05 December 2012

Review: Breakbot 'By Your Side'














BREAKBOT
By Your Side
[Ed Banger/Warners]

The front cover of By Your Side depicts Breakbot aka French producer Thibaut Berland as a partially unwrapped bar of chocolate, and his debut album crammed full of French funk, pop and sugary soul certainly falls into the "guilty pleasure" category. Sounding at times like Daft Punk or Crazy P or Phoenix or even Prince - though, admittedly, a slimmed down, low-fat kinda version - the album is enjoyable enough, it's just that almost every song sounds "like" somebody else. The title track sounds like Chromeo. One Out Of Two sounds like Hall & Oates or Supertramp. Fantasy sounds like Justin Timberlake doing his best Michael Jackson impression. Frankly, anything that guest vocalist Ruckazoid touches sounds like that, but perhaps that's part of the album's sweet treat charms: familiarity. Or at least enough familiarity to keep ears piqued, as there are a handful of tracks (Break Of Dawn, Intersection, Programme) which stray a little further into "interesting" territory - though these are all instrumental tracks, funnily enough. Programme is probably the most left field, which possibly says something about which area of the road this album is targetting. There are a couple of singles which have been fairly thrashed round these parts (Baby I'm Yours in particular), but the long and short is that Breakbot's debut album is chocka with music that's here for a good time, not a long time. Mind you, who can resist dipping back into a guilty pleasure now and again...?

3 stars from 5

Check out some album snippets in the player below, or the full album here.

breakbot - by your side (album preview) by experimedia

Review: Ondatropica













ONDATROPICA
Ondatropica
[Soundway Records]

Many of us mere mortals fantasise of following our dreams, throwing in the tools and breaking the shackles of modern life for something more exciting, more challenging. Something more real. Some of us don't dream, they just do. One of those people is Will Holland, Better known as Quantic. Some time back (after releasing about twelve albums in the space of seven years) Hollands followed his deep interest in the music and people of South America with a number of visits, before moving to and deciding to live in Colombia. He is now fully ensconced and has released a number of albums, with a mixture of local and guest musicians, as Quantic and His Combo Barbaro, and Quantic Presenta Flowering Inferno. On this occasion though, Holland has teamed up with Mario Galeano, the brains and power behind Colombian band Frente Cumbiero, to present Ondatropica. The project is an ambitious one, putting together in the famous Discos Fuentes studio in Medellin some of Colombian music's most legendary figures with young players from both Holland and Galeano's bands and asking them to represent both the classic and modern styles of Colombian music. Ambitious, yes, but ultimately, successful. There is a ahuge amount of music to digest in one sitting, but taken piece by piece Ondatropica is a rambling, sprawling triumph, and a credit to the spirit in which it was recorded. Lovingly released by those good folks at Soundway Records, Ondatropica is highly recormmended for summertime listening, dancing - and maybe even dreaming.

3 and 1/2 stars from 5

Check out a couple of cuts from Ondatropica in the player below, or via one of the many links above. You can also watch a "making of" film here.

Ondatropica by Barbican Music

04 December 2012

Wax Wednesday: Playlist 'In The Pocket with 90' Wed 28 Nov on Radio Ponsonby














Another 45s only "special" today. Check it out...

The Budos Band | Ghostwalk
Aiff | Akwaaba
Quantic Soul Orchestra | San Sebastian Strut
The Tornadoes | Huihui
Opensouls | What Do You Do?
Red The Man Without A Machine | I Should Tell Ya Mamma On Ya (Dam-Funk remix)
Human Race | Human Race
Plenty Action | Soft Touch
Suff Daddy | Comin2ULive
Urbs | The Incident
Smooth Daddy | If It's Funky, We Did It!
Saravah Soul | Supersossego (inst.)
Ben Westbeech | Hang Around
Recloose | Mana's Bounce
The Bamboos | Tighten Up
Cookin' On 3 Burners | Gravel Rash
The Limp Twins | Elemental
The Nostalgia 77 Octet | Freedom (The Freedom Zombie Dance) (Pt. 1)
The Broken Keys | Slingshot (Pt. 1)
Quantic Soul Orchestra | Don't Joke With A Hungry Man (Pt. 3)
The Undisputed Truth | California Soul
Heatwave | I'll Beat Your Booty
The Real Thing | Keep An Eye (On Your Best Friend)
Billy Paul | Am I Black Enough For You?
100 Proof Aged In Soul | Not Enough Love To Satisfy
Natalie Cole | Sophisticated Lady (She's A Different Lady)
Parliament | Flashlight
Ota | Nunui
Habitual Parking Violators | One To Twelve

21 November 2012

Wax Wednesday: Playlist 'In The Pocket with 90' Wed 21 Nov on Radio Ponsonby











It was the "Well, It's Kinda Jazz Special" on Wax Wednesday today, with an all-vinyl selection of jazz and other things fringing jazz. Check the tunes below...

www.radioponsonby.co.nz

Seu Jorge | Everybody Loves The Sunshine
Assembly Line | Cosmic Ballad
J Rawls Presents Liquid Crystal Project | So Fly
Beatless | Like Sugar Like Rain
G-Litter | Seoul 88
Slide Five | Rhode Trip
Fat Freddy's Drop | Del Fuego
IG Culture Presents Zen Badizm | Girl U Need A Change Of Mind
Rhythm Section | Circular Logic
The Budos Band | Up From The South
The JuJu Orchestra | Kind Of Latin Rhythm
Nuspirit Helsinki | Trying (Butti 49 Nu Niveau remix)
Miles Davis | Miles Runs The Voodoo Down
Ping Pong | Shmoo'sville
Dorothy Ashby | Soul Vibrations
Roberta Flack & Donny Hathaway | Baby I Love You
Quincy Jones | Killer Joe
J Rawls & John Robinson Are The 1960s Jazz Revolution Again with Tiffany Paige | Relax Ur Mind
MF Doom | Galangal Root
Feak | Baby E's Ain't No Joke
Greyboy | Ruffneck Jazz
Fertile Ground | Another Day (Povo rework)

Review: Label Love Volume 5 "The Jazz Edition"













Various Artists
LABEL LOVE VOL. 5
The Jazz Edition
[Various Labels]

When is jazz not jazz? When is "not jazz" jazz again? And does it really matter when the music's this intriguing? These are the questions I find myself asking after listening to Label Love Volume 5: The Jazz Edition, put together by a collective of independent record labels (check out the links at the bottom of this review) who have been quietly releasing a fabulously free series of compilations for a minute now. Yep, five free compilations of new, exclusive and/or previously unreleased forward-thinking music from some of the hottest acts on the planet. Volume 5 narrows its' focus to the much-maligned genre of jazz, which some say died when its' key players from the '40s and '50s passed; this selection alone illustrates that's a viewpoint politely described as "misguided". Featuring the likes of Nostalgia 77, Kit Downes Trio, Matthew Halsall, The Greg Foat Group, Examples Of Twelve and many more, this comp highlights some of the most beautiful, enthralling and exciting jazz music around, as well as pushing a few boundaries: album opener The Chosen, by Menagerie (otherwise known as Bamboos bandleader Lance Ferguson) leans heavily on the soul-funk side of jazz, while Troyka go waaaaayyy out on the abstract Rarebit, and Red Balloon sees Gizmo throwing down a lazy rap over a sparse beat laced with tasty piano grooves. At a time when copious amounts of free music is available over the internet, this is one free download you need to get hip to, you dig?

3 and 1/2 stars from 5

www.tru-thoughts.co.uk
www.impossiblearkrecords.bandcamp.com
www.gondwanarecords.com
www.jazzmanrecords.co.uk
www.editionrecords.com

Please take the time to visit the labels involved in putting this project together on the links above, and to download the full album here. Gratis. Nice one.

19 November 2012

Wax Wednesday: Playlist 'In The Pocket with 90' Wed 14 Nov on Radio Ponsonby














Beat Assailant | Hard Twelve
Moxie Disco Edits | Use Me John
Sunshine Anderson | Heard It All Before
Assembly Line | Saying Something
Blu | Just Relax (A Dan Aikido remix)
Kompleks | Wheel Of Life
Amp Fiddler | Cool About It
Esther Phillips | Home Is Where The Hatred Is (Onur Engin edit)
Quincy Jones | The Dude
Marvin Gaye | Loving You Is Sweeter Than Ever
The Windjammers | Tossing And Turning (Pt. 1)
MFSB | Summertime
L.T.D. | It's Time To Be Real
Sheila E | Droppin' Like Flies (Black Flag Club mix)
Lee McDonald | We've Only Just Begun (TM Juke remix)
Rose Royce & Norman Whitfield | Yo Yo
Lee Dorsey | Night People
Ronnie Laws | Tell Me Something Good
Bomb The Bass with Justin Warfield | Bug Powder Dust (La Funk Mob remix)
Freddie Cruger aka Red Astaire with ADL | Special Lady
Freddie Cruger aka Red Astaire with Desmond Foster | Something Good
Johnny "Guitar" Watson | Ain't That A Bitch
Heatwave | Gangsters Of The Groove

12 November 2012

Friday Freshie: Playlist 'In The Pocket with 90' Fri 9 Nov on Radio Ponsonby













Shapeshifter | Diamond Trade
Superspirit | We Belong To The Cosmos
Bing Ji Ling | Do What I Gotta Do
Positive Flow | Phaedra's Flight
Superspirit | Brand New Day
Positive Flow | Axis
Positive Flow with Colonel Red | Hold On
Bing Ji Ling | Move On
Fat Freddy's Drop | Silver And Gold
Positive Flow with Omar | My Prediction
Martino | Reasons (Sigg Buggz remix)
Bing Ji Ling | Home
A-Trak, Kimbra & Mark Foster | Warrior (What So Not remix)
Positive Flow with Andre Espeut | Tapestries Of My Mind
Bing Ji Ling | Thought Our Love Was Strong
Bing Ji Ling | Money In The Meter
Wagon Cookin with Gabriela Smith | All The Night
Positive Flow with Sharlene Hector | Look Around Any Corner
Toomy Disco | The Brush
Cajmere | Chit Chat (Clubhouse mix)
Frank Booker | No Delay

A large chunk of the music from today's show was taken from three albums: Flow Lines by Positive Flow, on the outstanding Tokyo Dawn Records; Superspirit's 2009 album Permission To Come Aboard; and Bing Ji Ling's 2004 album Doodle Loot Doot Doodle A Doo.

07 November 2012

Wax Wednesday: Playlist 'In The Pocket with 90' Wed 7 Nov on Radio Ponsonby













Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings | Keep On Looking (Kenny Dope vocal remix)
Lanu with Aloe Blacc & Quantic | Mother Earth
Dublex Inc. | Repercusion
Georg Levin | Leisure Suit
Rephrase | Good Feelin' (Parov Stelar's Late Night dub)
Claws For...? | Colour Theory
Wunmi | Message In A Bottle
TM Juke & The Jack Baker Trio | Heads High(er)
Quantic Presenta Flowering Inferno | Portada Del Mar
Blundetto | Nautilus
Bill Summers | Brazilian Skies
Fat Freddy's Drop | Breakthrough
Simbad with Steelo | Soul Fever
Grand Pianoramax with Spleen & Celena Glenn | The Hook (DJ Spinna vocal mix)
Kanye West | Diamonds | J-Todd's "Gimme The Ice" remix)
Aaron Jerome with Bajka | Way Of Life
Kanyor | Antidote
Miles Bonny | Lumberjack Soul
Examples | Be Kind To Your Mind (Red Astaire remix)
Wax Poetic with Norah Jones | Angels
Tosca | Heidi Bruehl (Plantlife Love Foolosophy remix)
People Under The Stairs | Tuxedo Rap
Upper Hutt Posse | E Tu

Review: Kylie Auldist 'Still Life'













KYLIE AULDIST
Still Life
[Tru Thoughts]

This kind of soulful pop music is often deried as "cafe lite". As in, it initially sounds sweet and entertaining, but upon closer inpspection ends up sickly saccharine, or lamely boring. In truth, it's an exceptional artist who can pull off this sound consistently, as it is a fine line to tread. Luckily for us, the close collaboration of vocalist Kylie Auldist and producer Lance Ferguson is more than capable of such consistency. They've been quietly building an impressive body of work via no less than five Bamboos albums, and now Auldist's third solo record. Still Life continues in the vein of her early work, with heartfelt and emotive tales of life, love and loss, backed by full-bodied instrumentation and production. Ferguson has always had a way with a clever pop song, but some of these tracks, particularly the huge Daydream, sound like stadium anthems to rival Duffy and Adele. Balancing that are tracks like Letterhead Life, which references '50s doo-wop and soul ballads, and (a cover of The Black Keys' track) Howlin' For You, which channels John Lee Hooker via Prince Jammy. Auldist and Ferguson are music lovers with life experience, and they write consistently good pop music, with a broad stylistic reach. So it's one of life's cruel ironies that such consistency has probably hindered them from reaching further levels of fame; particularly in this age of one trick pony production line gimmickry masquerading as music. This stuff is proper pop music, and its creators should be celebrated in far greater fashion than they are/ Spread the good word, folks.

3 and 1/2 stars from 5

Check out the track Howlin' For You here, or in the player below...

Kylie Auldist - Howlin' For You by Fuse Group Australia

03 November 2012

Friday Freshie: Playlist 'In The Pocket with 90' Fri 2 Nov on Radio Ponsonby













Lots of exciting new music today, with a few selections taken from the excellent Label Love Vol. 5: The Jazz Edition album. The Label Love series is a fantastic one, with a host of excellent record labels (the likes of Tru Thoughts, Impossible Ark, Jazzman & more in this instance) joining forces to promote their artists together. Google and download. Or click here.

Kora | Dream Life
Chrome Canyon | Memories Of A Scientist (Matthewdavid remix)
Knx | Jamfroze
Knx | Ashok
Sara Mitra | April Song
Greg Foat | Girl And Robot With Flowers
Kahil El'Zabar's Ethnics  with Nona Hendryx | It's Time
Nostalgia 77 & The Monster | The Taxidermist
Kenny Cox | Lost My Love
Ivo Neame | American Jesus
Karriem Riggins | Matador
Sade | Jezebel (Finnebassen og Hansebassen remix)
Kora | Story Ain't Over
Sixth Avenue Express | Take You Up
Escort | Starlight (RAC remix)
Kylie Auldist | Howlin' For You
Troyko | Rarebit
Reeno | Eternal Wisdom
Tony Betties | You And I (Isaac Tichauer remix)
John Talabot & Pional | Braves
Stan Smith | Disco Technic (Lay-Far remix)
Jorge Takei with Moku | The Clock
Colonel Red | The Riddle

01 November 2012

Wax Wednesday 7" Special: Playlist Wed 31 Oct 'In The Pocket with 90' on Radio Ponsonby



















Ava Blaste & Lopez | Yesterday's Games
Dedy Dred with Mr Bird | Safari Life
Human Race | Grey Boy
D'Angelo | Really Love (Unreleased Triple J Questlove promo)
Mil | Emily
La Sphere | Pas De Stress
J. Rawls Presents Liquid Crystal Project with Tiffany Page | Too Personal
Opensouls with Ladi 6 | Sweetlove
The Dynamic Set with Liam Bailey | When Will They Learn?
Dave & Ansil Collins | Double Barrel
Dub Asylum | Ba Ba Boom!
Kinny with The Quantic Soul Orchestra | Enough Said
Nicole Willis & The Soul Investigators vs The Dynamics | Feeling Free
Menahan Street Band | Make The Road By Walking
Timonthy Nealy | Sagitarrius Black
Sugar Pie DeSanto | Git Back
Fire | Flight To Cuba
Breakestra | Deuces Up, Double Down (Pt. 1)
The Soul Seven | South Side Funk (Pt. 1)
Marie "Queenie" Lyons | Fever
Coke Escovedo | I Wouldn't Change A Thing
Tuomo | Don't Take It Too Hard
Kool & The Gang | Dujii
Black Cow | Rotation #5
Random Factor with Georg Levin | Move On (The New Mastersounds 7" remix)
The Jazz Invaders | Bonga Bonga Jazz (Aiff remix)
Una Mas Trio | Nova Do Brasil
Willie Bobo | Broasted Or Fried
Syl Johnson | Goodie Goodie Good Times
Eddie Kendricks | Happy

31 October 2012

Review: Kora 'Light Years'













KORA
Light Years
[Kora]

Music is a quite magical thing. One of the few art forms which has the ability to transport the participants to otherworldly places and spaces, music has a transformative quality which has rightly been celebrated throughout the ages, from Count Ossie's Rasta drummers to the whirling dervishes of the Middle East. And in Whakatane, on the East Coast of the North Island of New Zealand. Laughton, Francis, Stuart and Brad Kora, and brother-from-another-mother Dan McGruer, are among those few musicians capable of really moving a listener, and their self-titled debut album from five years back did just that. Hence there's been some pressure on them to prove it wasn't a one-off. So it'd be fair to say that Light Years has been more than merely eagerly awaited. As with all truly good music, the songs take a few listens to properly digest, and with lashings of layered keys and squelchy bass lines, there is a lot to take in. They call it "Alien Funk", which seems appropriate, as many of these tracks have their heads in space, crackling the kind of electric energy Kora have become famous for. There's more hip hop and electronica and less metal than on their debut, but that seems a logical - and welcome - progression for a band still unafraid of breaking out the guitars. Beyond all of that though, this is pop music: a diverse and intoxicating cocktail of future funk and soul science, making for some seriously spaced-out - and really, really good - pop music magic.

 4 stars from 5

Check out the track Dream Life here, or in the player below.

4. Dream Life - Kora by KoraOfficial

30 October 2012

Live at Tin Soldier: All Vinyl Saturdays in November




















I'm excited to be starting a mini-residency at Tin Soldier during November; with their strictly vinyl-only policy and open-minded musical appetite, Saturday nights should be a lot of fun.

The food in the restaurant is, quite frankly, amazing, and the service is spot on. They've a bunch of fancy craft beers, a flash new fitout and now, a bespoke selection of quality music from 6pm every Saturday in November. If I may say so myself.

Nice one.

26 October 2012

Wax Wednesday: Playlist 'In The Pocket with 90' Wed 24 Oct on Radio Ponsonby













Stonephace | Wedgehead Gets Lucky
Eru Dangerspiel | Coq Au Vin
Wild Bill Ricketts Meets Mike Fabulous | Riki
Freddie Cruger with Desmond Foster | Movin' Amongst The Madness
Colonel Red | Blue Eyed Blak
Sasso with Diane Charlemagne | Hold On Tight
Hint with Laura Vane | Keep Your Shirt On
Astoria | Discomotion
Spiritual South & Sweetalker Sleepwalker | Hullabaloo
Big Bang with Xan Blacq & Rasiyah | Dancin' Nights (Daz-I-Kue remix)
Brotherly | Put It Out
Mark Force & Kaidi Tatham Present Blakai with Bembe Segue | Afrospace
Jazzanova with Shaun Escoffery | Boom Clacky Boom Klack (Mr Scruff vocal mix)
Future Beat Investigators | All I Want
Christian Prommer's Drumlesson | All Around The World
Quantic Soul Orchestra with Noelle Scaggs | Lead Us To The End
Kokolo | Mama Don't Want No Gun (Beatfanatic remix)
The Daktaris | Quiet Man Is Dead Man
Me&You | Last Night

24 October 2012

Review: The Hot 8 Brass Band 'The Life & Times Of'













THE HOT 8 BRASS BAND
The Life And Times Of
[Tru Thoughts]

Truly funky music speaks to the listener regardless of how polished it is, what genre it is, or when it was recorded. Truly funky music can be painstakingly put together electronica or loose-limbed organic live playing. Despite the good work of the Godfather, it has little to do with "the one", just ask Tony Allen or Sly Dunbar. Hell, even a brass band can be truly, mind-blowingly funky, just take a listen to The Hot 8 Brass Band. Direct from the Second Line streets of New Orleans and breaking out of the city with the most lively and energetic version of Marvin Gaye's classic Sexual Healing these ears have ever encountered, the band's debut album dropped in 2007 on Tru Thoughts. Coming through the horrific experiences of Hurricane Katrina and losing several members of their group (two to street violence) has been taxing for the Hot 8, but they've returned with a brand new album, proving they're no one-trick pony. The Life And Times Of is a trip. A beautifully vibrant and raggedly funky brass band take on soul, funk and hip hop, the record is far from being slickly produced - but the sheer exuberance they've captured among the warts and all is nothing short of infectious. With a clutch of original tunes alongside covers of Basement Jaxx's Bingo Bango and The Specials' Ghost Town, it's clear that while these guys are serious about playing brass instruments, they don't take themselves too seriously. Recommended.

3 and 1/2 stars from 5

Radio Ponsonby: Sunday Vinyl Session at Britomart Country Club




















Once a month the good folks from the Britomart Sunday Service at the BCC invite a bunch of DJs from Radio Ponsonby to come down and spin a bunch of records. And records it is, with an all-vinyl policy ruling the roost at the venue currently. I wholeheartedly support this kind of endeavour. Come and join me, with A.D.A.M., the Sunday Shuffle DJs (Kris Holmes and Nettie Page) and Yam Jams' own Rohan St. Claire this Sunday, from 2pm til 8pm (when the movie starts).

All free fun for all the family. Bet you can't beat me at mini golf, either.

23 October 2012

Wax Wednesday: Playlist 'In The Pocket with 90' Wed 17 Oct on Radio Ponsonby












Huba | Mary
Deodato | Super Strut
Bossa 70 | Berimbau
Massak | B.L.A.
Antibalas Afrobeat Orchestra with Mayra Vega | Che Che Cole Makossa
Kabuki with Cleveland Watkiss | After The Fire
Kinny & Horne | Us On Fire
Sly & The Revolutionaries | L.S.D.
Toots & The Maytals | Pressure Drop
Quantic Soul Orchestra | Walkin' Through Tomorrow (TM Juke remix)
A Soulful Sound | Qualified In Keef (JDeep edits)
Willis | Word Up
Ned Doheny | Get It Up For Love
Stevie Wonder | Don't You Worry 'Bout A Thing
Rufus with Chaka Khan | Circles
Clyde Alexander | Got To Get Your Love
James Brown | Funky Drummer
Betty Padgett | Sugar Daddy (Pt. 1)
Soft Touch | Plenty Action
Olympic Runners | Wooden Head
MFSB | Summertime
Mighty Ryders | Evil Vibrations
Eddie Kendricks | Body Talk
Darondo | Legs (Pt. 1)
Breakestra | How Do You Really Feel? (Cut Chemist Atkins edit)


11 October 2012

Wax Wednesday "Stones Throw Special": Playlist 'In The Pocket with 90' Wed 10 Oct on Radio Ponsonby














Today's Wax Wednesday show was dedicated to playing vinyl only taken from the L.A.-based Stones Throw Records, and its' subsidiary label Now Again. Originally seen as a hip hop label, the Peanut Butter Wolf-initiated outfit have branched out into all manner of musical mischief, but I've not strayed too far from the roots of it all with this two hour selection, as listed below.

I got all nerdy on it and listed the catalogue numbers of the pieces of wax too. Just in case.

Aloe Blacc | Patria Mia [STH2137]
Connie Price & The Keystones | Sticks And Stones [NA5020]
L.A. Carnival | Blind Man [STH7024]
Lil' Lavair & The Fabulous Jades | Cold Heat [NA5017-1]
Soul Seven | Mr Chicken ---- [NA2005]
Ebony Rhythm Band | Soul Heart Transplant [NA5011-1]
The Detroit Sex Machines | Rap It Together + Funky Crawl (J-Rocc's edit) [NA5016]
Kashmere Stage Band | I Wish (Todd Terry remix) [NA5025]
Myron & E. with the Soul Investigators | Cold Game [NA7020]
Leon Mitchison & The Eastex Freeway Band | Street Scene [NA5018]
Dayton Sidewinders | Slippin' Into Darkness [NA5017-1]
Willie Bobo | Broasted Or Fried [NA7014]
Mayer Hawthorne & The County | Just Ain't Gonna Work Out [STH7028]
Jaylib | The Red (inst.) [STH2061]
J-Rocc | Play This (One) [STH2054]
Mr Magic & Pookie Blow | Earth Break [STH2056]
Charizma & Peanut Butter Wolf | Devotion [STH2077]
Madvillain with Lord Quas | America's Most Blunted [STH2065]
Peanut Butter Wolf | Summer's End [STH2043]
J Dilla | Crushin' (inst.) [STH4021]
Dam-Funk | When 80MPH Feels Like 20 [STH7033]
Dam-Funk | Brookside Park [STH2225]
Yesterday's New Quintet | Visions [STH2086]
Yesterday's New Quintet | Papa [STH2040]
Yesterday's New Quintet | Elle's Theme [STH2034]
Koushik | Winter Sun + One In A Day [STH2069]
Breakestra | Sister Sanctified [STH2055]
Aloe Blacc | Take Me Back [STH2246]

09 October 2012

Review: David Byrne & St. Vincent 'Love This Giant'














DAVID BYRNE & ST. VINCENT
Love This Giant
[Todo Mundo / 4AD]

I love it when this happens. When the real thing eclipses the hype. When it's not just-as-good-as-it-says-on-the-tin, but better. Because, when does that really ever happen? Here, with hipster godfather David Byrne (that's meant as a compliment, btw) and St. Vincent aka Annie Clark, via an intriguing collaboration released in the form of debut album Love This Giant. I've said it before etc. but often the end result of these kinds of star-crossed musical meetings is less than pleasing. That is not the case here. Love This Giant is a satisfyingly engaging and enlivening listen, almost throughout. While more often (surprisingly) funky, there are times I feel I'm listening to a musical, and it's obvious why: brass. Lots of brass, and saxophones, and tubas, and such. With guests Antibalas and Sharon Jones' backing band The Dap-Kings on board though, and with some exceptional drum programming, it's one of the coolest musicals ever. But it's a David Byrne and St. Vincent record, are we surprised the musical backdrop is so, well, unexpected? Not really. What is a surprise is how well these two work together vocally, trading inter-locking lines and straight duets with Byrne's characteristically plaintive and robust wail seldom dominating St. Vincent's more gentle, ethereal touch. The analogy of the beauty and the beast has been applied by some, and the folk tale reference is apt; Love This Giant suggests Byrne and Clark have stumbled upon some twisted kind of old folk music and breathed new life into it. Wonderful.


4 stars from 5

Check out the song Who, taken from the Love This Giant album, or link to their website here

 

The Taste Of: Playlist 'In The Pocket with 90' Tue 9 Oct on Radio Ponsonby













Every Tuesday on 'In The Pocket with 90' I'll be laying down 'The Taste Of', a selection of music with a common thread running through. It could be locality, genre or label features, it might even be DJ-mixes or compilations; whatever it is, I'll be looking to give you a taste of my take on things.

This week, it's The Taste Of: Lazer Funk, Raw Disco and Cosmic Boogie.

Lalo Schifrin | Quiet Village
Bob James | Nightcrawlers
Pyramid Plus | Comin' At Ya
Deodato | Keep On Movin'
Plush | Free And Easy
Esther Williams | I'll Be Your Pleasure
The Fatback Band | Let The Drums Speak
Gonzalez | (I Want To Get) Closer To You
Lakeside | Fantastic Voyage
Jacqui & The Rumor | Just Don't Break-A-My Heart (inst.)
Linx | The Ice Is Melting
Side On | A Magic Version
Zalmac | What's In It For Me?
Sumy | Soul With Milk
Yo Yo Dance | Kabbala
Sylvester | I Need You (unreleased mix)
K.I.D. | Don't Stop
Atmosfear | Extra Special
MdCL Presents Sy Smith | Teena (Lovergirl Syberized)
Karlmarx Project | OSC

Club Connoisseurs: Playlist Mon 8 Oct













Every Monday evening here in Auckland at Chapel Bar & Bistro, a handful of keen vinyl enthusiasts gather to share a corner of their record collections. It's called Club Connoisseurs, and it's been a labour of love for those involved; but not without real reward. Some of the DJs involved really mix up the styles and genres, so it can go in most any direction.

I played an all 7"s set tonight, and being that I kept the records in order after playing them, I thought I'd throw the setlist up here. What is a blog for if not shameless self-promotion and rampant egoism? Good, glad we're in agreement there. Here are the records.

Patchworks & Mr Day | Brothers On The Slide (The Dynamics edit)
Soul II Soul | Jazzie's Groove (Jazzie's 7")
Opensouls | Turn It Up! (Submariner Meets Opensouls and Killamanraro Uptown)
Erykah Badu | Honey (DJ Day remix)
The Dynamic Set with Liam Bailey | I'm Gonna Miss You
Dub Asylum | Ba Ba Boom!
Nicole Willis & The Soul Investigators vs The Dynamics | Feeling Free
Bongmaster Inc. | Brothers And Sisters
Marvin Gaye | What's Going On (Truth And Rights remix)
D'Angelo | Use Me (live)
Quantic & His Combo Barbaro | Linda Morena
Una Mas Trio | Son Montuno
Quantic Presenta Flowering Inferno | Ciudad Del Swing (version)
Chic | Sao Paulo
Sugar Pie Desanto | Git Back
George Baker Selection | Little Green Bag
Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings | How Long Do I Have To Wait For You?
Sly & The Family Stone | Luv n' Haight
Rufus feat. Chaka Khan | Rags To Rufus (inst.)
Desmond Dekker | You Can Get It If You Really Want
The Dynamics | Move On Up
Althea & Donna | Up Town Top Ranking
This Kid Named Miles | Ring Of Fire
Son Of Dave | Low Rider

08 October 2012

Monday Melt: Playlist 'In The Pocket with 90' Mon 8 Oct on Radio Ponsonby












Some radio stations thrust their listeners into the working week, pummeling tender ears/souls with insistent and urgent musics, when we know you'd really rather be gently massaged through Mondays. Well, check this out. You're sorted, with the 'Monday Melt', a bespoke selection of proper music, designed to ease you back into your week; with no kicking or screaming required, this is the radio equivalent of effective gentle persuasion.

Ooft! | Mazin' (ruffjam)
LNTG | Come Inside Me
Duff Disco | Fame
DJ Steef | Simply Beautiful
Gazeebo | Shiny Lust
Soul II Soul | Fairplay
The Glue | Our Love Is An Edit
Loose Ends | Hanging On A String (Frankie Knuckles club mix)
Next Evidence | It's Only Right
Totalcult | Fire-Breathing Fists (Charlie Sheen vs Cypress Hill)
The Black Seeds | Rotten Apples (Lowman's 'Block Rockin' Beats' remix)
Ladi 6 | Dark Brown
Nightmares On Wax | Passion
Gecko Turner | Monosabio Blues
Bebel Gilberto | Ceu Distante (DJ Spinna remix)
Harlem Zip Code | Where Will You Go?
Oneself | Unfamiliar Places
Raphael Saadiq aka Ray Ray | This One
Stevie Wonder | Uptight (Grant Phabao remix)
Dubxanne | Walking On The Moon (dub)
Zapp | Computer Love
Weldon Irvine | Music Is The Key
Ramsey Lewis | My Love For You

Bumps: Nature 'The Prep'












It's not often I update the 'Bumps' section of this blog, but that's the case today, as we enjoy a touch of '80s disco rap straight outta Minnesota (y'all), courtesy of Nature, with The Prep. Massive thanks to the fine, upstanding gentlemen at the Beat Electric blogspot for posting the track in the first place.


Nature - The Prep by bro90

05 October 2012

Friday Freshie: Playlist 'In The Pocket with 90' Fri 5 Oct on Radio Ponsonby














The 'Friday Freshie' is an excuse to break out the brand new (to me) material I've acquired over the past week or so. Today I pillaged the new Tokyo Dawn Records compilation The Boogie Vol. 3 (which I recently reviewed) for much of the music - though there were also a number of new bits from the wonderful House Of Disco label, and some other pieces from indeterminate sources.

Here's the playlist. Follow the links if you're that way inclined. I often am.

Yellowtail | Back To The Melody (Opolopo remix)
Kris Mars | Night Falls
Rakotep | Get Up
J-Felix with Jake Jon | The Green Light
Maze Hill | Long Haul (LV remix)
The Nextmen vs Joe Dukie | Hold Me Now
Sunshine Anderson | Heard It All Before (Angle "Let It Go" edit)
Amalia & Reggie B | Hysteria
Blaktroniks with Alicia Renee aka Blue Eyes | It's All Right Now
Positive Flow with Heidi Vogel | Children Of The Sun
Chrome Canyon | Generations
The Heavy | What Makes A Good Man? (Kenny Dope remix)
The Nextmen vs Joe Dukie | Blow Wind Blow
Teeko | Tenshun (You And I Are You)
Reeno | Eternal Wisdom
The Beloved | Sweet Harmony (Sommerstad remix)
Tony Betties | You And I (Isaac Tichauer remix)
Sixth Avenue Express | Ain't No Use
Frank Booker | Hope
Martino | Reasons (Sigg Buggz remix)
Colonel Red | The Riddle
Stan Smith | Disco Technic (Lay-Far remix)
Wagon Cookin with Gabriela Smith | All The Night
Al Velila with Opolopo | Fearless
Cosmonauts | Love Me Tonight
Cajmere | Chit Chat (Clubhouse remix)
Firas | Stray (Aashton & Swift remix)

(Anything I haven't linked to in the above playlist was taken from The Boogie Vol. 3, which you can link and listen to here.)

03 October 2012

Review: The Cactus Channel 'Haptics'














THE CACTUS CHANNEL
Haptics
[Hope Street Recordings]

Raw, unadulterated funk seems to ooze out of Melbourne like some kind of primordial soup. Or there's something in the water, at least; because, while Australian hip hop is truly stuck in a quagmire, Aussie funk music is on another planet. As if further proof was required, young (like, still-in-their-teens young) 10-piece band The Cactus Channel,  hailing from Melbs, have just released their debut album, Haptics. Real and nasty instrumental funk and soul music, recorded straight to analogue tape and with little regard for anything other than getting a crowded dance floor hot and sweaty, Haptics is a rough and ready (1970s movie car-chase scene) ride through hard funk, swingin' boogaloo and deep soul. Yes, at times this is jarring, with blaring horns relentlessly rubbing against the grooves laid down by the loose-limbed rhythm section; but it is also endlessly exciting at the same time - exactly how funk music should be. And to be fair, hearing this music played in a live environment, while jammed into a little room with a cluster of like-minded folks, with a beer in one hand and your girl in the other would be something else. Bands like (countrymen) The Bamboos and NY's Dap-Kings and The Menahan Street Band spring to mind, as do Eddie Bo, The Blackbyrds and The J-Bs; but this is more than a pastiche - it's a clever amalgamation of a handful of different funk and soul styles, which keeps the listener's attention throughout, with all the right boxes ticked: big fat horns, scratchy guitars, thick layers of keys and bass, heavy-handed drums and some fantastically arranged tunes. All up, a remarkable and impressive debut.

3 and 1/2 stars from 5

Have a listen to the album below or at this link. I recommend it.


The Cactus Channel - Haptics by HopeStreet Recordings

Wax Wednesday: Playlist 'In The Pocket with 90' on Radio Ponsonby Wed 3 Oct














Wednesday is all about the vinyl. New and old, clean and dusty, albums and singles. Here is the order in which they found themselves played today.

Kahil El'Zabar | He's Got The Whole World In His Hands (Henrik Schwarz remix)
Scott Grooves with Roy Ayers | Expansions (12" mix)
Fat Freddy's Drop | Hope (3 Generations Walking remix)
Fat Freddy's Drop | Hope (MKL vs Soy sos dub)
Zeb | Afrodubcidal
Earth, Wind & Fire | All In The Way (Reel People club mix)
The Rebirth | Everybody Say Yeah
IG Culture Presents Zen Badizm | Girl U Need A Change Of Mind
Akasha | Brown Sugar
Beyond There with Arcee, Yungun & Jhest | Slumber
Sa-Ra Creative Partners | Powder Bump
Starkey with Anneka | Stars
Hudson Mohawke | Rising 5
Dam-Funk | Burgundy City
Beatless | Life Mirrors
Red Astaire | Tito
Freddie Cruger with Linn | Pretty Little Thing
Scritti Politti  with Mos Def | Tinseltown To The Boogiedown (Ali Shaheed Muhammed variation)
Solaa  with Hollie Smith | Keep On
Teddy Rok | Nelson
Greyboy | Unwind Your Mind
Eva Be with David Ben-Porat | Trippin' On Eva Be
J*Davey | Dirty Love

26 September 2012

Review: The Boogie Vol. 3














Various Artists
THE BOOGIE VOL. 3
[Tokyo Dawn Records]

Boogie. A widely mis-used word. Rather like 'disco', which has so many negative connotations it actively scares some folks off using it. The word 'boogie' has many different meanings to many different people. Some music lovers might think of the guitar-led, foot-stompin' 12-bar workouts of ZZ Top or Lynyrd Skynyrd; while some would associate it with the likes of Dam Funk or perhaps Chromeo; while others still would refer us all back to Kleeer or Zapp for some schooling. Consistently strong independent label Tokyo Dawn though, point us in another direction. The Boogie Vol. 3 is a 17-song compilation which assembles a slice of boogie circa-2012, with selections from across the globe (Coco Solid open the comp with Wow). From the J Dilla-esque bounce of Get Up by Rakotep (aka Stacey Epps and Astronote) to Blaktroniks' sultry nu soul number It's All Right Now, featuring a suitably seductive sounding Alicia Rae aka Blue Eyes; from Colonel Red's banging (and almost bruq) The Riddle, to the mad-sounding '80s drum machines and distorted vocals of Erik Rico's epic Electromagnetic; and anything that has Opolopo involved in any way ( !! ), The Boogie Vol. 3 is varied and strong. While there's an undeniable influence of hip hop in many of the tracks, the weirdness and funk shine through and keep the boogie front and centre. Essentially, if spaced-out p-funk, lush vocals and soulful hip hop sounds like your bag, you need to check this. It's boogie, but perhaps not as we've known it.

4 stars from 5

Check out some snippets from the album below, or go to the Tokyo Dawn site here.


Tokyo Dawn Records - The Boogie Volume 3 by Tokyo Dawn Records

Wax Wednesday: Playlist 26th Sept 'In The Pocket with 90'














Another Wenerei, another reason to bring out the wax. All vinyl, all love.

Quantic & His Combo Barbaro | The Dreaming Mind (Pt. 1)
Cal Tjader | Soul Burst
Bukky Leo & Black Egypt | Skeleton
Sugar Minott | Give The People What They Want
Peter Tosh | Ketchy Shuby
Gotan Project meets Chet Baker | Round Midnight
Joy Denalane with Lupe Fiasco | Change
Moka Only | Lowdown Suite
Havana | Shine
Kenn Starr, Asheru & Talib Kweli | If
Open Sky Unit | Sunshine Star
Lefties Soul Connection | Doin' The Thing
Breakestra | Show And Prove
DJ Einstein & MC Zaakir | Haves and Have Nots
Nancy Wilson | Sunshine
The Hot 8 Brass Band | Sexual Healing
Antibalas | Big Man
Afrodisiac Sound System | Raygun Kills
Killer Funk Disco Allstars | Larry Levangelical (Born Again edit)
Raul Orellana | The Real Wild House (Wild mix)
Horace Silver | Won't You Open Up Your Senses?
Jazzanova | L.O.V.E. and You and I
Lord Newborn & The Magic Skulls | Just A Phaseshifter I'm Going Through

24 September 2012

Review: Various Artists 'Private Wax'














Various Artists
PRIVATE WAX
Super Rare Boogie & Disco 
[BBE]

This is the kind of compilation which gets nerdy record loving guys of my ilk very hot under the collar indeed. Lovingly put together by a completely obsessed record collector who works in the renowned Reckless Records in London's Berwick Street, Private Wax is an excursion through some of the most excitingly raw and real disco and boogie tracks ever pressed. Not just any old pressings, mind, these fifteen tunes are by genuinely independent artists who had these songs privately pressed to vinyl; an obsessiveness only matched by the fellow who put this collection together. The man we should thank for tracking down (or stumbling upon) this super rare boogie and disco goes by the name Zaf (his Zafsmusic.com website is well worth a look for anyone searching for really, really rare vinyl records), and his taste is immaculate. It's difficult to single out songs from a compilation of such quality as this, but being that I'm writing on a blog, I feel I must: Party Track by Mr Fox takes a ride on a squiggly synth riff which winds its' way through Marvin Gaye's Got To Give It Up via The Gap Band; Chuck Strong frees up a cracking version of the Willie Hutch-penned, Gwen McRae-sung boogie classic Doin' It; and smooth-ass Chicagoans Yohon raise the temperature with Fly With Me, throwing the kitchen sink of disco elements - including laser sounds - at an effortless groove and Jackson 5-alike vocal performance. Flawlessly funky from top to bottom, this set is a sure-fire floor-filler at the most discerning of disco and boogie parties. Next time you're having one of those eparties, make sure you do two things: a) play this, and b) invite me please.

4 stars from 5

For an extra special 45min mix by DJ Chris Read, check this link. I recommend you do.

Friday Freshie: Playlist 21st Sept 'In The Pocket with 90' on Radio Ponsonby














Fridays on 'In The Pocket with 90' on Radio Ponsonby are all about keeping it FRESH. Fresh new music, fresh suggestions for your weekend's entertainment and a fresh approach to life. After all, the weekend is within sniffing distance. Here's the playlist for the Friday Freshie:

The Broken Orchestra with Natalie Gardiner | Over & Over
Blu & Exile | Maybe One Day
Get Down Edits | Sneakin' In The Back
Funkommunity | The Light
Estere | Cruel Charlie
Visioneers | Ice Cream On My Kicks
Mayer Hawthorne | Work To Do
Sola Rosa | Lion's Den
Dub Asylum | Skavoovie
Esther Philips | Home Is Where The Hatred Is (Shmix edit)
Stevie Wonder | Golden Lady (Scrimshire edit)
Satin Jackets v Aaliyah | Rock The Boat (edit)
Slow Hands | Rhabarbarum (original)
Lou Teti | Dare Me
Only Children | Down Fever
Haggis Horns | The Traveller (Pt. 2)
? | Cokehead (edit)
Bondax | Baby I Got That (Justin Martin 'Endless Summer' remix)
Aurra | Make Up Your Mind (Space Duke remix)
Onur Engin | Brisk (original)
Jade | Every Day Of The Week (Finnebassen remix)
Boogie Culture | Lipstick

19 September 2012

Wax Wednesday: Playlist 19th Sept 'In The Pocket with 90' on Radio Ponsonby
















Every Wednesday is "Wax Wednesday" between 12-2pm on Radio Ponsonby. Here is the playlist from today's show:

Rocket Juice & The Moon with Erykah Badu | Manuela
Tony Allen | Kilode (Waajeed rework)
Big Bang with Rasiyah | To The Full Every Minute (Yam Who? rework)
Platinum Pied Pipers | Pigeon Hole
Assembly Line | Cosmic Ballad
Julien Dyne with Parks | Stained Glass Fresh Frozen
Electric Wire Hustle | Perception
House Shoes | The Makings
James Pants | Crystal Lite
Van Hunt | If I Take You Home
Krystal Klear | Tried For Your Love
Claws For? | Colour Theory
Disco Tom | Goldie's Boogie
Slow & Local | All The Way Down (We Love Esther)
Unknown Artist | Climbing Girl
The Gap Band | Baby Baba Boogie
James Brown | Star Generation
Snowboy with Anna Ross | Girl Overboard
Windjammer | Tossing And Turning
Joe Bataan | Ordinary Guy
Johnnie Taylor | Please Don't Stop (That Song From Playing)
L.A. Carnival | Flyin'
Mayer Hawthorne | Just Ain't Gonna Work Out

In The Pocket with 90 NOW ON Radio Ponsonby!















In The Pocket with 90 now EXCLUSIVELY on Radio Ponsonby 107.7FM and streaming live on www.radioponsonby.co.nz, every weekday from 12-2pm.

I'm stoked to join me old mate Murry Sweetpants on the radio Monday-Friday, as he hosts the stations' Breakfast Show on a daily basis. We're just about to make a move into the brand new Ponsonby Central development on the corner of Richmond and Ponsonby Roads - at which time you'll be able to come in and have a chat with us as we spin tunes live on the radio.

Radio Ponsonby 107.7FM
www.radioponsonby.co.nz

13 September 2012

Review: Seva Hi Fi 'Early'














SEVA HI FI
Early
[Sugarlicks]

There's a well-known and very successful New Zealand group called Fat Freddy's Drop who have earned the misnomer 'BBQ reggae'. I have issues with this for many reasons - not least that the bands' music is remarkably forward-thinking within a genre that's generally fairly limited in its scope for experimentation - but also because there are albums far more deserving of that label than Freddys' ground-breaking and best-selling debut album Based On A True Story. Like Early, the debut set from Seva Hi Fi, for example. The first release on locally-based label Sugarlicks in five years, Early is a collaboration between producer/Sugarlicks founder Gareth Farry (aka Gmuva), percussionist Levani Vosasi and musician/vocalist Baz Suamili. The three key players blend not only cultures (New Zealand-Lebanese, Fijian and Niuean) but also technologies, with an ambitious mix of traditional Island sounds, analog synths and modern electronica. The high point is undoubtedly the lead single, Pressures Of Life, which has a killer hook and features the vocal talents of Nat Rose. Unfortunately, it's all downhill from there. Early is an inconsistent, patchy affair, with too few moments musically which match the heights of that first single. There are other good songs - Starting Up, Til I Make You Move - but even these run out of steam a minute or two before they actually end. Lyrically it's a little disappointing also, with lazy cliches (who uses the words "struggles and strife" anymore?) and predictable messages of remaining positive despite the 'pressures of life'. However, in an effort to end this review in that same spirit of positivity I can highly recommend Early as perfect fodder for your next BBQ.

2 stars from 5

Please check out the fantastic lead single from this album right here:

Seva Hifi - Pressures of Life (radio edit) by Sugarlixx Studio

10 September 2012

Playlist: George FM 'In The Pocket' Sun 9 Sept














The Nomad with Farda P | 141
Sola Rosa with Olivier Daysoul | Wiggle
Duff Disco | Moy
Elias Tzikas | The One
Heartbreak Sound | Brown Sugar
Erykah Badu | Bump It
The Reflex | What's Goin' On
Raphael Saadiq | Skyy, Can You Feel Me?
Chet Faker | No Diggity
Tony Ansell | Softly As In A Morning Sunrise
Tosca | Chocolate Elvis
Greg Perry | Come Fly With Me
The Beatles | Don't Let Me Down (Gramatik edit)
The Dynamics | 90% Of Me Is You
Harry J Allstars | Liquidator (Leftside Wobble edit)
Lowe 1 & Jordinary K | Dubble-O-Revolution
Roy Ayers | We Live In Brooklyn Baby
VKTA | Don't Explain
Copycat | Nautilus
Stevie Wonder | Golden Lady (Scrimshire edit)
Appo | Getaway
Slowhymn | Revival
Sleeve | Hipness

08 September 2012

Review: DJ Vadim 'Don't Be Scared'














DJ VADIM
Don't Be Scared
[BBE]

DJ Vadim is one of those artists who has always managed to skirt around the edges of the mainstream without any apparent interest in engaging with it. He's been playing his trade for almost twenty years, initially via his own label, Jazz Fudge, and then through renowned indies Ninja Tune and now BBE. His new record Don't Be Scared, is something like his seventh solo album, and it sits alongside a raft of other work, including joint efforts - the outstanding One Self and The Electric projects among them - and countless remixes, re-works, collaborations and such. One aspect of his career that is without question is his desire to keep pushing his sound forward, constantly looking to the next thing, the fresh approach, the excitingly new. Don't Be Scared is no different - but that's not to say it all works all of the time. There's an incredible array of influences and styles present here, with bass-heavy dubstep and treacle-thick hip hop beats the main basis; but the overall feeling is that this particular pudding has been considerably over-egged. All is not lost, as there are some great tracks on here - Lost My Love with the oustanding Jazz Bailey on vocals, and Set Them Free, featuring Sabira Jade, being the highlights - but even the "merely" good tracks (I'm Feeling You, Lemon Haze) outstay their welcome and the album quickly loses its charm. While I admire what Vadim is endeavouring to achieve, I'm just not convinced he has nailed this one. Don't Be Scared? Don't be disappointed.

2 & 1/2 stars from 5

22 August 2012

Review: Sola Rosa 'High And Beyond, Low And Behold'














SOLA ROSA
Low And Behold, High And Beyond
[Rosa Recordings]

During the late '90s I was managing a music retail store in Auckland's Queen Street when an only marginally older Andrew Spraggon showed up hawking a box of CDs. I was vaguely familiar with him via local post-rock outfit Cicada, but the Starter For 4 EP from his brand new Sola Rosa solo project was not what I was expecting: "Kind of like spaghetti western hip hop", I vaguely recall him telling me. I paid for the CDs using money from the till without telling the boss - and, thankfully, we went on to sell many, many more copies. Time has passed, I'm no longer in music retail and Sola Rosa has been going from strength to strength. Low And Behold, High And Beyond is their fifth album, and one which sees them now more than ever functioning as a group rather than a solo project. There have been other changes since those early EPs too: where they certainly inhabited that space Spraggon described to me initially, their last album Get It Together and the new album both seem to have been geared towards the masses. This is slickly produced and cleverly arranged soul and funk music with its head in the clouds of pop music, and just enough rough edges to keep the listener intrigued. With Low And Behold... Sola Rosa have delivered an album of consistently high quality. Besides a rollcall of guest musicians, there are also a handful of guest vocalists involved, with locals LA Mitchell (who appears on three tracks) and Ned Worboys, and internationals Olivier Daysoul and Miles Bonny appearing, alongside regular contributor Spikey Tee. Daysoul provides two of the albums' many highlights with the opening track Promise (which you can check out below) and the obscenely funky Wiggle, while Mitchell proves she's worthy of the hype with a fantastic performance on the closing track Loveless. Interestingly, the other highlight is the album's sole instrumental, Lion's Den, which just goes to show Spraggon and his band are well capable of making a glorious racket all on their own. Still mad decent after all these years.

4 stars from 5

Check out the album-opener, Promise, featuring Olivier Daysoul, right here. And I encourage you to dig a little deeper - and purchase a damned copy...

Promise Ft. Olivier Daysoul by Sola Rosa

You can also check out Sweetpants and I speaking about Low And Behold, High And Beyond on the radio, for the Radio Ponsonby Record Review, on Murry Sweetpants' Breakfast Show, The Long Black...

Record Review - Sola Rosa by Radio Ponsonby

15 August 2012

Club Connoisseurs Playlist: Mon 13 Aug














Every Monday evening from 6pm some of Auckland's most keen lovers of vinyl share some of their collection for Club Connoisseurs, at Chapel Bar. This week I had the great pleasure of playing a number of tunes, alongside Messrs Murray Cammick and Jay Jeffrey. Hallowed company, indeed. My selection included these tunes...

Cal Tjader | Soul Burst
Etta James & Jimmy Smith | I Just Want To Make Love To You
D'Angelo | Spanish Joint
Rocket Juice & The Moon with Erykah Badu | Manuela
Bukky Leo & Black Egypt | Skeleton
Nancy Wilson | Sunshine
Breakout | Planet Rock (Jazz version)
The Lions with Noelle | Think (About It)
The Rebirth | Evil Vibrations
The Congoes | Fisherman
Sugar Minott | Give The People What They Want
Yesterday's New Quintet | Too High
Sinclair | Ain't No Casanova
Quincy Jones | The Dude
Cymande | It's Magic
Charles Earland | Comin' To You Live
Toshiki Kadomatsu | Step Into The Light (Onur Engin edit)
Corky McClerkin | Searchin' For The Soul

12 August 2012

Playlist: George FM 'In The Pocket' Sun 12 Aug













Sly & Robbie Meets Howie B | Into Battle
Micronism | Constructing Space
Benjamin Damage & Doc Daneeka | Creeper
Harry Wolfman | Nightmares On Acid
Vladivostok | Sustain This! (Berghmeister's Bam! Bad Boy Rip)
Blind Melon | No Rain (DJ Kue edit)
Ed Wizard & Double Dee | Magnificent
Jersey Street | It's A Beautiful Thing
Cole Medina | On Fire
Ben Browning | I Can't Stay
Markas | Love (edit)
Psychemagik | Boogie Drome
DJ Agent 86 | Give It To Me Baby
Jadoo | Kings & Queens
Stars On 33 | Something I Can Feel
Parliament | Chocolate City
Letta Mbulu | Kilimanjaro (The Revenge edit)
Jerrome Derradji | NYCom
Jadoo | She Can't Hate You
Keep Schtum | I Want You For Myself
Superbreak | That Loving Feeling
Kastil | Baltimore Thunder