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SMILING C

DJ Mad A (Adam Embleton) & Dr. Stevie The Ambient Guru (Stevie Hewitt) originally met when Adam picked up the Saturday shift at Record Mart, a record store run by Stevie back in the late 80's. They quickly bonded over shared tastes and enthusiasm for the growing dance club culture in England.

'Balearic Beat' had arrived from Ibiza, house music was taking over, and clubs were pushing boundaries, encouraging DJs to experiment with the dancefloor. Stevie was a regular selector at classic venues like Club Havana and Flixx, where he blended house, electro & techno for the loaded English youth. Adam had signed to Island records, at 17, the first signee for newly appointed A&R rep Darcus Beese. Their collaborations in the Island studio is where the early Mad A production techniques were cultivated.

With Adam behind the programming and Stevie on guitar, the two assembled a few songs to add to their explorative DJ sets. They printed a white label tiny pressing of "The Mad Vibe", four tracks, sending out waves that shock, their sound was a frantic blend of electro and house. The EP sold out fast locally, with their tune, "Levitating Pharaohs" catching the attention of drum 'n' bass duo "Spring Heel Jack" and labels like Mo'wax. As the 90's rolled on, the two continued to DJ as residents at clubs like Corner House, Brody's, Arena & Dickens.

Smiling C 2019 repress of this cult 12". Remastered and housed in a die-cut 12" jacket with pharaoh's head sticker.

'Play The Trax. Feel The Vibes. Mad as.....


STAFF COMMENTS

Matt says: New one on me, and if it is for you too - then you need to get to know! Great these little rabbit holes of house music history that are constantly opening up. I'd never heard 'The Mad Sound' before, but if proto-UK-house with a hedonistic slant is your penchant - start here!

Smiling C collaborate with Bahamian super talent, F.J. to compile a selection of six lost tunes from his catalogue, many of which make their first appearance on vinyl. Fritz Bootle, Jr. (F.J.) created a unique blend of reggae and r'n'b while living on the Grand Bahama island in the early 90's. Subtly inspired by the Compass Point Balearic locus of the nearby island of New Providence, and locally by a flourishing scene of soca, reggae, and disco, he developed this sound to fill a gap he saw in popular music.

He was fortunate to marry into a family that gave him unlimited access to work in the legendary studio on Freeport, G.B.I. Recordings, run by Frank Penn. Always more of a passion project, he would come up with these in the evenings after work, finding a way to blend all his different influences (Bob Marley, George Duke, Teddy Riley, Journey...). Fooling around with Cubase he navigated his way to this magical deep bass sound and new jack style drum programming. "That's The Way" is the retrospective collection of the best moments from his Bahamas chapter.


Shams Dinn

Shams Dinn

    For their first ever reissue, Smiling C connects with the Arabic rapper Shams Dinn to release a compilation his best songs, including the hit "Hedi Bled Noum". The compilation covers his entire career of with songs made between 1985-1990, most of which went unreleased at the time. One of the few Moroccan rappers to ever be recorded on vinyl back in the 80s, Shams Dinn was a pioneer of Arabic flow. Starting his career because he wanted to be a positive light for the Arabic immigrants living in France. He earned his status participating in freestyle competitions, and performing in small clubs around Europe. His career came to a turning point when he was asked by a major label to record a full LP. Unfortunately, the label decided they didn't want to promote Arabic music (largely because of the Gulf War) - and asked Shams to translate the Arabic to French. Shams Dinn wouldn't stand for that, and he was dropped from the label. The following years he worked at a school, teaching kids how to rap and express themselves through words. The reissue comes with newly imagined art, and an inner sleeve with interview and photos. 

    FORMAT INFORMATION

    LP Info: One copy found!

    Jindřich Parma originally created this record as a studio project on his own 'Parma Productions' label in '91. The release was the debut of the musician Karya, and although the singer has become fairly prolific, 'Muž Ze Skla' (The Man Of Glass) remains an anomalous release in her catalogue.
    In fact, the song never actually featured the singer we know as 'Karya' today, and was solely the experiment of Jindřich and Company. With a Balearic house sound that never really had a parallel in the country, this remains a truly unique Czechoslovakian record. Absolutely dripping in choice period features, the cut chugs right onto the Shoom dance floor, fusing the Harry Thumann bassline with a classic Balearic beat while the proggy panpipes, Fairlight choirs and spoken vocals sound cooler than the ice in your cocktail. Flip it for the arrangement adjustment of the remix, which stretches the track out for a tantric build up to the inevitable drop. 

    STAFF COMMENTS

    Patrick says: Rare Czech Balearic here from Smiling C, who introduce us to Karya and the mighty "Muz Ze Skla". Coming correct with a '91 breakbeat, snaking bassline and the exquisite New Age combo of Fairlight vocals and synth pan pipes, this is arguably the most Balearic record I've heard all year. Sure, you might have loads of things that sound like this, but you don't have this - and you do need it!


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