Search Results for:


Greg Foat's 9th album 'The Mage' joins the dots between the past and future of British jazz. Enlisting the talenst of jazz/library/soundtrack legends Duncan Lamont, Art Themen, Ray Russell and Clark Tracey to collaborate with their modern contemporaries Greg Foat, Moses Boyd and Heliocentric's drummer Malcolm Catto to create something undeniably British but outward looking and global.

A long time personal ambition for Greg was to work with Trinidadian songstress Kathy Garcia, on 'The Mage', this wish is granted as she joins him to re-imagine the deep Xian masterpiece 'Of my Hands', 45 years after recording it as a young girl.

Greg's compositions and arrangements showcase the old and new, downtempo folkscapes, free jazz with notes of hip-hop and soul from the young team flavouring the mix. Featuring Simon Ljungman and Friends as a male choir, Greg's EMS Synthi AKS experiments (made famous by Dr Who) the album is a testament to the versatility and pure musicality of all those involved and Greg Foat's ability to bring artists together to record beautiful, timeless music.

#Greg Foat's 9th album joins the dots between the past and future of British jazz. Bringing Jazz/Library/soundtrack legends Duncan Lamont, Art Themen, Ray Russell and Clark Tracey to the table with modern contemporaries Moses Boyd and Heliocentric's drummer Malcolm Catto. A long time personal mission for greg was to work with Trinidadian singer Kathy Garcia, she joins him on The Mage to re-record the deep Xian masterpiece 'Of my Hands' 45 years after recording it as a young girl.

Greg's compositions and arrangements showcase the young and old, downtempo folkscapes, free jazz with Notes of Hip-Hop and Soul from the young team flavouring the mix. Featuring the Simon Ljungman male choir, Gregs EMS Synthi AKS experiments (made famous by Dr Who) the album is a testament to the versatility and pure musicality of all those involved and Greg Foat's ability to bring artists together and make beautiful timeless music that moves deeply.

Andrew Wasylyk is the alias of Scottish writer, producer and multi-instrumentalist, Andrew Mitchell.

In 2018, Andrew was extended a residency invite from arts centre and historic house, Hospitalfield, Arbroath, Scotland to create new music for their restored, 19th century, Erard Grecian harp.
During Wasylyk's five-month sojourn he created melodies and progressions echoing the building's unique relationship with the looming North Sea horizon. Using not only the harp, but the house's original grand piano, Andrew explored the Angus landscape and beyond, gathering field recordings on trips to neighbouring Seaton Cliffs and Bell Rock Lighthouse (the world's oldest surviving sea-washed lighthouse).
Winter slipped into spring, and harp-led compositions gave way to an ambitious third, full-length album, exploring a range of themes utilising a broad palette of instrumentation, including flugelhorn, euphonium, oboe, string trio, vintage synthesisers, drones and upright piano.

From the wandering, Bob James-esque, Fender Rhodes and shimmering strings in the study of coastal light, "(Welter) In The Haar", to the plaintive brass and farewell transmission blowing through, "Adrift Below A Constellation", punctuated by the fragility of Wasylyk's sole lead vocal of this collection - "The Paralian" (a dweller by the sea), is a conclusion embued with blue and golden melodies that land in a territory akin to experimentalists such as Robert Wyatt and Brian Eno. Through which, Wasylyk weaves the listener along a Modern-classical, Ambient and Jazz dream of Scotland's east coast.

Athens Of The North team were stunned by the luminous beauty and creativity at play in this work. Falling between genres and time, it stands next to 60s British Jazz, effortlessly blending notes of Library and soundtracks with dashes of British Folk.

"I love you" is arguably one of the best obscure soul ballads out there. The highly anticipated re-release of this rare and collectable 45 is another collaboration with my good friend Brian Sears, Brooklyn based collector/researcher. Hailing from Dallas, Willie Griffin is a self-taught guitarist and singer-songwriter with a very unique style, which is on full display on both sides of this record. Although "I Love You" has long been a favorite among ballad collectors, do not sleep on "Where There's Smoke, There's Fire". For this limited release we were ecstatic to uncover the original master tape from 1984, in pristine condition, yielding the perfect reproduction. We hope you enjoy this special record.

The 45 of Everyday People - World full of people is well known on the modern soul and funk scene and it relatively easy to find a copy for maybe 500 pounds. What was always less well known was that there was also an LP by the same band but labels as People Pleasure. I first came across this LP in Turku, Finland in the early 2000s when at the house of DJ and Collector Felix Manell who pulled a pile of rare and interesting bits that day. I did not really appreciate the true rarity until trying to source my own copy. The next copy I saw was in Japan in 2004 but was not going anywhere. Roll on 15 years, Russell Paine, collector, DJ and super record researcher called me saying he had finally unravelled the mystery and was talking to Bill brown & Al Hall Jr. Russel sets himself the hard task of only putting out unreleased material on his own label so we also work together on LPs and Singles on Athens of the North. After we managed to clear the rights the final hurdle was finding a clean copy, not an easy task. After asking loads of deep collectors, Zaf put me onto DJ Nick the Record who very kindly lent me his minty personal copy, a huge favour considering how rare this record is, almost impossible to replace. So we mastered from the vinyl (no tapes exist) and while it still sound pretty raw it is twice as good as the O.G. Been a long time coming.

Kashmere Stage Band


Another sure shot double sider out the Now-Again catalogue, until now both tracks were album only and both pure club killers. I smashed these back in the day; I remember listening to it from Jazzman Geralds collection and was blown away. I went right out and found the LPs which took a little time even then when there were fewer people after them. A couple of years after that 'Kashmere' was dropped on funky 16 corners comp Egon put together, and the cat was out the bag. Anyway back to the music, for those who don't know, Conrad O. Johnson of Kashmere High School, Houston Texas, created the Kashmere Stage Band turning it into one of the most fierce unbeatable high school bands in the national championships, the recordings here are my two favorites out of many. Don't miss out on the 2011 Documentary Thunder Soul which reunites the band with Conrad O. Johnson over 30 years down the line.

Brief Encounter

Where Will I Go

One of the most coveted unreleased Low Rider / Soul Ballads. A huge tune for Summer twenty eighteen, up there with infamous Darling Dears. This had only ever been released on a Japanese compilation 20 odd years ago without the bands consent (and with some of the channels missing) Athens of the North bring us the full unreleased version for the first time. Hot off the press this golden two track seven inch has everything you could ever want – or need! This is a big one for people who know the score. 


Matt says: We're in deep Summer, which means some of you hopefully will relate to this slice of beach fried, sunshine soul music. Someone get me a cold towel, my head's burning!

Born in Rio in 1940, Helio won a guitar from his father at age 12.After working in sugar mills or as a sales clerk in record stores, he started performing at Rio nightclubs (like Plaza) and São Paulo. In 1975 he signed to RCA Victor on which he released his first LP, "Matheus Segundo Matheus" With arrangements by Oberdan "Black River" Magalhães, Zé Rodrix and Chiquinho de Moraes with participation of Azymuth as a support band withg a total of 128 musicians involved int he recording. Unfortuanly this much deserved reissue didn't make it to press before Helio Passed last year, but we are most humble and proud to do it justice. One of my favourite Brazilian LP's just to listen to.

This Hampshire & Foat project should not come as too much of a surprise to those familiar with Greg & Warren's music, influenced heavily by not just Jazz but the library sound of the 60s and 70s along with film soundtracks from the same golden era. Greg& Warren are avid collectors of this music, Greg sends me links night and day to LPs he has picked up digging on his travels. This constant search sends him down new musical pathways and often sparks a whole new concept for projects. Warren and Greg are both fiercely creative talented individuals which means we have to keep them working, a challenge for us all, but the music rewards the effort many times over. Side one is five tracks in very distinct styles, musical paintings for the big screen. The vast sound of the Japanese influenced Jasmine, The Spaghetti Western melancholy of Mariposa Lily, the call to action that is Antonio's Theme, The Breezy Vintage sports car in the sun that Coastal Drivepaints, and Lost in Nostalgia, a late night Poirotesk piece.


Matt says: If "The Honeybear" saw the band languidly exploring an enchanted woodland by day, then "Night Shade" encapsulates the magic of said woodland at night; full of beguiling spirits and esoteric wanderings...

Millie says: Hampshire & Foat have yet again created a captivating album, this one is clearly packed with things that have influenced that and the result is a beautiful mix of ambient and folk.

After the success of 'Galaxies Like Grains of Sand', Warren and Greg retreated back to the Isle of Wight to start work on long discussed concept album based on a fictional children's book The Honey Bear. Each track a chapter of the book, hypnotic folk pieces mixed with ambient field recordings that Warren and Greg collected around the beaches, cliffs and gardens of the island.

They brought everything together at home, organically forming this beautiful ambient folk tale during the island's idyllic summer evenings. After finishing the initial mixes on the island they brought the tapes up to Scotland and overdubbed with Strings, Oboe and Flute. Whether your 5 or 50, the charm and beauty of The Honeybear is undeniable.

Children fairytale book concept album
Limited Edition pressing


Millie says: The Honeybear beautifully captures the soft mystical tones of this harrowing ambient folk album following their previous record 'Galaxies Like Grain Of Sand'. The inspiration behind the album of it being a children’s fairytale, you can immediately get the sense of the whimsical innocence by the lovely fluttering of string instruments.

Athens of the North bring us this precious tape extracted from the Sony vault for the first time since the records was released in 1980. A floaty disco masterpiece that has been on the soul scene for time but deserves a broader appreciation. Bursting with soul drenched energy this hand 7” will provide you will all you disco-soul needs and desires. 


Millie says: Fiery and bold, ‘Just You & Me’ is the track to get the party started. The flip side ‘Blame It on Me’ turns the dial down for a smoother calming vibe.

Prophets Of Peace

Get It On

Prophets of Peace are roaring over here with this sizzling track ‘Get It On’, it’s on fire on this new release on Athens of the North. These two unreleased tracks, including ‘You Can Be’ were miraculously found by the team at Numero Group and these were in dying need to be pressed on vinyl. Recorded at Audiotek Studios Inc in 1975, David Z, who engineered Lipps Inc's "Funkytown" and several Prince productions, piloted both these recordings. Everything you need for a funk-filled enjoyment is here. 


Millie says: Blasting out from the speakers is the exact sort of funk-disco grooves I like to hear. Dreamy vocals paired with the sensational underlying rhythm is perfect. This 7” is going to fly out so don’t wait around!

Feeling like you’re missing a funk shaped hole in your life? Ice’s official rare reissue soul funk jam 'Reality' via Athens of the North Records is here to cure that. Super rare modern soul, this massive boogie tune is needed in every collectors’ record shelf. First played by Ian Wright and a few others on the Deepfunk scene and was then picked up by the Northern soul scene where it flourished and made its way to being an all-time favourite.


Millie says: Look no further for your new favourite funk single. Ice reveals this banging reissue to solve all the searching to be halted, this is the one you need. Smooth funky grooves and impressively swooning vocals, this is a dream.

Athens of the North celebrate Valentines Day with a disco delight depicting the thing that saves the day, tears you apart and keeps you together - I'm talking about love, you dig? This sweet little 7" is a much needed reissue of the cultly adored, but impossible to find deep disco gem "Love Tempo" by Love Company. Absolutely nothing to do with Quando Quango's punk-funk powerhouse of the same name, this is as soulful as you like. Slick bass, romantic guitar chops, velvetine vocals and a solid disco 4/4 come together like an older couple, taking their time to make it right. Flip it for soulful stroller "Somebody Help Me Be Fair", a swooning ballad with unexpected synthery.


Sil says: Uptempo soulful disco banger alert. Will put a smile on your face. 100% dancefloor reaction.

Anthens of The North brings us more fire from Aaron Broomfield's archive. We have two sought after sides. 'I'm Gonna Miss Ya' was transferred from tapes by Aaron himself and is a brilliant boogie joint that's highly coveted on many scenes for good reason. On the flip we have got the super rare and relatively unknown 'Does Anybody Really Know' which is a Northern Soul classic dancefloor filler, smooth and cathcy this is easliest the best combination of Aaron Broomfield tracks around, pure bliss!


Millie says: Possibly the most groovy and sharp seven inch you’ll hear this year, ultimate cool vibes over here.

Luiz Mendes Jr or "Junior Mendes" was a ubiquitous figure in the
Brazilian Soul / Funk scene of the 70s and early 80s, contributing to
compositions for bands such as Banda Black Rio , Tim Maia, Sandra de
Sá and many more. This, his only solo album has remained off the map
(unless your a collector of rare Brazilian vinyl) for ages.
An original will set you back an eyewatering £250, now, I like a laid back latin groove as much as the next homem but you have to draw the line in the sand somewhere. At that price you could get a cheap flight to Rio and dig out a copy yourself PLUS you'd also be able to spend your evening sipping on a Caipirinha as the sun sets on Impanema beach. Essentially what I'm saying is under no circumstance should you but this beautiful AOTN reissue, get yourself on Skyscanner and put some work in for a change...

A Super rare disco / modern Banger to end Athens Of The North's prolific and exceptional year. Star Quake formed in Columbus, Georgia and as is always the case it seems, released this one, brilliant 7 inch and then got on with their lives as, who knows? Doctors, Lawyers, Burger flippers?
'Don't you know I love you' is a new kid on the block on the Northern scene with O.G copies easily going for over $1000 and with good reason. It's a disco floater over some brilliant bass, that no home should be without this festive season. It'll certainly be on my soundtrack and will go especially well with an Old Fashioned, I think...

More hard to find, impossible not to own goodness from Athens Of The North.

A side 'Third Rock' has been remastered especially for this release. Originally released on a Cincinatti WEBN radio sampler in 1977 it's a dreamy soul classic underpinned by some of the funkiest bass guitar you're ever going to hear.

B side 'Wake Up' was originally released in 1976 and until now, never even sold on Discogs. A gorgeous slice of laid back, conscious soul, with a sweet, sweet vocal and Sylvia Striplinesque bass that will make any miserable Manchester Monday morning a better place to be.

Remastered and limited to 500 for the world. With no repress this won't be around for long, so, you know what to do.

Limited to 500 these are Athens Of The North, head honcho Yogi's two favourite tracks from the previously unreleased Raw Soul Express LP that we got in about a month ago. If you like your soul music (there are people who DON'T like soul music?!) on the smoochy side then this, my smoochy, soul loving, friend is the record for you. Both sides of this seven are perfect for getting close to your dancing partner of choice and whispering sweet nothings in their ear while, at the same time, showing off your impressive dancing skills and , if that's not how you like to spend your weekend evenings? Shame on you... 

Discovered about 7 years ago, when a good Mancunian friend of AOTN won a copy on ebay, this Willie Dale record changed from an expensive $500 record to a VERY expensive $4000 one almost overnight after being discovered on the Northern circuit.
It isn't a straight up Northern dance floor foot stomper though, in fact, it's pretty psyche in places, having more in common with say,  Shuggie Otis than your usual soul record.
Maybe it's because it can't be pinned down to one genre that it's blown up so much, Willie would sit comfortably in any set from soul to garage making it pretty much essential, again... 

'Chicano Soul Floaters' has to be one of the smaller sub genres of Disco but Nubia is probably the best example you're likely to hear this side of the Atlantic any time soon.
It's a perfect summer record that will soundtrack your rainy, gale force wind, barbeque with aplomb.
AOTN managed to secure the master tapes from original writer George Rivera so it sounds as good, if not better, as the day it was recorded.

Multi talented UK Jazz Pianist Greg Foat has teamed up with Mercury Award nominated "The Bees" member and multi instrumentalist Warren Hampshire to collaborate on a new LP drawing on their diverse musical influences. Classic British library music, 60s Italian soundtracks & lost Americana combined with touches of modern classical, minimalism, Jazz and Folk. Featuring many members of Greg and Warren's previous bands and one of the U.Ks finest Jazz drummers, Clark Tracy, the LP also features an Edinburgh orchestra and soloists hand picked and scored by the boys. Recorded all analogue onto 2" multitrack in Edinburgh, mixed down by Mattias Glavå at his studio in Gothenburg, Sweden then mastered and cut in Helsinki, Finland, it's truly a European affair. 

JOB's musical journey started as students at the famed Booker T Washington High School in Tulsa, Oklahoma. United by a shared love of soul music and sweet harmonies, singers James Davis, Ollie Carbin, and singer-songwriter & musician Billy Bruner began to jam together and eventually formed their own band, J.O.B and, upon graduation in 1977. set to work building a reputation by playing local parties, venues and fashion shows. Very quickly the word of mouth on J.O.B became so strong that they were offered a house band gig at North Tulsa's most popular after hours spot, The Point After. During their tenure at the famed late night spot many bigger acts came to see J.O.B when in town. Tulsa's own Gap Band, Chaka Khan, and Bootsy's Rubber band all paying homage to the trio.
Good quality quarter inch recordings from 1977 are thin on the ground so I can only imagine AOTN delight when this turned up. So, sit back grab a beer and transport yourself back to Saturday evening, 20 August 1977.

Yet more reissue fire from Athens Of The North. This Disco Funk Banger was discovered reasonably late on the deepfunk scene. Featuring a big Vivian Lee vocal over a super funky disco break that wouldn't sound out of place on a War record, it's straight to the point, short and sweet and will sleigh any dance floor featuring people with ears. 

HUGE record for fans of disco modern or just good music full stop. Original VG copies go for £200 (eek!).You don't own it, so there's no need to go rooting through your seven inches just to make sure it wasn't in that bumper crop of tunes you got from that charity shop in Little Bogg By The Weye that time. Frazelle is the party record that everyone wants, with Floating Points and MCDE to name just a couple who practically wet their pants when they heard AOTN were reissuing it. Another one that won't be around for long so buy now or cry later when you get shafted on discogs.


David says: If ever we needed a great boogie record that shines a light of love and hope on the world, we need it now. Great for the dancefloor and the soul, buy it now before Donald Trump bans it.

The Fruit Band's fleeting existence was only recently revealed by the discovery of a few unsold copies of their sole 1978 single, 'Say It', which quickly became a cult showpiece for savvy DJs and collectors. Athens of the North has since reached out to Cypress Studios of Jacksonville, Florida and discovered a complete album of the group's stylish, dancefloor-smashing funk and deep disco on tape, unreleased for over 30 years. Here the label present their two favourite unreleased tracks on seven inch for the first time. Limited to 500 there'll be no repress, you know what to do kids...


Patrick says: Athens Of The North go scrumping in Jacksonville's Cypress Studios and score a pair of previously unreleased disco-funk bombs from Fruit. Mouthwatering stuff!

Christopher Spraggins & The Strange Band of Rochester, N.Y released a grand total of one record. Introduced to the world by Cleveland Unlimited Records who still exist to this day, that one record failed to sell, well, anything at all really, so Strange disappeared as quickly as they arrived, until now that is.

Our friends in (athens of) the north have cherry picked the best tracks off that long forgotten album and reissued them on every funk lovers favourite format, the glorious 7 inch.

So, get down people, to the spaced out, trippy, disco funk of Strange and make a bunch of old dudes in Rochester NY that little bit happier and that little bit wealthier.

Penny Goodwin's album is hard to find, so hard to find, in fact that you'll need about £300 of your hard earned pounds for an original on vinyl. Even the solitary seven inch that came out in 1974 would set you back £250 and that friends, could but you a LOT of seven inch singles.

But, fear not, thanks to the good folks at Athens Of The North here's the very reasonably priced, official cd release.

Usually I find that 'long lost' albums have been lost for a reason but 'Portrait Of A Gemini' is jaw dropping brilliant. Not unlike Marlena Shaw's stuff from around the same time, it features  brilliant covers of Gil Scott Heron's 'Lady Day And John Coltrane' and Marvin's 'What's Goin On'.

Now, where's the vinyl reissue?

Two massive unreleased 12" inch disco bangers from the obscure Florida band Fruit, cut loud and deep like a true disco 12" should be. The Fruit Band's fleeting existence was only recently revealed by the discovery of a few unsold copies of their sole 1978 7" single, "Say It", which quickly became a cult showpiece for savvy DJs and collectors. Now Athens Of The North finish that untold story with an LP, this 12" and a soon to be released 45! "If You Feel It, Say Yeah" is a deep disco killer complete with moody chord progression, shouted vocals and an off kilter dark funk about it. On the flipside, "Say It", now sounding better than ever thanks to this heavy 12" pressing, bounds along with rapid fire polyrhythms, squelching bass and dreamy jazz-funk vocals. Already garnering support from Gilles Peterson and tons of other in the know DJs, this is a one time deal, so don’t sleep.


Patrick says: More heat for your feet from Athens Of The North, this time via a hefty 12" pressing of Fruit's deepest disco manoeuvres. Both cuts here bring it for the dancefloor, boasting deep, heads down breakdowns alongside hands in the air peaks. Massive!


I Saw You / Heaven's Love

Mind blowing Minneapolis boogie, there is so much to this story but let's start with their original 1982 press release:

"Hot group, NOBODY, definitely going somewhere!

During the 1960s the American popular music scene was overtaken and dominated throughout most of the decade by a creative surge emanating from Detroit. "The Sound Of Young America" was Motown. As Motown declined another inspired voice took up the slack. Under the direction of Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff, Philadelphia International, aka "The Sound Of Philadelphia" (TSOP), became the new voice under the early and mid-70s.

As is becoming quite apparent, the 1980s belong to the Twin Cities. Most people thought it would stop with Prince. It hasn't. A new band called Nobody is making sure that it doesn't. And although the group has been wrapped in mystery ever since they started just four months ago, their recently released demo tape (which will shortly be pressed on vinyl) is a monster that has music insiders buzzing with enthusiasm, "Right now nobody knows who we are. Once we become established, however, we will be casting a highly creative shadow that will be profound, and that other people will have to live up to," says the group.

The band has seven members: two vocalists-one male and two keyboard players, one guitar, bass and drums. All but one of the members are from the Minneapolis / St. Paul area, providing how fertile our sometimes mild little town can be. They've all had a diverse amount of experience-from jazz to funk - but their music doesn't fit any particular category. Some of Nobody's members even started out in the church, which gave their music a genuinely soulful feeling that can't be denied.

Nobody was primarily put together by the female lead vocalist; a lady who's sung with manyTwin City jazz and gospel greats. But beyond anything else the band is a team. A team with a mission. A mission to bring quality music to the community. Many of you will soon get to judge the sounds of their debut songs for yourself. KMOJFM is getting ready to add the single "I Saw You" to its playlist, and WLOL's music director said he "loved it." Along with the airplay will be an appearance on Scott Thompson's "Showcase" on KWTN

Meanwhile the group's manager, Jordanna Gold is keeping busy on both coasts attempting to hook up a deal with one of the major labels for this dynamic, multi-talented group that many people say will be busting out by grammy time."


If You Dance Tonight / Say Yeah

Athens Of The North bring us their second and final release from Billy Bruner's T'Spoon out of his obscure Oil Capital Record label. 'If You Dance Tonight' is almost unknown boogie spin you're never gonna find an original of. On the flip 'Say Yeah' is  1980s sweet soul ballad years ahead of the pack, AOTN boss DJ Fryer have a soft spot for this one - it's one of his favourite end of nighters. Strictly 500 copies only with no repress.

The Fruit band's fleeting existence was only recently revealed by the discovery of a few unsold copies of their sole 1978 single, 'Say It' (released on Cypress Records), which quickly became a cult showpiece for savvy DJs and collectors. Athens Of The North has since reached out to Cypress Studios of Jacksonville, Florida and discovered a complete album of the group's stylish, dancefloor-smashing funk and deep disco on tape, unreleased for over 30 years. Featuring a collection of 10 party-starting disco-funk killers, jazz-funk, boogie and soul, it's amazing that none of these tracks were considered worthy of release back in the day.

Starting out in late 1960s Chicago as The Fantastic Epics, the young, small group serviced dives of the oft-romanticised Chitlin' Circuit - with all its attendant racial tensions and segregations, rubber-cheque promises and 45 calibre resolutions - before being split up by the military draft. Former Rasputin's Stash band member, Paul N. Coleman himself narrowly escaped transportation to Vietnam, however, and spent his term on home soil instead, expanding his musical chops under the tutelage of an army bandsman with an ear for jazz; a little sunshine in a otherwise cloudy epoch.

After coming out of the service the band reformed straight away. Despite apparent opportunities afforded by hard-earned major management and recording deals, the 1970s seemed to consist of little more than rare peaks of spiritual reward among expanses of misfortune. Whole album recordings were shelved following ownership squabbles between Motown and Atlantic, master tapes vanished seemingly forever and heavy nationwide touring schedules were endured without profit, the group even travelling a thousand miles to one venue they found closed due to race-riots there the day before. While supporting The Impressions in a hometown stadium, Paul was dragged offstage by overzealous front-row fans and had half the beard torn from his face. Hence the group being renamed after the infamous Rasputin. He was, as Paul plainly states: "a man very hard to kill."

Luck eluded them still. The official new name of the band, now an eight-piece, was actually Rasputin Stash. However, after finally having inked a solid album deal with Atlantic's Cotillion subsidiary in 1971, the band's mood was blighted anew as industry members struggled with its pronunciation. A label executive mistakenly added the apostrophe and 's' on its first release and the band got stuck with an irksome misnomer for the remainder of its career. The two evergreen, soulful funk albums the band recorded, an eponymous debut and 1974's 'The Devil Made Me Do It' on Gemigo Records, are rightfully hailed as classics of their day and sold respectably, but without furnishing the band with fiscal dues. An increasingly weathered Coleman would eventually drag the band's contract home to Chicago once more, to Curtis Mayfield's own Curtom imprint, for a couple of single releases around 1977 - but with another renaming of the band, to R-Stash. Before too long the Stash, however it was spelled, was spent. Paul would form another local group, Crystal Winds, for one superb, independently-released 1984 album before slipping unceremoniously out of the broader public eye and into the realms of the obscure.

The previously unheard mid-1970s recordings here, lifted from two disparate sessions, are ostensibly a third and perfectly-realised Rasputin Stash album, if only one of several we might have otherwise heard. Well-earthed, but with a honed commercial polish, it stands as testament to the drive and talent of someone whose travails might have felled a lesser man.

Paul, whose spirits have been renewed by a flurry of recent rediscovery and interest, is still indefatigably working for anyone who wants his music and now fully understands the achievements of which he can be justifiably proud: "One: being able and lucky enough to record your ideas and emotions on wax for the world to experience. Two: a legacy, very important. Three: to have gained the knowledge and experience to call myself, and to be, a good musician. I still keep the dream going by writing and programming my tail off in hopes to get great music to other artists. Causing or creating interest in the music industry and signing contracts is an achievement that many never, ever experience. These types of achievements, I guess, are the things that keep musicians going in a world of uncertainty."


Feeling Good / Land Of Leaping No No (Ha-Ka-Cha-Ka-Ha-Ka-Cha-Ka)

Athens Of The North notch up their 30th release with this 45 from Santiago, aka Neftali Santiago from Mandrill. Santiagoo took a break from the band in 1975 and did a little experimenting on the side. These two cuts came out of a six hour session in which three tracks were recorded, all of which were produced by Philadelphia's legendary Sonny Hopson, and feature Santiago's only lead vocal to date. The band Santiago put together only lasted a year, but in that time supported Gil Scott Heron and The Ohio Players live.  On side A 'Feeling Good' is an uplifting jazz-funk / disco stormer with all the right ingredients, great guitar hook, solid horn section and strong vocal. The brilliantly-titled 'Land Of Leaping No No (Ha-Ka-Cha-Ka-Ha-Ka-Cha-Ka)' offers more of a funk groove, featuring plenty of brass and a party atmosphere in the background. Essential funk and disco.


School Dance / Sweetness

Athens Of The North continue to serve up the goods, hot out the Fryer (DJ Fryer of course) and straight to the platter for your disco delectation. Here, the flawlessly curated label dish out some French boogie collector's catnip in the form of the uber-rare Billy Bruner penned T'Spoon from his obscure Oil Capital Records. The originals are impossible to find even for hardened collectors, and when they do turn up they're always totally battered. Billy released two 45s on Oil Capital, and this AOTN 7" a track from each and gives them the usual fat pressing. On the A-side, "School Dance" is a P-funk burner packed with fat synth bass, smooth vocals and squelching synths, even incorporating the smurf style vocal much loved by everyone's favourite mother funkers. On the flip, "Sweetness" is a whole other kettle of fish; sunkissed, smooth and laid back soul for the lovers out there. Groovesome, hypnotic and loopy, given a different EQ, this could be a Garth Be classic.

Born at Scotland's postpunk crossroads in 1979, Boots For Dancing kicked down the boundary walls of a played-out scene and introduced the UK to a more funky way of doing Punk. Hugely popular as a live act, often wiping the floor with the bands they were supporting, Boots was something genuinely ahead of the epoch's curve and played an important part in the vanguard of the burgeoning Post Punk and Punk-Funk movements. Sadly, Boots For Dancing's light shone brightly but briefly, though the band had connections with, and cross-pollinations between, better-known acts such as The Rezillos, The Human League and Josef K. Their boundless energy and undeniable talent never proved quite enough for great success. Great songs, even bolstered with good looks, are no guarantee of success in the fickle music business. Ultimately, business got in their way and the group disbanded in 1982 with just a few single releases in its canon, though a wealth of potential hits had been put to tape. Athens of the North is proud to present the band's 1982 album-that-never-was - an album that surely would have made them. It still sounds as fresh as it was when recorded.

- The holy grail lost scottlish post punk LP - Extensive Sleeve Notes by Music and Theature writer Neil Cooper'

- Additional Sleeve notes by Jo Callis (Human League /Rezillos) and Mark Hagen (BBC Radio)

Cool Creations Of St Maarten

Wish Upon Love / Nightime On The Beach

Cool Creations Of St Maarten were formed in 1975 by Carlyle Barriteau, Funk Gumbs and Winston Macco. They were all in their last year of High School in St Maarten. The name Cool Creations was inspired by Kool And The Gang, one of their off Island influences. The band mainly played hotels, local dance clubs and carnival parades and in 1977 they recorded one self-titled LP (current Discogs price £73+). These two tracks were taken from that little know but much loved LP which was recorded in San Juan in Puerto Rico. "Wish Upon Love" is a modern 2-step soul / jazz-funk floater of the highest order that's been a favourite summer joint of AOTN boss DJ Fryer for years and recently been getting spins by Four Tet and others. Featuring pattering bongos, Donald Byrd style trumpet and sweet soul vocals make this a winner. With an intro featuring waves lapping the shore, "Nightime On The Beach" is perfect for a Balearic sunset or deep warm-up making for another essential package!


You Can Win / Let's Go

I challenge you not to move, groove and generally speaking lose your shit when those horns hit! Undisputedly one of the best, across the board crowd and DJ pleasing rare disco 45s ever cut to vinyl, this 7" from Bill Williams and his crew plays host to two sides of AAA grade party smashers. A-side cut "You Can Win" bounds out of the crossroads of "Move On Up", "Never Gonna Leave You" and "There's Something Better" grabs you by the hand and gets you dancing with the widest smile on your face! As far as feel good goes, it doesn't get any better than this, and without even a whiff of cheese. Flip the disc for the deep and soulful shuffle of "Let's Go", a midnight mover with plenty of funk in the trunk. Lowslung bass, rippling percussion, bursting brass and soul brother vocals combine perfectly for a bonafide unclassic! Cut as loud and deep as the tapes would allow, this fully licenced 45 won't be around long, so don't hang about, they ain't gonna be no repress.

Just In


Latest Pre-Sales


Just taken delivery of some @ArcticMonkeys single reissues. Grab them while you can.
Wed 23rd - 9:46
MASSIVE @PyeCornerAudio NEWS : Pye Corner Audio 'Hollow Earth' Preorder LIVE!
Tue 22nd - 3:09
Back in stock and in the ‘just in’ section on the website. 12” vinyl from @77_78_ and @TheOrielles via…
Tue 22nd - 11:10
The @sharonvanetten banner looking really good today. Her new album ‘Remind Me Tomorrow’ out now via @jagjaguwar
Tue 22nd - 10:57
E-newsletter —
Sign up
Back to top