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EXPLOITED

Phonk D is back on Exploited’s hallowed Black Jukebox series following the success of his #29 takeover earlier this year. You just can’t keep a good man down...

‘Let’s Shake’ leads the way with serious funk intent, mixing a thumping MJ-esque bassline with some of that late ‘70s / early ‘80s synth magic. Phasing guitar licks sidle up against spunky horn swells and sassy vocal blasts. It’s a track that has ‘party-starter’ written all over it.

‘Reality Dance’ is a chuggier beast, building slowly through looping guitar-and-bass plucks until a feel-good melody emerges. This low-slung, low-tempo groove is in no hurry to lay out its funky machinations, making for a perfect early-evening floor-filler as cocktail glasses clink and glitterballs bling.

‘Players Anthem’ chunks things up with conga-inflected groove and an arpeggiated bassline throb underpinning swooning female vocal harmonies. It rocks a simple arrangement that lets the groove do the talking, with sustained string notes adding an element of tension at the requisite moments.

‘No Limits’ sees Phonk D team up with old sparring partner Sascha Ciminiera for another hot collab. The bouncing off-beat groove pumps pleasingly in classic disco fashion, with a joyous mood built through Rhodesy chords and a scintillating synth line. Swelling horns are buried deep in the mix in the second half to help propel the track higher.

TRACK LISTING

A1. Let’s Shake
A2. Reality Dance
B1. Players Anthem
B2. Phonk D & Sascha Ciminiera - No Limits

Hailing from Liege in Belgium, David Body has been put on our radar with releases on the fine Endless Music, but this EP for Exploited’s cult collected Black Jukebox series is truly next level house music!

Timed perfectly for that sweet Summer release, "I Bird You" is a seriously charming affair, led by a colourful, sugary-sweet refrain that twinkles and sparkles in cute fashion. A warm deep house groove crafted through swirling Rhodes chords builds the vibe before the flowery melody explodes into life, pushing the track into an altogether more magical direction. Playing this at one of the first festivals of Summer 2022 could be a truly spiritual occassion! There's 'nuff tension from the last two years to warrent a full-on maximum love in; and tracks like this could be the perfect catalyst!

"Jack Me Baby" channels rubbery bass and a galloping house beat, with minor piano chords creating a dramatic feel as a classic vocal sample whoops away in delight. The enormous snare-roll propelled build-up thrusts the track into overdrive, with a delightful, balmy synth line woven in to provide a mystical counterbalance. Another hand-aloft rush of euphoria to sound track the party season. 

"The Talking Mouettes" is a supremely feel-good slab of Balearic-tinged peak time house, with choice piano chords cut up and cascading over a high-energy groove. Big squelchy melodic bass wiggles under the chords and shoulder-popping chime riff, with plenty of power and punch scattered throughout to keep the vibes rolling. Cleverly warped vox the icing on this sweet slice of sonic cake.  

"Endless Love" is an absolute monster to close the EP, a soaring, triumphant electro-disco beauty that overflows with euphoric melody and ecstatic, eyes-closed-and-rolling tingles. It just keeps building and building through layer upon layer of synth mastery to an explosive, epic climax.

Shir Khan's series has always been a big hitter here at Picc HQ but this is one of the biggest 12"s from the firm for some time. Get them orders in quick! 

STAFF COMMENTS

Martin says: It's been an eternity since Shir Khan's had us cantering around the shop. It's with huge delight that I can state, with authority, that David Body's launched us into the party season with this collection of open air festival house anthems.

TRACK LISTING

A1. David Body - I Bird You
A2. David Body - Jack Me Baby
B1. David Body - The Talking Mouettes
B2. David Body - Endless Love

Stefano Ritteri

Shir Khan Presents Black Jukebox 32

Italian master, London based Stefano Ritteri takes centre stage for the latest edition of Shir Khan presents Black Jukebox — number 32 in this illustrious series. This one is a chiefly electro-flavoured affair, joining the dots between the genre’s past, present and future across four slick tracks — with a dash of garage at the end.
‘Slow Tripping’ is a homage to the charismatic boogie sound of the early ‘80s, resplendent with beautiful melancholic melody and a wistful air. As the name suggests, the lazy beat perfectly compliments the array of dreamy sounds, and there’s a definite nod to French disco/electro/hip-hop fusions of days gone by.

‘Donna’ is a collab with Mytron (Bordello A Parigi, Multi Culti)which continues the chuggy theme, its gently swaying synth arpeggios and unhurried beat recalling some of Soulwax’s more pared back material. Its simple arrangement is kept engrossing with synth automation and subtle atmospheric touches.

‘Brutesque’ strips things back to an almost minimalist approach, where twanging, monotone sounds slowly morph over a taut backbeat and a variety of bleeps and blips. With its spoken word sounds and Krautrock-ish mixture of sounds, it recalls the work of Public Service Broadcasting.

‘Robot Love’ takes its cues from the sweeter side of 2-step garage, bubbled down to a more laconic pace. Cute melodic refrains and big reverbs adorn the stuttering rhythm to make for a colourful, atmospheric, reflective track.

TRACK LISTING

A1. Stefano Ritteri - Slow Tripping
A2. Stefano Ritteri & Mytron - Donna
B1. Stefano Ritteri - Brutesque
B2. Stefano Ritteri - Robot Love


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