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FIRST WORD RECORDS

Parisian multi-instrumentalist Will Galland has been with First Word since late 2014, providing several releases for us over the years, from his acclaimed debut album 'The First Day' to his last EP release, the organic opus 'Human Being - The Short Story Of The Reed'. Collaborations have included Makaya McCraven, Oddisee, Miles Bonny and First Word crew such as Eric Lau, Bastien Keb and Sarah Williams White, who he teamed up with on his classic remix of the track 'Hum' and most recently on the track 'One By One' which appeared on the compilation EP 'A Family Affair' at the start of 2021.

For his latest project, 'Movements' sits firmly in the realms of broken beat, after being heavily inspired at First Word's infamous 14th birthday party at Total Refreshment Centre, where he played alongside label-mates such as Kaidi Tatham and Children of Zeus. This delectable six-track EP encompasses a series of deeply percussive grooves and squelchy synths. This is a predominantly instrumental affair, though does feature the supremely soulful vocals of Oliver Night on the track 'Change Must Come', following on from Oliver's work with the CoOp Presents crew amongst others.

Quiet Dawn says "after the birth of my son, I took the time to get back to making new music.

And when I started to work on new tracks, I wanted to compose something without concept, unlike my previous records, just because time is precious and I wanted to find pleasure again when I composeand not be fixed to a concept, or a story.



These new tracks are instinctive; made with my main instruments, rhodes & piano, synths, percussions, vocals, bass and guitars. They are naturally oriented towards my big musical crush, BRUK, along with different rhythms, vibes and grooves. For me, it's definitely a record for the dancers. For this reason, the new EP is called 'Movements'. Aside from the dancer's element, the title relates to everything that is happening in the world at the moment, working on this record over the pandemic. Affecting people in all countries, friendship, mutual aid, solidarity and movements in many instances are very important to me, my family and my musical family, First Word.'



The influences on this particular EP come largely from the West London music scene; DKD, Bugz, Neon Phusion, 2000Black, Domu, IG Culture, Jazztronik, MdCL, the First Word fam and many many more artists. There are also heavy vibes inspired by 70's jazz, funk, disco, latin & african music."

TRACK LISTING

1. Yellow
2. Change Must Come (feat. Oliver Night)
3. Breathe
4. Swirl
5. We Can Do Everything
6. Coming Up

Hailing from Moss Side, Manchester, this young talent has been steadily building a rep for himself over the past few years as one of the UK's most exciting soul vocalists, with his releases encompassing an eclectic assortment of alternative R&B, future soul, hip hop and D&B. Influenced by an array of neo-soul artists, such as D'Angelo and Anderson .Paak, his own soulful style has already seen him tour and collaborate with a number of UK peers; working on projects with label-mates Children of Zeus & Australia's REMi, and supporting the likes of Etta Bond & The Mouse Outfit, as well as performing sell-out headline solo shows in Manchester and London, and playing various festivals across Europe, including the We Out Here festival very recently.

Since he began developing his music in 2017, [ K S R ] has had support from the likes of 1Xtra, BBC Radio 1, BBC Introducing, Mixmag, NTS, Reprezent, Unity & Soho Radio, in addition to featuring on a slew of D&B tracks with artists like Lenzman, BCee, Emba & Redeyes. The collab with Emba was recently named a 'Kiss FM Future Selection' courtesy of Hybrid Minds and features have been supported on Spotify's 'New Music Friday' and 'Mandem - Kings' amongst others. His debut release 'Unfiltered' appeared on Polarface Records in 2019, which was followed by single 'Flex With Me' (also produced by Tyler Daley from Children of Zeus) then an independent second EP, 'Take Control', followed in late 2020 (during the pandemic) which amassed over 500k streams. Additionally to the releases, he was recently recruited by Manchester United as part of their 21/22 season kit announcements, as well as working with Nike and Size? on a special MCR-themed Air Force 1 release.

It's now time for a new extended project from Roosevelt Kazaula Sigsbert - better known as [ K S R ]. 'Peace + Harmony' is a solid set of alternative R&B, produced by Dom Porter and mixed by Eric Lau. Six tracks in all, including the single, 'Harmless' (which received support from the likes of Mr. Scruff (Worldwide FM), BBC Manchester and Victoria Jane (BBC Radio 1), was 'Track Of The Week' on 1Xtra/BBC Introducing, and saw the video racking up several thousand plays in its first weekend) and follow-up 'CGWY' featuring Children of Zeus on a brand new interpretation of their classic track 'Get What's Yours'. From the intro track 'I Wonder', to the downlow future soul of 'Lily Apart', to the autobiographical vibes of 'Born In '98', to the closing track 'Given Summer', also featuring the vocals of Ayeisha Raquel, each track on the EP is of course laced with Roosevelt's unmistakable silky smooth vocals, and is set to join his already impressive catalogue of underground soul classics such as 'Alien Boo', 'Stylin' and 'New Love'.

[ K S R ] says "my third EP, [ P E A C E + H A R M O N Y ] is a collection of my thoughts and experiences from my journey throughout the last two years of my life. Lots of aspects of my life changed over 24 months, along with everyone around the globe. When we were thrown into the unknown at the start of 2020, I stepped away from music for a while as I couldn't find any peace in my creativity and needed to evolve. I finally started to feel cohesive with my songwriting and music, and I could feel harmony between myself and my art once again."

TRACK LISTING

1. I Wonder
2. Lily Apart
3. Born In 98
4. CGWY (feat. Children Of Zeus)
5. Harmless
6. Given Summer (feat. Ayeisha Raquel)

First Word Records is very pleased to present a brand new full-length album from Sarah Williams White! Emanating from the "hilly fields of Lewisham" in South London, Sarah Williams White is a singer songwriter, multi instrumentalist and producer. Her sound is a unique blend of psych-soul, folktronica and experimental synth-pop.

Sarah released her acclaimed debut album 'Of The New World' on First Word in 2015, which was written, produced and performed by Sarah from her home studio, with the assistance of drummer, engineer & husband, Timmy Rickard. Her projects have seen support from the likes of Lauren Laverne, Tom Ravenscroft, Nemone & Chris Hawkins (BBC 6 Music), Jamie Cullum (BBC Radio 2), FIP Radio, Clash & The Guardian, to name a few, and she's toured the UK with Dan Le Sac vs Scroobius Pip and Golden Rules (Lex). There have been additional collaborations with label-mate Quiet Dawn (on the 2021 compilation / EP 'A Family Affair') and with her brother, Paul White - a revered producer in his own right, with credits including Danny Brown and Sudan Archives.

Following a hiatus, Sarah now brings us her sophomore album, 'Unfathomable'. A project that offers up escapism from the mundane, enticing us to connect with our natural planet in this prevalent time, via the eyes of a new mother.

In her words, Sarah states that the album is "about escape. It's about deflating the ego by looking up to the endlessness of outer space, connecting with the greatness of mother nature, and loving how unfathomable the universe and life itself is".

11-tracks in all, including the recent singles 'Nebula', 'Green' and 'Monsters', this opus sees Sarah's buttery lathing of vocals merged with cutting beats and atypical pop sensibilities across the project, again entirely self-produced from home, defining her as one of the UK's most irresistible DIY psych-soul talents.

With a voice reminiscent of Peggy Lee, tapestried harmony akin to Hiatus Kaiyote, beats fit for Little Dragon, and experimental production evocative of Kate Bush, Sarah Williams White's signature genre-defying sound invites us into a world uniquely hers.

TRACK LISTING

1. Nebula
2. Oh!
3. Monsters
4. Spectrum Of Light
5. Those Ones
6. Green
7. Greetings
8. How I Need You
9. 364
10. Unfathomable
11. Exit Lyra

Following on from his EP 'The Rigour' from early 2020, the Mancunian musician dropped a little taste of his new material late last year in the form of single 'Battered Mars Bar' and limited cassette 'Beat Tapestry'. Now we have a double aa-side single featuring two cuts from his forthcoming album 'All Werk Is Play'.

'Eterno Retorno' features the glorious Portuguese vocals of Moreiya, gliding across Werkha's uniquely skippy bruk vibes, with squelchy bass stabs and delicate guitar strums in tow.

'In Saint-Gilles' keeps the tempo up, cleverly switching between a 4/4 and a half-time rhythm. This one bringing more European vibes with the talents of DJ/Producer Le Motel from Belgium also behind the boards.

Both tracks have already been shown support from the likes of AtJazz & DJ Paulette.

Werkha hails from Manchester and has been releasing music for a decade, collaborating and remixing artists such as Quantic, Bryony Jarman-Pinto, Marcos Valles and Andrew Ashong, and touring with Bonobo, Chet Faker and Mr Scruff.

TRACK LISTING

1. Eterno Retorno (feat. Moreiya)
2. In Saint-Gilles (feat. Le Motel)

First Word Records is extremely proud to welcome back Children of Zeus with their sophomore album, 'Balance'.

Following the release of their debut album 'Travel Light' in 2018 (which featured in numerous 'Album of the Year' lists), Tyler Daley and Konny Kon spent the next two years extensively touring the UK, Europe, Australia and South Africa.

With shows on ice over the last 12 months, Children of Zeus took the time to mature their sound; 'Balance' is 50 minutes of future-classic British soul music encompassing hip hop, neo-soul, gospel and r&b. Konny's laidback flow once again merges with Tyler's unmistakable buttery vocals across a set of bass-heavy backdrops and smoothed-out keys, taking the blueprint from their debut and evolving it into a deeper, more-refined sound.

As with previous material, the album is largely produced by the duo themselves, though we also see the return of Grammy-winner Beat Butcha, whose previous production credits include Jay Z, Beyonce, Nipsey Hussle, & Griselda (one of Butcha's productions graces first single 'No Love Song'). Title track 'Balance' comes from upcoming producer & Soulection regular, cay caleb and also features the only vocal feature on the album, from rising UK soul talents Akemi Fox and Georgie Sweet.

The Children of Zeus journey began with a mutual love of 90s Manchester pirate radio; consuming hip hop and beats, r&b and street soul, lovers rock and dancehall, garage and bass music. Then followed decades of performing, creating and collaborating in different guises. Over the past few years, the hip hop soul duo have garnered props far and wide; from Jazzie B to Jazzy Jeff. They've done performances for the likes of Soulection and BBC, in addition to hosting their monthly NTS Radio show and collaborating with artists like Black Milk and Goldie.

From travelling light, to travelling nowhere, it's been a time where we've all had to reflect on the lives we lead. This album is about equilibrium; walking the thin line of life and striving to keep your footing firm at all times, ever pushing forward. Balancing the rough with the smooth and the work with the play.

The Children of Zeus sound is now fully grown. It's time to bring 'Balance' into the universe. This is unashamedly big people music to be played out of big speakers. The definitive sound of UK street soul in 2021. The story continues..

STAFF COMMENTS

Millie says: Super smooth soulful grooves and pristine production isn't beyond what we've come to expect from the great Children Of Zeus, but 'Balance' sees them refining their already lauded sound to a whole new level. Languid grooves and woozy beats perfectly coalesce into a wonderfully satisfying and genre-defining whole.

TRACK LISTING

1. Sunrise
2. No Love Song
3. I Know
4. Be Someone
5. I Need You
6. Nice & Sweet
7. Balance (feat. Akemi Fox & Georgie Sweet)
8. Cali Dreams
9. 42Long
10. The Most Humblest Of All Time, Ever
11. What I'm Seeing
12. Love Again
13: Sunset

We started First Word Records in late 2003. The core team is based in London, but our roster is comprised of artists from all over the globe. As we look ahead to our 20th anniversary, and hit our 200th release, this EP is a collaborative effort from some of our current artists.

As a label, we've often championed musicians that create sounds that fall within the cracks of more defined-genres. Our aim has always been to highlight unique talent where we find it, and ultimately find things we deem worthy of inclusion in the great mixtape of life! Quite often the links may not seem apparent, but we feel blessed to have been able to slowly build a family of artists that not only have great respect for each other, but will quite often collaborate together without any prompts from us. This collection of music is a series of examples of that. 'A Family Affair'.

For this vinyl EP, there is a heavy dancefloor vibe, with four tracks that nestle within the realms of broken beat.

Following her debut EP 'Light It Again' for us in late 2020, Allysha Joy's track 'Better' is re-visited by the don Kaidi Tatham, who reworks the track in his own inimitable way; starting on a half-tempo neo-soul vein, before switching to his trademark fusion of bruk, boogie and jazz mid-way.

After a lengthy absence we're delighted to welcome back Quiet Dawn and Sarah Williams White, with a collaborative piece between the two entitled 'One By One'. You can expect longer projects from them both later in the year, but here's a little vibe to wet your whistle. This, the 'Bruk It' version doing exactly what it says on the tin.

On the flipside, we have a delicious rub of Takuya Kuroda's 'Fade' featuring the vocals of Corey King and taken from Takuya's highly-acclaimed LP 'Fly Moon Die Soon'. The remix work on this one courtesy of a killer combo in their own rights, KEARL aka Earl Jeffers (Darkhouse Family) and K15 (Profusion).

Speaking of K15, this EP closes out with his interpretation of Teotima's 'But I Can't' originally from their 2019 album 'Weightless'. Taking elements of the original vocal from Ellie Rose Rusbridge, K15 transforms this one into a dreamy boogie-tinged groove - previously supported by Mary Anne Hobbs and the like.

Two of these tracks have never been available on vinyl before, whilst the other two are brand new tracks being released for the first time on any format.

TRACK LISTING

1. Allysha Joy - Better (Kaidi Tatham Remix)
2. Quiet Dawn & Sarah Williams White - One By One (Bruk It Version)
3. Takuya Kuroda - Fade (KEARL Remix)
4. Teotima - But I Can't (K15 Remix)

Following up 'The Power of Same', the first single off 14KT's new project, featuring Muhsinah, and remixed by Kaidi Tatham, 'For My Sanity' is a "freedom project", an album rooted in free creation, without being tied down by bars, patterns, scenes, and sequences. The intention behind this long-player is clearly stated all throughout the 12 tracks: releasing the angst of the current climate we are facing through collective artistic means.

"I made all the music really late at night after my day-to-day work, as an escape from "what I normally do". Paired with the everyday struggles of being an artist, it was very stressful hearing about so many deaths––especially due to law enforcement. Making "For My Sanity" was how I was trying to find peace of mind every night so I could go to sleep." says 14KT.

The themes of the album sway gracefully from personal philosophies and creeds, to burning social matters and celebration of the importance of family and genuine, fruitful friendships. If we were to classify this in a genre, we would say For My Sanity is a jazz record, at its core, but elements of hip hop, soul, r'n'b and latin music are easily recognisable and at home on the album.

"I challenged myself to create a jazz album, primarily using Native Instruments Maschine. 85% of the album was created on there. The rest was my amazing friends and myself playing instruments." KT continues.

'For My Sanity' features an array of fellow visionaries - Jimetta Rose, Masego, Mark de Clive-Lowe, Muhsinah, James Poyser, Stro Elliot, Rasheeda Ali, Farnell Newton, Kris Johnson, Magestik Legend –– who help deliver the message and further relay the essence of what the album stands for.

The journey of this release is a story in itself, as the primary thought wasn't for it to be released, especially with a label. But when this landed in DJ Gilla's inbox, and then shared with the First Word team, it was clear that the music was right up First Word's street.


TRACK LISTING

1 Advent
2 Down The Street From Peace (feat. Masego)
3 Mainstream
4 The Power Of Same (feat. Muhsinah, James Poyser & Stro Elliot)
5 Sunday's Yellow (feat. Masego & Farnell Newton)
6 An Empty Vessel (feat. Rasheeda Ali)
7 Fourteen Missing (feat. Jimetta Rose & Kris Johnson)
8 Moonwinder
9 The Late Bird (feat. Mark De Clive-Lowe)
10 Nothing To Lose But Our Chains (feat. Masego)
11 Purple Flame (feat. Magestik Legend)
12 For My Sanity

It's been a long road leading to this album for Tyler Daley and Konny Kon.

They first embarked on their expedition into the music game two decades back - Tyler entered the scene as a songwriter, producer and vocalist, originally under the moniker Hoodman, whilst Konny began MCing, DJing and beat-making for hip hop crews The Microdisiacs and Broke'n'£nglish, along with DRS & Strategy.

To date, Children of Zeus have released three sell-out singles on First Word ('Still Standing', 'I Can't Wait' and 'Slow Down') and a compilation EP comprised of tracks made by the duo over the last decade entitled 'The Story So Far…'.

Children of Zeus are finally at the stage where they are releasing their debut album proper; the over-riding ethos of which is about keeping their eyes on the road ahead, whilst shedding the baggage they've accumulated over the years - 'Travel Light'.

Features mainly come from Manny family; [ K S R ], LayFullStop, Metrodome (Levelz) and former Broke 'n' £nglish spar DRS. Guest production comes in the form of Switzerland's Sebb Bash, Nottingham's Juga-Naut, and London's Beat Butcha, and there's your favourite DJ's favourite DJ,

Mr Thing, slicing up the turntables on two tracks too. There's a few extra special ingredients on this album, along with their trademark sub-heavy, rhodes-laden hip hop soul hybrid. Reggae music has always been an integral piece of the CoZ sound-system ethic, so we see Tyler putting on his lover's rock hat for 'Hard Work', and they invite soul queen Terri Walker to join them on the fierce 'Sling Shot Riddim', while the album closes with the epic K15-produced jazz-bruk opus, 'Vibrations', on which Konny breaks it down quite simply: "high frequency means that you travel light, so get lifted yo, we'll live gifted".

Long as the journey has been, the time for looking back is over. This is about the present and future of Children of Zeus. A shining light in Manchester's now-school, and rightly heralded by many as the best new act to emerge in British soul music in the past decade. Aside from the above features, this project is written, performed and produced entirely by Tyler and Konny. Since the crew first took flight, the end destination has never changed, the aim remains the same - to create timeless music, in their own unique style, without compromise, irrespective of industry and life distractions. The moral being this - travel light.

STAFF COMMENTS

Matt says: Are Children Of Zeus the most important thing to happen to Northwest hip-hop for the last ten years? Sorry, inabit everyone else! A homecoming triumph for these superstars...

TRACK LISTING

LP Tracklist:

1 The Story So Far...
2 All On You (feat. [ K S R ] & DRS)
3 360°
4 Slow Down
5 Hoodman2Manhood
6 Kintsugi
7 The Heart Beat
8 Fear Of A Flat Planet (feat. LayFullStop)
9 Hard Work
10 Sling Shot Riddim (feat. Terri Walker)
11 Respect Mine
12 Daddy's Car
13 Vibrations (Divine Signature)

CD Tracklist:

1 The Story So Far...
2 All On You (feat. [ K S R ] & DRS)
3 360°
4 Slow Down
5 Hoodman2Manhood
6 Kintsugi
7 The Heart Beat
8 Fear Of A Flat Planet (feat. LayFullStop)
9 Hard Work
10 Sling Shot Riddim (feat. Terri Walker)
11 Respect Mine
12 Daddy's Car
13 Vibrations (Divine Signature)
14 Still Standing
15 Smoke With Me
16 Crown
17 Don't Say A Word
18 I Can't Wait
19 No Strings Attached
20 No Sunshine Tomorrow
21 Push On
22 Elevate
23 Happiness
24 Rock You Internally
25 I Want You



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