What can we say, it's the second volume of BBE's exclusive From The Archives series. Enough said, really. But, to be honest, a release like this deserves attention and respect from us all given that this label has created whole generations of music lovers and makers, both in and out of the UK. Much like first instalment, there is so much great material on here that many of us haven't had access too previously, and this goes for tunes like Ron Trent's endless voyage that is "Ori Space", or The Rebirth's "Caterpillar" - a giant of a downtempo anthem - and even the Brazil-infused drums and vibes of the carnivally-minded "Finding The Peace" by Skymark. This has quality stamped all over it and you'll be stuck to find any better broken beat out there on the endless planes that are our charts. Recommended, of course.
As you can see - and hear - the Strictly Breaks imprint is back with another monster compilation, filled with the same charm and charisma as all of the other Soul Treats series, and it's time for number 19 in the series! Opening with Aretha Franklin's "Big Man" is a clear statement of intent, and that's closely followed by Junior Parker's "The Tax Man", so you know this is a soul compilation done absolutely correctly. If anything, it serves as a wonderful review of the very best music to represent a sound and an era that will forever remain timeless; but this ain't no amateur gear...just go an indulge in tunes from the likes of Joyce Williams, Charles Earland, James Spencer, Stevie Wonder and many, many more soul heroes.
It's safe to say that Newcastle's Steve & Turrell have become one of the Jalapeno label's hottest acts and, for that matter, some of the hottest acts out there in the nu-funk scene. Mount Pleasant Acoustic is an EP that revels in melancholia, but that does so in a way that retains the seductive nature of soul at its core. Just listen to tunes like "I'm Gone" or "A Deckham Love Song" and you'll be excited to hear the results of a totally acoustic sound brought to life by the sheer power of voice and guitar, which is also what makes up both "I Feel Alive" and "There For Me"...two endlessly pleasing releases of emotion.