Balearic . Yacht Rock . New Age . Downbeat

WEEK STARTING 16 Feb

Genre pick of the week Cover of Instrumental Dubs #2 by Various Artists.
Isle Of Jura present ‘Instrumental Dubs #2’, a deep dive into the world of the dub version and beyond. The A side has a distinct boogie feel, starting slow with a George Kerr produced cut from 1984 followed by a Brit Funk-esq instrumental from Harold Melvin & the Bluenotes originally released on the Philly World label (home to ‘Voice of Q’). The B side closes with the ‘Sweeter’ instrumental mix of boogie bomb ‘Loving Sweet Devotion’ by Idiater Edwards.

The B side opens with ‘H2S04’ from Mad Professor that defies categorisation, sitting somewhere between electro, disco and dub. Last but by no means least there’s an uptempo dub mix of Original Rockers' ‘Push Push’ making its first appearance on vinyl having only been on the CD single release first time around.

TRACK LISTING

Tracy Kerr - If U Want My Loving (Dub)
Harold Melvin The Blue Notes - Todays Your Lucky Day (Dub)
Diater Edwards - Loving Sweet Devotion (Sweeter Mix)
Mad Professor - Hs204
Original Rockers - Push Push The Underwater World Of Jah (Couteau Mix)

Jeremiah Chiu

In Electric Time

    On June 29th, 2023, Jeremiah Chiu walked into the Vintage Synthesizer Museum (VSM) in Highland Park, Los Angeles, with no plan more specific than "let's fire this stuff up and see what happens." Exploring the VSMs' vast collection of classic, rare and staple synthesizers, he would sequence, trigger, and layer the machines together with help from VSM founder/curator Lance Hill.

    The resulting album - In Electric Time - was recorded in just two days, and edited to completion in the two days following. It was captured fully analog by engineer Ben Lumsdaine, who contributes performances on a few tracks himself. Cooper Crain (of Bitchin Bajas) makes an appearance as well; but ultimately the collection is an intuitive expression of organic electronic music conceptualized and created in-context by Chiu alone, as he calls on a life time of work in sound synthesis to paint a fulgent, refreshingly undercut sequence of cinematic sketches and in-process themes. In some ways, In Electric Time reflects the directness of Raymond Scott's electronic studio recordings - with sharp cuts and room chatter - and, in others, it conjures the in-the-moment magic of Harmonia.

    TRACK LISTING

    1. ElectroComp 101
    2. Seawater Swell
    3. For Voices
    4. Rococco Rondo
    5. A Cloud Song
    6. Rhythm Bell
    7. Brush With Thin Air
    8. Rhythm Serge
    9. Static Stone Railway
    10. Transparent Spheres
    11. Echo Arp Hold
    12. In Electric Time

    Dortmund

    Titanic / The Deep

    Official reissue of Dortmund's self-released single from 1981. For those in the know a sought-after gem, for everybody else the single you didn't know you need in your life! Comes in picture sleeve with the original artwork. Limited edition.

    'Titanic' - quite self-explanatory - is about the queen of the ocean and her sinking as a ship believed as unsinkable. Starting off with its morse code-like sounds it evolves into a heavy grooving mélange of alternative rock, funk, new wave and synth pop.

    The B-Side 'The Deep' explores depths you didn't know about. This instrumental jazz boogie funk fusion piece takes you on a five minute journey that will be your life-saver on any day.

    In the early 1980s the scene of the Ruhr area was alive and kicking but still under the radar. Musicians played in different bands and projects of various styles. Three guys gathered simply under their city name "Dortmund" and did their own thing which led to this conceptual single - their only release.

    Before that Elmar Krohn (keyboards) and Thomas Meyer (vocals, bass, guitar, keyboards) were part of the "Mardi Gras Band", a funk and soul band with a great reputation for their live shows. They were also involved in writing 'Blame It On The Boogie' which got performed by "The Jacksons" in 1978 but that is another story. On the drums they were joined by Siegfried Hermes who also played in the band "Die Salinos".

    STAFF COMMENTS

    Matt says: A Balearic-rock curio that's intriguing as it is inviting. "Titanic" is a daft, rawkus, but ultimately danceable track that should find favour towards the end of any fun and eclectic session. "The Deep" is bit more bean bags and sun loungers - perfect daytime beach bar tackle. A interesting 7" no doubt!

    TRACK LISTING

    A. Titanic
    B. The Deep  

    Two years after the release of his first self-titled album, DJ producer Massimo Napoli aka Galathea presents the new 'Sacred Love', in which he once again avails himself of the collaboration of his friend producer and bass player Salvo Dub, as well as a combo of respected musicians: singer Kadi Koulibaly - originally from Burkina Faso - already featured on the first album, Giulia La Rosa, author of the lyrics and performer of the title track, pianist Mario Pappalardo, percussionist Sergio Spitaleri and drummer Luciano Cantone.
    'Sacred Love' is definitely a more mature, intense and profound journey than the previous album of the same name, which enhances the magical dreamlike and spiritual atmospheres of a certain African culture.
    The album guides the listener along a path of multi-ethnic contaminations: "Divinité", "Ouaga" and "Koloko", well interpreted by Kadi, touch on the sacredness and mysticism of the African continent and blend well with the Spiritual Jazz sounds that have evolved in the West.
    "Divinité", through the spoken word of French poet Diego Hernandez, tackles the themes of faith, life and the relationship with one's 'self', with references to French chanson productions, in which Kadi's spiritual song, at times 'Saharan', intersects and expands into cosmic space.
    The title track, the first single from the album, also released on 7" (45rpm) in two versions, is an Afro-American gospel with a typically afrobeat rhythm, vaguely reminiscent of Nina Simone's 'See-Line Woman'.
    North Africa is represented by "Equator", while we climb further north into the middle of the Mediterranean Sea with "Medican Blues", to land in Stromboli with the Deep Jazz of "Ginostra", whose title recalls the village of the marvellous island in the Aeolian archipelago.
    Then we have the Cuban track "Caminito", a sort of Cha-Cha with a romantic piano melody (à la Chucho Valdez) well performed by maestro Mario Pappalardo; and then again "Eos", strongly Balearic with a Brazilian mood; "Impression", a dreamy journey of impact; "Sirens", already present on the first album and here reworked in a new Spiritual-Ambient version produced by Agosta.
    "Sacred Love" is thus an original and musically borderless album, which expands a certain African sacred culture and naturally blends Afrobeat, Jazz and Blues atmospheres with the Balearic sounds of Mediterranean culture.
    Enjoy listening!

    TRACK LISTING

    A1.Ginostra
    A2.Sacred Love Feat. Giulia La Rosa
    A3.Equator
    A4.Divinitè Feat. Kadi Koulibaly
    A5.Koloko Feat. Kadi Koulibaly

    B1.Ouaga Feat. Kadi Koulibaly
    B2.Medicane Blues
    B3.Caminito
    B4.Eos
    B5.Sirens Feat. Agosta

    Nouvelle Vague

    Bande à Part (20 Ans)

      The Nouvelle Vague project was born from Marc Collin and Olivier Libaux’s desire to dust off and adapt new wave standards in a bossa nova style. Over the years, Nouvelle Vague has welcomed a host of singers on increasingly eclectic covers.

      Given the concept of the Nouvelle Vague project and its obvious filiation with its cinematic counterpart, it’s hardly surprising that the group’s second album is entitled ‘Bande à Part’ (a direct reference to Jean-Luc Godard’s 1964 film, considered one of the first works of the New Wave and a precursor in the cinematic field, even inspiring Quentin Tarantino to name his own production company, A Band Apart). More eclectic than its predecessor, ‘Bande à Part’ draws its references from pre-electro (Bauhaus and its famous ‘Bela Lugosi’s Dead’, New Order), postpunk (Buzzcocks) and Eighties pop (Billy Idol).

      To mark the band’s 20th anniversary, Le Label are proud to announce the reissue of this unique project album, which reappropriates songs from the punk and post-punk repertoire in the form of electro, bossa nova or folk. Enriched with numerous bonus tracks, some of which have never been released before.

      TRACK LISTING

      1. The Killing Moon
      2. Ever Fallen In Love
      3. Dance With Me
      4. Don't Go
      5. Dancing With Myself
      6. Heart Of Glass
      7. O Pamela
      8. Blue Monday
      9. Human Fly
      10. Bela Lugosi's Dead
      11. I Can’t Escape Myself
      12. Let Me Go
      13. Fade To Grey
      14. Waves
      15. Eisbaer (Bonus)
      16. Israel (Bonus)
      17. Ghost Rider (Bonus)
      18. Pride- In The Name Of
      19. Love (Bonus)
      20. Confusion (Bonus)
      21. Sex Beat (Bonus)
      22. Mirror In The Bathroom (Bonus)
      23. Sweet Dreams (Bonus)
      24. Come On Eileen (Bonus)

      Nouvelle Vague

      Nouvelle Vague (20 Ans)

        The Nouvelle Vague project was born from Marc Collin and Olivier Libaux’s desire to dust off and adapt new wave standards in a bossa nova style. Over the years, Nouvelle Vague have welcomed a host of singers on increasingly eclectic covers.

        In 2004, they released their first album, simply entitled ‘Nouvelle Vague’. The album featured covers of Depeche Mode, The Clash, The Cure, Joy Division and Dead Kennedys. A very British first album in spirit (as well as in the choice of groups) where the typically London new wave atmosphere predominates but revised and corrected in a Caribbean version by the dynamic tandem.

        To mark the band’s 20th anniversary, we’re proud to announce the reissue of this innovative album. Enriched with numerous bonuses, including a session on KCRW radio where the band’s constant reinvention reaches its apogee.

        TRACK LISTING

        1. Love Will Tear Us Apart
        2. Just Can't Get Enough
        3. In A Manner Of Speaking
        4. Guns Of Brixton
        5. This Is Not A Love Song
        6. Too Drunk To Fuck
        7. Marian
        8. Making Plans For Nigel
        9. A Forest
        10. I Melt With You
        11. Teenage Kicks
        12. Psyche
        13. Friday Night Saturday Morning
        14. Sorry For Laughing (Bonus)
        15. Wishing (If I Had A Photograph Of You) (Bonus)
        16. A Forest (KCRW Session) (Bonus)
        17. Just Can't Get Enough (KCRW Session) (Bonus)
        18. Bizarre Love Triangle (KCRW Session) (Bonus)
        19. This Is Not A Love Song (KCRW Session) (Bonus)
        20. Making Plans For Nigel (KCRW Session) (Bonus)
        21. Even Fallen In Love (KCRW Session) (Bonus)
        22. Guns Of Brixton (KCRW Session) (Bonus)
        23. Love Will Tear Us Apart (KCRW Session) (Bonus)
        24. In A Manner Of Speaking (KCRW Session) (Bonus)
        25. Mongoloid (KCRW Session) (Bonus)

        Nouvelle Vague

        Should I Stay Or Should I Go

          Marc Collin, the creator of Nouvelle Vague, never anticipated producing a fifth album for the project, originally envisioning it as a one-off tribute to post-punk through bossa nova. However, the unexpected success of their debut album, featuring unique covers of songs by XTC, Public Image Limited, Josef K, and Joy Division, propelled Nouvelle Vague into unforeseen popularity. Collin attributes their success to the timing of the post-punk revival and the emotional resonance achieved by blending bossa nova with melancholic music. He also suggests that their French identity played a significant role, as their willingness to reinterpret songs without treating them as sacred, along with French vocals, contributed to the project's appeal.

          Despite initially considering Nouvelle Vague as a short-lived endeavor, Collin reflects on its enduring success over 20 years, marked by diverse albums covering French new wave artists, original compositions, and unique reinterpretations of various musical styles. The latest album, "Should I Stay Or Should I Go", continues the trend, featuring pop-infused renditions of post-punk classics. 

          TRACK LISTING

          1. What I Like Most About You Is Your Girlfriend
          2. People Are People
          3. You Spin Me Around
          4. Only You
          5. She’s In Parties
          6. The Look Of Love
          7. Shout
          8. Should I Stay Or Should I Go?
          9. Rebel Yell
          10. Breakfast
          11. Girls On Film
          12. Rapture
          13. This Charming Man

          Open Space X Laura Groves

          Tied / Control

          The legendary Test Pressing blog launch their new offshoot label, Test Pressing Catalogue with street soul tinged music brought to you by Apiento and Andrew Hale of Sade with vocals by the truly talented Laura Groves (who has recently released her new album and been working with Sampha).

          Guided by the influential Andrew Hale of the legendary band Sade, this collaboration channels the timeless soul, jazz, and R&B essence that defines Sade's iconic sound. Andrew's expertise, honed through years as Sade's keyboardist, seamlessly intertwines with Apiento's vision, producing street soul music that pays homage to Sade's enduring legacy.

          STAFF COMMENTS

          Matt says: Test Pressing opens up a new collection, jumping on the street soul hype with deep and restrained movements of e-soul.

          TRACK LISTING

          A1. Tied
          A2. Tied (Instrumental)
          B1. Control

          Yoanson & Karamie / Prof Jah Pinpin 4tet

          African Leaders / The Final Bird (Le Temps D’une Vie)

          New Parisian label, Disques Messager, presents its new and second release. As its name suggests, the label has a simple leitmotiv: to place itself among the best messengers for rarities and sought-after gems of international rare groove. A mission which began like fire last year with a 7inch reissue release including two Brazilian disco bangers by Cristina Camargo. 

          Not many info can be found about Yoanson & Karamie, two young artists from the French African diaspora, who randomly met with Nessim Saroussi and his label Ness Music in the late 80s. Nessim produced their only EP release, "Kalimba" in 1988. Part of this EP, "African Leaders" is a stunning track melting Afro-tropical percussions, disco bass, proto-electro beats and leftfield vocals in a way that reminds us of Dinosaur L or Arthur Russel productions.

          Philippe de Lacroix-Herpin (aka Prof Jah Pinpin) has a long musical career started in the mid-70s and became a renowned saxophonist playing and recording for many famous French acts such as Jean-Jacques Goldman, Alain Chamfort, FFF, or even rap band NTM. In 1994, he moved to the Reunion Island where he quickly launched the Prof Jah Pinpin 4tet, in his own words, playing 'free/funk/jazz/rock/tropical' music… Quite a vast and large musical tag, but which immediately make sense when listening to the surprising "The Final Bird" track. Only released as CD in 1996, this instrumental production has a unique sound and flavor mixing all kinds of elements together (even samples of Weather Report!).



          STAFF COMMENTS

          Matt says: Two tracks of deliciously cosmic music that are, unless its just me, pretty obscure and under played.

          TRACK LISTING

          A. Yoanson & Karamie - African Leaders
          B. Prof Jah Pinpin 4tet - The Final Bird (Le Temps D’une Vie)


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