30 August 2011

Top 5 Tunes for August 2011

The good folks at SouNZgood.co.nz invited me to select my Top 5 Tunes of the Moment, for a weekly feature they run on their website. I never pass up an opportunity to press my musical preferences upon people, so thought even though you can link to the article here (for a short time, at least), I thought I'd share those tunes with you on this blog as well. So, here goes, in no particular order...

The Drop Out City Rockers
'Man On The Run'
Variously known as The Drop Out City Rockers, Drop Out Orchestra and other such pseudonyms, this Swedish outfit have been releasing modern disco gold for a minute now. 'Man On The Run' has all the ingredients required to make you wanna shake your tailfeather: lush soulful vocals, a clever arrangement and a bassline that goes for days.
Also check: 'Cool To Make A Million' featuring vocals from the legendary Leroy Hutson. The Man.

Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five
'The Message' (Roots Manuva remix)
A stone cold classic track given one of the more respectful re-touches in recent memory by a man more renowned for his emceeing abilities than production/remix skills - Roots Manuva. He strips the instrumental back considerably, somehow giving Melle Mel's delivery even more swagger and punch (though I'm unsure how anyone could swagger more than he does here). Add some muted trumpet stabs, a bubbling organ riff and flip the script on the spoken word finale and you've got a tasty wee re-rub on your hands.
Also check: the brand new Roots Manuva single 'Get The Get', from his forthcoming album.

'S&M (Sexy Music)'
Spanish producer and DJ Rayko gives a classic club track from 1983 a serious re-work for the discerning 2011 dancefloor. Originally recorded by legendary US producer George Kerr (The O'Jays, The Skull Snaps) and Reggie Griffen (who played keyboards on Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five's 'The Message' LP, among many others) with singer De De, this track has been sampled to death - but Rayko gives it that "slow disco" sound I'm loving at the moment.
Also check: the original.

Jayl Funk
'Piece Of Mine'
Another edit? Yep, another edit - and it's another scorcher. German producer Jayl Funk grabs the good reverend Al Green by the scruff of his collar, beefing up his track 'All Because' (from the album 'Al Green Gets Next To You') with a slight lift in tempo and a serious amount of bottom end. Apparently the secular Mr Green fancied a serious amount of bottom end too.
Also check: the original, of course...

'It Doesn't Really Matter'
The opening track from Zapp's 1985 album 'The New Zapp IV U' is a gleaming example of how brilliant R&B used to be: fat squelchy keys, inspirational lyrics and the best use of a "talk-box" ever. Zapp's frontman Roger Troutman (RIP) pioneered the use of a primitive instrument which gave the users voice a distinctive synthesized sound - like T-Pain only way, waaay, waaaaay cooler. If you're wondering what I'm on about - Roger Troutman's the guy who sang the chorus on 2Pac's massive hit 'California Love'.
Also check: the song Dr Dre sampled for California Love... yep, Joe Cocker.

I hope you enjoy the tunes!

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