Monthly Archives: December 2009

BASEMENT FREAKS: Cheeba Dance + Nova Monkies (Omegaman Remix) + 30 Min Ali B Show mix – free downloads

Basement Freaks ushers in the New Year with some next decade generosity here. Anyone who’s caught previous releases will know to expect funky breaks of the highest order and anyone who hasn’t will now know too because I’ve just told you. What you waiting for? Just for the record – Cheeba Dance is the one – get your hands on ’em below:
Cheeba Dance by Basement Freaks
Nova Monkies (Omegaman Remix) by Basement Freaks
30 min. mix broadcasted on Ali B’s Show on Kiss FM 10/11/09 by Basement Freaks

Basement Freaks – Myspace

ADIDAS: Skateboarding 2010 website + 2010 Spring shoes

Yeah – so I got the heads up the other day that the 2010 Adi webby was all go – and so it is. Not vastly different to the old Adi webby, it has to be said, you can of course check product as before…

…those early-90s style Pete Eldridge Superstars above for example – or these resurrected ‘Skates’ – fresh from the 70s archive…

…Adidas also continue their campaign to deny me a black and white cup sole Campus as the vulcanised version and the footy-influenced Busenitz appear to still be going strong…

…plus there are some new t shirts (admittedly not all as sombre as these) and flannel shirts and hoodies. Oh yeah – and there’s also a fair bit of downloady goodness including footage of the team in SF, all new rider, interviews, an ad archive, and more.
P.s. If anyone from Adidas Originals is reading this – I wonder if I might trouble you to persuade the powers that be to do a Franz Beckenbauer tracktop in Black and grey or black and gold. Just a thought…

Adidas Skateboarding

TOM CARUANA: Interview

Tea Sea Records head honcho, rapper and producer, Tom Caruana has been making the finest quality beats for some years now straight outta Brighton – and it has to be said that the man’s no slouch when it comes to output. In the last year alone (that I know of) he’s dropped the cracking LP Rebel Without Applause with MC Elemental (featuring a Count Bass D hook-up), his own solo LPs It’s So Different Here (as himself) and Further Into The Woods (as Tom Bombadeal), remix albums for both Large Professor and Doom and production credits on both Boston rapper Insight’s most recent single True Or False and Koaste’s Billy The Kid EP. Amazingly, on top of all that and the fact that it’s Christmas – he still had time for a chat. Here’s what he had to say…
Monkeyboxing (MB): Tell us a bit about Tea Sea Records.
Tom Caruana (TC): I set it up in 2005 to put out various projects that I was working on. I had put some music out with other labels including Breakin Bread, Son and Fluid Ounce, but felt that I wanted to be in control of something that would let me put my music out when I wanted. The main starting point was getting the website set up, I could use it to sell CDs, post up free downloads, podcasts and have somewhere central to promote stuff.
MB: I understand Cup Of Brown Joy which you made with Elemental and which featured on the excellent Rebel Without Applause LP (released earlier this year) seems to have become something of a YouTube sensation. Have any of the trappings of fame been forthcoming as a result?
TC: I remember watching a rough edit of the video and thinking it was gonna be really good, but a few weeks after it was up on YouTube it went from hundreds to thousands of views in a matter of days! We couldn’t believe how well it had been received. On my website I can view how people arrive at the site and the majority of the traffic is via YouTube, so that’s the main impact on the label. I regularly sell Rebel Without Applause CDs around the world because of that one song/video.
MB: You get any contact off Doom after that remix LP you did of his stuff? He could do with some decent beats lately.
TC: I sent it to Count Bass D and with any luck he’ll forward it on to him. Not holding my breath though.
MB: Hip-hop seems to be suffering a major shortage of credible party-starting bumps at the minute both underground and overground – discuss…
TC: I don’t really keep up with things much, I keep looking back to old music. The recent hip hop albums that I like are the new Large Pro, Grand Puba, Raekwon and the new Method Man & Redman.
MB: Tom Caruana. TC, Tea Sea, Tom Bombadeal – are there any other aliases we should know about?
TC: Not really for me, but there is another project coming soon called The Eclectic Maybe Band which is basically me playing instruments and producing, it features singers and other instrumentalists. But no other specific aliases of mine, yet!
MB: What’s forthcoming on TC?
TC: The Eclectic Maybe Band, mentioned above, I have one album ready to go and another in progress. The 2nd Eclectic Maybe Band album will be the thing I am most proud of musically. I’ve got some more remix albums coming soon: Wu Tang, J-Live, Brand Nubian. I’ve got an album with Grand Agent that’s finished, it just needs to be mixed and mastered and will be out around April next year. Finally the proper Bombadeal album will hopefully be finished in 2010, but it relies on a lot of other people. ‘Further Into The Woods’ and ‘Songs From The Wood’ were just little tasters.
MB: Who would you most like to collaborate with?
TC: The whole of the Wu-Tang, but that’s cos I’ve been remixing them loads recently.
MB: Any shout outs or last words?
TC: Keep Boxing Monkey boy!

Tea Sea Records

Tom Caruana – Myspace

THE BAMBOOS: On The Sly (feat. Kylie Auldist) – 2009 – Single review + Video

Rating: ★★★★★

(Read full album review of Bamboos’ LP 4 HERE)
A well-deserved full marks for On The Sly (LISTEN/ WATCH below) as The ‘Boos get downright sexy with this massive slice of super-heavy funk-slink punctuated by colossal hammond stabs and fronted by an ultra-sultry Kylie Auldist who trounces her own last single with ease. But enquiring minds want to know – is Auldist (listed in the press release as ‘regular guest vocalist’ but band ‘member’ on a band member or not? The monkey would hate to get that wrong after the last spat with Cookin’ On 3 Burners’ number one publici- er I mean fan…
…Flipside Turn It Up (currently available as a digital download – LISTEN HERE), on the other hand, finds Lance and co. providing a meaty flatbed of funk for former Quannum rapper Lyrics Born who squanders both this and his own highly respectable soul rasp somewhat with a fairly limited melody and thus fails quite to recapture the glory days of his late 90s Poets Of Rhythm collab I Changed My Mind. Doesn’t matter, you’ll be replaying the A-side ad nauseum anyway – check the vid below. Heads up for fourth album – er – 4 due March.
(Out on Tru Thoughts 8 February 2010)
The Bamboos – Myspace


Another Wack release. That’s ‘Wack’ not ‘wack’, obviously, as the label proffer two sun-drenched offerings to nice-up your freezing-ass Christmas holiday with some irie feeling. Both cuts travel a relatively clean-sounding upbeat skankin route – no Studio One antics here – which might appeal to the heads but will certainly have Balearic-leaning dancefloors gagging to don their skimpy Speedos, switch on the foam machine and do a live sex show. Or whatever goes on in those Majorcan clubs.
Dedy Dread & DJ Rebel -Turn You On (Smoove Retouch)
The weather is always warm when it comes to the laidback Portuguese and Italian duo Dedy Dread & DJ Rebel. Positive reggae sunshine and warm soul mashed into sweet club tactics. Mediterranean vibes from a Killer Ken Booth cut sweetened up with some acapella goodness that is sure to leave the dance floor begging for more. Turning you, me, and every one….ON!
DJ Andy Taylor – Jah Mambo
Andy comes from Lochwinnoch, which is the illest wetland reserve (RSPB) this side of Glasgow. He regularly makes the trek across the swamp (el pantano) to Glasgow where he shocks and impresses the crowds by not playing electro. Instead he rinses his usual collection of funk, soul, Latin, breaks and beats.
Jah Mambo is a fresh mashup of all of the above on a spiritual Rastafarian tip. All cut up with live performances courtesy of the man himself. Direct from the swamp it’s guaranteed move the floor.

Listen to DEDY DREAD & DJ REBEL/ DJ ANDY TAYLOR: Turn You On/ Jah Mambo

Wack Records – Myspace

Dedy Dread – Myspace

Andy Taylor – Myspace

ARTBOMBERS: Builtbypeople: ‘Yeti’ video feat. The Sly Players

If you’ve ever wondered what a picture of a Yeti made up of little anthropomorphic figures crammed together would look like – or indeed how long such a project would take to create with a marker on a shop window – now’s your chance to find out. Soundtrack by The Sly Players.

Builtbypeople – Yeti from artbombers on Vimeo.

The Sly Players – Myspace

GOODGROOVE: Download Podcast Series Volume 3

‘Tis the season to be jolly and Goodgroove are dropping stuff down your cyber-chimney like St Nick on happy pills. Hard on the heels of the recent Artist Series XI: Featurecast EP comes the free Goodgroove Podcast Volume 3 (hosted by Sly Players, with a guest mix by Smoove) mixing up the funk, breaks and hip-hop in a demented aural Christmas pudding – download below (that’ll be via the ‘down’ arrow button on the right-hand side for any soundcloud virgins) – and don’t forget to check out the new Builtbypeople Yeti video soundtracked by The Sly Players:
Goodgroove Records Podcast Vol.3 by GoodgrooveRecords

Goodgroove – myspace

Sly Players – Myspace

MONKEYBOXING.COM – Top 10 tracks – 2009

Sounds you hear that linger in your ear! Here’s what you should have got…(n.b. does not include re-pressings)
(See – Top 10 albums – 2009 HERE)

1. RECORDKINGZ (feat. The Beatnuts) – Rock Ya Shoulders
Criminally unreleased on vinyl. Beatnuts vs. Juliano Creator.
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Best battle rhymes in ages – and another dope beat.
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3. DEEP STREET SOUL – Kick Out The Jams
Funk that’s dirtier and grittier than sex in a gravel pit.
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4. MAKO & THE HAWK vs. BEASTIE BOYS – Too Many Rappers (Not enough Funk mix)
In the absence of Hot Sauce Committee Part I – get your funky Beasties’ shit right here.
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Now a Youtube phenomenon – 12 cups is my limit.
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6. SLYNK – You’re The Fool
Slynk is nobody’s fool with this breakbeat rerub of The Three Degrees.
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7. KAZAHAYA – Remember Hip-Hop
Kazahaya really remembers when hip-hop was good in this classy vocal mash-up.
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Sweet girl vocals on this ska-bomb.
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9. NOUVELLAS – Reputation
Crossover soul/ garage-rock fire.
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10. DA WIESEL – I Gonna Give It To Ya
MC Sensational + Mr Big Stuff + Express Yourself = v. large mash.
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MONKEYBOXING.COM – Top 10 albums – 2009

Sounds you hear that linger in your ear! Here’s what you should have got…
(See – Top 10 tracks – 2009 HERE)

1. NICE UP & J STAR – Cut Ups, Bruck Ups & Muck Ups
Pure dutty mash-up beats, every one a banger.
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2. BIG BOSS MAN – Full English Beat Breakfast
Mod-funkers pull off ‘difficult third’ LP in classic style.
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Best hip-hop LP of the year contender.
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4. NOUVELLAS – Nouvellas
Rock n soul, like it never quite was in the sixties.
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5. T BIRD & THE BREAKS – Learn About It
The closest you’ll get to Wilson Pickett and the JBs in one place these days.
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6. DEEP STREET SOUL – Deep Street Soul
Gritty funk direct from Oz.
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7. ELEMENTAL & TOM CARUANA – Rebel Without Applause
The closest you’ll get to Edan and Noel Coward in one place.
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8. RECORDKINGZ – Heavyweight
Does what it says on the tin. Juliano Creator on the cut!
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9. DIZRAELI – Engurland (City Shanties)
Hippy-hop? Folk beats? Whatever it is, nobody beats the Diz.
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Unsung heroes beat off stiff competition with this free drop.
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Listen/ Download

TOM BOMBADEAL: Further Into The Woods – 2009 – Album review

Rating: ★★★★½

Before there was Dizraeli, there was…Tom Bombadeal. Is it a coincidence that both artists are connected to the hip-hop scene in Brighton or evidence that there really are ley lines radiating through the English landscape which plug into a major socket round those parts and are now fuelling a burgeoning folk hop massive? Whichever it is, let this LP serve as a warning of what comes of having a toke on a summer’s day in the vicinity of the Long Man Of Wilmington or, as the missus put it, “this is weird music – sounds like it’s from that Wicker Man film.” Inevitably, given that Brighton and folk music are involved, ‘folk-punk’ bores the Levellers make an appearance (well, their fiddle player Steven Boakes does) though (despite expectations) this doesn’t spoil the LP. Neither does the fact that Bombadeal (a.k.a. Tom Caruana aided and abetted by a motley but equally talented crew including Dizraeli and Elemental) raids wholesale the more tripped-out moments from Tolkien’s epic Lord Of The Rings and specifically the character Tom Bombadil – a fat, jolly sort given to talking utter bollocks in rhyme which – as coincidence (again!) would have it – makes him perfect rapper material. In any case, despite all the ‘green man’ antics, the fol-de-rol-ery of this album has its tongue stuffed firmly into its apple-rosy cheek.
What could be irritating is the fact that with thirty five tracks in just over fifty minutes nothing ever seems to last for quite as long as you want it to – a fact recognised on the antsy two minutes of Family Name, “It’s Tom Bomba along yonder/ Some wonder why ain’t the songs longer.” It isn’t a question that seems to get an answer though there are rumours of a ‘proper’ Tom Bombadeal LP to come where this liberty cap-fuelled ADHD might be cured – don’t sleep on that one. Further Into The Woods is basically an agreeable sonic meander through a very English beatscape that (perhaps because of the shortness of tracks and the amiable ambience) you might initially put on as background music though sooner or later you’ll find it creeping it’s way into your forebrain. Take What Is It About The Night for example – a gorgeous acoustic ballad sung by Sadie Jemmett – all of a minute and twelve seconds long, or Growing Up (one minute fifty) where Caruana evinces his knack for a fat beat. Despite the production ADHD however, this is plum full of hooks and beats and as well as drawing heavily from folk and hip-hop there are flashes of ska (Jamboree/ Moon & Sun) and even (at the end of Night Vision) Zeppelinesque rock. It sounded like it was a lot of fun to make. Did I mention that this is a concept album too – probably not or you might have stopped reading earlier but apparently the idea is that Bombadeal’s rural idyll is under attack from crystal miners or something.

To summarise then: Further Into The Woods is an eccentric folk/ hip-hop hybrid concept album, featuring a member of The Levellers (alright – only on one track), that draws creative inspiration from a Tolkien character, where songs rarely reach two minutes in length (and many barely exceed one) with additional linking narrative by what sounds like a combination of Willie Rushton and a pissed up Adge Cutler…I’ll be the first to admit that that looks really bad on paper. It’s so ridiculous you ought to be compelled to give it a shot though and were you to do so you’d find it utterly bizarre in a strange way that is as likely to appeal to beat heads as hippies and children as well as adults and, as such, I am at a loss to describe it as anything other than truly Tolkienesque…Now go on and get your ass down them woods.

Listen to Tom Bombadeal – Further Into The Woods

Tom Bombadeal – Myspace