King Most - "Rhythm Rug" (My Favorite edit Ever) (3:29)
Altered Tapes - "Ego Drip" (Outta This Horn remix) (4:20)
Review: If hot-to-trot and heavyweight funk re-fixes are your thing, you should already be familiar with the work of Chicago-based Heat Rock Records. Their latest limited seven-inch delivers two must-check workouts. On the A you'll find the "Rhythm Rug" edit by San Francisco scalpel fiends King Most, a cut-and-paste concoction that peppers a sunny, hip-hop tempo good-time soul-funk groove with excerpts from the acapella version of rap classic "Can I Kick It?" Over on the flip, label regulars and Windy City heroes Altered Tapes provide something even wilder: a hot-stepping fusion of Afro-jazz horns, dancehall style drums and what sound like occasional Q-Tip vocal snippets.
Review: There's plenty to set the pulse racing on this inaugural, limited-edition seven-inch single from Off Records. Check first Parisian producer Son of a Pitch's A-side spin "Alice Donut", a hot-to-trot re-edit of what sounds like a late 1960s French fusion of lounge music, Phil Spector wall-of-sound pop and Hammond-heavy funk. It's undeniably quirky, but thanks to the presence of ear-catching organ lines and crunchy breakbeats, also a bona fide dancefloor hit. Over on the flip, French Zulu Nation member DJ Suspect turns his attention to a tongue-in-cheek Gallic Mod-era number, fattening up the breakbeats and emphasizing the killer horn lines and swinging sixties vibes.
Please Don't Make It Funky (The Patchouli Brothers Re edit) (5:05)
Review: "Please Don't Make It Funky" is one of those delicious curiosities that dusty-fingered crate diggers unearth every now and then. Recorded and released in limited qualities in 1980, it was apparently an attempt by Frank Pisani, then a veteran American singer who had last tasted success in the rock and roll era, to capture the disco/jazz-funk zeitgeist. While it was a commercial flop, the track is undeniably attractive and fun, with squelchy synth sounds, ear-catching horns, fluid piano solos and Pisani's blue-eyed-soul vocals rising above a tidy groove. This surprise - but most welcome - reissue backs Pisani's cheery original with a fresh re-edit by the Patchouli Brothers. This includes some filter trickery and a DJ-friendly arrangement, but otherwise sticks close to the original mix.
Review: The Bees were a product of the late 80s South African music scene. They were an unknown band even in their homeland but its hard to see why given their happy kwaito sound. Now, 30 years later, international diggers are bringing the outfit the acclaim they deserve after the band was rather forgotten because they never had a big crossover hit in their early years. Here two of their best tracks are served up by Dutch label La Casa Tropical. They're lit up with pixelated synths and retro-future vibes that European party people love to get down to. "Mamezala" is the more considered of the two, while "Never Give Up" is a strident and rousing proto-house anthem with plenty of boogie in the bass.
Review: Le Disques Bongo Joe's latest EP is a joint release with Calico Discos. It offers up four fresh cuts from L'Eclair, a self-styled "exogroove post-internet" six-piece with three must-check albums to their name. Musically, the four tracks offer a breezy, summery and mixed-up blend of Tony Allen style polyrhythms, tropical funk guitars, languid synthesizer sounds, psychedelic electronics and copious amounts of mind-altering dub effects. Our favourites include the low-slung deep Afro-psychedelia of "Dallas", the rousing, horn-heavy EP opener "Cebando" (a future dancefloor staple for sure), and the Moog-laden sunrise dreaminess of "Atlantis".