Sunday, 28 November 2010

Mariah Carey- 80's Funk Legend

There was a golden moment in time where Mariah Carey was putting out consecutive 80's Funk bangers. I'm only really basing that statement on 'Heartbreaker' and the fact that my friend Justin (a complete authority on 80's Funk) maintains that her soundtrack to megaflop vanity-project 'Glitter' is a lost 80's Funk masterpiece. In fact I seem to remember him playing me some and it was pretty damn good.

(Note to self: Acquire the soundtrack to megaflop Mariah Carey vanity-project 'Glitter')

I'm sure some of you may scoff at the mere mention of Mariah Carey, but I challenge you not to be MASSIVELY entertained by her music video (at the time the most expensive music video ever made?) to 'Heartbreaker', featuring the fat kid from 'Stand By Me' and a mental fight sequence where Mariah fights her evil twin.

After you've bopped your head to that, then spare a thought for Stacy Lattisaw, whose 'Attack Of The Name Game' was looped-up and sampled to make the song itself. From the album pictured below, 'Sneakin' Out', produced by legendary jazz-fusion drummer and disco-crooner (?) Narada Michael Walden, It is currently unavailable on CD and therefore offered for free download in the usual manner. I can't figure out how this crazy 'Name Game' works, no matter how many time the weird robot in the song explains it, but nevermind...

Stacy Lattisaw- 'Attack Of The Name Game' (1982) on SPOTIFY


EDIT: I just listened to the Glitter soundtrack. It's appalling (apart from a track that samples Alexander O' Neal's first album, which is AWESOME). Please disregard this entire post immediately . Thank you.

Thursday, 25 November 2010

Soul Jazz's Book of Bossa Nova Cover Art

Making a fine addition to any music lovers coffee table alongside this and this, I present to you (or the people at Soul Jazz present to you): 

Like ronseal quick-drying woodstain, it does exactly what it says on the tin; it's a nice big book of reproductions of Brazilian cover art from the 1960s. An impressive 200 pages long, and boasting to be the first book of cover art from Brazil (ok i'm just copying what's on the Sounds of the Universe website), a look inside reveals some truly beautiful and visionary artwork:

Shipping just in time for christmas (and lord knows we all love receiving a big cumbersome coffee table book for christmas that we'll look at round the dinner table, go 'ooh!'... 'ahh!' and then never open again), I recommend you click through to the Soul Jazz website and order a copy for a loved-one/me pronto (let me know if you need my delivery address).

Excitingly, Soul Jazz are bringing out a companion CD in january compiled by Gilles Peterson (groan) and Stuart Baker (yay)! Man, Brazilian music from the 60s is just the finest music ever recorded, sonically, harmonically, rhythmically... I can't wait to see what's on the comp.

If looking at all these covers makes you drool at the thought of what music might be contained inside the sleeves themselves, then I suggest you head over to Loronix, where I can pretty much guarantee that you'll be able to download ALL of those albums, for free, safe in the knowledge that they're out-of-print and you're not breaking any laws etc.

Thursday, 18 November 2010

Musicians please watch: Tim Exile's 'The Mouth'

Native Instruments produces some of the best music production software around. I LOVE YOU GUYS. Part of their suite of music production software Komplete is a mind-bogglingly advanced modular synthesizer/effects processor called Reaktor. It's almost impossibly geeky, and I most-definitely need to read the manual one day so I can actually figure out what i'm doing with it.

They've been working with Warp recording artist Tim Exile developing a suite of plug-ins for Reaktor, which you can just load up and forget about all that boring programming. Anyway, I waffle. Non-musicians would find this information distressing and sexually unappealing. Watch this video, a promo for his latest effort, The Mouth. It looks seriously fun.

Small Print: For some reason they won't let you embed the video from youtube, and was trying to embed from the native instruments website. It didn't work, so i've taken it down

To any Hackney dwellers unaware of Eldica Vinyl

Met up with a friend for lunch today at E8 trendies-favourite coffee shop Tina We Salute You. ISAYGODDAMN their doorstop sandwiches are nice. When I tried to get out of my chair, I was quite literally fenced-in by prams (x2) and babies (x3) and everything had to be awkwardly moved for me to leave HAHA.

Knowing full well the location of said coffee shop, I decided to take a few unloved 7" vinyls with me, to see if Andy at Eldica* would exchange them for some minty-fresh new 'platters' (Eldica is round the corner from Tina). Luckily he did, and needless to say I left there with an ecstatic grin on my face and a bag full o' records.

The selection at Eldica is almost 100% qualiTAY, and Andy seriously knows his stuff, so all Hackney dwellers must pop in at some point if they haven't done so already. Importantly, there's no need to be a vinyl geek either, as they sell all manner of vintage objects, some clothes, bric-a-brac. It's like the coolest charity shop ever, the likes of which exists only in your wildest nerdy fantasies.

Eldica Vinyl & Retro; 8 Bradbury Street, London N16 8JN


*I consider myself very fortunate to have dug for records in various cool places round the world; New York, Paris, Sao Paulo, Buenos Aires and Cape Town among them, but Eldica, alongside Flashback on Essex Road, is one of my absolute TOP places to buy records. Well, the only other place that compares would be Academy Records in NYC (both shops, Williamsburg and the East Village *cough ANAL cough*). Anyway, these two places are both 15 minutes walk from my house- WIN.

Sunday, 14 November 2010

Oswaldo Nunes e The Pops- Levanta A Cabeca (Free Download)

Here's a slice of Ren & Stimpy samba fun for a sunday evening. A b-side from around the time of the excellent 'Ta Tudo Ai' album (pictured above), 'Levanta A Cabeca' starts off with a skippy samba beat on solo drums before being joined by noodling surf guitars. Kind of like The Ventures if they were Brazilian badasses. It's happy happy joy joy music basically. Click on the downward arrow to the right of the soundcloud player to download:

Tuesday, 9 November 2010

Chicano Rap & Herb Alpert

There's something about rapping with a spanish accent that is so so so satifying; as in, rapping in english with a Spanish accent and throwing in the odd spanish word. Hmmm, maybe it's because i'm half-brazilian and feel some sort of innate connection to Latin America. More than likely it's because I listened to a LOT of Cypress Hill when I was a teenager (their main MC, B-Real, is half-mexican)

Wikipedia puts it quite nicely when it says that "Chicano Rap is a subgenre of hip hop music... that embodies aspects of West Coast and Southwest Mexican American (Chicano) culture and is typically performed by American rappers and musicians of Mexican descent". The 'culture' of which they speak also refers to the music sampled by the artists; Mexican melodies and Mariachi bands. Exactly the kind of stuff you want to hear with a hip-hop beat basically.

The ultimate chicano rap song has to be 'Tres Delinquentes' by Delinquent Habits. It samples a famous mexican melody 'The Lonely Bull', in particular the recording by lounge-music maestro and king of kitsch Herb Alpert. Anyway, the song is a straight BANGER:

Saturday, 6 November 2010

Tabla Rhythms and Sitar on the Optigan= WIN

Pea Hix is a badass. He's the owner of THIS site, and complete and utter authority on all things relating to the Optigan, which is basically the coolest instrument ever, and of which I am an extremely proud owner. 

If you were to read the wiki page on the Optigan, you would see that it is basically like a toy mellotron, in that the keys play back loops. In the Optigan's case, loops which exist as markings on the acetate discs you insert into it (it has a photo-optic thingimajig that converts light into sound). Shit is NEXT LEVEL.

Anyways, the point of this post; the Optigan discs originally produced are scarce, some of them rare as the proverbial hen's teeth. But Pea Hix has had the ingenious idea of making his OWN ones. Check out this tabla disc, it's the bomb-diggy-diggy!

I would definitely look forward to an Optigan 'Baile Funk' disc, I don't know if Pea is listening, but, y'know, MAKE IT HAPPEN DUDE

Friday, 5 November 2010

E.M.A.K Compilation = Soul Jazz Records are the best

You know those times when you hear a song somewhere and you HAVE to know what it is almost immediately? As in, after two seconds you are instinctively and unconditionally in love with it? That happened to me recently in Fopp, in Covent Garden, with this:

I heard this noodly-bass electro nonsense with a guy doing the deadpan German vocal thing a la Kraftwerk. I loved it and, after Shazam failed me, I ran to the counter, anticipating just finding out what it was and grabbing it online later. But when the guy told me that it was on a Soul Jazz* compilation of E.M.A.K (a collective of German electronic musicians/synthesizer geeks), I had to dip my hands into my pockets and hand over some dinero, 'cause that record label needs support from everybody, it's the fookin' best.

Here's the song, called 'Wenn Mr Reagan Es Will':

So If you like the tune, then support Soul Jazz and buy the CD direct from them HERE.


*Soul Jazz records is one of the greatest record labels around. Their compilation CDs are bascially ALWAYS amazing, whether it's a round-up of material by master Brazilian percussionist Papete or a selection of New York No-Wave classics.

Their Sounds Of The Universe shop just off Berwick Street (where the market ends) is the very very very finest CD shop in London (although their used vinyl selection isn't what it used to be when the shop was located round the corner in a Broadwick Street side-alley), especially for any music of the, ahem, African-Diaspora. God I hate the term 'world' music, I try never to use it.