Wednesday, 28 September 2011

Top Ten Tracks September

Another monthly dose of random tracks for September. With this 'indian summer' we are experiencing over the last few days it would have been easy to have put the Doors track in of the same name, but this is a serious blog don't you know...

1. Mark E-Call Me (buy)

This track has been knocking about for a while, most notably on a Beats in Space Podcast from last year, but has only just secured a full release. With a trademark vocal sample (Diana Ross I think) and a steady buildup, it's impeccably Mark E at his finest.

2. DJ Nature-Destiny Reprise (buy)

Golf Channel seems to get more props with each release they have put out in 2011, featuring heavyweight releases recently from Juju & Jordash, Justin Van Der Volgen and DJ Nature. However it's this beauty of a repress by the latter that did it for me and it's a heavy deep disco-house workout from the former Wild Bunch don.

3. Shakarchi & Straneus-Liseberg  (buy)

Glorious uplifting track out of Barnhus Records in Germany. Brings a smile to my face every time I hear it and every time I see the video. 

4. First Touch-It's Yours (2011 Mix)

When I first heard this, I instantly thought of 'First Love', a 1980s boogie act with underground gems such as 'Can I Be With You Tonight' and 'Give Me Your Love'. However, this is actually two German guys in the here and now whilst staying true to the 1980s boogie sound. Excellent. 

5. Ian Wilson-Four in the Morning (GoodKing Edit) (buy)

This was on the Rock Your Soul Compilation that I featured a few months back. With so much quality all cross the release, it was easy to miss a trick and I did with this until I gave it a spin a few weeks back. Glorious blue-eyed soul of the highest order.

6. Master C & J-Face It (buy)

Classic Chicago release which I found recently on a crackly charity shop 'Best of House 87' special deeply hidden in my still far-to-small vinyl collection. Also featured on Mike Huckaby's highly recommended Resident Advisor podcast this week.

7. The Drums-Days (buy)

The Drums "Days" from Mikol Vega on Vimeo.

The new The Drums album has come around quickly since last year's self titled album. Shades darker than the last album, tugging on the heartstrings in more complex ways, none more so than on 'Days'.

8. Blue Boy-So Catch Him (buy)

Whilst discussing influences for their new album, The Drums pointed to Reading's Blueboy and Bristol's Sarah Records, an independent label in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Jonny Pierce's open lyrics are certainly present in Keith Girdler's words, who sadly passed away from cancer several years ago.

9. Glaxo Babies-This is Your Life (buy)

Excellent late 1970s Bristol post-punk from the Glaxo Babies. Quite possibly includes some of the best lyrics ever... "This is your life, crying on the subway, lying to your wife". 

10. Girls-Heartbreaker (buy)

Yeah it ain't from their much lauded new album but it's the perfect guitar track to wave goodbye to another lonely summer to. Bring on the snow.

Friday, 23 September 2011

The Beach Boys-Til I Die (WalkMusic Edit)

Check out this lovingly made re-edit of a forgotten Beach Boys gem 'Til' I Die' by West Didsbury's own WalkMusic. Free download and it's a wav file so you can play it LOUD and it doesnt sound shit like most digital music nowadays...

'Til I Die // The Beach Boys (1971) // WalkMusic Edit by JWalk 

Check out the original here.

Monday, 19 September 2011

Ball Street

Ball Street Pilot from Nick Bowe on Vimeo.

From the talented and good looking knob who brought you 'The Institute of Unlimited Funds', check out the world premiere of Nick Bowe's 'Ball Street'.

Sunday, 18 September 2011

Underground Belgian Wave Volume 1

On the blog of late, I've mainly just posted brand new music and only occasionally flirted with that past on my top ten monthly blurbs. I've certainly changed tack today.

Certain kinds of music which may have once been lost, possibly in a dusty loft or a cluttered basement, now is getting the kinds of exposure that the artists thought impossible. Last year a new Belgian label, Walhella Records out of Antwerp decided to re-release lots of 80s Belgian New Wave music only previously available on cassette (remember them). Why Belgians in the 1980s had an affinity with New Wave, EBM and minimal synths is beyond me, but what we are left with is twelve obscure DIY gems.

While not all of the compilation is my taste, it's ability to capture a time of a small independent scene away from the larger countries/cities is refreshing, and just serves to highlight theres usually shit going down, wherever, the majority of the time. A second volume has also been released and if this is anything to go by, it's worth investigating further.

Underground Belgian Wave-Volume 1 (buy)

Thursday, 15 September 2011

Live at Robert Johnson 8 (By Dixon)

Earlier in the year whilst posting about a DJ Kicks release, I questioned the necessity of mix CDs in today's climate. As long as you have a internet conncetion, you essentially have unparalleled access to thousands of mixes at your fingertips, whether they are a podcast recorded for a website, a recorded live mix, a mix put up by the artist themselves or a rip of an actual mix CD release.

My argument was that despite all of this, you couldnt beat a good mix, wherever it is found. However, it is still with a tinge of sadness that this mix Live at Robert Johnson by Dixon will be the last for the German DJ and record label owner and also last of the series which has featured acclaimed mixes by Arto Mwambe, Prins Thomas and Thomas Hammann & Gerd Janson.

In 2007 at the height of the popularity of the Get Physical sound, Dixon was chosen to submit a mix as part of their Body Language series. What we were left with was quite possibly the mix of that year which had the unique ability to remain listenable long after it's release, even featuring tracks which had even at the time probably been overplayed.

Whilst the Body Language Mix and his Temporary Secretary mix from 2009 focused on layers of beats (and on the latter several tracks) whilst matching the tempo seamlessly, this mix starts off as a rather ambient affair. To be honest, there is little or no beats to be had in the first 30 minutes or so. Instead the mix begins with sparse drone soundscapes until we reach the third track, 'He Said', a low-key vocal number from Dominique, which was a highlight of the Dial ten year anniversary compliation CD of last year.

Dixon continues to build momentum, and once the drums drop from Agoria's 'One Hour', you just know Dixon has got the best yet to come. That's what I have enjoyed about his previous mix CDs. There is no need to overload the listener with the more high-profile tracks straight away, its marathon, not a sprint after al. Subtle, low key beats continue (all underpinned by a variety of understated vocals) where we find ourselves in the midst of his new edit of Mark E's 'Call Me' which soft feel leads pefectly into the more techier harsher Roman Flugel track.

What I enjoyed about the mix is that at this point it could quite easily for the last part, turned into a mix by numbers with more dancefloor friendly tracks being introduced. However Dixon slows it down once again before throwing Ame's killer mix and his edit of Osunlade's 'Envision' which represents the 'peak' of the journey before slowing down once again to close with a favourite of his recent DJ sets, Todd Terje's 'Snooze for Love'.

Whilst this may be last Dixon mix on CD, his original work and dedication to the art of a mix certainly won't disappear. Unlike many online mixes this mix is designed for the long haul, to be enjoyed over time. Without question, a fitting send off to an excellent series.

Live at Robert Johnson (By Dixon) (buy)

Friday, 9 September 2011

Wbeeza-Bagwag EP

                  "THIS IS THE HOUSE SOUND OF LONDON" 

Since his first EP dropped in 2008, Peckham's Wbeeza's releases have been bubbling along rather nicely. 'Deep house' as we know it today seemed to co-inside with this young man's emergence. Despite this connection, Wbeeza seems to do things his own way. He first came to my attention (and to many others) for his New Skank EP in 2009 and the bouncy loop of 'He So Crazy'.  Being on Third Ear, it's clear that this man has love for the Detriot house sound and artists who have appeared on the label. This culminated in a visit Stateside in preparation for his album 'Voidin 2010.

His first 12" release of 2011, 'Bagwag EP' is layered in fantastic quality and refreshing variety in equal measure. The opener 'One Solution' hits like a mule from the first beat and the track slowly builds towards some kind of grand statement that entices you in ala Theo Parrish and Carl Craig. The real gem is 'Laying Here' with blissful keys and subtle vocals, it's a shame summer is on the decline with beauties like this coming out.

On the flip 'Coast Spotting' has a spinetingling melody which rises and falls whilst on the closer ''Fallout' is a dreamy dancefloor jam. Keep your eyes peeled on this kid in the future.

Wbeeza -Bagwag EP (buy)

Wednesday, 7 September 2011

Dub Phizix-Editor EP

Ever since starting round my blog around 12 months ago, it has grown into a primarily a music-based blog sharing and promoting new releases, classic represses, showcasing upcoming dates, or simply blogging about what I've been listening to. This has leaned for the most part towards house, techno, electronic and alternative indie music. However that's not to say my blog isn't open to anything else.

For my first foray into other 'sounds', I'm proud to share Dub Phizix's first release on Marcus Intalex's Manchester-based Drum and Bass label Soul:R. The label is now over 10 years old and for their 52nd (!) release they have decided on a very local affair featuring Dub Phizix and the vocal talents of Chimpo, Strategy and Fox who are all proud Mancunians.

Dub Phizix has been in the game much longer than his relative unknowness may suggest. Schooled in forward thinking drum and bass since 2000, his productions have over the last couple of years received heavy support, especially 'Slow that Flow', which got plenty of airplay from well respected independent radio shows in addition to be being played by renowed DJs such as Fabio, Marky and Marcus Intalex himself.

  Soul:r 052 Dub Phizix - The editor E.P. by Marcusintalex Soul:rHQ 

This release is available from the fantasically named 'Bunch of Cuts' and all good record/digital outlets from September 19th.

Marcus Intalex's legendary Drum and Bass night 'Soul:ution' also continues its residency at Band on the Wall at the end of the month. The labelhead features alongside dnb pioneer Goldie with MC duties going to DRS. Get tickets here.