Looks like we're going quite Detroitish this week, judging more or less by what's on display on our various sections. Starting with our Album of the Month, courtesy of Dar K Com Edy aka Kenny Larkin, but also our Single of The Week by the likes of John Consemulder on Detroit label Moods & Grooves with remixes by Jon Tejada and Pirahna Head. And as if it wasn't enough, UK outfit Soul Central might well score the anthem of the year with their vocal revamp of Derrick May's classic "Strings Of Life"… January coming to its end, means it's now time for another selection of the best albums around with our 33RPM column…
Open your ears as this first 2K5 edition of our monthly albums selection looks like following the footsteps of the previous one, not only quality but also quantitywise… Jaymz Nylon and Dar K Com Edy aka Kenny Larkin droppin' quite interesting experimental works. The latest scoring our Album of the Month although this distinction could well have been given to Butti49 long awaited debut. Meanwhile Austrian duet dZihan & Kamien deliver a collection of their best remixes to date, thus making the choice even harder. Get ready for some sweetness with the long anticipated Bah Samba's newie, a new bunch of horizontal vibes from WDC pair Thievery Corporation added to a couple of groovy jams incl. their famous "The Heart's A Lonely Hunter" featuring Talking Heads head David Byrne. French sound engineer Eric Travaillé delivering nothing but the goods on the L.o.v.e. album under his Mini Groove Orchestra guise …
If refering to the famous "House Is Where The Hearted is", then you won't be surprised to have the first big one from France's much touted (DJ) Franck Roger mixing some of his Straight Up period gems on the label of the name and if into real deep groovers, then I'll suggest you to have a careful listen to Jack Flash's Extreme Couching Pt.4 selected and mixed for German label DJ sets. François K completing the whole with the first compilation installment of his Deep Space residency at NYC Cielo in addiction to some not to be missed x-tra goodies by the likes of Jazzanova, Octave One, Planalto The Rurals, Paolo Fedreghini & Marco Bianchi and a few amongst others…
Quite a rich selection this month indeed with tons of # vibes thus displaying the many sides of the groove and I've got to say that this is quite reassuring as far as eclectism is concerned ; the only bad news if there's any being as far as our wallets are concerned. Best remembered for "I Know A Place" released some time ago, NYC producer Jaymz Nylon is back in full effect under the aptly Afro Audio Research Program named guise doing sort of freestyle electronic Black soulful grooves quite far away from what's generally hailing from the Big Apple. A collection full of real gems varying from minimal to modern jazz, broken beat and the likes tinged with Afro, soul and blues influences, thus making this collection quite worth the listen for those in search for some different approach. (Nylon). Not that far away is Kenny Larkin's new LP on French label Poussez! (see our Album of The Month section). His first offering after a 7 year hiatus seing the Detroit born man now based in California going back for another round musically speaking. And what a dope round melting soul, funk, blues, jazzy and minimal house vibes, quite reminiscent of those approaches by Romanthony, Moodymann if not Prince at some time. In other words, expect the unexpected !
Never heard about Planalto before being send their Hornito! Album a few days ago. But who cares as it's mainly the result which counts and it's quite surprising as well at some time. Thanks to producers John Edwards and Stefan Robbers and female singer Janaina Rodrigues da Silva. People who obviously like to twist the beats judging by their rock acid approach on the killer opening "40 Degrees". Other tracks worth to mention including the bossa vocoderised "Brasileiro" and the broken beatish "Sambinha Maluco" not to mention the bleepy bossaish "Summer Breeze" (Downsall Plastics).
NYC based French producer/DJ François K. has long time had this reputation of being versatile, dealing with soulful black grooves as well as with more electronic fields. We find him back no surprisingly at what might easily considered as the epicenter of his influences. In other words : dub ! As shown at his Monday nite Deep Space residency at Cielo and the first compilation of the likes. An offering presented as an "Adventure into future dub, spacey vibes and abstract grooves" whereas you'll find cuts from Instant House, Jerome Sydenham & Dennis Ferrer ("Sandcastles") to Baby Ford, Jeff Mills, Tres Demented and François K himself to name but a few (Deep Space Media/Wave Music). Other quite versatile people is the Austrian pair consisting of dZihan & Kamien with their Fakes album mixing modern touch with traditional vibes from funk, dub and jazz to almost house music. Here we have them wearing the post-producer suits with a list of customers quite illustrative of what they're into including Bille Holiday, Nitin Sawhney, Tosca, the late Serge Gainsbourg and Atjazz to name but a few. And there a bonus CD containing song excerpts by The Brut Imperial Quintet destined for the jazz headz (Couch Records).
Amongst the purveyors of the finest are no doubt Berlin outfit Jazzanova. Here, they slow down the things for a collection of horizontal grooves entitled Secret Love which might fairly well be the circumstancial gift for Valentine's Day. A collection full of kinda bluesy sensuous gems reminding much of the romantism period in the 70's whereas you'll find cuts from 4Hero, Magnet, Ashley Slater, Rosie Brown and Marden Hill amongst (many) others (Sonar Kollektiv). This leading us to those rare loungey US champions better known as Thievery Corporation dropping their new album - The Cosmic Groove - here in France on Barclay label (on ESL Stateside). True to their roots, they deliver another series of cool grooves with ragga and dub influences at some time, featuring a vast array of guest incl. former Talking Heads David Byrne on the much sought after "The Heart's A Lonely Hunter" awaited with remixes by Louie Vega.
The so called nu jazz era has opened the path for a whole bunch of activists, many of which are coming from Scandinavia, from Hird to Koop, Nuspirit Helsinki and Illumination. Hailing from the same country as the latest (Norway) are Stavanger duet Snorre Seim & Oywind Jakobsen. People you may have heard of 4 years ago with the drop of their debut-single on Chicago-based label Guidance Recordings under the Butti49 moniker. They from then would make a name speaking for itself for the modern jazz headz, fusing organic vibes with a bit of tricks inherited from the technology. The opening cut of their Habit (debut) album - the broken beatish "Flying" -featuring EMO being quite illustrative of what they are into. And they have much much more on offer showing a vast array of influences from soul to funk latin and jazz bites (Exceptional).
Another piece of dream at the end of February is the release of Bah Samba's long awaited LP. People who've made quite some noise these past years on the defunct Estereo label, establishing themselves as serious contenders on the UK latin soul jazz scene alongside people like Mitch & Dewburry, Da Lata and (somehow) Incognito. No doubt, their Bah Samba 4 collection is a serious slice of beauty starting with the opening "Portuguese Love". This is phonky, this is acid jazzy, this is soul, this is discoish, this is housey this is latinesque, this is organic, this is groovy, this is has some retro feel, this is sensuous then even delving into some more downtempo lazy kinda feel on the CD2 and definitely made by true music loverz (BKO Productions). If regular to those pages, those who've scored our very first 2K5 Single of The Week are back with a full album. In other words Paolo Fedreghini & Marco Bianchi with Several People, a collection of sensous jazz jams with a drop of melancholy (Schema Records).
Could it be that we're not to have reel house on this selection ? The response is eurgh… nope ! Our propos have to come this month to a certain Jack Flash doing the 4th volume of the Extreme Couching series for German label DJ Sets Multimedia full of infectious jams, starting with Blakkat & Onionz present East River Rituals as the opener to an atmospheric phonky set. Not that far away finally UK label Pêng (the home of The Rurals) drops another collection of deep smooth phonky grooves courtesy of this distinguished duet and friends entitled My Twilight Blues. Meanwhile, France's champion Franck Roger delivers a mix of some of his most memorable gems called In My Mind on his former Straight Up label. A fine cocktail as you may guess featuring classics such as "Ekobah" , "No More Believe", "Reason", 'Mambo" and "If I" released as singles respectively on Needs Music, Kenlou, Straight Up, BRS and Sunny Side Records to name but a few.
Closing this selection with shiny cinematic vibes as delivered by French sound engineer Eric Travaillé aka Mini Groove Orchestra on his L.o.v.e. album providing us with easy listening at its best (Follow Me Records) and hip hop & beatz delivered by Philly rapper Jneiro Jarel on his Three Piece Puzzle LP for Dutch label Kindred Spirits, the name of which aptly speaking for itself when talking about quality.
Nuff said, speak soon. MFSB
DAR K COM EDY House Music (Poussez!)
ASHLEY SLATER Private Sunshine - from Secret Love… (Sonar Kollektiv)
BUTTI49 featuring EMO Flying (Exceptional)
BLAKKAT & ONIONZ present EAST RIVER RITUALS Affirmation - from Extreme Couching Pt.4 (DJ-Sets Multimedia)
MINI GROOVE ORCHESTRA La bassine en plastique (Follow Me Records)
BAH SAMBA Morris - from Bah Samba 4 album (BKO Productions)
JAYMZ NYLON as AFRICAN AUDIO RESEARCH People Still Dream - from Vol.1 album (Nylon)
FRANCK ROGER featuring CHRIS WONDER Reason - from In My Mind album (Straight Up)
RODRIGUEZ SANCHEZ River Is Deep - from My Twilight Blues (Pêng)
MATRIX & FIERCE Tightrope (Red One Remix) - from Deep Space NYC vol.1 (Deep Space/Wave)