Some MORE albums, quickly…

November 11, 2015 in Albums

I’m on a roll with this ‘potted album reviews’ malarkey so here’s some that are dropping THIS week…

Microscapes Vol II Buena Onda RecordsVarious – Microscapes Vol II
A VA comp here from a label who’ve never featured on TIWWD before – France’s Buena Onda Records. Don’t know much about them, but based on this evidence I’d like to find out more! Across Microscapes Vol II‘s 12 tracks you’ll find various flavas of house music, starting out seriously deep (Ekstendia’s Luana is a killer) then progressing into more uptempo (but still pretty deep, in the overall scheme of things) tech/prog territory as the album progresses, all coming from eight artists in total of whom only a couple of names (Knip, Gurwan) are even vaguely familiar. File under ‘unexpected pleasures’.

Golden Lounge 3 Clubstar RecordsVarious – Golden Lounge Vol 3
Here, long-running German label Clubstar present 29 tracks of nosebleed techno and 240bpm nu-gabba… nah, not really. Well, the 29 tracks bit is right… beyond that, expect neo-soul, bruk beat, ultra-chilled house, drifty Balearica, lo-fi hip-hop and other assorted horizontal grooves, coming from a mixture of big names (Jose Padilla, Andy Caldwell, The Rurals, DJ Pippi) and, er, some not quite so big names. The whole thing’s compiled and mixed by label boss Henri Kohn, with CD1 a bit more beat-oriented and CD2 taking us deeper into the sofa-surfin’ zone.

Nu Breeds 10 Spring TubeVarious – Nu Breeds 10
It seems like a little while since Spring Tube had any TIWWD love so let’s rectify that now with a quick peek at the latest in their long-running series of VA compilations. As is par for the Nu Breeds course, you won’t find any big names here… what you WILL find is plenty of smooth, classy electronic tuneage. Spring Tube’s natural musical stomping ground is that area where deep and progressive house collide, and that’s amply reflected in this set, with Moonwatch3r’s Dreams and Nio March’s Delight Me particularly worthy of your attention.

Some albums, quickly…

August 24, 2015 in Albums

Okay, slowly getting back up to speed after the two-week break! Tomorrow it’ll be back to business as usual, reviewing this week’s releases, but first there are a few albums from the past couple of weeks I need to tell you about…

Julius Papp Healing Force NeoDisco MusicJulius Papp – Healing Force
The US deep, soulful house veteran returns with his first long-player since 2012’s Music Is The Key, coming once more on his own NeoDisco Music imprint, and it’s fair to say it’s a bit special. Kicking off with the laidback Spanish guitar vibes of A Flower Blossoms, the album goes on to take in cinematic downtempo-isms (A Theme For Sereen), classic-style Balearica (Kosmosis), soulful house (Dontcha Wanna Dance, A Thousand Years), throbbing main room house (Primitive Future) and more besides. Healing Force? They could just as well have called it Tour De Force
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Magnetic Cuts Vol 2Various – Magnetic Cuts Vol 2
The second installment in this six-part best-of series from DJ Sneak’s Magnetic Recordings. Compared to Volume 1, the overall mood here is a little more peaktime and driving, though as ever with the Sneaky one the funk is in full effect throughout, with highlights for this reviewer including DJ W!ld’s Shiva with its echoes of Aly-Us’s classic Follow Me, Sneak’s own swing-tinged I Rep Underground and J Paul Ghetto’s jazzy Imma Let You Know.
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Singers & Players War Of Words On-U Sound

Singers & Players – War Of Words
A must-check for the reggae and dub lovers here, as this highly sought-after LP from 1981 gets a long-overdue re-release courtesy of On-U Sound. Singers & Players were a short-lived supergroup that included Bim Sherman, Prince Far I, Jah Woosh, Keith Levene of PiL, Ari Up of The Slits and members of Roots Radics and The Arabs… with Adrian Sherwood on production duties. And yes, the results of this stellar studio collision are every bit as good as you’d expect!
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Beach Disco Sessions Vol 6 NangVarious – Beach Disco Sessions Vol 6
Nang serve up a compilation here that may surprise a few listeners. Because while it’s true there’s a certain style of spangly nu-disco that Nang have made their own, Beach Disco Sessions 6 serves as a timely reminder that they can do a lot more. Across its 13 tracks you certainly will find synth-y Italo-esque joints – see, for instance, Ilya Santana’s HypnoDisco. But you’ll also find funk-fuelled breakbeats (Bronx Dogs’ 212), Kraak & Smaak/Fat Freddy’s-ish neo-soul (Material’s Come Down) and soulful house (Situation’s Here Comes The Sun)… not to mention Fuzz Against Junk’s County Clonk, as remixed by Lindstrøm into what sounds suspiciously like an homage to Faze Action’s In The Trees!
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Real Ibiza 8 React

Various – Real Ibiza 8
React’s Real Ibiza series returns after an eight-year hiatus, with a 16-track collection of smooth downtempo sounds. The Korvids kick things off with the Groove Armada-ish Ursula My Dear; after that, scene stalwarts like Chris Coco, Jose Padilla and The Kenneth Bager Experience rub shoulders with a host of newcomers on a comp that ranges freely between Balearica, slo-mo disco and all-out ambience. Sonic Radox for club-weary souls (and soles).
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