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WAH WAH 45S

Paper Tiger

Rogue Planet

    Having previously collaborated with the likes of Shafiq Husayn, Chester Watson and Foreign Beggars, electronic space funk outfit Paper Tiger return from an explorative journey to the dark edges of the cosmos with their long-awaited third album ‘Rogue Planet’. The Leeds and London-based outfit (whose collective playing credits include Yellow Days, Werkha, Nubiyan Twist, Cinematic Orchestra & more) once again seamlessly combine elements of live recording and improvisation, their emphasis on blending organic sounds with electronic production techniques. The result is music which is interesting and technically proficient, but remains vibrant, colourful and funky -captivating both in headphones and on the dancefloor.

    Just like the journey from debut long-player ‘Laptop Suntan’ to second album ‘Blast Off’, and in-keeping with the band’s space travel fascination, ‘Rogue Planet’ is a cosmic leap from its predecessor. Band leader Greg Surmacz explains: “There is still humour and a sense of playfulness hopefully -largely provided by our MC, Raphael Attar - but the overall sound is much more lush, jazzy and soulful. We wanted to make something that fits into our universe but hits a deeper emotional nerve.

    “With diverse guests ranging from the legendary Steve Spacek on lead single ‘The Cycle’ to Olivia Bhattacharjee (the vocalist of Gondwana Records-signed Noya Rao) on the shuffling, leftfield beats of ‘Bioluminescent’ and Chicago-born but LA-based MC Lando Chill’s quick-fire delivery on the ironically titled ‘Slow Motion’ the album is a rich and varied listen. It’s a record drenched in futuristic soul, brimming with textured samples and intriguing progressions demonstrating the enviable musicianship on show here. G-Funk-esque melodies run throughout, joined by reverberating celestial horns and scattered drum patterns.

    Kutiman

    So Long

      THIS IS A RECORD STORE DAY 2019 EXCLUSIVE, LIMITED TO ONE PER PERSON.

      This release marks 20 years of Wah Wah 45s as a record label, and to celebrate they have tempted internationally renowned producer, videographer and film-maker Kutiman to the fold for this one-off RSD special. ‘So Long’ sees the man famed for his Thru You videos and Netflix documentary Presenting Princess Shaw, delivering some deep psychedelic, orchestral soul. On vocal duties is none other than Wah Wah 45s family member, Honeyfeet front woman and member of the Afro-Celt Soundsystem, The Breath and so much more -Gaelic powerhouse, Rioghnach Connolly. Remix duties come courtesy of another family member, Gene Dudley, with his first production for a couple of years, taking Kutiman’s composition into string laiden Balearic dance floor territories. “So Long” will be Wah Wah 45s’ third ever 10-inch release, with another specially designed custom sleeve courtesy of our in-house designer Animisiewasz.

      Debut album from forward-thinking Tel Aviv based ensemble, Time Grove. Guided by acclaimed pianist Nitai Hershkovits alongside one third of Buttering Trio, and newly signed Stones Throw recording artist, Rejoicer, this group of musicians have produced a sound which is both delicate yet powerful; sonorous yet uplifting.

      The full line-up also features reed player Eyal Talmudi, drummers Roy Chen, Amir Bresler and Sol Monk, keyboard master Bemet, trumpeter Sefi Zisling, and guitarist Yonatan Albalak, who have together created some of the most exciting instrumental music we’ve heard for quite a while!

      Already garnering praise from Huey Morgan on BBC 6Music, Tim Garcia on Jazz FM and Tina Edwards on Worldwide FM, amongst others, Time Grove are set to conquer!

      From the somewhat spooky horn and piano lines on the mysterious opener, "TG Theme", to the lighter, more idyllic sounds of "Second Attention", it’s clear that the nine talents at work on this album are set to deliver a full range of emotions through their well honed instruments and convey a truly unique instrumental set with a twist. The album concludes with the suitably serene "Latrun", a celebration of Rejoicer’s synths, Hershkovits’ piano and the horn section in perfect harmony, bringing something of a sublime conclusion to this most life affirming of long-players.


      Time Grove

      Roy The King / Sir Blunt

      From forward thinking Tel Aviv based ensemble, Time Grove is the debut single Roy The King and Sir Blunt on Wah Wah 45s label. Guided by acclaimed pianist Nitai Hershkovits alongside one third of Buttering Trio, and newly signed Stones Throw recording artist, Rejoicer, this group of musicians have produced a sound which is both delicate yet powerful; sonorous yet uplifting. The full line-up also features reed player Eyal Talmudi, drummers Roy Chen, Amir Bresler and Sol Monk, keyboard master Bemet, trumpeter Sefi Zisling, and guitarist Yonatan Albalak who have together created some of the most exciting instrumental music we’ve heard for quite a while. In preparation for their debut album, More Than One Thing, due in September, we bring you a double whammy jukeox 45 with two of the more foot friendly cuts from the LP. The A-side, Roy The King, features drummer Roy Chen. The rest of the band kept telling him “today, we make you a king” and so it was. Rejoicer, Sefi and Talmudi, wrote and played the melody after Nitai came up with the piano riff. The B part, which only Talmudi and Roy could bring such energy to, got the gypsy out of all of the ensemble in the room bringing it to a festive finale. On the flip, Sir Blunt, is an introduction to the other core of Time Grove. With Amir Bresler on the drums, carefully crafting the perfect parts for this tune; Albalak on the bass, playing beautifully the upper register yet providing a strong bed for Nitai on the piano & Moog and Rejoicer on synths to present somewhat of a no-bar-lines feeling.

      STAFF COMMENTS

      Millie says: Time Grove have mastered the perfect ambient jazz track, Roy The King builds into powerful heights yet remaining delicate while the b-side Sir Blunt turns to the more experimental jazz side. Fans of anything Gondwana will love this!

      As bottom end provider for Cinematic Orchestra and Paper Tiger, Hunrosa (AKA Sam Vicary) already has something of a pedigree for a man of such tender years. His music glides effortlessly between Bonobo at his most sonorous, Jon Hopkins at his most ethereal and Flying Lotus at his most freaky.

      Currently based in Manchester, his music captures the wild organic senses of his Cornish childhood, anchoring it with a darker 2am undercurrent. Following the success of "Ransom" (a firm favourite of BBC 6 Music’s Tom Ravenscroft) Hunrosa returns with his newest offering "We Know". An eerie, ethereal track full of haunting atmospheres, Vicary enlists Austrian percussion maestro Manu Delago, who lends his hang drum expertise to the proceedings weaving it amongst the twisting, intricate beats and Anna McLuckie’s delicate vocals.

      Here, as a bonus release, here we get a tasty white label 12" with three reworkings from burgeoning producers Lavan, Etherwood and Danvers. Newcomer Lavan is up first, moulding the organic melodies and earthy percussion into a dubbed out, soulful and bouncy 4/4 number. Hospital Records golden boy Etherwood (whose band Hunrosa is also a member of) brings a late-night liquid DnB atmosphere into play, harnessing the raw emotional power of the lyrics, as reverberating piano chords strike out into the darkness. Having turned the heads of Bradley Zero and Gilles Peterson with his recent releases, CoOp and WotNot Music’s Danvers resets the atmosphere with a zen like extended intro, before launching headfirst into a hypnotic and enthralling looped rhythm section. The groove locked in place, it rises and falls with precision, joined by spaced-out synths throughout the nine-minute duration, allowing the majestic instrumentation to gather pace as the spine chilling vocals drift overhead.

      For the best part of two decades now, South London afro-dub legends Soothsayers have been preaching their politically charged good vibrations to a growing and loyal fan base. Their live shows are legendary and vary from off-the-cuff community friendly gigs in Brixton, to festival headline slots and tours across Europe and beyond. Having released six albums and a number of EPs and singles to much critical acclaim, the band signed to Wah Wah 45s early last year. 

      "Tradition" comes at a time when Soothsayers music and political message couldn’t be any more needed. As the force that binds us together and simultaneously builds the walls that keep us apart, how we relate to and negotiate tradition is a challenge. Is it a defining factor, a warm blanket or a threat? Whilst songs like "Head Rules Heart", the Fela Kuti inspired "Sleepwalking (Black Man’s Cry)" - featuring label mate Dele Sosimi - and of course the debut single from the album, "Dis & Dat", question the motives of mainstream media, politics and government; yet there’s plenty of positivity on show. "Good Vibration" delivers just that; "Nothing Can Stop Us" (originally written by Soothsayers for Jamaican veteran Cornell Campbell) is simply a moment of pure, unadulterated joy; "Overcome" is a dub infused celebration of the human spirit; and "Take Me High" searches for loftier plains of being (and features aforementioned legendary falsetto Cornell Campbell). Elsewhere, "Goodnight Rico" pays homage to a missed colleague - the late, great Rico Rodriguez - best known for his work with The Specials but with a significant legacy that stretches far beyond this - a true Jamaican great; while "Watching The Stars" showcases the ridiculously soulful vocals of band member Julia Biel; and finally, Soothsayers take on something of a challenge - a Bob Marley cover. Their version of "Natural Mystic" cradles the spirit of the originator and turns it upside down re-imagining the familiar into a journey back to Africa via a classic Afrobeat groove, spiritual flutes and percussion. Once again, Cornel Campbell’s vocal floats and drifts in an warm and inviting sonic lagoon while the song’s main melody is emphatically reproduced by Soothsayers horn section who have spearheaded the long and eternal journey.

      Soothsayers

      Sleepwalking (Black Man's Cry) / Natural Mystic

      For the best part of two decades now, South London Afro-Dub dons Soothsayers have been preaching their politically charged good vibrations to a growing and loyal fan base. 

      Having recently filled London’s Jazz Caf to much acclaim, and in anticipation of their new album, "Tradition", out on Wah Wah 45s in June, Soothsayers unleash the second single to be taken from it. It’s a double header of sorts that shows the band’s knack of reinterpreting a cover version or two for the dance floor. "Sleepwalking" is a take on Fela Kuti’s 1971 classic "Black Man’s Cry". It’s a chant of frustration aimed at disenfranchisement from the process and features Afrobeat Ambassador Dele Sosimi on guest vocal duties.
      It questions if we are sleepwalking into the abyss, and is a revolutionary song about taking power back into our own hands!
      Although it’s challenging to do justice to a Bob Marley cover, on "Natural Mystic" Soothsayers cradle the spirit of the originator and turn it upside down, transforming the familiar into a journey back to Africa via their trademark groove. Spiritual jazz flutes and percussion combine with the floating vocals of the mighty Cornel Campbell, while the song’s main melody is emphatically reproduced by Soothsayers horn section to stunning effect.

      Sam Vicary A.K.A Hunrosa (meaning "to dream") is an electronic music producer capturing the wild organic senses of his childhood and anchoring it with a darker 2am undercurrent. Based in Manchester, he is principally a bassist and currently a member of The Cinematic Orchestra, Paper Tiger and The Dominic J Marshall Trio, as well as performing with Manu Delago, Imogen Heap, Matthew Halsall, Anil Sebastian and Stuart Macallum.

      His latest offering 'Ransome' is a heavily rhythmic journey, full of textured hand percussion and soaring strings, accompanied by the beautifully melodic vocals of Alice Higgins drifting overhead. The Clap Clap remix sees the Black Acre mainstay exploring expansive territories, polyrhythmic hand percussion and textured electronica perfectly intertwine, drenched in dub ambience, heightened by scattered arpeggios and swirling synths. The music is inspired by a coastal upbringing, represented in the music via field recordings, as well as being aided by visual stimulus throughout the writing process.


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