disco . italo . cosmic . disco-not-disco . boogie


Genre pick of the week Cover of Music Is The Healing Force Of The Universe - Höga Nord Rekords Singles Collection Vol.4 by Various Artists.

Various Artists

Music Is The Healing Force Of The Universe - Höga Nord Rekords Singles Collection Vol.4

The Mothership has come! It has arrived in the form of the strictly limited collection box “Music Is The Healing Force Of The Universe”, containing all singles released on the label between 2019 and 2021. The Höga Nord – galaxy resounds of all good between strict electro and loose jams, fluffy krautrock and moist world music to underwater techno and space funk. Although, what it is that defines the Höga Nord sound is not genres, instead it is, to cite Mathias Nilsson, founder of and boss for the label, music “strongly connected to fantasy, to the creative world.” Creativity over profit!

The collection is an overview on Gothenburg’s underground music and on an international scene that breathes similar air as the local Swedish acts that Höga Nord Rekords has chosen to highlight. The kinship between Jesse’s 80’s varnish sports car-electro and Purple Desert Rain God’s more traditional mountain sound can appear distant but the artists come together in their free spirited approach to their own productions – what all acts on this collection has in common is that they move toward something new, something beyond the genre they are in.

“Music Is The Healing Force Of The Universe ” mark the closer for Höga Nords first run. The 2010s are over and the 2020s lies open for further investigation of the cream of the Swedish and international of underground scenes!


Matt says: Cosmic, EBM, DnB, drug-chug... it's all there in this 3rd crucial, catch-all collection from our Gothenburg buddies. One of our favourite labels of recent times - the DIY aesthetic and stylistic direction is some of the strongest around and their roster, varied, innovative and highly creative! In short, an imperative and beautiful release - not least because of the sexy silk scarf that you get alongside the records!


Record 1 - A. Global Tracks - Hither Green
Record 1 - B. GlobalTracks - Shelley
Record 2 - A. Kanot - Bottenmannen
Record 2 - B. Kanot - La Danse Des Corneilles
Record 3 - A. Tecwaa - Cï
Record 3 - B. Tecwaa - Xentæh
Record 4 - A. Dame Bonnet - Portamento
Record 4 - B. Dame Bonett - Dark, Slow
Record 5 - A. Birds - Transcendental Phases
Record 5 - B. Birds - Tunnel Vision
Record 6 - A. Purple Desert Rain God - Invisible Matter
Record 6 - B. Purple Desert Rain God - Bridge To Nowhere
Record 7 - A. Jesse - Possibilities
Record 7 - B. Jesse - Shazzy
Record 8 - A. The Exorcist GBG - Stonerdisco
Record 8 - B. The Exorcist GBG - Superstandard
Record 9 - A. Timothy J. Fairplay - Pathfinder Theme
Record 9 - B. Timothy J. Fairplay - UFOs Over China
Record 10 - A. Pink Skull - Taki Chrome
Record 10 - B. Pink Skull - Strummer Maxx

Arp Frique returns with a new album after a string of releases, leaving the cratediggers and dancefloor tastemakers with underground classics like "Nos Magia", "Voyage" and "Nyame Ye". On ''Analog People Digital World' he embraces the digital coldness of Yamaha’s classic DX7 synthesizer to create a refreshing listening experience using only the FM synthesis-based sounds from this machine to find new heat for an analog world, reflecting on the digital revolution we are living through. The album features Ghanaian songstress Mariseya (Omampam, Jah Kingdom, Digital World, Roi Salomon), Cape Verdean OG Americo Brito (Go Now Wetiko) and Surinam funkstar Sumy, who joins the record on the opening track “Spiritual Masseuse”. Arp Frique closes the album with “Duncan Truffle”, a very intense and wobbling instrumental echoing Bootsy and Bernie Worrell on a solo exercise. Expect an analog-digital exploration of lofi funk, highlife, zouk and reggae. Does that DX7 sound hot or cold to you?


Matt says: Arp Frique's synth-laden touch turns its hand to a variety of musical genres - zouk, highlife, reggae, disco etc - with quite dazzling results. There's both cohesion and flamboyance in equal measure across the LP. A technicoloured trip into sound!


Spiritual Masseuse Feat. Sumy
Omampam Feat. Mariseya
Jah Kingdom Feat. Mariseya
Digital World Feat. Mariseya
Go Now Wetiko Feat. Americo Brito & Mariseya
Roi Salomon Feat. Mariseya
Duncan Truffle

Chris & Cosey

Elemental Seven - 2023 Reissue

    Chris & Cosey’s Elemental 7 – available here for the first time in 40 years - is the soundtrack to the film of the same name (on Cabaret Voltaire’s Doublevision video imprint) that saw the duo working once more with John Lacey – Lacey had previously worked with Cosey in COUM Transmissions and introduced Chris Carter to the collective. The album’s highlight and one of their best loved songs, ‘Dancing Ghosts’, sounds as fresh and relevant today as it must have on its original release.


    Side One:
    1/ Dancing Ghosts
    2/ Temple Bar (Edit)
    3/ Meeting Mr. Evans
    Side Two:
    1/ The Final Calling
    2/ Sidereal
    3/ Invisible Spectrum (Edit)
    4/ Well Spring Of Life

    Chris & Cosey

    Feral Vapours Of The Silver Ether - 2023 Reissue

      2007’s Feral Vapours of the Silver Ether will be available here for the first time on vinyl, and was the second release under the Carter Tutti name. On it, the electronic and the acoustic are merged in a seamless, crafted album that is awash with echoes of the sea, the moon, the open road, and flatlands.


      Side One:
      1/So Slow The Knife (Edit)
      2/Lowlands (Edit)
      3/Torn Window (Edit)
      4/Woven Clouds (Edit)
      5/It Was

      Side Two:
      1/Breathless Endings
      2/Forest Floor
      3/Acid Tongue (Edit)
      4/The Sun Shone That Day
      5/Feral Vapours (Edit)

      Chris & Cosey

      Muzik Fantastique! - 2023 Reissue

        1993’s Muzik Fantastique! is receiving its first ever vinyl issue. The album finds Chris & Cosey in one of their most dynamic and melodic periods with an album that slides towards subtler grooves and textures.


        Side One:
        1/ Fantastique (Edit)
        2/ Sound Of Sound (Edit)
        3/ Masqued (Edit)
        4/ Apocalypso (Edit)
        5/ Frakira

        Side Two:
        1/ Hidden Man
        2/ Visions Love (Edit)
        3/ Loves Lost Immortal (Edit)
        4/ Eternal (Edit)
        5/ Neverneverland
        6/ Melancholia

        The Free Music & Najib Alhoush

        Free Music (Part 1)

        Blisteringly groovy collection of completely off-the-radar songs by Libyan composer / producer Najib Alhoush's group The Free Music, circa 1976. Releasing an astonishing 10 albums, all impressively strong and equally infused by soul, funk, disco and reggae, The Free Music created a distinctly infectious groove that unfortunately didn't make an impact outside of Libya due to the complex political situation at the time. There is a reason it says "Part 1" in the title.

        Avid Habibi Funk listeners may be familiar with Libyan composer / producer Najib Alhoush, who's track "Ya Aen Daly" - the Bee Gee's "Stayin Alive" cover - was included in our second compilation. While the original track never excited us, Najib's version managed to strip it from its pop approach that had taken over disco during the genre's peak. At that time, disco tracks mostly were aiming to appeal to the widest audience possible. Najib had turned the original track into something different and very unique. Upon further research we found that Najib was actually the singer and founder of The Free Music band alongside Fakhreddin, Salim Jibreel, Abdulrazzak 'Kit-Kat', Mukhtar Wanis and Mohameed Al Rakibi.

        Initially, we only licensed Najib Alhoush's "Ya Aen Daly" from Yousef Alhoush, Najib's son, who was pleased to hear that there was interest in his father's music form someone abroad. In the process of exchanging and learning about Najib's music and career, our understanding was that The Free Music only recorded the one album. This couldn't be further from the truth, in fact, there were ten albums produced by the group, all impressively coherent with a clear influence from disco, soul, funk and reggae.

        The Free Music album was probably the longest it ever took us to gather information, photos and musical source material in a good enough quality to be reissued. This is largely due to the complicated political situation in Libya, compounded by the fact that Libya is still largely cut off from international payment systems, so getting an advance payment to the right person can be a process that takes weeks. The same goes for getting master tapes to a studio abroad and afterwards back to Libya.

        When we look for music that works under the umbrella of Habibi Funk, we often come across albums where bands experimented with influences from Soul, Jazz, Funk, Disco and more, usually on a single track or two but then they often go down to a different path for the rest of the album. This was not the case for The Free Music. All their albums are fully dedicated to their unique blend of Disco, Reggae and Funk and it feels that when we made the selection for this album, we could have chosen a completely different number of tracks and the album would be been equally strong.

        The lead-off single is the stupendously groovy "Ana Qalbi Ehtar" out February 3rd along with LP pre-order to capitalize on Bandcamp Friday. From the outset, the rhythmic strumming of the funkified guitars give way to the galloping drums and bass, opening up to anthemic vocals and rounding out with a blistering guitar solo, a certified disco-funk classic through-andthrough.
        Second single, out February 17th is the disco slammer "Hawelt Nensa Ghalaak." Guitars, harmonized horns, synths and bouncing bass and drums collide w/ spaced out vox to make the track a dancefloor sureshot for any party.

        Third single is "Mathasebnish," a pure disco-funk slammer if there ever was one – with stabbing horns, funky bass riffs, a riding rhythm guitar and anthemic vocals, rounded out with stunning flute and guitar solos – the track will surely be on repeat along with the arrival of warmer weather.
        Album focus track "Men Awel Marra" is another standout disco-infused tune, showcasing the immense creativity out of Najib and The Free Music. This past summer we finally had the opportunity to get together with Yousef face-to-face at a coffee shop in Istanbul's central Istiklal road together with our friend Anas El Horani. Yousef told us the whole story of how his father got into music, the start of the band and his father's continued conflicts with the Gaddafi regime that probably kept his career from becoming even bigger. As always, both vinyl and CD come with an extensive booklet featuring background on The Free Music and Najib Alhoush, including words from Najib's son, Yousef, as well as unseen photos, cassettes and more.

        Funk Masters

        Love Money

          “There are certain records that ‘split the atom’, creating a totally new sound - serendipitous moments in time when an artist pulls a rabbit from the hat and forecasts a change ahead.” - Greg Wilson, DJ Mag.

          Few records crossed over into different musical worlds as successfully as the Funk Masters’ sublime UK disco / jazz funk monster classic cut, ‘Love Money’. A monster underground hit in New York - everywhere from Larry Levan’s Paradise Garage and David Mancuso’s Loft in New York - through to the new wave / no wave dance crowds at Area, Club 57, Danceteria, Limelight and Mudd Club, and artists such as Keith Haring and Jean-Michel Basquiat, who similarly played the track to death. The track then also became a huge Chicago house club track and influenced everyone from Masters at Work’s Louie Vega to Francois Kevorkian with its dubbed-out sound.

          Originally released in 1981, the track came out on the flipside over a rap cut to the song by Bo Kool, one of the earliest examples of UK rap, but it was the instrumental ‘Love Money’, with its dubbed out sound effects, that was more often played, filling dancefloors everywhere. This nod to reggae and dub was not by chance. The track was produced by long-time UK resident Jamaican reggae DJ and producer Tony Williams. This was his first attempt at a club track but, by using reggae musicians, he created new style blending funk, disco and reggae, years ahead of its time.

          So if ever you want to hear a record that encapsulates the world of disco, funk, proto-house, hip-hop, no wave dance and reggae in one go then this is it.

          This is the first release from Soul Jazz Records’ delving into the Tony Williams Tania Music and Funk Masters catalogue, which contains a wealth of UK jazz funk killers.


          1. Funk Masters - Love Money
          2. Bo Kool - (Money) No Love

          Jerry & The Melange / Bob & The Rustlers

          New Room / Rustle Bob's Creek

          The Space Grapes disco train continues; destination - FUN! Fast becoming the biggest players on the modern disco circuit - the crew's records exude that authentic warmth and skilled musicianship of the genre's golden period whilst injecting new themes and energy, never sounding cliched, never sounding forced.

          Two more crucial iterations, containing material by acts possibly real, possibly made-up (are they all just MCDE and his mates fucking about with us?!). Side A, by Jerry & The Melange, contains a buck wild, freewheeling rhythm section on the verge of careering out of control whilst a whole manner of funky instrumentation grips us by the hips and doesn't let go!

          Meanwhile on side B, Bob & The Rustlers contribute the equally frenetic and crazed "Rustle Bob's Creek". Guided by hyperactive clav lines, high synth strings and aggressively plucked bass it's another high octane roller for your next barn dance and guaranteed to get those heels kickin' high into the air!

          Just gotta also add a huge thanks and big ups to Rush Hour and Danilo Plessow who've gone outta their way to support physical 'brick n mortar' stores during these testing times by offering us all exclusive on this. You won't find it via online shops or discogs (..yet!), and it's great to receive this kinda support from big independent labels such as Space Grapes. 


          Matt says: Space Grapes give us physical record shops a reason to be cheerful, giving us exclusive on this new double header from the label. Hustlin' and bustlin' barn dance trouble on this rambunctious joint. Check!


          ! A. Jerry & The Melange - New Room
          B. Bob & The Rustlers - Rustle Bob's Creek

          Love Drop

          Love Drops 03

          Cult editsmith Love Drop is back with his highly anticipated 3rd release on his sell out series of rework disco rockets.

          His deeply enchanted, almost spiritual form of mutant disco packed full of never ending grooves and heavy delays conjures up fond memories of early Moodymann jams. And his releases have attracted plays and support from discerning jocks around the globe such as Gilles Peterson, Art Of Tones, Horse Meat Disco, JKriv, Dicky Trisco and many many more.

          A digger's desire for an original source blended together with a dancer's feel for the floor produces a powerful magic spell that'll conjure up sonic infernos for the club. Even though we're only three releases you in; you know this is gonna be a highly collectable and cherished series. Recommended! 


          Matt says: High grade disco edits you feel Horse Meat Disco or Supernature will get a load of road miles out of. Number three from this tasteful series and sure to become a collector's piece.




          Funky Boogie

          Moar's 45 Loves series continues with another dose of double disco delights. On side A he applies his hip-hop chops and sensibilities to Glenn Jones' "I Am Somebody", giving it a sense of urgency and freshness we might not be accustomed to. Side B sees Light Of The World's ode to the capitol from 1980, "London Town" sped up slightly, but retaining much of the original's silk and smoothness. You know the drill by now - essential twists on bar room classics for your hard working vinyl disc jock! 


          Matt says: Moar's 'fresh n tasty edits on 7" for the working bar DJ' label - 45 Loves continues in earnest. Rather than concentrate on rare and illusive source material he opts to choose classic tracks and give them inventive touch-ups / rub-downs - offering up new twists on classic sounds. It works!


          A. L
          B. LL

          The Orb

          The Dream - 2023 Reissue

            ‘The Dream’ is the eighth studio album by The Orb. It was released in 2007 on Liquid Sound Design Records and saw a return to form and leans towards the earlier Orb sound and aesthetic. Dr. Alex Paterson reunites with Martin ‘Youth’ Glover and is also joined by Tim Bran of Dreadzone. Listeners are treated to the magical guitar flair from none other than Steve Hillage (Gong, System 7) as he joins in on several of the album’s tracks. A special one for aficionados, collectors, and connoisseurs across the globe!

            TRACK LISTING

            A1. The Dream (The Future Academy Of Noise, Rhythm And Gardening Mix)
            A2. Vuja De
            A3. Something Supernatural
            A4. A Beautiful Day
            B1. DDD (Dirty Disco Dub)
            B2. The Truth Is
            B3. Phantom Of Ukraine
            B4. Mother Nature
            C1. Lost And Found
            C2. The Forest Of Lyonesse
            C3. Katskills
            C4. High Noon
            D1. Sleeping Tiger & The Gods Unknown
            D2. Codes
            D3. Orbisonia

            Helene Rickhard & Rune Lindbaek

            Fiero EP

            Our favourite Norwegian noisemaker returns with a new label called Cosmic Oslo. This debut voyage sees Rune teaming up with the Balearic & cosmic disco queen of Norway, Helene Rickhard.
            It's a wonderfully varied & esoteric affair, with the ominous opener casting cavernous sonic shapes lit by the midnight sun. The astonishing first cut is followed by 'Fiero', a haunted cosmic pop affair...

            On the flip 'Hubris' reminds us of early 90's 'One Dove' era Weatherall productions, while 'Julemix' is a FX drenched optimistic ambient piece.

            STAFF COMMENTS

            Matt says: Standing proud in our psyhedelic dance / drug-chug section is this new belter from Norwegian genius Rune Lindbaek. A stunning interpretation of cosmic / ALFOS / EBM styles given a seriously psychedelic twist.

            TRACK LISTING

            A. Blodekjaer Rave
            A2. Fiero
            B. Hubris
            B2. Julemix

            Riding high on the inexplicable tech-house adoption of their last release, Talking Drums return with hit number six. This desert island disc finds the family bagging a last minute flight to sunnier climes, where the cocktails are strong and the seas are calm.

            On 'Air Ecosse', the crew provide an engine overhaul to a middling slice of Scotch boogie, squeezing maximum thrust out of the new beat-y intro before a bubbling bassline and chiming chords provide some serious uplift. The captain takes the comms for a late deadpan vocal, hinting at a little Pet Shop Boys karaoke prior to touchdown in paradise.

            The percussion pals kick off the Birkies on the B side, boarding the bateau with a pair of proper harbour heaters. 'Too Yacht To Handle' bubbles along like Mick'n'Keef in disco mode, oozing grooves under a swooning vocal a la Nicolette Larson. A hazy arrangement lets the music play, indulging the instrumental breaks, soaring synths and subtle delays in true 12" Extended Mix stylee, perfect for peak-time at poolside or la playa.

            Dropping the tempo to a sunset strut, 'AORwaves' provides the perfect cool-down, as TD cut back the fat on a forgotten soft-rocker to create a cosmic yacht bomb. Low slung, sleazy and spaced out, this is gonna rock a bar set and beyond.

            STAFF COMMENTS

            Mine says: Oh hello there... what's this sultry little number? Air Ecosse has to be up there with my all-time favourite TD edits, Too Yacht To Handle does exactly what it says on the tin and you can literally feel the sleaze ooze out of AORwaves - in the absolute best possible way. Cosmic after hours tackle at its finest from my favourite percussion posse!

            TRACK LISTING

            Air Ecosse
            Too Yacht To Handle

            Nkono Teles

            Love Vibration

              The pioneer of West African electronic music was known for being tapped by over 100 other musicians to produce or arrange their music, from King Sunny Adé, Guy Lobe, even Steve Monite's album "Only You" and more. Having already appeared on Soundway's best-selling compilation "Doing It In Lagos", here more of Nkono's limited solo work is carefully remastered and reissued on vinyl for the first time. One of a small handful of pioneers of the Nigerian electronic music scene in the 1980s (alongside the likes of Jake Sollo & William Onyeabor), Teles was known for being tapped by over 100 musicians to feature on, produce or arrange their music. The list of '80s Nigerian records that his sound and style embellished is seemingly endless: Steve Monite (he arranged and produced the music on the Only You album recently re- issued by Soundway), Dizzy K, Peter Abdul, Odion Iruoje, Steve Black, Rick Asikpo, Feladey, Charly Boy, Majek Fashek & Sonny Okosuns, to name just a few, all engaged his enigmatic production and keyboard services throughout the 1980s. He became known as the first person in Nigeria to push the use of the drum machine into popular music and created a unique and original boogie-funk sound combining these new beats with guitars and an array of new and affordable synthesiser sounds that started appearing in the early 1980s.

              TRACK LISTING

              Martin Street Special
              Love Got A Hold Of Me
              Hometown Weather
              Martin Street
              Love Vibration
              Party Beats

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