Reviews January 9, 2005

Picks of the Week

Exclusive Review / Lost Grooves 2004: Vernessa Mitchell "Took my life" (Marlon D's UC Mix)(JVM Records CD-R)

An underground club hit in New York and other cities but unfortunately not released by her label as they decided to go for mixes appealing to a different crowd. This mix by Marlon D is built around a fiercely stompin' groove that is added with absolutely wicked keys and irresistible drums, not to forget Vernessa's powerful yet soulful vocals that give the song an uplifting feeling.

Exclusive Review / Lost Grooves 2004: Vivian Green "Emotional rollercoaster" (Osunlade Remix)(Sony Records CD-R)

As with the above, the label went for mixes that appeal to a different crowd when they released the song back in 2003. Here we have Osunlade taking care of it and serving a wonderful version for the soulful heads that makes full use of the marvellous vocal performance by Vivian Green. He underlays the sexy vocals with a smoothly bumpin' groove with sweet percussion and wicked keys, creating a laidback vibe.

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Reviews January 16, 2005

Picks of the Week

Donna Allen "He is the joy" (The Unreleased Mixes)(SoulFuric Records CD Promo)

SoulFuric are returning to their roots by resurrecting this 1999 lassic and giving it an update for 2005. Brian Tappert, who together with Marc Pomeroy produced the song, provides a phat re-edit of this gospel stomper featuring all the bells and whistles from the original. This is followed by the Rawsoul Orchestra and MoD remixes that are fireing things up with cool effects and new instrumentation including wicked keys, phat basslines and groovy beats. Both these new interpretations keep the gospelish vibe of the original alive.

Marlon D featuring J.R. Morrison "Affection" (Jellybean Soul Records 12")

Underground Collective DJ and producer Marlon D presents "Affection", a fierce and driving garage production with an irresistible groove based on kicking drums and featuring an outstanding key section and organ solo courtesy of Scott Wozniak while J.R. Morrison provides an uplifting vocal performance.

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Reviews January 23, 2005

Picks of the Week

Tanja Dankner "Will I ever" (Jamie Lewis Remix)(Purple Music Records CD Promo)

This track was released back in 2000 and is originally produced by Stefan Raab, a very successfull german TV showmaster. Jamie Lewis licensed the track for his label and gives it a lovely reworking that will rock the dancefloors with its smoothly stompin' beat, funky bassline, wicked guitar riff and jazzy piano that harmonise perfectly with the sweet vocals by Tanja Dankner. The dub is all about the funky elements, giving the guitar riff lots of place to grow.

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Reviews January 30, 2005

Picks of the Week

Yukihiro Fukutomi "EP 1" (Pantone Music Records 12")

Pantone Music is a new label out of the UK that will release the album "Equality" by japanese producer Yukihiro Fukutomi later this year. "EP 1" is a taster for the album and features three selected cuts. "Hooked" featuring Lady Alma is an uplifting production featuring a warm groove and melodic keys together with sweet percussions and Lady Alma's outstanding vocal performance on top. Lady Alma also provides her vocal capabilities on "Peace", a bumpin' house track with broken beats and jazzy keys. "All over the world" is jazz-funk on a broken beat tip at its best, featuring a wicked instrumentation and the soulful voice of Victor Davies.

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Reviews February 6, 2005

Picks of the Week

Mr. V "The Dance Ritual Project" (Sole Channel Music Records 12")

Sole Channel Music unleash a beautiful EP of jazzed-up house grooves here, courtesy of Mr. V. "Somethin' with jazz" comes with bumpin' beats and light piano touches, together with Mr. V's half-rapped vocals. This is a great four-to-the-floor groover with a true jazz flava thanks to the jazzy piano line. The flip features "Un dia bonito", a latinesque groover with vocal scats by Miss Patty and a wicked jazzy piano solo by Ben Kohn. Beats of both tracks are featured as an extra bonus.

Exclusive Preview: 280 West featuring Diamond Temple "Fly" (Blaze Remix)(PhutureSole Records CD Promo)

One of the defining moments in soulful dance music of 2004 is back in brand new interpretations by Blaze. They rework the song into a complete new direction, using a subtle backing music for the magic voice of Diamond Temple. Smoothly thumpin' beats, sweet percussion, melodic keys and a great piano line let the emotion of Diamond Temple's vocal performance shine all over. The big surprise on this release is the 'Temple Dynasty Mix' which is an interpretation of the song by Felicia Temple (the youngest daughter of Diamond Temple). Just accompanied by piano and cello, Felicia Temple delivers a wonderful interpretation full of soul and emotion where she is showcasing her vocal capabilities. A real delight to listen to.

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Reviews February 13, 2005

Picks of the Week

Tiger Stripes featuring Simone Moreno "Vem sambar" (Look-At-You Records CD Promo)

Swedens Mikael Nordgren aka Tiger Stripes presents an absolutely fierce debut release for Look-At-You Records, featuring female singer Simone Moreno. "Ver sambar" is an uplifting, latinesque production spreading a feel good vibe that features a live string section together with funky elements and melodic keys that create an irresistible feeling on the dancefloor through the feel-good rhythms and powerful vocal performance.

Abicah Soul featuring Cei-Bei "Love is just a call away" (Jellybean Soul Records 12")

Glenn Underground is on a roll at the moment and releases the wonderful "Love is just a call away" under his Abicah Soul guise. Featuring the sweet and soulful voice of Curtis Harman aka Cei-Bei, "Love is just a call away" is a smooth yet fierce groover based on deeply groovin' percussion and spheric keys giving the song a cosmic edge. With Cei-Bei's wonderful vocal performance on top, this is subtle house music with a heartfelt spirituality.

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Reviews February 20, 2005

Picks of the Week

Various "The New Breed EP" (POJI Records 12")

POJI Records keep it real with this extremly hot three track EP that kicks off with "My latin woman" by Sueno Soul featuring Gosando Music which they licensed from Newlite Records for this release.  It is an uplifting latin house track with a bouncey groove, guitar and male spoken words creating an irresistible groove you can't resist dancing to. Next up is "People need people" by Pixel, a laidback production featuring soulful female vocals over a mellow groove with smoothly stompin' beats, topped with spacey keys giving the song a melodic vibe. DJ Pope & Jason Din team up as DenPo and deliver the magical "Oobaye oobaye", coming with african chants over a percussively bumpin' beat, added with jazzy keys and an organ line, creating an absolutely irresistible vibe.

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Reviews February 27, 2005

Picks of the Week

Blaze "My beat" (Sumo Remix)(HEYA HIFI CD Promo)

This is the first release for S.U.M.O.'s own label HEYA HIFI that is taken from the forthcoming album "Rebounces". S.U.M.O. take on the Blaze classic "My beat" that features Palmer Brown's preaching lyrics and turn it into an afro beat work out featuring brand new instrumentation including horn section, organ, afro guitar and sweet percussion. The 'Rebounce' version creates an irresistible afro house vibe with Palmer Brown's unmistakable vocal performance while the dub stripps the vocals and features additonal instrumentation instead, enforcing the afro vibe.

Raw Artistic Soul "Kana EP" (GoGo Music Records CD Promo)

After the fantastic "One Cultural Groove EP", Raw Artistic Soul are back with another chapter of inspiring music. The title track of the EP, "Kana" (available in both vocal and dub versions) features the voice of Laygwan Sharkie who sings in the native Zimbabwian language over a smooth yet powerful afro house beat that is topped with melodic keys and a lovely jazzy flute. "Bathanga vibes" features Migrant Souls aka Lyygwan Sharkie & Metaphysics and is inspired by 'Bathanga Jive', a traditional dance of miners of Zimbabwe. Can7 delivers an uplifting interpretation coming with infectious melodies and an irresistible groove, creating a feel-good anthem. Finally there is "Flores para ti", a latin tinged production featuring a broken-beat styled, percussion loaded groove and jazzy vocal ad-libs together with Rafael Cortes on guitar. With this second outstanding EP, I can't wait to hear the forthcoming album "What about love".

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Reviews March 6, 2005

Picks of the Week

Sara Devine "Special" (Vega Records 12")

After her underground smash "Take me home" thanks to the Masters at Work remixes, Sara Devine is back with Louie Vega remixes of the sultry neo-soul gem "Special". Louie Vega delivers uplifting reworkings featuring a riffing guitar, sweet percussion and melodic chords to create a grooving house take that has an an acoustic edge that comes to full effect on the isntrumental 'Roots Dub'.

Steal Vybe "Musical Journeys EP" (Steal Vybe Music Records 12" Test Pressing)

The third release for Steal Vybe Music is a triumphant return as they present a fantastic EP that kicks off with "Love's song" that features songstress Stephanie Renee and hypnotic keys over a driving groove, creating an irresistible vibe. "Love's song (the other story)" is the second part, being on a broken beat tip and spreading a jazzy vibe through the warm and orchestral melodies. "Relief" comes with spoken words over a deeply stompin' groove that features some heavy drum patterns and is topped with a jazzy piano line and spacey keys. Finally "Vibrations" is a sweet bossa/brazil house track with lush keys, layered vocals and unique melodies creating a laidback feeling, perfect to chill.

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Reviews March 13, 2005

Picks of the Week

Exclusive Preview: Milesart Orchestra "Better Times EP" (Ibiza Soulstice Music CD Promo)

Ibiza Soulstice Music is the brand new label by Joan Ribas Ferrer. The first release is a four track EP by the Milesart Orchestra featuring music inspired by 70's soul, jazz and funk grooves. "Something coloured" comes with a stompin' beat, deeply funkin' bassline (think of "Papa was a rolling stone") and sweet melodies on top. "Funkoff (deep love to Isa)" is a fantastic afterhours track based around a deeply stormin' groove and features a jazzy instrumentation together with a funky guitar. "Gotta make you move" starts with a lovely intro before the drivin' groove kicks in and the jazzy saxophone, funky guitar and soulful vocals create an irresistible feeling. Lastly we've got the title track "Better times", a midtempo groover spreading a laidback feeling through the jazz-funk vibes.

King Britt presents Scuba featuring Lizz Fields "Our time" (Slip'N'Slide Records CD Promo)

Slip'N'Slide Records have just started a new compilation series called "Jazzmental" with King Britt presenting the first selection that includes his own production "Our time" which features r&b singer Lizz Fields. She delivers a soulful vocal performance over a deep bassline and piano driven groove added with sweet percussion, strings and melodic keys on the 'Funke Mix' while the 'Sunrise Mix' is stripped of the beats and percussion. The remix included is courtesy of Mikale Nordgren under his Tiger Stripes moniker and comes with smoothly stompin beats, superb flute and afro elements added to the original instrumentation, giving the track an irresistible feeling.

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Reviews March 20, 2005

Picks of the Week

The BackRoom featuring Kimara Lovelace "Here I am" (Soul Groove Records 12")

"Here I am" is one of those songs that has a melody that won't get out of your heard for a long, long time to come, courtesy of the production team of Backroom Productions. The music is based around an irresistible groove and features a delightful George Benson like guitar, warm melodic chords and sweet percussion, creating an infectious vibe. Add the wonderful and passionate vocal performance by Kimara Lovelace, and you've got a soulful and timeless garage production, perfect for the summer season ahead.

WMC Preview: Michelle Weeks "Be thankful" (Purple Music Records 12" Test Pressing)

In 2002, Jamie Lewis and his Purple Music family brought us "The light", in 2005 they bring us "Be thankful". It has the same energy that made "The light" one of the standout tunes three years ago, with Michelle Weeks proving why she is undoubtly one of house music greatest. It's the irresistible piano together with the unmistakable vocal that are layed over a fiercely stormming groove on this track that will conquer the attention of everyone who hear this track. Simply irresistible.

WMC Preview: Nikos featuring Nita "Let's stay together" (Under My Skin Records CD Promo)

For his latest release on Under My Skin Records , DJ and producer Nikos has choosen to do a cover version of one of his all time favorite songs: "Let's stay together" by Al Green, a timeless soul classic. With the help of a gifted group of musicians who provide the live instrumentation including sax, flute, bass, drums and percussion, this new interpretation brings the soul directly to the dancefloors with its smooth vibe and an electrifying vocal performance by Nita Hutton whose voice is soulful and breezy, giving the song an inspirational and passionate feeling.

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Reviews April 3, 2005

The WMC 2005 Picks

John Kumahara featuring Martino "Paradise in the Sahara" (Kenny Carvajal Remix)(Iwanai Records CD Promo)

This was the first release back in june 2003 for Iwanai Music that now returns with a simply fantastic reworking by Kenny Carvajal who takes the track to a higher ground, expanding the organ and keys provided by Martino to a new dimension, with the pulsating percussion underlining the late nite vibe of this production. The original version will also be included on the release.

Gene Douglas featuring David Walker "Almost heaven" (Almost Heaven Records 12" Test Pressing)

David Walker has worked as background voice for Mariah Carey, and here he teams up with Gene Douglas for a wonderful production. The original is on a classic vibe with a laidback feeling to it, featuring warm melodies over a mellow groove. Simon Grey takes it to a different territory on his mix, turning the song into a jazzy broken beat track, while Noel Pix is adding more punch to it with a sweet pumpin' groove. Frank Wichmann & Gary Lanziere take it to the underground on their tribal groove driven, electro-ish dub version. Finally Sebastian Wunder delivers a deep house groove with warm melodic sounds.

Blaze featuring Ultra Naté "Wonderful place" (Remixes)(SuSu Records CD Promo)

What a strong remix package SuSu have prepared for this great song featuring the wonderful Ultra Naté. Bobby & Steve together with James Ratcliff give it a soulful makeover with smooth percussion, lovely jazzy flute and groovy beats. Fanatix give it a deeper edge on their take, with phat beats and spaced-out keys. Their dub takes it even deeper and has an underground vibe to it. H&H come up with a bumpier affair with a funky bassline, cool guitar and disco-ish strings, adding a feel-good vibe to the song.

Kenny Carvajal featuring Swaylo "You remind me" (Phuture Sole Records CD Promo)

After giving Kenny Carvajal a five star rating for his remix on "Paradise in the Sahara", we have to admire his production skills. On "You remind me", he teams up with singer Consuela 'Swaylo' Ivy for a timeless production, with a vocal performance full of passion, coming striaght from the soul. The music is based on a smooth groove and comes complete with a marvellous jazzy piano and guitar solo that together with the melodic chords create a wonderful feeling.

Jully Black "Stay the night" (83 West Remix)(Universal Records CD  Promo)

Canadian singer Jully Black will soon be dropping her debut album. "Stay the night" is the first single lifted, coming complete with a remix by 83 West taking the song straight to the dancefloor with sharp beats, a deeply rumblin' bassline and spheric keys that get accompanied by jazzy keys, giving the song a late night vibe.

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