Review: Having previously restricted their output to one record per year, the Secret Squirrels posse have been very busy in 2014 with this fifth 12" their third disco transmission since #3 dropped in February. Somewhat cunningly still shrouded in mystery, the Secret Squirrels crew present another two extensions for the intended delight of disco selectors everywhere. The more scholarly DJs out there will most likely nod knowingly as both the tracks here play out, with the B Side a particular string laden gem in the disco canon, but it's how the squirrels use their scalpels that matters most when it comes to this record, some 1210s, a mixer and a willing dancefloor. Cut loud for optimum play.
Review: The mysterious nut-gathering disco fiends at Secret Squirrel continue their razor-sharp edit work with two more incredibly funky slices of nu-disco. Side A is a spirited fusion of wah wahs, filters and a tight vocal loop from Ike Strong's "Boogie Land" while Side B is a slower, acid-tickled jam that takes Blair's "Nightlife" and brings it kicking and screaming into the 21st century. Both are stunning and are guaranteed to sell out like the previous SS editions.
Review: The enigmatic edit crew returns! And they're firing on the most tricked out disco cylinder you ever did see... Two sides, two killer cuts, two reasons to get involved. Side one is all about Empress "Dyin' To Be Dancin". Emphasising the Rogers-style guitar shimmers and thundering bass, it's loopy, it's hypnotic, it will have your dancefloor strutting harder than Travolta. Flip for an awesome twist on Diana Ross's "Love Hangover". Taking the best bit of the record and completely subverting it, full focus is applied to the lolloping bass, jazz key sprinkles and insistent organ hums in the background. Trust us: this is one hangover you'll want to maintain for as long as possible. As with all Secret Squirrel 12"s, this one is limited... Go nuts.
Review: The inaugural and highly sought after Secret Squirrel release came our way exactly a year ago... Could this be an annual thing? That would be a shame, as these edits really are very special. On the A-side we have what appears to be a high-NRG/newbeat reversion of Eddy Grant's "Nobody's Got Time" while the B-side is a much more subtle sample-based bassline chugger that loops and wriggles with filtered charm. Proper wholesome disco, these won't be secret for very long... Get on it!
Review: Since launching in 2013, the mysterious Secret Squirrel series has provided DJs with a steady stream of floor-friendly, largely obscure edits that gleefully join the dots between Italo, P-funk, acid, disco and vintage house. This seventh installment in the series delivers two more tried and tested bombs, with the early house chug, darting Italo synths and rolling, proto-house grooves of side A leading the way. Things get a little looser on the flip, with a delightfully chugging slice of Prince style purple funk, naturally teasted and tweaked for maximum dancefloor enjoyment. Really, Secret Squirrels releases shouldn't need the hard sell; they hit the spot every time, regardless of style or source material.
Review: Boom! Here's the sixth chapter of the Secret Squirrels edits and it was about bloody time too! Needless to say, we don't know who's behind these disco-fuelled cluster bombs but even if we did, we wouldn't be allowed to tell ya! In any case, "Track 1" of this naughty little 12" is an effective, loopy, electro-jacked party-starter packing one hell of a bassline, while "Track 2" takes things down a notch and enters funk mode thanks to its swaying, slow beats and takes a "lil ride laaas' night"! For all you DJ Harvey roadies!
Review: The number 13 may be unlucky for some, but it appears to have had no effect on the quality of the Secret Squirrels' club-ready disco manipulations. In fact, it could be argued that the series' 13th vinyl missive is amongst its best to date. A-side "Track 1" makes merry with a throbbing, piano-heavy disco number, adding expert chops, loops and house style drums for guaranteed dancefloor pleasure. The temperature is raised further on flipside "Track 2", where punchy horn lines, life-affirming organ solos, undulating electronics and dubbed-out vocal samples ride a beefed-up disco-funk groove. As usual, the original source material and editors responsible are closely guarded secrets, but neither really matters; these are scorching dancefloor jams, and that's all that counts.
Review: Secret Squirrel is up to number nine already? You better believe it! The disco re-edit surgeon this time takes the razor to the Lenny Williams classic from 1974 "You Got Me Runnin'" which also happened to be a Paradise Garage anthem apparently; re-edited by the man himself Larry Levan back in the day, but we're preaching to the choir here aren't we? In the regards to the sweet track on flip, we don't kiss and tell, but for those that know: the hook on this Italo funky alternative is the stuff of legend.
Review: Finally, the tenth instalment of the tight-as-hell Secret Squirrel label, another two-pronged nu-disco attack to satisfy each and every one of your DJ needs. Sticking to their strictly anonymous look-and-feel, the ambiguously named "Track 1" wraps a fuzzy twist of guitar riffs around a heads-down groove that emanates sexy strings from all angles; "Track 2" on the B-side meanders towards a more synth-pop kinda sound, where a busy beat flex gives charge to an ultra-sleek and carefree 80's sound. Oh, lord, those riffs!
Review: The disco loving yet secretive Sciuridaens return with an eighth volume of finely teased productions primed for deployment on the discotheque. We are still none the wiser on who is behind the Secret Squirrel project despite some scurrilous rumours but it's clear by now they have quite the knowledge of funk, boogie, Italo, acid, disco and vintage house. Up top it's a funk-flecked disco number that feels like the tempo has been nudged down slightly, adding a subtle druggy feel to those Philly strings. It's good but Secret Squirrel really hit the spot with the think break-infused '90s era filtered house burner that sits on the flip. Some vocal hook on this one.
Review: Heads down as the mysterious Secret Squirrels series returns for an eleventh outing. As usual, they're keeping quiet about the identity of both the source material and the editor (or editors) involved. "Track 1" is something of a proto-house treat, with Fairlight style stabs, bongo hits, and spine tingling piano motifs - accompanied by just the right amount of delay - holding court over a killer electronic bassline. Flip for "Track 2", where more extensive piano solos and riffs do their thing over a post-Italo disco, early house groove. If Giorgio Moroder and Frankie Knuckles had ever got together to make a record, it would sound like this.
Review: One of the joys of the Secret Squirrels series - aside from the consistent quality of their late night disco and boogie reworks, of course - is the label's steadfast refusal to offer clues as to which DJs and producers are responsible. As usual, they give nothing away on this 12th installment, preferring to let the edits speak for themselves. This time round, the A-side contains a slightly dub-centric rework of a disco-boogie fusion cut full of sweet, life-affirming vocals, elastic synth bass and Inner Life style piano motifs. It feels impressively breezy, all told, which is in stark contrast to the heavy, trippy and locked-in B-side, which reinvents an early '80s disco cut as a late night shuffler with clear NYC proto-house influences.
Review: Nut-nibbling nocturnal delights from the mystery bushy-tailed edit fiends Secret Squirrel. As always, both anonymous cuts are deeply dug, expertly refocused and, between the two, cover a serious yard of dancefloor. On the A we have a powerful synth boogie jam where the lead spins a swooning yarn over an insistent slap-bass groove while the B drops the tempo a smidgeon for a dense dubby groove that climaxes in evangelistic style. Essential, as always.
Review: Glasgow's Secret Squirrel series is back with a pair of club-ready edits and this nineteenth edition is one energetic and super sexy disco express that will be well familiar to collectors here on the A side. On the flip, things get more deep down and funky (not to mention loose) with this sunny and feel-good jam that has been extended and streamlined for any DJ set in the most respectful manner.
Review: 17 immaculate edit 12"s deep and this anonymous crew are still bright-eyed and bushy tailed. Side A is all about the rampant disco chugs with tightly plucked guitar and a thumping freight train energy while side B takes a diversion towards more Italo pastures. Full sleaze, no cheese and heaps of lavish string strikes; these won't be secret for very long.
Review: The bushy-tailed bandits strike again! This time they're hitting with some serious Latin fire as both sides look towards central America for source inspiration. "Track One" takes an upbeat Joe Cuba classic and slows it down to let us really chew into the warm, pumping groove. Trust us, one listen to this and you'll never want to go back to Georgia either! "Track Two" meanwhile flips the disco/funk Joe Bataan classic "Mestizo" with a little uptempo twist and some precision-placed disco bubbles. Go nuts and add this to your stash.
Review: Some people shake their hips. Others shake their money makers. This anonymous longstanding editor crew shake their furry tales. And as we hit number 20 in their series of sassy party versions, we're reminded there's a lot to shake to. "Track One" shakes with a slight carnival theme thanks to its punchy horns before dropping into swooning funk guitars. "Track Two" shakes with much more disco deviance thanks to its stomping thumping Hi-NRG kicks, gutsy vocal loop and lolloping slap bass. It pops. But ssshhhhh.... some squirrels are best kept secret.
Review: Don't get mad, go nuts... The sneaky Secret Squirrel team return for their 21st mission and it's every bit as bright-eyed and bushy-tailed as everything else they've ever stashed. The A-side leads with a peppy horn-fired strutter that shoves us deep in the heart of the hottest dancefloor imaginable. Flip for an intimate, smouldering piece of end-of-the-night soul from 1979. Trust us, once you get a close hold of it, you'll never want to let go.
Review: As far as hush-hush re-edit/remix series go, it's hard to top the catalogue of Glasgow-based Secret Squirrel. The label's genius lies mainly in the club-ready, tried-and-tested nature of the untitled and un-credited rearrangements, which are handed to the imprint's well-known (but naturally secretive) chief by fellow working DJs. Volume 16 begins with an easy-to-mix dub style revision of an Italo-disco era classic, which strips out the original vocals and turns it into a much more locked-in late night groove. Arguably even better is the flipside excursion, a kind of two-step proto-house/early Chicago house workout blessed with some spine-tingling vocal passages.