Craze-Fabriclive 38 (Fabric) (UK)
After a steady onslaught of white guy overbite techno from zee Germans, Fabric finally swerves things back into territory that I can relate to a little more-ghetto and bass music. Growing up in Cali and having been exposed to the legendary Los Angeles AM radio station KDAY as a young teen to ghetto beats and electro from cats like Mantronix and the World Class Wreckin Cru played more of a role in my musical development than those from the land of Detroit or Chicago. Forget any preconceptions, Craze drops a dope mix of ghetto, turntablist flare, and some brand new booty breaks that have some real dancefloor power. Imagine the best elements of Diplo's Fabriclive mix fused to the newer moves of Tayo's mix from last year. Both of those mixes were untouchable in my opinion so a mix that strips out only the best of those two and adds even more ghetto to me is a modern day classic. Finally a mix that adds something to the genre. Leave it to the supposed hip hop turntablist dude to show us how a real American DJ mix made.
DJ Dolores-1 Real (Crammed)(US)
Brazilian music is great, some of the absolutely best music in the world. It's one of the few places along with India that you can hear her music and know instantly where it comes from. Unfortunately, being such a big country with most of it's population centers in the southeast most of what comes to us via import are the musics popular in Sao Paulo, Rio, and Bahia-samba and bossa nova. Sadly that neglects the regions of the northeast and the entire Amazon basin interior of the world's fifth largest country in size. These regions are much poorer and filled with the bulk of the country's native populations. This schism has led to developments of different styles in cities such as Brasilia and Recife-forro and Jovem Guarda. It is here that DJ Dolores begins his political journey into the one things many Brazilians have longed for-unity and peace through song and dance. Imagine one of our presidential candidates espousing such a message, it would be unheard of and yet not unwelcome. The album cleverly titled after the name of one Brazilian dollar spreads a populist message with a political agenda fusing fiery agitprop with the everything but the kitchen sink styles of forro, dub reggae, and even rock. These 13 tracks are also well-augmented by electronics as well as hints of the 1960s Jovem Guarda sounds of revolutionary groups such as Os Mutantes. It's a good collection that sounds far less commercial than the ponytailed white guy comps that Luaka Bop is constantly sending me.
Workidz-Washmachine EP (CD single)(Toolroom Trax)(UK)
Part of Toolroom's brand new "Leaders Of The New School" series, Workidz (nee David Nagy) hails from Hungary-a serious hotspot for this here blog. His debut for the label has him dropping some seriously deep and proggy minimal ala Dubfire and less like Mr. Fingers despite any similarity in track titles. "Washmachine" is the club banger in that Mark Knight steez I've apparently become a sucker for, "Twisted" is an electro-bass cut and plays better to the electro and fidget crowds, while "Big Wave" is the weakest of the three adding little more than the "southern rock" cowbell to "Twisted" basic skeleton. Hard to hate on the cowbell but as always I find a way. Solid cut that will see "Washmachine" getting the lion's share of the play during the late winter/early spring months.
ATFC-Ya Killin Me EP (CD single)(Toolroom)(UK)
Hard to believe this was the dude who gave the world dross like "In & Out Of My Life" and "Bad Habit" but ATFC proves he still has some shake in his bake with his latest for Toolroom. The A-side as usual leaves me pretty cold, too proggy for the crowds here and more on the "Essential Show" commercial tip. Actually it reminds a little of DJ Dan and y'all know how I feel about that guy. The b-side "Mothership" is the real draw here with three different remixes. The Bart B More is again too much in Pete Tong's radar to be in mine and in a major bummer scene Mark Knight's remix, while dark, isn't up to his usual standards of quality. The real winner here is the original club mix of the b-side, a seriously dark and underground club banger and vocals that the P-Funk army would truly appreciate.
4Hero-Morning Child EP (CD single)(Milan)(US)
Part of the ongoing journey that is 4Hero in America. If there were ever heroes that the electronic music community could anoint it would be these mofos. They have been involved in every innovation of the sound over the past twenty years. That's what made Play For The Changes kinduva letdown for me, the retreat back to the Chicago soul sound of the early 70s plays less like changes than settling for defeat in America. The album's leadoff track "Morning Child" continues the duo's fascination with Minnie Ripperton featuring soundalike vocals courtesy of Carina Andersson. However, despite any complaints to the contrary you'll be hard pressed to find me not playing the dark, head snapping remix by Massive Attack's Daddy G or the classy horny, horn re-rub by my new downtempo chums the Landau Orchestra. The L.A.O.S. drum & bass remix, while taking it back the 4Hero roots, does little. Danya Vodovoz's broken beat remix is a nice try but sounds like a like a glossy Hollywood attempt at the genre. The single also contains dubs of the original, the Daddy G, and Landau Orchestra mixes for you turntablists out there.