The Album Reviews for 1998.
December 28, 1998
Pure Blaze (Easy Street Records Double-Album)
Easy Street pay tribut to one of the most important production teams in house music: Blaze (aka Kevin Hedge and Josh Milan). This compilation includes eight of the productions they did for this label. Among them are "Baby Love" and "Never thought I'd see you again" by Cassio, "Saturdays" and "4 tha love of you" (duet with De'Lacy) by Alexander Hope, "Goin' throught the Motions" by Keisha Jenkins, and more.
December 20, 1998
Charles Dockins presents "The Blak Cuban's Chronicles of Love" (Slip'N'Slide Records Double-Album)
This one should have been released in early september but it has been worth the wait. Beside the singles "Journey", "It's alright" and "Traffic Jam", there are many great new tracks that show that Charles can't be categorized just as a garage producer. For example, "Great Day" is a solid r&b production while "Cosmic Life" and "Moviestar" are on a jazzy drum'n'bass tip.
The Sunburst Band "Here comes the Sunburst Band" (Z Records Triple-Album Test Pressing)
We all know what Joey Negro does best: producing serious 90's disco grooves. On this twelve track album (which is mostly instrumental) he shows us, that he is not strictly producing uptempo stuff - he also gives us some downtempo stuff for the romantic moments of life.
December 13, 1998
DJ Tools (Ibadan Records Album)
Sub-titled "featuring beats by Kerri Chandler, Joe Claussell, Jerome Sydenham". All very percussive, and something for the experienced DJ and music lover.
Sounds of OM "House Compilation 01" (OM Records Double-Album)
"Showcasing OM's past & present foray into the percolating realm of contemporary house culture, we present you with our renegade lineup of musical diplomats, featuring the bare soul essence of Naked Music NYC, the intoxicating (and elusive) Terra Deva and the jazz-laden artistry of Naked Funk. Recognize."
Now this is a pretty perfect description the label is giving us about their album. Including "If I fall", "Fresh start", "It's Love" and more remixed by Joshua, DJ Iz, Derrick Carter, Wamdue Kids, King Britt, Julius Papp/Dave Warrin, Naked Music NYC and more, this really stands out of all those compilations released this year.
December 6, 1998
Abstract Jazz Lounge II (Nite Groove Records Double-Album)
As the first volume in this series (that will hopefully be continued), this double album has some goodies to be checked. Frankie Feliciano's current 12" "The Real Thing" is included here with brand new mixes by Albert Cabrera, "Mongobonix" by Harry 'Choo Choo' Romero is here in an club-friendly unreleased version as is "Touch the Groove" by The Eastside Movement (produced by Lenny Fontana).
My favorite is "Straight Magic" by Ananda Project feat. Heather Johnson in it's classy 'Wamdue Kids Jazz Mix', very tastefull jazzy house grooves.
November 15, 1998
Urban Soul "My Urban Soul" (KingStreet Records Double-Album)
This double-album is a retrospective of the material Urban Soul have put out on KingStreet Records over the past few years. Eight tracks featured, including the David Morales edit of "Show me", the Deep Zone mix of "Until we meet again", the Eric Kupper mix of "What do I gotta do".
November 8, 1998
Hot Sauce (Chilli Funk Records Double-Album)
Chilli Funk Records have put out a compilation with some of their finest moments. A must have.
House of 909 "The Children we were" (Pagan Records Double-Album)
After severel 12" singles, the House of 909 put out their first long player on double pack format. Laidback grooves, some added with vocals. Lets take you into dreamland with this.
October 18, 1998
Shazz (Columbia France Records Double-Album)
Beside the singles "El Camino (Part I)", El Camino (Part II)" and "Inner Side", the album features brand new jazzy material, some housey, some downbeat. Very good material, both instrumental and vocal. Not an album for club play but for your listening pleasure.
September 27, 1998
Kerri Chandler "Kaoz Theory - the Essential Kerri Chandler" (Harmless Records Triple-Album)
Kerri Chandler, one of the most important and influential producers in house music in the past and today, finally gets a compilation including his essential recordings. You'll find classics like "Drink on me" by Teule, "Inspiration" by Arnold Jarvis, "Deeper" by Susan Clark or "Get if off" by Third Generation as well as some classics tracks from his "Ionisphere EP" and "Atmosphere EP" as well as some of his recent work for Ibadan Records.
Essential is the right word for this one.
Deep Bros. "House Hunters" (ZAP Music Records Switzerland CD)
You should know Deep Bros. by now from their previous 12" releases on various labels. Deep Bros. are swiss DJ Pino Arduini and keyboarder Alessandro Oliviero.
Included here are their previous 12" "You got it" feat. Gerideau and "Keep on lovin' you" feat. Barbara Tucker & Sabrena Armstrong (both out on Azuli Records), "Get into you" feat. Fonda Rae (out on Arthrob Records), as well as "Sensitive Touch" and "Up and Down" (out on GrooveOn Records) and the latest single "Victim of Love" feat. Michelle Weeks (out on BlueSteel Records).
Among those well known club hits there are new vocals tracks like "My love grows" feat. Michelle Weeks, "Be myself" feat. Carol Sylvan, "Let's do it again" feat. Mr. Mike (should be out soon on MAP Records) and "Ritmo Caliente" feat. Mayra Leon. Also included is "Millenium" feat. Gerideau (some lucky people do have this on very limited 12" test pressing complete with dub mixes). You'll also find new tracks like "Ain't no baby", "The Key", "Soul talkin'", "Round and round". Finally, there is the remix they've done of "Joy and pain" for Rhythm Authority feat Barry Stewart.
All I can say is that this album is full of quality house music for listening as well as for playing in the clubs.
Release Date: November 1998.
August 9, 1998
Everybody Dance! Remixed Dance Classics (Rhino/Atlantic Records Double-CD)
After the two 12" sampler we got about two month ago, the double-CD with all tracks is now available (ok, it's out for a while, but it took me some time to get it). Lots of classics get the 90s treatment. In addition to the mixes available on 12", there are a Pal Joey mix of Chic 'Dance, dance, dance', Paul Simpson mixes of The Spinners 'Could it be I'm falling in Love' and 'I'll be around', JohNick mixes of Manu Dibango 'Soul Makossa' and Herbie Mann 'Hi-Jack', Black Science Orchestra taking on The Trammps 'The Nights the Lights went out' and many more.
July 26, 1998
Scott Grooves "Pieces of a Dream" (Soma Records Double-Album)
After the brilliant 'Expansions' 12" we now get the full album on double vinyl. Eight laidback, soulful jazz and funk influenced grooves for ya to space into the next millenium.
July 5, 1998
Danny Tenaglia "Tourism" (Twisted Records Quadruple-Album)
Man oh man, what an expensive purchase this is: a quadruple pack inlcuding ten tracks, all in Danny's twilo-style, already getting lots of club play. Danny has choosen some fine vocalists like Liz Torres, Teena Marie, Lula, Celeda and more.
Kim English "Higher Things" (Nervous Records Triple-Album)
Can you believe it? It is finally released! Her previous singles "Supernatural", "Nite Life", "Time for love" and "Learn 2 Luv" are inluced as well as brand new tracks produced by Maurice Joshua, Frankie Feliciano, Todd Edwards.
June 28, 1998
Brothers of the Underground "Collective Grooves" (SOM Underground Records Double-Album)
What a compilation this is. Containing productions by Tony Rodriguez, DJ Camacho, Cassioware and more, this is a must have.
June 21, 1998
Yoshitoshi Artists "One Nation under House - Session 2" (Yoshitoshi Records Double Album)
A week after volume 1 there is volume 2 with more slamming tracks. There are Dished out Bums 'Laavburds', Kings of Tomorrow 'I want you for myself' and 'Fade II Black', Mysterious People 'Frequency Ride' and more.
Cricco Castelli 'Thank god its funky" (SI Project Records Double-Album)
Cricco Castelli delievers an album with eight funky tracks including 'Life is changing', A Day in Copacabana' and 'Batarcuda Soul'.
June 14, 1998
Booker T. "The Prize Collection" (SolidState Records Triple Album)
This is a compilation of Booker T. greatest remixes, including rare and hard to get mixes (lots of them were available only on promo). It's a showcase of Booker T. work in the near past. It features such gems as his dub of Sounds of Blackness 'The Pressure', Conner Reeves 'Nobody but You', Soul II Soul 'Pleasuredome' and 'I feel Love' and many more. A mixed CD is also available.
Yoshitoshi Artists "One Nation under House - Session 1" (Yoshitoshi Records Double Album)
This includes lots of classic work and recent stuff like Eddie Amador 'House Music', Mysterious People 'Fly Away' and 'Love Revolution', Chiapet 'Tick-Tock', Lofty Love 'The Rock' and many more.
Bob Sinclair "Paradise" (Yellow Records Double-Album)
After releasing some quality 12", there is finally the album. As usual, lots of funk and disco elements, and some naked woman on the cover.
May 24, 1998
H2O "You can run..." (Liquid Groove Records/Columbia Records CD)
H2O finally release their debut album, and they got a distribution deal with Sony Music so things are set to be big. Produced by Oliver Stumm, many new slamming tracks among their previous singles 'Living for the future', Take me higher' and 'Nobodys business' are included. 'H2O the Flow' is a minimalistic groove telling you what H2O is (remember your chemic lessions in school?) while 'All over my face' and 'You can run...' are potential hits in their own right.
As mentioned on the news board, 'You can ran...' will be the next single.
May 10, 1998
Body & Soul Volume 1 (Wave Records Triple-Album)
Compiled by Francois K., Danny Krivit and Joe Claussell, this is a showcase of the Body & Soul Movement thats fascinating so many people at the moment. Included are such gems as 'Can you see the light' by Voices (in the K.O.T. Remix), 'The prayer' by Jephté Guillaume, 'Living in ecstasy' by Fonda Rae, 'Escravos de Jo' by Kerri Chandler and much more.
As a highlight, the Mood II Swing remix of 'Being single' by Valerie George is finally available on vinyl. This track was done by Mood II Swing about two years ago, but Motown Records refused to release it. So MIIS decided to use the groove with a new vocalist, and we got 'Searchin' by Loni Clark (this was released on GrooveOn Records).
May 3, 1998
Nuphonic 01 (Nuphonic Records Double-Album)
Nuphonic Records put out a compilation including some of the most underrated tracks of the past two years. If you missed things like 'Moonwalk' by Blaze, 'In the trees' by Faze Action, 'Nothings changed' by Ten City, 'Flim flam' by Yellow sox, this is for you.
Arpil 26, 1998
Moodyman presents: "Mahogany brown" (Peacefrog Records Double-Album)
Another damn fine album release on Peacefrog Records, this time by Moodyman alias Kenny Dixon Jr. This is a must for all lovers of moody house music, and of course for all Moodyman fans. Deep and moody house vibes to shake your body...
Jasper Street Company "In a Spensane World" (Basement Boys Records Double-Album)
Long awaited debut album by those brilliant Baltimore people inlcuding their hits so far ('Solid Ground', Love Changes', 'Get together' and 'A Feeling') among new tracks. This is a top quality package with lot's off jazz and soul for those who understand.
Ultra Naté "Situation: Critical" (Airplane Records Double-Album)
What a return album this is! You might have expected an house album, but it's not. Instead, it is a showcase of Ultra Naté vocal capabilites. Productionwise, get Al Mack doing midtempo tracks, D'Influence doing uptempo club tracks, Mood II Swing doing midtempo and house tracks (including the two singles 'Free' and 'Found a Cure') and finally, the killer cut 'Divine Love' is produced by the Masters at Work. A real listening pleasure.
This one will also be out on Strictly Rhythm Records in the USA and AM:PM Records in the UK.
March 15, 1998
The Best of Wave Music Vol. 1 (Wave Records Double-Album)
This is out for a few month already, but it shouldn't be missed. It includes some of the best moments of Wave Records with the already classic original mix of 'Hypnodelic' by Francois K., the dub mix of 'Tribe' by Mato, the 'Body and Soul Mix' of 'Sun Juice' by Natural Flavors among others. Also included is a fantastic new song by Francois K. feat. The Alchemist 'On the way' - another instrumental jazzy monster track to die for.
March 8, 1998
MAW Beats Vol. I & II (MAW Records Double-Album)
Not much words need to be lost on this one: beats by the unbeatable Masters at Work of some of their best remixes including Ce Ce Peniston, Tito Puente, Cover Girls and more.
February 15, 1998
Byron Stingily "The Purist" (Nervous Records 3xLP)
Now here we go, a triple pack of an ablum we've all been waiting for. Of course, all his recent 12" are inlcuded ("Flying high", "Sing a Song", "Get up" and "You make me feel"). Also included is "Back to paradise", a Frankie Knuckles production, that has been hammered by all those importand DJs all over the world for about a year now in it's full near 10 minute version. "It's over", the already bootlegged underground killer song produced by the Basement Boys is included as well (another near 10 minute track). One of the outstanding new cuts on the album is "Keep love going" produced by Frankie Feliciano - a classic NY style garage cut. Not to be missed are "Found a love" and "Temptation", both produced by Maurice Joshua. Jazz'N'Groove produced "Testify" in their usual style. Finally, there is Oscar G. getting the production credits for "Beautiful night".
A CD is available too with bonus cuts: "Run to me" produced by Eddie Perez, "Feeling good, feeling happy" produced by Mike Dunn and "Don't fall in love" produced by David Morales. Unfortunately, all tracks are edited on the CD...