave Your Cares Tonight', the neo-trance cheeriness of Picklejam's 'Endorphin Situation' and the stab-happy, peak-time house retro-futurism of 'The Feeling' by Downunder Disco.
Review: Hailing originally from Nottingham but now based in Leeds, Akeem Raphael serves up a very serviceable contemporary disco-funker, dripping in squelchy geetar and topped with a spoken word vocal that a little Googling reveals to be sampled from a Black Girls Rock! award acceptance speech by US actor Angela Bassett. Monsieur Van Pratt's remix ups the tempo a notch, adds some jaunty lil' sax parps and tones down the guitar a little, allowing the bassline to shine through, while label boss Conan The Selector adds his own remix, a slightly more stripped-back variation on the theme.
Review: Four tracks from Italian producer Dario Aieello's recent 'Cosmic Sailing EP' get the remix treatment. As with the original EP, the clue's in the title: if you're looking for peaktime stompers you'll need to look elsewhere, but if you're in seach of drifty, evolving cuts to soundtrack voyages through inner space, look no further. 'Storm' and 'Malvasia', remixed by James Bright and Blair French respectively, keep things super-chilled, Willie Graff's rub of 'Fenice' adds a lil' Spanish flavour, but for sunny afternoons spent slow-groovin' on an Ibiza terrace (if only!) Hot Toddy's remix of 'Neve Su Acireale' is the one.
Review: A pleasingly varied EP here from The Magic Track, AKA the Hungarian duo of Peter Makkai and Andras Szerepi. There's a Phenomenal Handclap-esque rocky edge to 'Be Free', with the vocal nodding to (but not sampled from) The Who's 'I'm Free', while 'Keep On Flowing' takes us into early 80s boogie territory. We're then treated to a slab of early 70s-style psychedelic funk in the form of 'Resist The Temptation' while finally 'Trust Yourself', with its brass flourishes and gutsy female soul vocal, has more of a 60s deep funk flava. Something for everyone, then!
Review: Danish chill out legend Kenneth Bager turns in a ninth Sunset Session on his most esteemed Music For Dreams imprint. In the game for some 20 years now, Bager's compilations are something to be trusted and highlights this time come from Lucci Capri's down and dirty "Boom Boom Clap" and the syncopated rhythms of SIRS remix to Bongo Entp. Soulful touches of jazz make it into the deep house affairs of Pepe Link's "Gypsy Love Affair" and amid the bassline mechanics of "Man With The Red Face". But let's not forget the man Kenneth Bager himself, who chips on with an ambient edit to Laudness' "Atlantish" - think 80s soundtrack music - next to the handpan drumming, balearic vocals, electronic drum programming and spanish guitar of "Avisa A (feat DJ DIVO & OliO)". Ole!
Review: A warm welcome back to Jay Donaldson AKA Palms Trax, who launches his new label CWPT with his first fresh EP since he appeared on Dekmantel two years ago. Musically, 'Petu' is arguably one of the most original and ear-catching things he's released during his career, with vocalist Nonku Phiri making her presence felt atop a gorgeous combination of spacey Italo-disco synths, punchy horns, densely layered percussion and throbbing synthesizer arpeggio lines. It comes accompanied by an almost vocal-free Dub and a killer remix by Masalo, who smartly re-casts the cut as a squelchy and surging slab of celebratory Italo-disco brilliance.
Review: Glitterbox regular Alan Dixon brings us his take on five Salsoul classics, but rest assured these are no shoddy "whack a 4/4 kick under it" bootlegs - Dixon was given full access to the original multi-tracks for this project. Even so, it's a brave man or woman indeed who looks at the Salsoul catalogue and thinks "I could improve on that," so he's wisely avoided doing anything too radical or adding any extraneous elements of his own, instead simply teasing out the tracks' most familiar hooks and giving them a structural make-over, rendering them easier to programme in contemporary house and disco sets. Classy stuff.
Review: We don't know much about Deo'Jorge, other than that he's a New York-based DJ/producer who has run or managed countless events over the years. This outing on Me Me Me appears to be his debut EP and if so it's a hugely impressive first outing. The three original tracks on show each cannily combine throbbing, Italo-disco style arpeggiated basslines, thumping beats, sparkling synthesizers and the kind of Balearic musical flourishes often associated with Norway's space disco specialists. It's certainly fitting then that one of those, Prins Thomas, provides a predictably epic, constantly-rising revision of 'Sparking Plugs' that emphasises Deo'Jorge's subtle musical nods towards krautrock. In contrast, the Hardway Brothers' revision joins the dots between throbbing cosmic disco and the breezy brilliance of 'Sueno Latino'.
Review: In the midst of the current craze for all things synth-y and Italo, it somewhat ironically falls to Italian label Sound Exhibitions to bring us a six-track EP that ploughs a more 'traditional' disco furrow. Two contributions from Monsieur Van Pratt have a jazz-funkish feel, 'Rap In Blues' busts out the ominous stabs from 'The Message', Luciano FM & Stradivarious take us into soulful disco-house territory (think Sunburst Band or Opolopo), while finally the two tracks from Mr Thruout have a slightly deeper funk/soul vibe about them, 'Adapter' sporting a half-spoken male vocal while jazzy fem vox adorn 'Thrubet'.
Review: This year, Fred Everything has been busy revisiting tracks from his back catalogue. The latest cut to get the revisionist treatment is 'Barbarella', a gorgeously intergalactic fusion of deep house and squelchy nu-disco that first featured on his 2018 album Long Way Home. The headline-grabbing revision comes courtesy of Parisian legend I:Cube, who reinvents the track as a sleazy, spaced-out chunk of metronomic synth-pop/space disco fusion with added acid bass and lashings of starry-eyed synths. Fred Everything provides two 'Slow Down' versions, both of which shuffle along at 89 BPM. The main mix is a street soul tempo wide-eyed shuffler, while the 'ReDub' is a sparse, analogue bass-propelled late-night treat full of echoing beats and sharp, mind-mangling acid lines.
Review: Mark Broom draws on his own rich back catalogue for the opening tracks on Fast Funfzig: with their rumbling bass tones, swirling synths and hypnotic tribal drums, both "Fingers" and "Slow" draw on the raw techno soul that pervaded his 1996 debut album, Angie Is A Shoplifter. Meanwhile, "Wild Style" sees him embark on a different route; led by a spiky electro rhythm and an ominous bass, the veteran techno producer weaves vocal snippets into the woozy arrangement. On the final track "Facteur" Broom goes deeper, with hollowed out drums providing the backdrop for a tapestry of dreamy melodies that flow and ebb elegantly.
Review: Certain tracks are so effortlessly joyous and life-affirming that dropping them in the club will guarantee smiles all round. Iner's 'Trip of Happiness', the lead cut from the latest EP on his edit-minded Dobro label, is one of those. Powered forwards by colourful keyboard riffs, unfussy drums and waves of attractive electronics, it's a hands-in-the-air affair that seemingly builds from start to finish. Iner's second contribution to the EP, 'White Nights in St Petersburg', is also impressive, with the producer conjuring an acid bass-propelled slab of retro-futurist Afro-house. Saint Paul delivers two equally righteous rubs too: the tactile, early '90s soulful house wonder that is 'A Natural High' and the more bustling funky house flex of 'Joie De Vivre', where chunky house beats combine cleverly with vintage disco-funk instrumentation.
Review: Say 'Toolroom' to most people these days and they'll perhaps think first of peak-time tech-house stompers, but there's always been more to the label than that. Their 'Poolside' series, for instance, has been showcasing the more lounge-y, soulful and/or disco-infused side of house since 2014, and if you're a fan of such styles then this latest installment, packing cuts from the likes of Opolopo, Random Soul, Sebb Junior, Per QX, Saison and Ross Couch plus a host of up-and-comers, is unlikely to disappoint. The jazz-funk nouveau of Opolopo's 'Ginsu Knife' and Vertigini's garage-tinged 'Over You' are among the highlights of a collection with nary a Pavlovian snare roll or cheesy rave stab in sight.
Review: Rare Wiri's more leftfield offshoot Golden Soul bring us a couple of Italo/cosmic workouts courtesy of Spanish producer Ivan De La Rouch and fellow countryman and frequent collaborator Rams. The mid-paced 'Blessing' then gets a slightly tuffer, dubbier makeover from Italy's Belabouche, whose work has previously appeared on Midnight Riot and FKR, while the more funk-fuelled 'Freshhigh' is given an apocalyptic-sounding and lightly acidic refix from the mighty James Rod. The most dramatic remix, though, comes from Berlin's Grey Pantone, in whose hands 'Freshhigh' becomes a high-octane techno/electro workout to punish even the most energised of dancefloors.
Review: At one end of the re-edit spectrum, you get 80s pop hits with a 4/4 kick shoved underneath; at the other, are fine collections that see a 21st Century makeover being given to the kind of ultra-obscure killers you only discover through years of obsessive digging. File this one firmly in the latter camp: the only source we can identify is Harlem Underground's barrio funk fave 'Smoking Cheeba Cheeba' from 1976, but whether you like it jazzy and replete with brushed snares and tinkling ivories ('Welcome...'), gangster-lean ('Cheeba Cheeba') or sunny and tropical ('Agosto D'Amor'), Lego Edit has you covered.
Review: Way back in 1997 record collector, DJ and music writer, Jasper The Vinyl Junkie, curated BBE Music's second ever release: Stop & Listen Vol. II. With BBE celebrating 25 years in the game the label goes back to its roots by inviting JJ for another West end jazz beat special. With rarities and never before heard gems now cut for digital, Vinyl Junkie Thangs calls up all-time music heroes like Fred Wesley, The Fatback Band and DTrain's Hubert Eaves alongside lesser known artists like Exile One, Ashantis and Funkshone with "Spiritual Interlude II (The Heist)" a particular highlight. Featuring curious other Jasper joints from Basement Freaks, OPOLOPO, Jkriv & Free Magic and Mr Scruff, it ain't always a vinyl thang.
Review: It's all about keeping up the energy levels this year, which is why the Scour imprint has supplied us with a serious system-buster from Mr Stabalina here. As far as originals go, we are in for an absolute treat with this one as 'In The Air' gives us anything we want from a modern-day breakbeat original, linking together crunchy guitar leads with some super punchy drum maneuvers for a recipe that will get the dance absolutely lifted. The vocal remains incredibly catchy as this one is set to become a massive hit with the dances once again reopening for a weekly ruckus.
Review: As an imprint, 1985 have always championed the weird and wonderful, which is why this fabulous new four track adventure from Tsuruda fits so perfectly. We begin our treacherous tale with 'Fugitive', which sees the man himself, Mr Alix Perez arrive on collaborative duty, supplying us with a truly magnificent journey through syncopated rhythm and synthetic action. Next, 'Kaioh' once again throws us wonky drum arrangements and other-worldy soundscaping, drawing us in with some fantastic compositional value, before the creeping melodic manoeuvres and grizzly low-ended writhes of 'Out Of Pocket' launch themselves forward. We then dive down a whole new hole of sonic depravity, as the gut-wrenching synth swipes of 'Migi' provide us with a suitably eye-opening outro. What a project it is!
Zillas On Acid - "Lose Your Soul" - (6:44) 110 BPM
Felice - "Just Passing By" - (6:19) 118 BPM
Time To Sleep - "For The Love Of" - (5:54) 115 BPM
Review: Some 15 years after Benjamin Frolich and Tom Bioly launched their Permanent Vacation label with a fine compilation of the same name, the Munich-based pair return with a seventh showcase of treats from the imprint's now sizable roster of artists. As you'd expect, it's an eclectic and uniformly high-quality affair, with the 22 included cuts touching on everything from cheeky electro covers of Chris Rea (DMX Krew's rather good take on 'On The Beach'), deep nu-disco (the star-fall synths and Italo-disco bass of Kendal's Basorexia') and sun-soaked, 80s synth-pop-meets-dream house bliss ('Digital Joy' by Rees), to sleazy slow acid ('Lose Your Soul' by Zilas on Acid), late-night proto-house revivalism (Felice's 'Just Passing By') and rushing, breakbeat-driven dancefloor dreaminess (Dharma's 'The Epiphany'). In a word: excellent.
Review: Next up from the 3024 team, we have yet another top quality exploration into the more experimental side of dance music, here assembling a top quality lineup which happens to be jam-packed with the perfect combination of creativity and production ability. There really is something for everyone on this fantastic compilation, which takes the title 'It Was Always There', from Sobolik's 'Like Like' original which takes a seriously colourful approach in both its melodies and percussive beauty, to the hardcore-inspired drum skips of 'Let The Seasons Drift' and 808-driven subs of Pharma & J Weaver's 'Red Shift'. Despite the fact the EP works so nicely as a long-play project, we do have to point out a couple of highlights, those being the stunning 'Drum On' from CCL, which performs absolute wonders with a pulsating low end and clicky drum designs, alongside the gorgeous synth-hums of Laurence Kapinga's 'Headrest'. It's a special compilation to say the least!
Review: San Francisco's Cole Odin, a purveyor of "psych-rock, tech-hop, deep-balearic, chug-house", teams up with Berlin-based Canadian slo-mo don Eddie C on a languid, sinuous, constantly evolving instrumental workout that's two parts sleazy Berlin disco to three parts acid-fried west coast love-in, with a hint of Far Eastern exotica thrown in for good measure. Fellow Californians 40 Thieves then deliver a remix that somehow manages to emphasise all three aspects at once, aided and abetted by some six-string magic from Florida jam band Guavatron. Merry pranksters and disco dancers the world over should be more than satisfied.
Review: The fifth instalment of Nomada's 'White' series is something of an expansive affair, whose six sparkling cuts are a mixture of solo tracks and collaborations from Sofatalk and Last Nubian. The former handles the first half of the EP, springing between sunny broken beat (the soulful 'Five Folds'), early Floating points-esque deep house jazziness (the superb 'Hot Jupiters') and Kaidi Tatham-esque jazz-funk/bruk fusion ('Kleper's Law'). Last Nubian first joins forces with Dougan for the driving deep house haziness of 'Last Boogie', before showcasing two solo productions: the more expansive and musically intricate excellence of 'You're a Shepherd' and the ultra-deep, analogue rich dreaminess of 'Brown Me a Caller'. Superbly summery fare.
Review: A most enigmatic producer, Pandreas is a name that surfaced in 2012 and not again until 2017. It was his Back 2 School EP on Full Pupp that brought the artist to attention again which happens once more with this Bulgaria EP. What makes this EP interesting is the release of its lead track "Bulgaria" in 'demo' form which Prins Thomas subtly refixes with two functional drums tracks to match the original's heavy percussion. Pandreas then reenters deep and slow-mo Balearic mode with "Looping Stade D'Originale" in an EP that has us once more intrigued by the sounds of Pandreas.
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: If you're not familiar with Sentimental Animals, there's a good reason for that: it's a brand-new Transatlantic collaboration between old pals Dicky Trisco and Razor N Tape Records' co-founder J Kriv. 'Love Vibration', their debut single, is simply superb, offering an attractive, colourful and addictive trip through hybrid disco-boogie territory complete with dextrous bass guitar, authentic turn-of-the-80s beats and a fine lead vocal from Nicki B. The pair also offers up a superb, proto-house inspired 'Basement Mix' (think Paul Simpson, Winston Jones, Boyd Jarvis etc), and 'Loose Rules', a more organic slab of disco warmth smothered in Chic-style guitars and mazy piano solos. To complete a superb package, Yuksek offers up a slightly tougher and more driving disco-house rework of 'Love Vibration'.
Review: For their latest trick, Razor-N-Tape Reserve has decided to breathe new life into 'Agua', one of the standout cuts from Brazilian band Baianasystem's chronically overlooked 2018 album O Futura Nao Demora. Freerange main man Jimpster delivers two wonderfully breezy and life affirming reworks: a fully-formed remix that wraps Antonio Carlos' vocal and splashes of the original's samba-soaked instrumentation (jazz guitars, warming horns, vintage synth sounds and so on) around a tactile deep house groove, and a deeper, dreamier and especially groovy Dub. After that Diego Strausz and JKriv take over, first re-framing the track as an extra-percussive chuck of acid-speckled nu-disco (their remix), before brilliantly stripping back the cut on their disco instrumental style Dub mix.
Review: They might hail from Israel, but much of Rabo & Snob's music is not influenced by Middle Eastern musical culture, but rather the rhythms, vocals and instrumentation of the African continent. The pair continue this approach on their first Razor 'N' Tape outing, with opener 'Yom Yom' cannily combining squelchy synth bass, fizzing electronics and slick Afro-synth drums with Ghanaian vocals and distinctively West African melodic phrasing. Later in the EP you'll also find a more hypnotic, percussion-rich Dub Mix of the same track that's also well worth checking. Elsewhere, 'Have You Seen My Lady' is darker and sleazier, with low-slung bass, creepy chords and warehouse-ready stabs, while the similarly weighty and locked-in 'Adjinu' makes great use of Acid Arab style electronics and a very 'LFO'-esque analogue bassline.