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Once upon a time, in the glory days of the forum, a new generation of DJs and collectors were being introduced to a wealth of rare and exotic tunes; musics with life changing powers which spoke a universal language. Moonboots, Mike, Brewster, Broughton, Boardman, Mison and Dr Rob - all present and correct, all on hand to educate, entertain, inform and swiftly remind you that you had next to no chance of ever finding a copy. 
Well, times have changed, editmania has given way to the march of the reissue, and all those rare birds are coming home to roost - or at the very least nest nicely in your record collection.
This latest reissue from Italian imprint Best Records ticks another biggie off the collective wantlist, providing us all with an affordable, remastered and reissued copy of Roberto Lodola's Balearic classic "Marimba Do Mar". 
Lodola was one of the first Italian DJs and producers devoted to the Afro sound born in the Northern parts of Italy. As the 80s wore on, and Roberto found his way into the studio, his exotic tastes and sunny disposition perfectly translated into the Mediterranean masterpiece "Marimba Do Mar", a breezy, jazz flecked slice of tropical pop complete with DX7 panpipes, synth marimba, subtle percussion and swelling sax. Whether you opt for the largely instrumental 'Fusion Version' or the sweet and sensuous 'Vocal Version', you've got a certified classic on your hands. As a BIG brucey bonus, Best have also turned up a pair of previously unheard outtakes "Feeling Of The Sun" and "Hey George!", which slice your cocktail lime in different directions depending on taste and mood.


Patrick says: Awwww yeah! Best Records hit us with another BIG Balearic classic, that's been super tough to find for the longest time. As Mediterranean as it gets, "Marimba Do Mar" takes tropical synth work, sleazy sax and jazzy grooves and flips it into a piece of true Balearic brilliance. Every home should have one.

Man Face is a disco afro studio project from 1977, from the musicians duo Winston Alwyn Gill and Henderson Brathwaite from sounth Africa but recorded in Italy during the disco era. New rediscovered by Early Sounds Recordings in conjunction with Best Record Italy. Pellegrino from the Early Sounds Collective did a good job with additional remix and overdubs for the new "Na Na Na Edit" plus the remastered original disco version available on the flip.

Here's something to set the pulse racing: a fresh reissue of a dream house-era Italian cover of Carlos Santana's "Aqua Marine". Thrillingly, this edition dispenses with the pointless radio edit, replacing it with the previously unreleased "Original Studio Version". This is something of a stunner, all told, with the track's Santana-like solos and breezy, beachside synthesizer lines being accompanied by the soft focus of bongo rhythms. Of course, the more club-focused versions are ace, too, with the dream house style "Club Version" and "Sweet Dream Version" being joined by the undeniably epic "Paradise Version", which slowly builds to deep house heaven via a sublime ambient intro.

Finally the official remastered reissue of one of the rarest and sought after italo-disco record from early 80's. You'll be hard pushed to hear anything like this ever again... this is an epic out there electronic production that's one of a kind. In the same period of other italo-disco classics like REM, STOPP, Klein & MBO, GANG previously reissued by Best Italy, they representing the roots of chicago sound played by the pioneers like Ron Hardy!

You've heard of Baldelli & Loda right? Well, while Fabrizio Fattori might not have scored the same international acclaim for his work behind the turntable, the Italian did kill it in the studio, and this seven track set brings together the Afro-cosmic magic from his 1985 releases on London Records. Perfect for zero gravity dancing, eyeball licking and your next vision quest.
Sweatband carefully placed on the brow, that swift bathroom speedball pulling you this way and that, we begin. "Running On The Nile" condenses everything you love about the Cosmic / Balearic scene into five flawless minutes of loose limbed passion. Tribal shouts and tumbling drums, chizzed up basslines, faux brass, mallets and a seriously euphoric chorus! The pace drops a little for the scat-heavy fusion frenzy "Leg Pulling", a mutant cousin of "Stop Bajon", before "Black Babe" locks into slo-mo fist pumps and sax-led swooning across two versions. (N.B. the last time I went tops off in a club was when I heard Baldelli drop this in Milan - Patch)
Slow-jam unlocked, Fabrizio keeps the magic coming, cooking up the totally tribal Stargate tackle "Bara-Hum-Ba", a break-fuelled exotic stomper with ace pianos and chanted vox. In dub form "Leg Pulling" is imbued with new, ultra-Balearic powers while the cinematic, dramatic and dreamy cosmic thrust of "Babihe" sounds like the first time you came up. Bliss!


Patrick says: Best Records continue to smash it out the park, following a recent string of essential Italo and boogie reissues with a heavy LP combining Fab Fattori's two in-demand cosmic EPs with a little bit of unreleased material. Perfect for tops off dancing in a mirror tiled room.

Official remastered reissue from the original tapes of The Fresh Band's highly sought-after 1984 classic 'Come Back Lover'. Produced by The Strikers' Darryl Gibbs and mixed to maximum effect by the one and only Tony Humphries, this super cool disco boogie floor-burner made it big in the Underground dance clubs of Chicago & New York, receiving heavy rotation from legendary DJs like Mancuso, Larry Levan and Ron Hardy. This special re-release from Best Italy contains for the first time all the four versions mixed by the legendary Tony Humphries : including the astounding Tony Humphries Vocal, Dub, Remix and the rarest Dub Remix which moves towards a deeper, headier groove, with atmospheric echoing vocals and mind-blowing piano breaks.


Patrick says: Absolutely vital groove music on the boogie / proto house overlap. Mixed by the one and only Tony Humphries, this bad MF throws out dojo moves in the heart of the dancefloor. All four versions should tickle your pickle, but the bass-heavy bump of the "Dub Remix" is on another level of trouser-tenting excellence.

Best dig deep into dustiest crates of the Italian underground to present us with a remastered reissue of forgotten classic "Miss Manhattan". Released under the Metropole moniker, this early 80s heater was produced by Al Festa and provided the first studio experience for none other than Balearic hero, Mike Francis. "Miss Manhattan" glides into your life with a cinematic swell of piano and synth-strings, softening you up for the sensual disco tackle that follows. Panning guitar riffs a la Chic, buoyant bass and great horn hooks vie for position before the big soul-jazz vocal lifts us into the stratosphere. Perfection by anyone's standards. This limited 2018 remaster also features the full length instrumental and the "Piano Reprise". 


Patrick says: Best Records bring us some disco delight from Italy here, as Al Festa and Mike Francis cook up their finest slice of NYC inspired magic.

Best bring the uneducated up to speed with a limited remastered edition of one of the early elektro underground italian releases that became a classic in the Chicago house and Detroit techno scenes. The work of Florence duo Paolo Alfani & Nicola Serena AKA R.E.M., "Computer Communications" is a dizzying combination of snapping drum programming, icy Italo sequencing and Mattel Speak & Spell, which circumnavigates any hint of gimmick and instead smashes into my all time Italo top 10! Released way back in '83, this cut was a total milestone, and sounds every bit as vital right now as it ever did.


Patrick says: Ice-cold Italo perfection topped with an MF Speak & Spell - no wonder the Detroit techno pioneers and nascent Chicago house movement went wild for it. Flash your lights!

It was only a matter of time before Best Records reissue department turned their attention to this ALL TIME CLASSIC! Originally released by percussion king Tullio De Piscopo in 1983, "Stop Bajon (Primavera)" became a favourite in Rimini Discotheques, the Balearic Islands and even Chicago during the early house days. Impressive stuff, but it doesn't even begin to tell you how unique this Italian anthem really is. Rolling toms, sharp rim shots and a solid kick combine for a groove that's both tough and sensual, while the the jazzy horns, twinkling Rhodes and cool synths convey a distinctly Mediterranean flavour. Chuck in the endless pulse of the one-note bassline, chanted nonsensical lyrics and great guitars and you've got a classic on your hands. An official anthem for Mancunian Balearic legend Moonboots, along with every other DJ worth their salt, this is totally legendary. This special limited edition release from Best Record Italy features for the first time the original acapellas (tracked down during tape restoration) plus the balmy fourth world Balearic bomb "Stadera", previously available only on the first Italian pressing.


Patrick says: Official remastered reissue of possibly the greatest track to come from Italy. Well Balearic, completely cosmic and kind of jazz funk, this summery scorcher is an essential part of any record collection. Bonus brilliance comes courtesy of the ace fourth world wonderment of "Stadera", previously only available on the original Italian pressing of the 12".

Best Records revive an all time Balearic classic for their latest reissue, bringing us the brilliance Bolognian winner from 1983, Band Aid's marvellous "A Tour In Italy". A bona fide White Isle play for Alfredo, Leo et al, this buoyant blast of sunblushed boogie gets full marks from every single member of the Balearic mafia - so you need to get on it. Checking all the boxes that matter (feelgood chug, funky AF bass, Chic-style guitars and delicate chimes) the O.G. whispers sweet and surreal nothings in at least two languages - what more could you want for a Balearic release? Well, maybe a dub - and it's the dub, with its reverb swathed drums, echo laced horns and flipped arrangement which has remained a staple for all these years. Good job it's on here really. This 2018 reissue also boasts an ace brucey bonus, the unreleased "Mediterranean Version", mixed and overdubbed by Pellegrino from Early Sounds Recordings. The Neapolitan hero brings the mallets to the fore, twists the synth sounds and transforms the track into a percussion party on a disco-not-disco tip.


Patrick says: Best treat us to a great reissue of an all time classic here, the carefree and cool "A Tour In Italy" by Bologna's Band Aid. This new version offers up the OG, uber-Balearic dub and a brilliant alternative mix from Early Sounds man Pellegrino. Too good.

Best Italy hop across the Med to soak up the coastal cool of Cannes with a dope reissue of THE best cosmic boogie cut to be produced on French soil. Written in 1984 during the MIDEM conference in Cannes, "Ecoute Le Son Du Soleil" is a spacey and summery slice of Mediterranean boogie complete with well Balearic choral vocals and heavy use of the Publison DHM 89, an early harmonizer with a ton of weird energy. If you got down to Ahmed Fakroun's "Soleil Soleil", you'll be all over this similarly sunny groover. This limited edition reissue from Best Record Italy contains the vocal, instrumental plus the unreleased dub version and Yannick's radio jingles, a perfect tool for the playful jocks out there!


Patrick says: Brilliant Mediterranean boogie here from Best Italy, who head to Cannes with a reissue of Yannick Chevalier's red hot cosmic groover. Sunshine on a slab of wax...

Best have been consistently smashing it since they entered the reissue market a couple of years back, but every now and again the Italian imprint totally excel themselves. Well folks, this is one of those occasions. What we have here is an official reish of a undeniable Italo masterpiece from 1983 produced by dynamic duo, Francesco Paolini (Pasta DJ) and Alessandro Novaga (appearing here as Stopp). Entirely incendiary, "I'm Hungry" hits us with bubbling bass, bombastic sequencing and lightly jacking drum machines, laying the perfect foundation for some playful synth work and choice Italo vocals. Aside from its success in the Italian club scene, the track also became a massive dancefloor classic in Chicago thanks to regular Ron Hardy plays and spins on WMBX's Hot Mix 5 show. Backed with the equally awesome "Caramba Mix" (a dubbier, jacking variation with reversed vocals), this piece of house history will eat your other records for breakfast.


Patrick says: Best Records delight my Talking Drums fam with an official reissue of this squiggly Italo bomb which blew the doors off the Muzik Box in the hands of Mr Ron Hardy. Weapons grade banger folks.

Contiuing their stellar reissue series, Best Record Italy give us the fully extended versions of two Billy Woost heaters, previously only available on the Billy Woost album as 'one continuous edit'. While the megamix format might have suited jocks back in 77, struggling to make a seamless blend on a pair of Thorens while concentrating more important matters like groupies and mountains of nose drugs, times have changed and we much prefer the definitive versions, fully extended and as separate tracks. On the A-side "Vibrations" does the low slung disco funk thing with aplomb, dishing out wild clavs, punchy percussion, wordless female vocals and the odd seque into string-laced sequin tackle. Chuck in some killer drum breaks and a searing guitar solo and you're laughing! Flip it for the frisky and frothy "Baobab", an insanely Italian bit of loungey disco funk with a seriously sensual vocal. Prosecco disco anyone?


Patrick says: As Italian as it gets (without being Italo) these two extended Billy Woost cuts come correct with maximum funk breaks, Mediterranean vocals and sleazy clavinet.

"'Ere y'are mate, got any Delirium records?" As it happens my poorly spoken but clued up, I have almost all the original Italo slammers on that fine imprint - but not this one! Much to my delight, the latest in a long line of killer reissues from Best Records is Neddy Smith's "Give It Up", a blue-eyed boogie slammer awash with percolating off-beat percussion, smooth synthwork and soulful piano. Chuck in an impassioned vocal and slick bassline and we're cruising for a grooving! But the musical magic doesn't end there as the B-side brings us "Liberated Woman", a smooth as silk groove with a dramatic chord progression and some frankly ridiculous lyrics about female empowerment and soap operas. Ace!


12" Info: *ONE COPY FOUND!!

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