Tag Archives: Jazz

MELVIN SPARKS: Live At Nectar’s (2017)

MELVIN SPARKS:  Live At Nectar's“My name is Melvin Sparks on the gui-tar!” Thus opens the first track, Miss Riverside, on Melvin Sparks: Live At Nectar’s to whoops and applause from the crowd. Melvin Sparks? Not ‘the’ Melvin Sparks? Melvin Sparks the rnb and soul jazz guitarist who used to back the likes of Dr Lonnie Smith, Jack McDuff and Charles Earland? Melvin Sparks whose soul-boogie cut If You Want My Love
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VARIOUS: Funky Chimes – Belgian Grooves From The 70s (2017)

Funky Chimes - Belgian Grooves From The 70sRating: ★★★★★ It shouldn’t be that surprising that Belgium managed to provide some super-dope funky grooves back in the day – it is after all the land that spawned the much-sampled Chakachas. What is surprising however, is how long this funky legacy has taken to be discovered or at least re-discovered. Happily, the SDBAN label’s Funky Chicken compilation from a few years ago certainly
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NUBIYAN TWIST: Dance Inna London feat. SUPACAT/ All The Pieces Ltd. 12″ (2017)

NUBIYAN TWIST:  Dance Inna London feat. SUPACATHow do you manage to fit both tracks of a single, plus two remixes of each track plus the instros on vinyl? The answer, hipsters, is on a twelve inch – remember them? Nubiyan Twist certainly do as they re-work Supacat’s dubby 80s dancehall cut Dance Inna London in their own live-band, jazzy-reggae style with singer Nubiya Brandon effortlessly supplying new vocals and lyrics and
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RENE COSTY: Expectancy (2017)

Bet you haven’t heard of Rene Costy – music teacher, classical violinist, jazz musician and composer. The last point is what concerns us here since our man composed a ton of library music in the seventies from which period one track, Scrabble, was discovered in short order in the nineties by a number of significant breaks and hip-hop musicians and made it onto tracks such as
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BLACK FLOWER: Artifacts (2017)

artifacts-black-flowerYou probably wouldn’t have thought the sound of Ethio-jazz would be alive and well in Belgium but then again, after everything that happened globally last year, surprising things might have lost the element of – well – surprise. And so it is that should you be looking for the spirits of Mulatu Astatke and Fela Kuti all mixed into the pot with some eastern scales, a bit of rock and dub and a
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AFTERNOONS IN STEREO: Echo Valley (2016)

echo-valley-afternoons-in-stereoAfternoons In Stereo takes a trip down jazz canyon on sixth LP Echo Valley which fuses multiple genres with, well, jazz, obviously. The title track (and opener) is a beatless Rhodes piano mood piece that swiftly gives way to the crisp breakbeat intro of City Of The Future and its jazz fusion vistas. Eames In Dub by contrast juxtaposes spacey echoes with jazz disco beats
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DALINDEO: Slavic Souls (2016)

Slavic Souls Dalindeo“What’s not to like about a melancholic party song?” says Dalindeo band leader Valtteri Laurell Pöyhönen of the Finnish band’s new LP described in the PR Blah as a “Surf-Jazz-Tango-Extravaganza.” Ah the Finns and their melacholy. A mate persuaded me to go to the cinema once to watch a Finnish film. I forget the name of the director and the film now but I do remember that
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TRAMP RECORDS: Movements 8 (2016)

Movements 8 TrampRating: ★★★★★ Are Tramp trying to outdo Soul Jazz Records and/or BGP? It’s like a re-run of the Anglo-German naval arms race before WW1 only with rare vinyl instead of dreadnought battleships or something. And the way they keep the number of regular compilation series they manage to run in between all those record buying trips (Feeling Nice, Praise Poems, Santa’s Funk & Soul Christmas
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TRAMP RECORDS: Praise Poems Vol. 3 (2016)

Praise Poems Vol. 3 Tramp RecordsIt’s Praise Poems time again at the ever-digging Tramp Records with the release of Volume 3. And if you checked Vols. 1 and 2 you’ll know that they go deep on these selections. Deeper than that service shaft underneath Hampstead tube station? Deeper than Poseidon’s basement in the Marianas Trench my friend – for we are in the realm of jazz funk. Well, initially anyway – but
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SUBES: Free To Speak (2015)

Free To Speak SubesDutch outfit Subes‘ third full-length effort finds them once again exploring their bass and breaks-heavy amalgam of jazz, bossa and afro-influenced grooves in the eleven track deep Free To Speak. As with its two predecessors Contra Bossa and Thrill From The Pill, this is an all-live instrumentation effort with content varying from club-ready numbers like the sax-led Free Basic
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