Search Results for:

MR BONGO

Arthur Verocai

Arthur Verocai - Definitve Reissue

    For a very long time, we have been trying to re-issue this record; a true and complete album masterpiece in every sense of the word, considered by many people to be one of the greatest ever made, regardless of genre.

    Recorded at Studio Somil, Rio De Janeiro in 1972, the album was produced, arranged, directed by the self-taught, Arthur Verocai. Previously he had worked on many records in various capacities, with artists including Jorge Ben, Ivan Lins and Celia, this album gave him the chance to do his thing in its most pure form.

    The 29 minute masterpiece, perfect in its arrangement and fusion of sonics, epitomises the sound of Brazil at the time; strings, guitars, pianos, break beats, basslines, synthesizers, vocals from the wonderful Célia and percussion from Pedro Santos. Bossa nova, samba, jazz, MPB, psychedelics and funk sit side by side effortlessly.

    The album transcends the genre of Brazilian music, and infact all genres. Highlighted in part by the number of artists that have sampled from it; MF Doom, Ludacris & Common, Little Brother, Jneiro Jarel aka Dr Who Dat?, Dibiase and Action Bronson amongst others.

    The original Continental versions of the album now fetch around $2000. Our definitive re-issue is an exact replica of the gatefold original LP and the source master is taken from the Continental tapes, re-mastered in 2012 under Arthur’s supervision.

    FORMAT INFORMATION

    Coloured LP Info: The definitive reissue - supervised by Arthur Verocai.
    Original replica gatefold artwork
    Mastered in 2012 from the original Continental master tapes
    Limited Edition Red vinyl

    The genre, electro (or electro-funk), is sometimes perceived to have a separate identity to hip-hop; however, this electronic cousin was integral to the early development of the hip-hop sound. Drawing on drum machines, such as the Roland TR-808, and influenced by funk, these two genres were intertwined and rode a parallel axis for a while, with rap, breakdance, and graffiti as pillars of the culture and community. The mechanical sound of electro would later go on to inspire a different set of producers and played its part in influencing contemporary electronic dance music. For this 7” release we are taking things back to 1984 and 1985 with a split single from The Egyptian Lover and Jamie Jupitor.

    First up is a track from The Egyptian Lover, AKA Greg J. Broussard, the cult Los Angeles-based producer, vocalist and DJ, who is a true hip-hop / electrofusion pioneer. ‘Computer Love (Sweet Dreams)’ is a seminal electro-fusion / machine-funk classic that saw a release on the iconic label Freak Beat Records (owned by Greg himself). The original 7” release is now very sought-after by collectors. On the flip we have another electro jam from The Egyptian Lover disciple, Jamie Jupitor. ‘Computer Power’ was additionally produced and arranged by The Egyptian Lover, and was released on Egyptian Empire Records (the label that evolved from Freak Beat Records). For this release we have opted for a special 7” unreleased radio edit, that has Greg kindly provided us with, which differs slightly in composition from the previously released versions. One for fans of D m Funk, electro and 80s funk

    STAFF COMMENTS

    says: No it's not a cover of Kraftwerk! But LA's veteran electro-funk / freestyle legend Egyptian Lover reissuing some highly treasured HEAT from his early catalogue.

    The Choice is Yours is one of the most celebrated 12” releases of the early 1990s. The story of why is told on this 7” - the first official release on this format (and, technically, the first UK release in any format except as a B-side). The original version, here on the flip, is a fine track in its own right, and is the version you’ll find on the seminal ‘A Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing’ album. Built around elements from Johnny Hammond’s oft-sampled ‘Big Sur Suite’ from 1974 and incorporating snatches from Iron Butterfly and the Bar-Kays, it’s a truly original, witty track that showcases Dres’ deft wordplay and the group’s way with a hummable hook.

    However, what made the song legendary was the reworked version called ‘The Choice is Yours (Revisited)’, here on the A-side. It more or less rebuilds the track from the foundations and, accompanied by an iconic and acclaimed video, is for many the definitive version. It’s the soundtrack to many a hyped club night, a track that could ignite the audience in the same way that Onyx’s ‘Slam’ would a couple of years later. It weaves together vocal stabs from Sweet Linda Divine with a propulsive bassline from McCoy Tyner that seems like a significant step forward in the jazz-sampling era of hip-hop. Widely quoted, referenced and even covered in music ever since, this is a classic that punches well above its weight.

    Main Source

    Think / Atom

    A year before Wild Pitch Records properly introduced us to the trio of Queens native Large Professor and Toronto’s Sir Scratch and K-Cut, the soon-to-be-legendary group self-released their own debut single. Dropping on Actual Records, the 12” of ‘Think’ and ‘Atom’ was soon a sought after rarity, with scarce originals still fetching upwards of three figures. On it, they only hint at the greatness to come, while simultaneously showing that they’d already mastered the three-minute rap single - this is concise brilliance with no flab whatsoever. Engineered by the late, esteemed Paul C, ‘Think’ is a study in how to turn wellworn samples into something new. The combination of several James Brown snatches, along with bits lifted from Lyn Collins and Jimmy Castor Bunch, could have been tired and almost parodic by 1989, but instead the group weave something interesting from old fabric.

    ‘Atom’ is arguably even better, built around a brace of elements from Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell’s 1967 duet ‘Little Ole Boy, Little Ole Girl’. On it, Large Pro gives the first real hints that he’ll not just be a super-producer, but a committed MC to watch. Mixing threats with humour, positivity with braggadocio, it’s a calling card performance on a track that could have still sat comfortably on 1991’s ‘Breaking Atoms’ album. Heavily bootlegged, this is the first official double-sided 7” release bringing together both these foundational cuts

    One thing hip-hop has never been great at - and certainly something for which it has zero reputation - is nuanced emotion. Enter Large Professor and ‘Looking at the Front Door’, the group’s first single on Wild Pitch Records and the lead out for their stunning ‘Breaking Atoms’ album. Wrapped around a loop from Donald Byrd’s Blue Note classic ‘Think Twice’, bolstered by the infectious chorus of ‘Chick A Boom’ by The Pazant Brothers and Beaufort Express, it’s a melancholy tale of love gone wrong. It was a brave choice of lead single in the 1990 hip-hop landscape, plucked from an album full of genuine head-nodders and standout tracks. It was also the right choice - a piece of production perfection laced with romantic honesty.

    The B-side also strikes a different tack, a tale of a brother who “doesn’t fight, his brain is his left and right.” Using a solid foundation of drums from Funkadelic’s ‘You’ll Like It Too’ (most famously used on Eric B & Rakim’s ‘I Know You Got Soul’), Large Pro weaves his tale of an ambitious, studious man over an original organ line (by JD Drumsticks) that wouldn’t sound out of place at a hockey rink. The theme is sledgehammer subtle - don’t sell drugs, stay in school - but delivered with the lightness of touch that would be Main Source’s signature. This is the first official UK release, and the first time both sides have been together on a 7”.

    Matthew Tavares & Leland Whitty

    January 12th

    January 12th, 2020, a Sunday night in Toronto - Matthew Tavares and Leland Whitty (of BADBADNOTGOOD fame) are reunited at Burdock for a live improvised Jazz session. The pair are joined on stage by bassist Julian Anderson-Bowes and drummer Matt Chalmers as part of Burdock’s Piano Fest, an annual event at the city’s brewery and music hall. Two days later an email from Matthew hits Mr Bongo’s inbox... “I think it turned out amazing, brought some really nice recording gear and it sounds almost like a studio record, thought I’d share. Moments definitely get to the jazzier side but there is some spiritual moments that are so far out”.

    The Bongo office were all blown away by this free-flowing session, one which sounded like a well-rehearsed set at the end of a long tour, rather than a onetake improvised assembly. The chemistry between the musicians is magical. The tight friendship and musical connection between Tavares and Whitty are self-evident, however, Chalmers and Anderson-Bowes have a great contribution to make too. They act as the solid foundation that leaves Tavares and Whitty free to roam and explore moments of darkness and light, intensity and beauty. From the first time of hearing this intimate session, we knew this had to be shared. The same quartet feature on Matthew Tavares & Leland Whitty’s 2020 album ‘Visions’. The plan to promote ‘Visions’ was to tour, with each night comprising a uniquely improvised set. Sadly due to world events, this couldn’t happen, but for now ‘January 12th’ is a snapshot of the wizardry that would have been from four amazing musicians at the top of their game.

    STAFF COMMENTS

    says: Unbelievably smooth-flowing, intricate jazz improvisations from the master duo of Tavares & Whitty. Expect moments of BADBADNOTGOOD-like smooth jazz and more esoteric, freeform freakouts. A superb recording of superb musicians at full flow. Amazing.

    Orlandivo

    Onde Anda O Meu Amor / Gueri-Gueri

    Orlandivo’s ‘Onde Anda O Meu Amor’ is one of those special tracks that have long been high up on the request lists of many Mr Bongo customers who wanted them to add it to their growing Brazil 45 catalogue. Mr Bongo are super happy to finally make that become a reality. It is taken from Brazilian composer, singer and percussionist Orlandivo’s (real name Orlandivo Hon rio de Souza) sought-after self-titled album from 1977. Originally released on Copacabana Records, the album features greats such as Sivuca on accordion and arrangements, and piano and organ by the maestro, Jo o Donato. ‘Onde Anda O Meu Amor’ is a beautiful, tripped out mellow groove with amazing spacey keys and flute lines - a true Brazilian underground classic. For the flip side, they have opted to include the song ‘Gueri - Gueri’, which is taken from the same album. This catchy samba rock number brings back great memories of listening to it whilst exploring Chico & Zico’s vinyl emporium in Sao Paulo. The chorus almost sounds like the vocalists are singing “Gary Gary”, which is not only a ridiculously catchy hook, but also a fitting tribute / name check to Gary Johnson from Bongo HQ.

    Matthew Tavares & Leland Whitty

    12th January

      THIS IS A BLACK FRIDAY RELEASE AVAILABLE ONLINE ONLY ON FRIDAY NOVEMBER 27TH FROM 6PM.
      LIMITED TO ONE PER PERSON.


      January 12th, 2020, a Sunday night in Toronto - Matthew Tavares and Leland Whitty (of BADBADNOTGOOD fame) are reunited at Burdock for a live improvised Jazz session.

      The pair are joined on stage by bassist Julian Anderson-Bowes and drummer Matt Chalmers as part of Burdock’s Piano Fest, an annual event at the city’s brewery and music hall. Two days later an email from Matthew hits Mr Bongo’s inbox... “I think it turned out amazing, brought some really nice recording gear and it sounds almost like a studio record, thought I’d share. Moments definitely get to the jazzier side but there is some spiritual moments that are so far out”. The Bongo office were all blown away by this free-flowing session, one which sounded like a well-rehearsed set at the end of a long tour, rather than a onetake improvised assembly.

      The chemistry between the musicians is magical. The tight friendship and musical connection between Tavares and Whitty are self-evident, however, Chalmers and Anderson-Bowes have a great contribution to make too. They act as the solid foundation that leaves Tavares and Whitty free to roam and explore moments of darkness and light, intensity and beauty. From the first time of hearing this intimate session, we knew this had to be shared.

      The same quartet feature on Matthew Tavares & Leland Whitty’s 2020 album ‘Visions’. The plan to promote ‘Visions’ was to tour, with each night comprising a uniquely improvised set. Sadly due to world events, this couldn’t happen, but for now ‘January 12th’ is a snapshot of the wizardry that would have been from four amazing musicians at the top of their game.

      FORMAT INFORMATION

      Coloured LP Info: Orange Vinyl.

      Kit Sebastian

      Ennui / Abandoned

        Kit Sebastian are back with a special stand-alone alone 7” release that presents an appetising taster of what is to follow from their much-anticipated second album. After losing themselves in the magic of the French countryside to record, the band have delivered two gems that we initially thought were a soup on of the said new album. In fact, though recorded during the same sessions, they felt these tracks were best served up as an aperitif to the album.

        Francis Lai, Vladimir Cosma, Fikret K z lok, Jane Birkin, and Selda Bacan all served as inspirations during the recording sessions. Though their idols can be heard in ‘Ennui’ & ‘Abandoned’, the fusion of Anatolian Psychedelia, Brazilian Tropicalia, 60’s European pop and psych-folk vibes results in a sound that is drenched in their unique signature style and can only come from Kit Sebastian. The beautiful, heartfelt, longing vocals on both ‘Ennui’ & ‘Abandoned’’, makes it hard for the listener to resist falling in love with the world of Kit Sebastian, and they leave the heart longing even more for their next long player to drop.

        Much about “Beat Bop” is shrouded in mystery. Who really produced it? Why was Jean-Michel Basquiat relegated from rapper on the track to drawing the cover and labels? What are they actually rapping about for most of the ten-minute length? These questions, however, are all part of the enigma and rich legend surrounding a song that is an undisputed piece of true hip-hop genius. The combination of graffiti artist Rammellzee and rapper K-Rob is a potent one, with each MC adopting a persona - hustler and B-Boy respectively - that they maintain against an unusual swirling backdrop that must be one of the best instrumentals ever committed to wax.

        The original Tartown Record pressing was limited to 500 copies, a mere test pressing in the eyes of the assembled artists, with scarcity further driven by Basquiat’s rising rep in the art world. Those few hundred copies - and a subsequent re-release on Profile Records (the same label where K-Rob played out the rest of his brief career) - punched well above their weight in terms of lasting influence.

        Consider the early vocal tones of the Beastie Boys (who also sampled the track), or the huge part it played in the sound of Cypress Hill and B-Real. His voice is almost homage to Rammellzee’s on “Beat Bop”, while they also lifted the chorus of “Shoot ‘Em Up” and even a sample of ‘Cypress Hill’ from the track too. It’s unsurprising - this is a multi-layered, complex song that reveals a little more of itself each time you play it but remains damn funky. This reissue boasts the vocal and instrumental versions in full, as well as both the full cover and label artwork from the original Tartown Release.


        FORMAT INFORMATION

        Coloured 12" Info: Limited edition black & white splatter vinyl.

        Official Mr Bongo Hip Hop Reissue. Nas has had a career of generally consistent excellence, punctuated with a few lulls.

        He’s an incredibly skilled rapper sometimes accused of having a tin ear when it comes to choosing beats - especially on albums (and the entirety of ‘Illmatic’ aside, obviously). ‘Made You Look’ was a shot in the arm for Nas at a time when he’d shed some of his core, street fanbase. After the unfocussed ‘Nastradamus’ and ‘I Am...’ albums he’d had a return to some kind of form with ‘Stillmatic’, but many felt he came off second best in the ensuing battle with Jay-Z.

        This single, a club and street classic almost from the moment it dropped, is exactly what he needed to reconnect with his fans and to show he could still throw down. Lyrically, it’s hardcore bragging 101, delivered with panache and numerous quotables that themselves would go on to be sampled. Key to it all, however, is that beat. Salaam Remi was no stranger to resurrections, having almost single-handedly turned The Fugees from forgettable also-rans to major-players. The beat here is deceptively simple, one of hundreds of records to chop up Incredible Bongo Band’s ‘Apache’ but doing so in a way that felt instantly fresh. Nearly 20 years later it still has the power to get a stationary crowd moving, an empty dancefloor to fill, a still head to nod.

        This original version has never been on 7” before. It’s presented with full artwork

        Jorge Ben

        Curumin Chama Cuh T Que Eu Vou Contar (Todo Dia Era Dia De Ndio)

        Mr Bongo's much in-demand series of classic Brazilian 45’s are back! Featuring a vibrant new design, they’ve curated yet more wants-list regulars and unearthed fresh finds from Brazil that are destined to become collector’s items in their own right.

        Number 80 in the Brazil.45 series, aptly sees a double-sider focusing on the awesome 80’s recordings by one of the giants of Brazilian music, Jorge Ben. First up is the addictive, building groove of ‘Curumin Chama Cunh t Que Eu Vou Contar (Todo Dia Era Dia De ndio)’.

        Taken from the ‘D diva’ album from 1981, and originally released on Som Livre Records. A homage to the indigenous people and tribes of Brazil. The flip features one of Jorge’s most beloved Brazilian-Boogie joints, ‘Rio Babil nia’, which celebrates life in Rio, partying, the beach, and the city’s iconic monuments.

        The song was originally released on a compacto and taken from the ‘D diva’ album from 1983, it features arrangements by the late-great, Lincoln Olivetti.

        Number 81 in the Brazil.45 series sees further digging into the magical world of Jorge Ben’s lesser-explored 1980’s productions. ‘Ma Ma Ma Ma Ma (A Lingua Dos Anjos)’ is taken from his ‘Al Al , Como Vai?’ album from 1980, which is arranged, produced, and features keys by the don, Lincoln Olivetti. The song contains trippy lyrics singing about flying saucers and angels.

        ‘Dona Culpa’ finds Jorge featuring on a cool mid-tempo groove track taken from Cauby Peixoto’s ‘Cauby! Cauby!’ album (also from 1980). Singer Cauby Peixoto had a long and stellar career, recording and releasing music from the mid-1950’s all the way up until his passing in 2016.

        MATTY

        Dejavu

          As with many of the most fertile creative minds, continual reinvention leads to exploration of new sounds and styles. ‘ D j vu’ sees a departure from the jazz of BADBADNOTGOOD and a move into a more song-based storybook, with Matthew stepping up to the plate as lead-vocalist. As Matthew explains “I’ve always worked on my own stuff outside of BADBAD, and I’ve made music that sounds like this since I was 16. But when BADBAD started taking off, it was like “Ok, I can’t really make rock-y songwriter music anymore”.

          The inspiration for the album came after revisiting old favourites and classics such as The Zombies, The Beatles, shoegaze, and Krautrock records. It was also made in a difficult and reflective period in Matthew’s life, with each song being a vignette to an individual. “I wrote each song about someone specifically, but then I realised very quickly afterwards that every song is about myself”.

          Even though on the surface the record could be loosely categorized in the rock / indie camp, its dreamy psych-pop vibe evokes much richer musical inspirations. Elements of jazz, AOR, and the compositions of ‘golden-era’ Brazilian arrangers such as Arthur Verocai enrich the songs. For the Mr Bongo release of ‘Dejavu’ we have included the beautiful bonus track ‘Verocai Pt. II’ which was a product of the same recording sessions and rounds off the record.

          Though a ‘solo’ release, with its songwriting, content, and themes being very personal to Matthew, the record is backed by a cast of friends, family, including BADBADNOTGOOD members. Mr Bongo are proud to present yet another sublime record from a unique, gifted, and necessary voice in contemporary music.

          FORMAT INFORMATION

          Coloured LP Info: Red coloured vinyl.

          Idrissa Soumaora Et L'Eclipse

          Nissodia (Mike D Edit)

          Legend’ is lofty praise that is often used lightly, however, Mike D from the Beastie Boys certainly is one in the truest of spirits. We are delighted after over 30 years of being involved in music to finally release a project involving such a hip-hop pioneer and icon as Mike.

          In keeping with the maverick attitude of the Beastie Boys, you don’t always get what you expect. For this release there isn’t a hip-hop beat, instrumental-funk or hardcore-punk joint in sight, rather an electronic-African club banger. Mike took it upon himself to rework Malian artists Idrissa Soumaoro and L’Eclipse De L’I.J.A. and their track ‘Nissodia’, which is taken from the ‘Le Tioko-Tioko’ album originally released in 1978 on the German Democratic Republic (GDR) label ETERNA. The song was also featured on ‘The Original Sound Of Mali’ compilation released on Mr Bongo back in 2017.

          It was November 2019 and the day before a Mr Bongo 30 years celebration event in Paris at the Pedro party in the ‘New Morning’ club, when out of the blue the remix landed in Dave Mr Bongo’s inbox. We loved it straight away and decided to road test it the next night in the club. Whether it be a remix/re-edit/ rework, it doesn’t matter, what does matter is that it works spectacularly in the club and had people jumping on the stage to dance at the party. A sensational track and one which leaves a beautiful memory of good-times from a night out in Paris (and one which is in retrospect is even more poignant as the late-great maestro Tony Allen was in the club that night), and we are sure it will light up many more dancefloors to come.

          STAFF COMMENTS

          says: Check-ch-check-check - check-ch-check it out! Beastie Boy Mike D takes his scalpel to this Malian jam-a-thon from Idrissa Soumaora and twists it into a stomping Afro-electronic banger which has me begging for the clubs to re-open. Chuck in the OG on the flip and you got some must have wax on yo hands.

          FORMAT INFORMATION

          Ltd 12" Info: Indies exclusive yellow vinyl.

          So much legendary hip-hop begins with a misunderstanding. You might not realise it on first or even hundredth listen, but 'Insane in the Brain' is a diss track. What has become one of the hip-hop's most iconic party anthems, and one of Cypress Hill's biggest hits, started out with them taking offence at Chubb Rock.

          He'd flipped some of their lyrics on his own 'Yabba Dabba Doo' song in 1992 and the group didn't like it. While B-Real's lyrical attack on Chubb is subtle and almost subliminal, Sen Dog spends most of his verse making fat jokes at Chubb's expense.

          It's a little known beef, hidden beneath the vast success of this single in 1993, with it reaching number one in the US rap charts and proving a pop hit worldwide too. At this stage, the group's producer DJ Muggs had perfected an idiosyncratic sound all of his own, lending it to tracks for the likes of House of Pain and Funkdoobiest.

          Here he melds samples from Sly and the Family Stone and The Youngbloods with a beat lifted from George Semper's instrumental cover of 'Get out my life, woman'. Those subtle songs are alchemised into a boot-stomping head-nodder that transcended hip-hop to become a festival favourite, a rise that ended in Ned Flanders delivering the line, "this may sound just a teensy bit insane in the old membrane, Homer," in The Simpsons.

          The only official 7" of this was released in the Philippines, and fetches prices in the hundreds of pounds – this reissue puts a hip-hop classic in crate-friendly form.

          Asha Puthli

          Asha Puthli (RSD20 EDITION)

            THIS IS A RECORD STORE DAY 2020 RELEASE AVAILABLE ONLINE ONLY AS PART OF THE AUGUST 29TH DROP DAY AT 6PM.
            LIMITED TO ONE PER PERSON.


            Official Mr Bongo coloured vinyl re-issue for Record Store Day 2020.Asha's debut self-titled album is a wonderful fusion of jazz, soul, blues, and disco.It includes an outstanding cover version of J.J.Cale's 'Right Down Here'; a track which Asha has made very much her own by flipping it into a deep-funk groove with sultry ethereal vocals and a drumbeat almost ready-made for samplers of the future.The record was produced in the UK by Del Newman, who had worked with Carly Simon, Cat Stevens, and Elton John to name a few.It was released on London CBS records in 1973.Shortly after the release of the record, Asha (who was born in Mumbai), was banned by the Home Office from working in the UK for a period of time due to visa issues.These obstacles along with problems with her recording contract did not hold her back.Asha moved on and continued her musical journey elsewhere.This resulted in further astounding creative works that Mr Bongo will also be presenting soon.For this special RSD special edition we have pressed on sky blue vinyl to bring out the colours of Asha's stunning dress that she wears for the cover portrait.

            Sir Joe Quarterman & Free Soul

            Sir Joe Quarterman & Free Soul (RSD20 EDITION)

              THIS IS A RECORD STORE DAY 2020 RELEASE AVAILABLE ONLINE ONLY AS PART OF THE AUGUST 29TH DROP DAY AT 6PM.
              LIMITED TO ONE PER PERSON.


              Official Mr Bongo re-issue for Record Store Day 2020 with a gatefold cover.The self-tiled Sir Joe Quarterman & Free Soul album from 1973 was the only album recorded by the group.The success of the hit song and album enabled the band to share the stage with big-name acts such as James Brown and Earth Wind & Fire.The album track '(I've Got) So Much Trouble In My Mind' even became a regular feature on the legendary TV show, Soul Train.These triumphs also drew the attention of record company executives who wanted to sign Joe as a solo artist; an offer he refused as he was not willing to abandon the band.The group members for the recording were neighborhood musicians and school friends from the Washington D.C area - George "Jackie" Lee (Guitar), Gregory Hammonds (Bass), Charles Steptoe (Drums), Karrissa Freeman (Keyboards), Johnny Freeman (Trombone), Leon Rogers (Sax/Vocals) and Joe (Trumpet/Vocals).The simple cartoon-like almost pre-Basquiat style record cover artwork has become iconic in its own right, but this was not the original intention.Joe had prepared a quick illustration for a photographer to depict in a collage for the album art, however, the label ended up using his original sketches for the final cover.Whatever was in the water, things all came together and aligned at the right time, and a true soul-funk classic record was born.

              Various Artists

              Brazil 45s Boxset / Curated By DJ Format

                THIS IS A RECORD STORE DAY 2020 RELEASE AVAILABLE ONLINE ONLY AS PART OF THE AUGUST 29TH DROP DAY AT 6PM.
                LIMITED TO ONE PER PERSON.


                Limited Edition Clamshell Box which doubles up as a DJ box for your Brazil 45s collection.We've been toying with the idea of collaborating with a guest selector for the Brazil 45 series since its inception in 2014, but up until now the timing has never been quite right.That all changed following a recent digging trip to Brazil, where upon our return DJ Format was first into the office, full of excitement and enthusiasm (portable record player in hand), ready to bust open the boxes and see what treats we had unearthed.Straight away we knew that alongside being one of the UK's premier record collectors, producers and DJs, he had the passion and knowledge that would result in a totally unique take on a Brazil 45 collection.†Brazil has such a rich multi-genre musical heritage that sometimes it can be hard for curators to decide on where to focus.DJ Format has a very distinct stamp to his own productions and mixtapes, and that can be clearly seen in the coherent theme he has applied to his selections for this release.He has chosen 10 funk-psyche-break-beat Brazilian nuggets from the '60s and early '70s, and included wonderful artists such as The Modern Tropical Quintet, Manito, Free-son, and Marisa Rossi, to name a few.It is a body of work that fits together perfectly and shines a light on some perhaps forgotten artists that deserve attention and praise.This collection will appeal to fans of DJ Format, those with a knowledge of Brazilian music, and even the first time buyer just wanting to discover something new.†This special limited Record Store Day 5 x 45s collection comes in a box designed by Owen Tozer.

                Ultra Magnetic MC's

                Give The Drummer Some

                  The late engineer and producer Paul C's fingerprints are all over this single from Ultramagnetic MC's, perhaps the defining release of their career. While earlier records gave notice of their strange and unique talents, they were loveably messy affairs. This, however, is the real deal, as polished as their early sound would ever be.

                  'Give the Drummer Some' grabs a fistful of different elements – from James Brown, Dee Felice Trio and James Brown – but bends them to its own purpose. This is a song with a momentum of its own and endlessly quotable lyrics. One of which, of course, was sampled by The Prodigy – huge hip-hop fans – for 'Smack My Bitch Up' in 1997. The now hugely rare 7" of 'Give the Drummer Some' edits this out to make it more radio-friendly, but this reissue reverses that cut, giving you the original lyrics. If anyone knows why Kool Keith also changes the word 'rappers' to 'monkeys' for that edit, answers on a postcard…

                  The brilliant B-side harks back to the time when every group had a song dedicated to their DJ. 'Moe Luv's Theme' sees Kool Keith at his most straightforward, singing the praises of the turntable skills of Moe Luv. It would be throwaway were it not for the effortless repurposing of Jackie Robinson's oft-sampled 'Pussyfooter'. That – and the presence of one of the world's great MC's at the height of his powers – elevates it far above a footnote.

                  Ultra Magnetic MC's

                  Ego Tripping

                    Melvin Bliss' iconic 'Synthetic Substitution' (1973) has been sampled hundreds of times. Gracing records from Naughty by Nature's 'O.P.P' to Public Enemy's 'Don't Believe the Hype', it's one of the foundations of hip-hop. However, there's a school of thought that says the sample could have been retired forever after Ced Gee used it for 'Ego Tripping'. It was the first song to use those wonderful Bernard Purdie drums, and arguably the best.

                    Their first release on Next Plateau Records, this instant 1986 classic slams from the first bar, that hard-as-hell beat underpinned by stabs and the breathy 'ultra-magnetic-magnetic' chant beneath. Meanwhile, Ced and future legend Kool Keith go to town with pseudo-science and a thinly veiled diss of Run DMC – 'Say what, Peter Piper, to hell with childish rhymes'. It's a song shot through with promise they'd more than fulfil on their debut album, 1988's landmark 'Critical Beatdown'.

                    The flip, 'Funky Potion', doesn't coalesce with quite the same genius but is still more than a curio, with the MC's doubling down on their futuristic nonsense approach to lyricism. Rufus Thomas' 'Do the Funky Penguin' is the base for yet more stabs, discordant scratches and a kitchen-sink approach that shows just innovative the group were prepared to be.

                    Never before released before on 7", this undeniable hip-hop classic comes complete with bespoke hype stickers incorporating one of the great rap logos of all time.

                    Ultra Magnetic MC's

                    Travelling At The Speed Of Thought

                      Let's be honest – the first time many of us heard the otherworldly talents of the Ultramagnetic MC's was on a compilation. A smattering of singles in 1986 had barely registered beyond a small circle in New York, but the inclusion of the 1987 single 'Travelling at the Speed of Thought' on Street Sounds' 'Hip Hop Electro 16' set, sandwiched between classics from MC Shy D and Just-Ice, was a watershed moment.


                      In a way, it's their most atypical release. The deceptively simple combination of drums 'borrowed' from The Rolling Stones and a scratched hook from The Kingsmen's definitive version of Richard Berry's 'Louie Louie' is one thing. The simple by their standards vocals, however, render it into a loveable pastiche of rock-rap, a more esoteric equivalent of Run DMC's 'Walk This Way'.

                      The flip is more in keeping with their style both on their earlier 'Ego Tripping' single and the soon-to-arrive landmark classic album 'Critical Beatdown'.

                      Over some heavily chopped drums from erstwhile breakbeat classic 'Apache' by the Incredible Bongo Band, Ced Gee and Kool Keith showcase flows that were different from anything out there at the time.

                      'M.C.'s Ultra (Part II Edit)' is part brag-rap, part baffling science lecture. Leaning heavily on the thesaurus, it's a slang heavy manifesto that elevated the boast rap to the next level. While Kool Keith would go on to be the group's breakout star, this is a showcase for the whole collective, right down to DJ Moe Love's slithery scratching sliding from one channel to the next.

                      Only previously released in the UK as a 7" that's now very hard to source, this is a chance to re-embrace this breakthrough from a legendary group.



                      Tadao Sawai & Kazue Sawai & Hozan Yamamoto & Sadanori Nakamu

                      Jazz Rock

                        They say you can’t judge a book by its cover, and going by ‘Jazz Rock’, nor a record by its title.

                        Though entering into jazz territory and featuring some distorted guitar, ‘Jazz Rock’ is more a beautiful marriage of funky breakbeat drumming and spiritual jazz instrumentation, combined with traditional Min’y 333; music performed on the koto and shakuhachi.

                        Originally released in 1973, the record sounds simultaneously vintage and contemporary. It is akin to something Madlib might dream up whilst lost in Japan collaborating with Min’y 333; players at a recording session. The record features some amazing shakuhachi (bamboo flute) playing by Hozan Yamamoto, which gives the music a haunting, dreamlike atmosphere. You can almost visualise the long grass blowing in the wind, and hear the bamboo rustling in the distance on a long hot summer’s day. Takeshi Inomata, Tadao Sawai and Kazue Sawai anchor the session.

                        Takeshi’s exceptionally funky-drum work will almost certainly get some producers dusting off and firing up their MPC’s. Whilst Kazue and Tadao work their magic on the koto (a traditional string instrument).

                        Though certainly not an ambient record, ‘Jazz-Rock’ has the same meditative, other-worldly quality that invites you to sit back, listen and be transported somewhere else. Unfortunately, until now the ‘Jazz Rock’ album is a scarcity that commanded a high price-tag only for the most hardened of record collectors. So it is pleasure to make it accessible to all, and we hope you dig this lost, obscure future classic as much as we do.

                        Surprise Chef

                        All News Is Good News

                          There is something simultaneously both brand-new and retro about ‘All News Is Good News’ - the debut album from Melbourne’s instrumental soul group Surprise Chef.

                          It sounds like something dreamt up by lo-fi cousins of David Axelrod and Janko Nilovic, with dramatic Library-music-eqsue cinematic arrangements echoing both light and dark, delving into moments of dissonance and positivity. There is a meticulous education of 1970’s soul on display that touches on the legacies of the great composer / producers, yet at the same time this is a truly contemporary record that could have only been made now. The first limited pressing of ‘All News Is Good News’ was released on the band’s own ‘College Of Knowledge’ imprint in November 2019.

                          It slipped rapidly into the collective consciousness of underground music lovers around the world, with all copies selling out within a week and becoming a firm favourite at Mr Bongo HQ in the process. We felt Surprise Chef had made something very special, a future-classic, and that needed to be heard well beyond those lucky enough to have bagged those limited first copies. Formed at the end of 2017, Surprise Chef have grown within the fertile, creative, and supportive Melbourne music scene. Whilst the band is comprised of four core members, the album features friends and family as guest instrumentalists on flute, saxophone, vibraphone, congas, and assorted percussion; all adeptly recorded by engineer Henry Jenkins from the band Karate Boogaloo.

                          The warm-raw-authenticity of the album was captured in the recordings live to tape over a handful of sessions in the band’s home studio in Melbourne’s inner-northern suburb of Coburg. As band member Lachlan Stuckey explains “All of the music we record is tracked live to tape, simply because so many of the records we love most were made that way”.

                          The results are a captivating journey of instrumental cinematic-soul that will connect with the hardened Axelrod, Truth & Soul, El Michels Affair, and Daptone’s fans, as well as the open-minded first-time listener. We are very excited to share this first slice of Surprise Chef’s world, with plenty more magic from these guys coming around the corner very soon.

                          STAFF COMMENTS

                          says: Wow! Surprise chef have all the groove you'd expect from good old 1960's soul, mixed with the sort of plunderphonic hiss of modern soundtracks and sleazy lounge. An intoxicating mix indeed.

                          Gang Starr

                          Jazz Thing

                            With the original UK 7” of this release now as rare as hen’s teeth, and with the group having recently ‘reformed’ for one last album together, the Mr Bongo replica re-release of this 1990 masterpiece by Gang Starr couldn’t be more timely

                            The now-legendary duo of DJ Premier and Guru dropped this at the height of hip-hop’s sampling of jazz, which had led to a creative leap forward for the genre. Yet while others plundered in the dark, this instant classic wore its influences on its sleeve and paid verbal homage to the musicians they were sampling. The “melodious funk” of “Thelonious Monk” gets namechecked, while the track samples two of his records, including 1958’s Bop gem ‘Light Blue’.

                            While both versions presented here have common elements, the ‘Movie Mix’ - so-named for the song’s appearance on the soundtrack to Spike Lee’s mythic jazz biopic ‘Mo’ Better Blues’ - goes in a few different directions to the ‘Video Mix’. Rather than just drop in an instrumental for the B-side, DJ Premier instead shows his versatility by switching up the base track (Kool & The Gang’s 1971 ‘Dujii’) and layering in other samples. In more ways than one, his virtuosity here echoes the improvisation of a jazz musician, akin to Denzel Washington’s Bleak in the movie.

                            Of course, he’s not the only show in town. The late Guru’s voice is as mellifluous as an instrument itself here, his potted history of the genre and the artists of jazz delivered with his own unmistakable cadence. Without this record, would he have gone on to make his ‘Jazzmatazz’ projects.

                            Marumo

                            Modiehi

                              We were first introduced to Marumo’s ‘Modiehi’ album via DJ Okapi’s amazing resource the ‘Afrosynth’ blog, which archives South African bubblegum/ disco from the 80s & early 90s. Aside from this blog, this music would otherwise remained unknown outside of South Africa, apart from the most hardcore of digger and record collector.

                              ‘Modiehi’ was originally released on Spades Record in 1982 and was recorded by producer West Nkosi, who was a member of supergroup ‘Mahlathini & The Mahotella Queens’. He worked with the big hitters in South African music such as Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Teaspoon & The Waves, Patience Africa and many more. Marumo were made up of a group of musicians from the Athlone School for the blind in Bellville, close to Cape Town. The band members, John Mothopeng, Munich Sibiya, Simon Falatsi and Marks Mbuthuma, had previously played in the groups Batsumi, All Rounders and The Orations and came together to record this versatile album. It covers a wide number of genres from Sotho soul, Mbaqanga, disco-funk, gospel & spacey-synth slow jams.

                              Flash forward 30 or so years later and lost dead-stock copies of the album start to appear and Marumo’s music begins to be heard across the world in the DJ sets of Motor City Drum Ensemble, Invisible City Editions, Floating Points, DJ Okapi and others.

                              We included the afro-disco-funk beauty of ‘Khomo Tsaka Deile Kae?’ on our Mr Bongo Record Club Volume Three compilation, but felt ‘Modiehi’ needed to be available and heard in it’s entirety. We hope you enjoy!

                              The Star Beams

                              Play Disco Specials

                                Play Disco Specials’ was produced by Ray Nkwe who also worked with Mankunku Quartet and The Soul Jazzmen, with all writing credits on the album going to Ray, the recording credited to engineer Robin Ritchie and the artwork to Carol Knowles.

                                The Star Beams album is a bit of an enigma. When we first came across their epic dance-floor monster ‘Disco Stomp’ it was on a Disco Calypso compilation, so we assumed it originated from the Caribbean. Years later we worked out how wrong we were and that this nugget was actually from South Africa and taken off an ultra scarce album on JAS Pride records from 1976. The next problem was tracking down an original copy and we don’t think we’ve ever seen our Bongo team member Gary Johnson as happy as the day he turned up clutching a copy under his arm.

                                Aside from the disco-jazz-funk of ‘Disco Stomp’, which has found it’s way into the DJ sets of Theo Parrish, ‘Play Disco Specials’ will appeal to fans of The Star Beams South African contemporaries The Drive, Batsumi and Pacific Express.

                                Matthew Tavares & Leland Whitty (BADBADNOTGOOD)

                                Visions

                                  ‘Visions’ is a new collaborative album from BADBADNOTGOOD co-founders, Matthew Tavares and Leland Whitty. The Grammy Award winning, multi-platinum producers have been performing and writing music together for 10 years. They have achieved international acclaim with BADBADNOTGOOD and Tavares’ recent solo single ’Self-Portrait’ has been championed by tastemakers such as Gilles Peterson and Benji B. ‘Visions’ is the latest upshot of their incredibly fruitful partnership.

                                  Recorded in Toronto, it was produced by Tavares and Whitty - with Tavares also mixing the album and arranging strings. After a three-week writing period it was played in its entirety in one continuous studio session; almost all the tracks on the album are the first take. Tavares is on piano and guitar, Whitty on saxophone and flute. The rhythm section of Julian Anderson-Bowes on bass and Matthew Chalmers on drums completes the players. They make an impressive collective and are performing at the peak of their powers.

                                  Conceptually the album is a canvas for a combination of composition and group free-form improvisation. Tavares and Whitty are the sole composers, but with some tracks collectively improvised, there is also a group dynamic running through the album. The outcome is a sublime melting pot of modern jazz, impressionist classical music and Arthur Verocai-esque arrangements. It is a sound that is hard to date; it is certainly of the now but is also reminiscent of a lost classic. Similar to the process of its creation, the optimal listening experience for ‘Visions’ is in its entirety. As a coherent body of work it draws the listener in with waves of intensity and crescendos that release back into tranquility - there is both darkness and light in the album’s narrative arc. There is also rawness and honesty to the music, which makes it feel like an intensely personal and intimate offering.

                                  FORMAT INFORMATION

                                  2xColoured LP Info: Red Transparent coloured vinyl.

                                  Solat

                                  Change The World / Try, Try

                                  It is hard to think of many 7” singles where both sides are as heavy as this one! Change The World / Try, Try was released in 1977 by Solat, a Dutchbased funk group made up of Surinamese and Dutch-Antillian musicians. Formed after ex-band members of Reality / Tony And Reality; Eddy Veldman, Franky Douglas, Ivor Mitchell and Glenn Gaddum teamed up with singer Billy Jones, Solat went on to release two singles for Poker records.

                                  With its crossover nature, it pleases disco, funk and modern-soul collectors and DJs alike, plus due to only been released in the Netherlands, the record has now become an extremely sought-after item with a high price tag to match. Both amazing cuts are aimed straight for the dance-floor, but retain conscious and positive messages that are as relevant now as they were back then. ‘Change The World’ is an anthemic feel-good disco funk gem, whilst ‘Try, Try ‘ is reminiscent of a Mizell Brothers golden-era production. Mr Bongo present a replica edition with dinked centre and original cover and label artwork, for all to enjoy.

                                  STAFF COMMENTS

                                  says: Reissue of these 1977 gem ‘Change The World’ and ‘Try, Try’ are funk and soul essentials to have on vinyl, it’s been highly sought after for years and the time is here to play these classics loud.

                                  Peter King

                                  Omo Lewa - Reissue

                                  Super-funky business from Nigerian-born multi-instrumentalist, Peter King; fuses funk, jazz and highlife vibrations. ‘Omo Lewa’ follows his ‘Miliki Sound’ album, also available on Mr Bongo. Recorded in London, originally released in 1976 by Orbitone, this is one of his finest records.

                                  Shina Williams & His African Percussionists

                                  Shina Williams

                                  Shina Williams ‘Agboju Logun’ was a ground-breaking fusion of afrobeat, electronics, boogie and disco. First released on Phonodisk in 1979 as part of the ‘African Dances’ album, then in 1984 as an alternative version on Rough Trade’s Earthwork off-shoot, it has gone on to attain cult-like status. So it remains a bit of a mystery how so little has been documented about the followup. Shina’s self-titled album was originally released on Help Records in 1980. It differs from the upfront afro-disco-funk of ‘African Dances’ as it diverts into deeper, hypnotic, afro-beat territory. Though listed as a six-track album, each side (composing of 3 tracks) is builtupon one continuous groove with call and response female & male vocals and instrumental solos coming and going as each side progresses. The results are raw, hypnotic, locked-in grooves, which sit perfectly on forward-thinking contemporary dancefloors.

                                  Gyedu Blay Ambolley And Zantoda Mark III

                                  Control

                                  Extremely hard-to-find Ghanaian LP from legendary musician Gyedu-Blay Ambolley, originally released in 1980. Tough Highlife, funk and boogie moods with added synthesizer! Ambolley is still actively touring today, keeping these vibes alive - he will be touring Europe throughout 2019. This is the third Gyedu Blay Ambolley LP that we have reissued on Mr Bongo, following on from his seminal ‘Ambolley’ and ‘Simigwa’ recordings. Official Mr Bongo reissue licensed from Gyedu-Blay Ambolley.

                                  Ebo Taylor Jr With Wuta Wazutu

                                  Gotta Take It Cool

                                  Tough, mid-tempo Ghanaian funk & Highlife grooves from Ebo Taylor Junior, son of the mighty Ebo Taylor. Originally released in 1978, this sunkissed set with Wuta Wazutu is now extremely difficult and expensive to find in its original form. Soulful and skanking with the classic Accra sound, the nine track set is infectious from head to toe, though never better than the mighty back-beat attack of the killer “Mondo Soul Funky”.

                                  STAFF COMMENTS

                                  says: Autumn might have hit hard this year, but this groove heavy LP from Ebo Taylor Jnr and Wuta Wazutu is simply sunshine in vinyl from. Funky, soulful and skanking, this has had everyone smiling in the shop this afternoon.

                                  ‘Mantra Moderne’ is a stunning, contemporary masterpiece that fuses Anatolian Psychedelia, Brazilian Tropicalia, 60’s European pop and American jazz. A must for fans of Khruangbin, Portishead, Arthur Verocai, Goat, Caetano Veloso, Tom Ze, Os Mutantes, Cortex and co. The duo is formed of Kit Martin, who lives between London and France and plays all instruments on the album, and Merve Erdem, vocalist and multi-disciplinary artist from Istanbul, now based in London. This is their debut album.

                                  The album explores universal themes such as love, loss, decay, language and ideology, mixing three different languages: English, Turkish and French. Written and recorded by the duo - Kit composed all the songs and Merve wrote the lyrics - in rural France during 2018, each song was completed within a 12- hour window, pawning contemplation for spontaneity.

                                  Dubbed by Kit and Merve as ‘lo-fi-hi-fi’ in reference to the high-end tube equipment that helped it find its way to 8-track cassette tape. The style owes its sound to narrow tape width, valve distortion, spring reverb, the mixture of high end gear with lo-fi equipment as well as a disregard to the norms of hi-fi studio techniques. All instruments were analogue and no samples were used. The instruments that are used range from tablas to darbukas, balalaikas to ouds, MS20 synths to Farfisa organs and a lot of cuica. The mixing techniques were done on-the-fly, tracking immediately to tape: compression, EQ, delay and reverb;meaning mixing could not be revisited!

                                  STAFF COMMENTS

                                  says: Kit Sebastian's 'Mantra Moderne' is a brilliantly oddball juxtaposition of exotica, international psychedelia and tropical beach vibes, brought together into a swinging haze of lysergic guitar strums and staggering percussion.

                                  Atmosfear

                                  Xtra Special

                                    In 1982 Atmosfear hit their prime with the release of this underground classic, ‘Xtra Special’. A gear switch from their jazz-funk origins, this boogie track featuring the sublime vocals of Beverley Skeete, is a prime example of an innovative band at their peak.

                                    Archie Shepp

                                    Attica Blues

                                    This is a previously Japan-only 7” featuring two tracks originally released on Shepp’s 1972 classic soul-jazz LP, ‘Attica Blues’. A powerful mix of psychedelic soul & jazz that retains Shepp’s political sentiment of his earlier works. ‘Attic Blues’ is a huge funk-soul composition, referring to a mass shooting of inmates at Attica Prison. Henry Hull’s vocal sits on top of bass, layered percussion, wah-wah guitars, plus large horn and string sections to create a massive sound. The big band, almost soundtrack-esque, ‘Quiet Dawn’, is sung by the composer’s 7-year old daughter. She floats on top of piano, strings, drums and rich layers of percussion

                                    Extremely hard-to-obtain album from the Ghanaian master composer, producer and musician. Originally released in 1982 by the WEA International label and then again in Germany in 1985 by Ambolley himself; this is one of his finest albums in our opinion.
                                    Ambolley fuses Highlife, disco and boogie sonics perfectly and features the anthemic club cut, Highlife, that we have spinning for a while - always does the job!  Official Mr Bongo reissue. Licensed from Gyedu-Blay Ambolley.

                                    Kit Sebastian

                                    Mantra Moderne / Kyutu

                                    ‘Mantra Moderne’ is a stunning, contemporary masterpiece that fuses Anatolian Psychedelia, Brazilian Tropicalia, 60’s European pop and American jazz. A must for fans of Khruangbin, Portishead, Arthur Verocai, Goat, Caetano Veloso, Tom Ze, Os Mutantes, Cortex and co. The duo is formed of Kit Martin, who lives between London and France and plays all instruments on the album, and Merve Erdem, vocalist and multi-disciplinary artist from Istanbul, now based in London. This is the debut single from their debut album.

                                    Dubbed by Kit and Merve as ‘lo-fi-hi-fi’ in reference to the high-end tube equipment that helped it find its way to 8-track cassette tape. The style owes its sound to narrow tape width, valve distortion, spring reverb, the mixture of high end gear with lo-fi equipment as well as a disregard to the norms of hi-fi studio techniques. All instruments were analogue and no samples were used. The instruments that are used range from tablas to darbukas, balalaikas to ouds, MS20 synths to Farfisa organs and a lot of cuica. The mixing techniques were done on-the-fly, tracking immediately to tape: compression, EQ, delay and reverb; meaning mixing could not be revisited!

                                    Mantra Moderne was hugely influenced by Italian library soundtracks. The first backwards sound that occurs at 0.26 was an earlier recording of the track that was meant to have been recorded completely over, an example of the amount of mistakes that were present in the recording process that became desirable!

                                    Kuytu is strongly influenced by Turkish Anatolian Rock and Azeri Mugham folk but also the works of someone very important to Kit and Merv, Vagif Mustafazadeh. The lyrics, written in Turkish are about a mysterious figure whose presence brings a heavenly love and joy into the poet’s life. However, his unexpected disappearance leaves a black sorrow in her heart.

                                    STAFF COMMENTS

                                    says: A very unique and somewhat irresistible blend of sounds, combining slow grooving bass lines, charming vocals and a good portion of jazz into a psychedelic haze. Delightful!

                                    Tim Maia

                                    What You Want To Bet ? / These Are The Songs

                                    Debut single from the mighty Tim Maia, released upon his return from the USA in the late 60’s. Maia sings in English here - influenced by his time spend travelling and working in the USA. Both songs are very soulful, reminiscent of the great soul singers of 1960’s USA, who were clearly a powerful inspiration to him.

                                    Carlos Sodre

                                    Ciumeira / Rasga Teu Verso

                                    Dismayed at the prospect of a harsh British winter, Mr Bongo fly south to Rio for the foreseeable, bringing us a gorgeous double sider of uptempo vintage MPB samba jazz from Carlos Sodre, originally released as a 33rpm ‘compacto’ 7” single on Copacabana in 1965. On the A-side, "Ciumeira" shuffles and sizzles with snake hipped rhythms, heavy guiro and Technicolour orchestral arrangements. On the B-side, "Rasga Teu Verso" drops the intensity for a more sultry swing through the smoke and sweat of the jazz bar. 

                                    Written and produced with Ebo Taylor and originally released in 1975,  "Simigwa" is Ambolley's debut solo album. It's a legendary Ghanain album - with one of the music iconic covers ever! - that fuses Highlife, afrobeat, folk and funk.
                                    Ambolley grew up during the peak of Highlife in Ghana and was a key figure in its fusion with soul and funk influences from the USA. He played in many bands including Houghas Extraordinaires, Meridians Of Tema, Ghana Broadcasting Band and the Uhuru Dance Band, for which he was recruited by his friend, Ebo Taylor. The group went to Nigeria in 1973 to play with Fela at his legendary Shrine spot.
                                    ‘Simigwa’ was a chance for Ambolley to release his own productions and to experiment to a certain extent. A main inspiration for this album was the work of the mighty Mr. James Brown, something that is evident from the rhythm section, horns, vocal stabs and percussion breaks throughout the record.

                                    Protoje

                                    A Matter Of Time

                                      JA poster boy Protoge returns with a fresh new album "A Matter Of Time". As always his positive, politically conscious and wry commentary doesn't fail to raise the spirit and the sufferer in us all. Backed with an incredibly strong rhythm section and produced by Winta James, there's two guest appearances from Chronixx (on vocals) and one King Jammy (!!!) on production. Hit singles “Blood Money”, “Truth & Rights” and “Bout Noon” hit hard with some fantastic lyrics, and the whole album is assembled beautifully, playing through like the modern day reggae masterpiece that it truly is.

                                      Protoje is going from strength to strength, and on "A Matter Of Time" it really feels like he's found a natural stride - effortless songwriting and precise instrumentals making for a wonderfully rewarding listen. Recommended!


                                      Luis Perez

                                      Ipan In Xiktli Metztli

                                        Official Mr Bongo reissue. Replica original artwork, including the insert with listening instructions, in Spanish and English.

                                        Luis Perez was born in Mexico City on July 11, 1951. From 1971 onwards he dedicated much of his time to the research of pre-Columbian instrumentation. This research that allowed him to travel the Mexican territory and study musical traditions of the native peoples of Mexico.

                                        He learned directly from the living sources of the music and collected samples of musical instruments and the songs of different native speakers including Maya, Nahuatl, Mazateco, Yoemem, Comcaac, Raramuri, Wixarika and more. His personal collection of native Mexican instruments includes ethnographic instruments still in use by ethnic groups, along with archaeological artifacts some of which are more than 2,000 years old.

                                        He continuously utilises these instruments in performances, concerts, lectures, exhibitions and recordings, in a sense, keeping them alive. Following a decade playing in Mexico City’s psychedelic rock scene, his early solo work was a mixture of sounds derived from his vast array of pre-Hispanic and ethnographic wind and percussions which he managed to blend with electronic devices including tape delay units, electric guitars and synthesisers. During this time, he was given the name ‘Ixoneztli’ (or “one who makes music”) by the legendary ‘curandera’ Pachita and her son Enrique, to whom, like Alejandro Jodorowsky before him, Luis served as assistant. In 1981, the Mexican government became very interested Perez work and sponsored the production of what became the first recording of the fusion of native mexican instruments with electronics - entitled ‘Ipan In Xiktli Metztli,’ in the Nahuatl language, or ‘En el Ombligo de la Luna’ in Spanish... ‘In the Navel of the Moon.’

                                        The impact of this recording and subsequent performances among media, ethnomusicologists and audiences alike established Luis Perez ‘Ixoneztli’ as a precursor to a new musical genre followed by a generation of young Mexican musicians - Ethno-Rock, Ethno-Jazz, Ethno-Experimental and the like. ‘El Ombligo de la Luna’ reaches us from deep in the past but it also exists entirely outside of time, as Luis Perez ‘Ixoneztli’’s offering to the world - the soul of Mexico channeled through the hands of a master musician.

                                        Pat Thomas Introduces...

                                        Marijata

                                          Ghana's Marijata was a group made up of three members – Kofi 'Electric' Addison on drums, Bob Fischlan on organ and Nat Osmanu on guitar. ‘This Is Marijata’ is the groups first LP; released originally on the Gapophone label – it is pure, rootsy, raw, driving African funk music of the highest order, now highly sought-after in both its original and previously reissued forms. Addison, Osmanu and Fischlan formed a band called the Sweet Beans with a young singer and guitarist, namely the legendary Pat Thomas. They released ‘False Lover’ in 1974 on Gapophone Records before recording ‘This Is Marijata’ and then ‘Pat Thomas Introduces Marijata’ shortly afterwards.
                                          ‘This Is Marijata’ is summed up perfectly by the text on the back cover: “Three young musicians of the Sweet Beans believe that in music and entertainment business, there is no room for mediocrity if one’s music is to win over a bigger audience and fame. How could they give the public a taste of the talent they had so meticulously nurtured since they began their musical careers without upsetting the current musical inclination in the country?
                                          Backed by a group of hand picked musicians, the whole album is exclusively the work of three young men who are trying to bring back some freshness and raw funk into the current flash-in-the-pan songs being recorded in this country.
                                          “I Walk Alone” a cool, scintillatingly slow number, displays some interesting instrumental works. “No Condition Is Permanent” and “Break Through” exhibit originality using the funk medium. Even though the vocal rendition sounds somewhat on the hoarse and gritty side, a strong impression is left on the mind of the listener that the boys have something going for them right in there. With the emergence of this album, I believe subsequent albums will breathe more freshness into the whole entertainment scene. Right on, brothers Marijata.”
                                          Produced in 1976 at Gapophone Records, Accra, Ghana, the album is licensed from George Prah, founder of Gapophone Records.It features correctly labelled sides, in contrast to the original pressing. Replica original artwork.

                                          FORMAT INFORMATION

                                          LP Info: *WAREHOUSE FIND*

                                          ‘Spirit Reflection’ is the third album LP from Los Angeles singer-songwriter Gaby Hernandez. Blissful layers of instrumentation, electronics, vocal harmonies and folkloric percussion intertwine with west coast feel to create a unique, beautiful and multi-layered album.

                                          The album features a stellar line-up of LA talent; jazz star Kamasi Washington, Stuart Howard (AKA Lapalux), Kelis and Gaslamp killer collaborator Dexter Story, plus Ninja Tune, Plug Research and Soul Jazz artist Carlos Nin 771;o, Miguel Atwood-Ferguson and Gabriel Reyes-Whittaker all accompany Gaby, with stunning results.

                                          Even before Spirit Reflection had been finished, the demo mixes caught the ear and gained support from Gilles Peterson, Lefto, Toshio Matsuura (U.F.O.) and J- Rocc (Beat Junkies). Born, raised and based in Los Angeles and of Chilean descent, Gaby Hernandez has been writing and recording since 2001. She was a founding member of the ‘creative music ensemble’ Build An Ark alongside others including Carlos Nin 771;o, Dexter Story and Dwight Trible.

                                          Gaby was the only vocalist on Teebs' debut Brainfeeder release Ardour. She made major contributions to AmmonContact's Ninja Tune releases New Birth and With Voices, plus The Life Force Trio's Plug Research album Living Room. She was also the vocalist on Dimlite's Outernational Duet - released as part of his highly acclaimed Sonar Kollektiv longplayer This Is Embracing.

                                          David and Graham from Mr Bongo met Gaby and Carlos Nino at the end of their hugely successful Arthur Verocai album launch and rare record sale at the RAPPCATS venue in LA. “Gaby and Carlos passed us a copy of ‘Spirit Reflection’. and we put it on the deck. It immediately grabbed us and we couldn’t stop listening to it. When we got back to the UK we got in contact straight away and signed the album. We’re very proud to be releasing it”... “...this is a future classic, an 'album' in the truest sense of the word. Brilliant.” says Graham.

                                          “The music itself envelopes its listener in a warmth reminiscent of decades past, presenting both a nostalgic soulful sound and a sensual experience” Culture Collide

                                          “A romantic summer cocktail that should be imbibed half-nude on a beach or while scattering rose petals on a bed. The songs flow between seductive, relaxing and spiritually nurturing, with earthy rhythms and warm production that make the listener feel comforted” Buzz Bands LA

                                          “Jaw-droppingly tasty” LA Weekly

                                          STAFF COMMENTS

                                          says: Shades of Mia Doi Todd abound on this delicate and drifting journey through hook heavy, hazy soul. This is the soundtrack to the summer everyone.

                                          Eloah

                                          Os Orixas

                                          Tip off from our good friend Rodrigo Gorky aka Bonde do Role, that has since become one of our favourite album discoveries, and continues to grow on us with every spin.

                                          ‘Os Orixas’ is rich in layered percussion, horns and guitars. Singer Eloah’s lead vocals are reminiscent of the likes of Ellen McIlwaine, Elza Soares and Joyce. Samba, funk, folk, jazz and MPB over ijexa and African grooves, that combine beautifully across the moods. Os Orixas refers to one of the manifestations of the ’supreme God’ in the Yoruba faith.

                                          The songs were written by Luis Berimbau, assisted by Ildásio Tavares. Berimbau was a very influential multi instrumentalist, poet, writer and composer from Bahia, Brazil. He produced the wonderful folk / psychedelic rock group Perfume Azul Do Sol’s ‘Nascimento’ LP amongst many others.

                                          Tavares was an author, composer and poet from Salvador, Bahia. As a composer, he worked with many artists including Vinicius de Moraes, Maria Bethania, Alcyone, Toquinho, Nelson Gonçalves and Maria Creuza. Many of his poetic works were published, and he even penned Afro-Brazilian opera entitled ‘Lydia's Oshun’.

                                          'Dawn Of The Dread' brings the big personality that is Horseman to the forefront of a full length album for the first time. As fearsome a drummer as he is an MC, Horseman has worked with musicians and producers Tippa Irie, Max Romeo, Gregory Isaacs, Sugar Minott, Jah Shaka, Mad Professor, Barrington Levy, Eek-A-Mouse and The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra with John Holt - to name but a few - most recently performing with Hollie Cook and Prince Fatty. It was while playing with renowned outfit The Ruff Cut Band he met producer and long term colaborater Mike 'Prince Fatty' Pelanconi. 'Dawn Of The Dread' was recorded at Studio Dub in Thailand before being mixed at Prince Fatty's Ironworks studio in Brighton. "Mike just asked, "you ever been to Thailand?" and we went. There were great vibes, we walked in and it all fell into place. We were looking to get that 80s digital sound and all that original equipment was just there waiting for us. It was fate".

                                          The album is the follow-up to her fantastic eponymous debut album which was released to huge acclaim in 2011, with Q calling it "gorgeous late '70's style reggae pop" whilst the BBC named it as "one of the most enjoyable reggae albums of 2011". In 2012 a dub version of the debut album was released – "Prince Fatty Presents Hollie Cook In Dub". That same year Ian Brown asked Hollie to support The Stone Roses on one of their hugely anticipated reunion shows at Manchester's Heaton Park.

                                          The new album "Twice" sees Hollie's obvious love of reggae joined by other influences including Bond-like strings, Brazilian percussion, dark disco and shades of Giorgio Moroder. She is joined on the album by Dennis Bovell, Omar, George Dekker and Winston Francis. The strings on the album are the Macedonian Radio Symphonic Orchestra and Choir. The album was produced by Prince Fatty.

                                          Various Artists

                                          I Like It Like That - Fania Remixed

                                            Like many American stories, the tale of Fania comes from the boroughs and inner city barrios of New York City. Along the way, Fania artists mixed a cornucopia of styles that transcended the boundaries of traditional Latin music and set the path for the genres of salsa, boogaloo, Latin R&B, and Afro-Cuban jazz. This set brings the Fania sound right up to date with an excellent selection of contemporary remixes. Radio 1 DJ, Brownswood Records label boss and all-round music guru Gilles Peterson offers up a great mix of Nora Morales' "Saona", alongside Ashley Beedle, who touches up "Feel Like Making Love" by Ricardo Marrerro. Brazil's electronic trio of the moment, funk carioca outfit Bonde de Role take on Lenni Sesar's "Morris Park", while Sinden revamps La Lupe's version of "Fever". Hip hop pioneer DJ Format brings us a storming mix of Dave Cortez' "Happy Soul With A Hook", while Masters at Work's Louie Vega drops an 11 minute rework of Hector Lavoe's "Mi Gente". Add to that remixes by 4hero, Bugz In the Attic, Nicola Conte, Quantic, Andy Smith and Keith Lawrence, and I reckon we have a pretty essential LP.

                                            FORMAT INFORMATION

                                            2xCD Info: 28 track double CD.


                                            Latest Pre-Sales

                                            161 NEW ITEMS

                                            To celebrate @shamebanduk new album ‘Drunk Tank Pink’ the band are broadcasting a 12 hour live stream this Tuesday… https://t.co/fwKFy9AJvs
                                            Sun 17th - 6:13
                                            Since you can’t come in and rifle through the racks or listen to your choices on our decks, as you all love to do a… https://t.co/jlveN1Nhtm
                                            Sun 17th - 4:38
                                            RSD DROPS - SALE! SALE!! SALE!!! SALE!!!! SALE!!!!! - https://t.co/pMFEbQlk3U Charlatans, Natalie Prass, Metronomy… https://t.co/ELm98PILAV
                                            Fri 15th - 2:45
                                            The new album from @shamebanduk ‘Drunk Tank Pink’ is out today on @DeadOceans - available on indies exclusive “Gala… https://t.co/EJKv9Nw3vw
                                            Fri 15th - 12:46
                                            Happy New Music Friday everyone! @sleafordmods are in the window to celebrate the release of ‘Spare Ribs’ - the ban… https://t.co/22Ln239UVY
                                            Fri 15th - 11:53
                                            E-newsletter —
                                            Sign up
                                            Back to top