Harold Melvin & the Blue Notes – Be For Real – The P.I.R. Recordings (1972-1975) Soul Music Records

Teddy Pendergrass remains for me one of the world’s most vital male vocalists. You couldn’t say the equivalent of Loleatta Holloway (although of the same stature) because his voice testified as to something very particular to him. A cross of pain, sorrow and also of joy from a uniquely soulful perspective which lent his vocals a depth that remains resonate today like all truly great singers. Emerging originally as the group’s drummer in 1970 but by the time Philadelphia International Records had secured the assistance of the might of CBS he had become lead singer, as featured on the albums contained here. The Love I Lost from 1973 (originally released as 7″ side-A & side-B edits) and Bad Luck from 1975 remain powerhouses of heavenly charged music that sound as good as anything today, incredible given just how long ago they were recorded and produced. Following the distinct line from Gospel inspiration through to R&B and then throughout Disco these songs helped define an era, released by a label that did likewise. And it would be fair to add that they were also a key component to House Music in the future. As far as the word classic goes, Don’t Leave Me This Way ranks up there pretty high and is included here on the third disc as Tom Moulton’s mind-expanding arrangement transformed it into eleven blissful minutes. That third disc also has Moulton’s version of Bad Luck and the sheer force of the music alone transcends just about everything in its wake. While Pendergrass went on to launch a solo career in 1977 becoming a Soul icon in the process, it remains important to also celebrate the musicians in the band as well as the producers, alongside the various songwriters who all left a vital legacy. Listen to the music: Wake Up Everybody.

Release: August 23


Jean Pierre, Jesse Calosso, Trangaz – 420 EP – Whippin Records

The kind of delirious intensity served up by these productions created by the trio of Jean Pierre, Jesse Calosso and Trangaz almost defied suitable description. But all the same this robust take on House is not to be messed with, firing forcefully on all cylinders. Take Jean Pierre’s title track, 420 which boasts a brutal kick and bass combination that feels just as dirty as it does life-affirming contrasted by the more subtle, funky percussive elements alongside smoky vocals leaving their own indelible impression. Remixed by MASON Collective who bring the Acid intention to the fore as insistent hi-hats plus punchy vocal edits spin off into the distance. Remaining originals: High Roller and the excellent heady, energised potency of Henny White complete this addictive array of sounds, beats and forward motion.




Ossaim – Trickster – Get Physical Music

Escaping the mindless boredom generated induced by the modern dilemma of tech-house is this set of three finely tuned productions from Ossaim. It takes a curious mind to create music that engages on all three levels but mind, body and souls are equally quenched via imagination plus illuminating flair. You can hear the influences seeping throughout the 90’s inspired Trickster, yet it also feels defiantly contemporary too. The excellent, No Way Back perhaps answers that call moving forward with an electrifying array of fiery keys and evocative, haunting sounds expanding the horizon. But back to the beginning with the chugging beauty of the aptly titled, Happi which loops tantalising voices alongside a reassuring rush of warm synthesizers.

Release: August 16



Dennis Quin – Burnout – Madhouse

In a sense this couldn’t really be on any other label apart from mad-house. As the duo of words entice and demand certain attributes which Dennis Quin certainly delivers in abundance. The title track, Burnout contains that brilliant intensity in which you can lose yourself in all to easily care of its succession of banging, brutal kick drums alongside timely organ hits, while an atmospheric voice adds the human touch to it all. Next, Eastern Market highlights the influences more readily via 90’s punctuated keys plus a series of swinging rhythms seeking out salvation, though not necessarily in church.

Release: August 16



jOHNNYDANGEROUs – Clear My Mind (Remix) – Nite Grooves

Resurfacing via fresh remixes by Berlin based DJ/producer Dilby is this jOHNNYDANGEROUs gem from a couple of years back. And as you can’t keep a good thing down here we go again. This sparkles and sizzles with pumping rhythms adding extra juice to the self-prophesying voice-over that never fails to tease and excite. Party music with added sass, at a guess. An Instrumental version accompanies, as does the harmonious Acapella so there’s no excuse not to.



Berkson & What – Keep On feat. Robert Owens (Tim Engelhardt Remixes) – Poker Flat Recordings

Does twenty years feel like a long time to you? Perhaps not if you’ve reached a certain vintage, but in the end it’s all about the music and how it survives exposure to the ticking clock. Celebrating that timespan then is a series of remixes with this from Tim Engelhardt beginning the sequence in two parts. Saluting, Keep On and featuring the unmistakable time honoured voice of one Robert Owens, Remix A highlights all of the vocal goodness on offer, alongside its timely message, over a bed of electronically charged rhythms feeling that bit loser with an addictive, shuffling funkiness very much in evidence. Remix B injects a little extra energy rearranging the song over brisker drums and freshly squeezed sounds. Although, either way this is a classic moment to add the labels already robust canon.

Release: August 16



Deaf Joe – Love Stories LP – Church Ceilings

Another outstanding piece of music for you to absorb during the remainder of 2019. Love Stories not only inspires a sense of wonder at your surroundings but also poses more introspective questions about what lies beyond. Maybe the most telling hint at this is, Taal Lake which begins the album with a sense of trepidation fuelling its undulating impulses. Beautiful, exciting yet also something else too. It’s not all beat-less as tough rhythms inform the proceeding, Havnegade and likewise, Ocean Beach. However, it is the moments reflecting an ambient nature which prove to be the most captivating. Although not afraid of shying away from the sometimes controlled, violent intensity defining the outstanding Cambodian Sirens either. Phnom Bakheng, returns to the location leaving the short and sweet message of Cut The Hate to inspire you in definite directions as Love Stories finally escapes you.

Release: August 2

buy http://deafjoe.bandcamp.com/album/love-stories
buy https://music.apple.com/gb/album/love-stories/1456055984



3TM – Abyss (A prelude to Lake) – We Jazz Records

It must be something in the air. Or ether. But have you noticed just how prevalent the ambient (for want of another word) genre of imagining landscapes of sounds, ideas and motion has become. It’s all over Dance Music, perhaps ironically, and the need to explore other aspects of what music can do is an exciting one, for all the right reasons. This beautifully crafted new album from drummer/producer Teppo Mäkynen acts a precursor to his band 3TM’s next album but in the meantime plays with notions of how atmospheres and moods shape the world we live in. At times the music meditates and reflects such as the illusion of running water which caresses the opening, Dream Of Crossings. While darker colours infuse the haunting, Slow Fall. Each of the ten numbers is exhilarating in itself and perhaps ambient isn’t even the most fitting description to apply here, as there is much more going on in terms of the scope and timbre of the sounds utilised. Maybe it is more about the blurred impression ambience itself leaves….

Release: August 9

Buy/ listen https://wejazzrecords.bandcamp.com/album/abyss-a-prelude-to-lake



Manuel Rodriguez – Needle and Thread EP – MYR

In a world of knowing exactly what to expect next in music. Isn’t it wonderfully exciting not to. And there is no way that you can guess what you are about to experience when listening to Faded, existing in its short lifespan of weird, fuzzy ambience. Next comes, The Preface – One Summer’s Morning complete with funky, shuffling drums while combining a fresh sense of perspective as punctuating sounds, organic or otherwise, unfold. The title track, Needle and Thread completes via tough, almost eerie, synthesized lines of enquiry that shiver and excite the levels of communication with seemingly dangerous voices stretching out the imagination. Strange and otherworldly, yet compelling brilliance. Watch out for that bassline too.

Release: August 2

Pre-Order ☛ https://bit.ly/2O9l4GJ



Neverdogs – Run Da Fun EP – Moan Recordings

Run Da Fun lets fly with the rampant sort of energy that leaves you entitled to feel breathless. Its rolling, tough rhythms cause all sorts of damage as pounding beats and energised percussion work their way into your system producing insistent temptation. Barem’s remix reworks the elements adding a more fluent, warmer low-end to the probing arrangement of sounds, leaving second track: Juice to feel breezier care off brighter, life affirming keys.

Release: July 29