East Wind/Universal (Japan), 1974.
A wonderful album from the great Cedar Walton trio that featured Sam Jones on bass and Billy Higgins on drums – a really beautiful group of musicians who completely transformed the sound of the piano trio in the 70s! The group played together often in the 70s, and they've never sounded ... (Jazz CD)
Tum (Finland), 2021.
Pianist Vijay Iyer has left his own very strong mark on the world of jazz in the past decade or so – but here, he's in a completely different setting, and a surprisingly strong fit for the sort of spirit we're used to hearing from trumpeter Wadada Leo Smith! The set also features drummer ... (Jazz CD)
Specialty/Craft, 1955. 3 x 10 inch LP
Some of the earliest work ever done by the young Sam Cooke – served up here in a really special package! LP1 features early gospel recordings with The Soul Stirrers – a group that featured Cooke in the lead before he went solo – with titles that include "Mean Old World" ... (Soul LP)
Cannonball Adderley with Nancy Wilson & Lou Rawls
Capitol/Universal (Japan), 1968.
Almost everything soulful at Capitol Records in the mid 60s – packed together in one sweet little place! The set's a winner in a great line of Cannonball Adderley live dates from the time – produced by David Axelrod, and done with that great mix of angular, slightly electric groove the ... (Jazz CD)
Blue Note, 2021. 2CD
A really special sort of collection – one that features a fair bit of new material mixed in with some of the key cuts from the Blue Note years of singer Gregory Porter – an artist who started in jazz, but who's clearly had a huge impact on the world of soul music in recent years too! ... (Vocalists CD)
Craft, Late 50s/1960s/1970s/1980s/1990s. 4CD
A career-spanning collection of work from the great Doc Watson, all collected together in a really beautiful book-styled package – one that offers up as much about Watson's unusual life as it does his legendary work on guitar! Watson's got an enigmatic history – in that during the 50s, ... (Folk/Country CD)
Universal, 1971. Gatefold
The first-known recordings of the young Aerosmith – pulled from the group's own vaults, and issued here for the first time! The sound of the group is already strongly in place, and you'll know some of these cuts from their first studio album – but the versions here have a quality that's ... (Rock LP)
Quartet (Spain), 1972. 2CD
Beautiful grooves from the legendary Piero Piccioni – a set that's a great follow-up to some of his famous 60s work – touched with a few more sexy 70s touches than before, but in a way that's still extremely groovy! There's lots of electric piano lines on the set – almost a ... (Soundtracks CD)
Hot Mule (France), Late 70s/1980s.
Sweet solo work from Teddy Lasry – a keyboardist who first rose to fame as part of the French group Magma, but who's in much more soulful territory here – grooves that are a mix of jazz fusion and sound library modes – all presented with the sort of vintage vibe that you'd expect ... (Jazz LP)
Ace (UK), Late 60s/Early 70s.
Gus Dudgeon may not be a household name in the annals of rock and roll – but he was a British studio genius whose talents touched more than a few of the more groundbreaking records of the London scene – with an especially great impact on the ever-changing sounds of the late 60s/early ... (Rock CD)
We've always loved the music of Kahil El Zabar – and over the decades, the work of the drummer/percussionist has made us very proud to be part of the Chicago music scene! Yet recently, Kahil seems to be on fire even more than before – driven with a new sense of purpose and message that' ... (Jazz CD)
Bethlehem, 1960. (reissue)
A classic collection of work from Bethlehem Records – a package that brings together some of their strongest jazz singers of the time, under a cover image that's similar to the first album by Nina Simone! The difference here is that the record features a killer non-LP track by Nina – ... (Vocalists LP)
Verve, Late 40s/Early 50s. 4LP
Charlie Parker blew into the world of jazz from Kansas City, and rose to fame in New York – but right from the start, he also left an impact on the scene in Los Angeles – where he recorded his famous Dial Records material, and also worked in some Jam Session recordings too! But the ... (Jazz LP)
Omnivore, Mid 60s. 2CD
Stunning solo piano work from legendary Philly musician Hasaan – best known for his one Atlantic session with Max Roach, but sounding completely different here on his own! From the very first note of the set, you know that you're in the company of a committed modernist, of the same ... (Jazz CD)
Jazzaggression (Finland), 2021.
A contemporary group named after a jazz club in Helsinki – one that must be a very special place, given the quality of this music! The lineup here features Pentti Oironen on saxes and flutes, an artist you might know from his work in Oiro Pena – but the style here is often a lot more ... (Jazz LP)
United Artists/Universal (Japan), 1962.
A really unusual live set from the great Art Blakey – his only album for the United Artists label, but one that continues the tradition of the expanded group style he was starting to use at Blue Note! The lineup here is a sextet, one that's got even more power than the Jazz Messengers as a ... (Jazz CD)
Solid State/Universal (Japan), 1967.
Sublime vibes from a young Mike Mainieri – still working here mostly in a jazz mode, but also stretching out towards some of his experiments to come in the 70s! There's a dark sort of sound to the record – definitely an echo of the MJQ generation, but taken further too – and ... (Jazz CD)
Favorite (France), 2021.
A really fantastic second album from this keyboard-heavy combo from France – a set that's even more cosmic and spacey than their first album, as you might guess from the cover – thanks in large part to all sorts of great work from Florian Pellissier, on a host of keys that includes ... (Deep Funk CD)
IRC/Outernational (UK), 1974. (reissue)
A song of Soweto, but served up here by a really unique South African group that also features key work by a number of American players too! The sound is mix of the loping rhythms of SA jazz and some of the bolder elements you'd hear in American funk of the period – but all mixed together ... (Jazz LP)
Jazzaggression (Finland), 2021.
Christian Reim is a Norwegian jazz legend, with a legacy of recordings that stretches back to the 60s – but here, he presents new material with two different trios – both of whom have the pianist sounding even more vibrant than ever! The first half of the set features Harald Johnsen on ... (Jazz CD)
Rough Trade/Superior Viaduct, 1981. (reissue)
A record that really sums up the genius of the early Fall at their best – not their first album, and not even a full-length set – but one that has all the wit and energy of Mark E Smith really coming into sharp focus! The group still have plenty of noise in their music, but they've ... (Rock LP)
Soul Brother (UK), 1970s/Early 80s.
A great little collection – and one that definitely gets the "soulful" in the title right! The cuts here are from some of our favorite mellow soul artists of the 70s – tracks that move, but in a nicely laidback way – with funky rhythms moving slower than on club cuts, ... (Funky Compilations CD)
Blue Note, 1956. (reissue)
The lyrical genius at his best – an early record from pianist Horace Silver, but one that already has him really defining that special sort of sound that made him really stand out from his contemporaries! The difference here is hard to put in words – but there's a careful ear for an ... (Jazz LP)
Columbia (Japan), 1974. (reissue)
A beautiful little record from 70s Japan – a set that's got the warmly collaborative spirit you'd expect from the image on the cover, and an overall sound that's very much like some of the best material from the Cali scene at the time! Instrumentation is great – a blend of acoustic and ... (Rock LP)
A really cool project from Jarvis Cocker – a set that's inspired by the Wes Anderson film The French Dispatch, with Cocker singing in French throughout – and at a level that really opens up his well-known love of some of the best pop modes of the 20th Century! Jarvis often whispers as ... (Rock CD)
Grapefruit (UK), Late 60s/Early 70s. 3CD
A heady serving of work from the UK scene at the end of the 60s – work from the very vibrant scenes around Birmingham at the time – a place that was starting to deliver a heck of a lot more music than previous hotspots like Liverpool! In some ways, the sounds here are a great ... (Rock CD)
A totally fantastic book – one that will take you deeply into the world of black action cinema of the 70s, and get you way past the bigger hits like Shaft and Superfly! The book is as lively as the cover – filled with images from posters and films throughout, in support of alphabetical ... (Book)
Verve (Japan), 1957.
A tremendous little set from guitarist Howard Roberts – recorded in the years before his better-known records for Capitol, and done in a looser, more relaxed mode! The setting's a quartet with Pete Jolly on piano, Red Mitchell on bass, and Stan Levey on drums – plus some especially ... (Jazz CD)
Hot Casa (France), 1980. (reissue)
A funky highlife stunner from the mighty K Frimpong – an artist who always seems to find a way to make a familiar groove sound even heavier than you might expect! That's definitely the case here – as rattling percussion really sets the scene for every track – sometimes with ... (Global Grooves LP)
Athens Of The North (UK), Late 70s/Early 80s.
A sweet selection of lovers rock tracks that take on big soul hits of the 70s – tunes that often have a bubbling bit of reggae in the rhythms, but which always feature a strong soul-based singer right up front! The tunes offer up not just a great example of the way that lovers rock could ... (Funky Compilations CD)
Buda/L'Arome (France), 1970s.
Amazing 70s recordings from Ethiopian singer Alemayehu Eshete – one of the greatest stars of the Ethiopiques series next to Mulatu! The style here is often quite funky at times – a strong James Brown influence in some of the rhythms, hitting hard with a heavy funk groove at the bottom, ... (Global Grooves LP)
Born Bad (France), Late 70s/Early 80s.
Sweet spacey grooves from Sauveur Mallia – the French electronic genius who was also the founder of the group Arpadys, who you might know from similarly spacey work of their own! The tracks here are all from a point when the European sound library scene was shedding some of the bigger ... (Sound Library CD)
Columbia, 1971. (reissue)
One of the more heavily brooding albums ever cut by Leonard Cohen – and also one of the best – the iconic Songs Of Love And Hate from 1971! Cohen's aptly titled third LP, with the nice spare approach to production that most of his early work had, even more stripped down, with voice and ... (Rock LP)
Wax Trax, 2021.
The first record in many many years from Chicago legends Naked Raygun – but a set that makes us feel like we're still with the group back in the days when they had all their best qualities fully intact! The interplay between blistering guitar lines and anthemic lyrics is fantastic – ... (Rock LP)
VP/17 North Parade, Early 80s. 2LP Gatefold (reissue)
The vocals here are wonderful – a strongly soulful style that really reflects the group members' many years in Jamaican vocal groups – but the rhythms are also key, too – and handled by the Roots Radics with some slight touches of the digital age to come! The balance between ... (Reggae LP)
LMLR (France), 1973. (reissue)
Canned Heat recorded famously with John Lee Hooker during their years on Liberty Records – but here, the blues group is in very different territory – as they work with lead vocals and piano from Memphis Slim, in a Memphis-based setting that also features added work from The Memphis ... (Blues LP)
Steeplechase (Denmark), 1978.
A previously-unreleased album from guitarist Monnette Sudler – a really compelling player from the Philly scene of the 70s, and one whose greatest fame came from her other two albums on the Steeplechase label! The sound here is a slightly different vibe than those records – as Sudler's ... (Jazz CD)
International Anthem/Nonesuch, 2021.
Ben LaMar Gay might well be one of the most creatively intense artists on the International Anthem label – and that's saying a lot, given all of the groundbreaking talents who've come to record for the company in recent years! And while Ben's previous record was completely mindblowing, this ... (Jazz CD)
Silver Age, 2018.
The Czarface team of Wu-Tang veteran Inspectah Deck and Boston underground hip hop heavyweights 7L & Esoteric are joined by the one-and-only MF Doom – a bonafide supergroup – and one of the finest comic book/sci-fi rap records since Madvillainy! Each one of these characters is so ... (Hip Hop LP)
Buda/L'Arome (France), 1970s.
A stunning set of vocal recordings by Tlahoun Gessesse – one of the most important singers during the golden age of Ethiopian Music – caught here on a set of sides that sadly saw that period coming to an end! The tracks on the set are mostly from the early 70s, a time that saw great ... (Global Grooves LP)
Blue Note (Japan), 1969.
One of the strangest albums ever recorded for Blue Note – and one of the coolest, too! Duke Pearson recorded this set in 1969 – during the middle of his last productive period of activity, at a time when he was doing some tremendous genre-crossing jazz that really broke from his ... (Holiday Music CD)
Gorbra/Sonorama (Germany), 1975. (reissue)
The rare debut of tenorist Fitz Gore – a player born in Jamaica, but one who didn't get his chance to shine in the spotlight until moving overseas – where he started his own small label in Germany! The set's a live one – and has Fitz stretching out with a very deep tenor sound, ... (Jazz LP)
A record that's maybe as famous for its cover art, done by comic legend Neal Adams, as it is for the music of The Groundhogs – who are really moving away here from the more blues-based work of their roots! The great Tony McPhee is on vocals and guitar, and also uses mellotron and harmonium ... (Rock CD)
Proud/Tidal Waves, 1982. (reissue)
A late rare gem from southern soul genius Bobby Patterson – the Texas talent who's best known for his work of the late 60s and early 70s, but who's featured here on a self-released album from the start of the 80s! The approach is a bit like the shift that Malaco Records was making in ... (Soul LP)
Olufsen/Acid Jazz (UK), 1988. (reissue)
A sublime criss-crossing of jazz modes and percussion – served up here by Emmanuel Abdul-Rahim, an artist who doesn't always record much as a leader, but always gives us something fantastic when he does! The album's from the late 80s, but has a sense of spiritual exploration that's more 70s ... (Jazz LP)
Terrestrial Funk, 1970s/Early 80s.
Armenian grooves, but done with plenty of familiar funk elements as well – including lots of sweet keyboards and some hard-driving rhythms that makes more than a few of these tracks perfect for the clubs! There's not much in the way of notes with the package, and the set is hardly ... (Global Grooves CD)
Beatball (Korea), 1974. Gatefold
A rare Roy Budd score for a film that starred Michael Caine – a tipoff that you're likely in for the same territory that Budd handled for Caine's classic appearance in Get Carter! The vibe here is slightly different, but does share some similar great elements – including occasional use ... (Soundtracks LP)
Capitol/Universal (Japan), 1974.
A stone classic from Supersax – a record with plenty of classic bop elements, despite a very 70s-styled group name and cover! The combo's a large one, and features tight horn formation deftly cutting through a host of bop classics – lots of ensemble passages at the start, then breakout ... (Jazz CD)
Epic/4 Men With Beards, 1971. (reissue)
Amazing solo work from ex-Zombie Colin Blunstone – his first album after parting ways with his former group – and one of our favorite albums of all time! Blunstone's vocals were already amazing in The Zombies – especially near the end – but this set takes things even ... (Rock LP)
Mushroom Hour Half Hour (South Africa), 2021. Gatefold
A really beautiful record from South African trombonist Malcolm Jiyane – a set that's got plenty of the earthy, organic currents of SA jazz from years past – but which also has a very distinct flavor of its own! Malcolm is a player who really uses his instrument to explore sound first, ... (Jazz LP)
United Artists/Universal (Japan), 1965.
An excellent gimmick from the United Artists label – a way of mixing their strong run of 60s soundtrack hits with the world of jazz – thanks to Count Basie and his group taking on a whole host of themes from the successful James Bond films! Count Basie brings a soulful swing to the ... (Jazz CD)
Columbia (Japan), 2001.
A great set by Korean jazz singer Ann Sally – recorded with a gentle mellow finish, and some sweet Brazilian touches! Ann sings in both Portuguese and English – running through a host of tracks that includes classics by Ivan Lins, Marcos Valle, Joni Mitchell, Henry Mancini, and Roberto ... (Neo Soul LP)
Jazz Refreshed (UK), 2021.
A beautiful set of spiritual jazz from saxophonist Kevin Haynes – an artist who also plays a fair bit of percussion too, with a rootsy vibe that's perfect for the Yoruba inspirations which drive the music here! There's a really pan-national vibe to the record, and maybe a pan-Atlantic one ... (Jazz LP)
Father Daughter, 2021.
Tasha hails from our hometown of Chicago, but she's got a sound that's very much her own – a quality that's instantly personal, and a way of putting over a tune that's a bit unlike anyone else we can think of! Her voice can lilt on high notes, but also has a very down to earth quality too ... (Neo Soul LP)
Big Crown, 2021.
A short set of work from El Michels Affair – but as with most of their records, a set that delivers a heck of a lot more than you'd get from other groups in their scene! If the cover looks a bit familiar, it's because the cuts here were recorded during the sessions for the Yeti Season album, ... (Deep Funk LP)
Blue Note, 1975. (reissue)
Sublime genius from funky flute player Bobbi Humphrey – a record we'd rank right up there with her classic Blacks & Blues set – and like that one, another fantastic collaboration with producer Larry Mizell! The groove here is tremendous throughout – a heady mix of Bobbi's ... (Jazz LP)
A once lost gem! Hudson's voice as a producer remains one of the most unique and idiosyncratic of his era, and this first LP issued under his own name stands as a shining document of his genius. Cut very near the time of his classic dub side Pick A Dub, this album shares the haunting mood that ... (Reggae CD)
Warner (Japan), 1988. (reissue)
We're not sure we've ever heard Carlos Toshiki and Omega Drive before – but the album's a great entry in the Japanese scene of the 80s – a soulful set that really marks a moment when warmer sounds were coming back to the music! The instrumentation is definitely 80s-styled, but used ... (Rock LP)
Mallory-Hall Band (Sanifu Al Hall & Charley Mallory)
IRC/Outernational (UK), 1974. (reissue)
Really fantastic work from this unusual South African band of the 70s – a group who never got much exposure on our side of the Atlantic, but includes key work from some very hip American players of the time! The group is led by trombonist Al Hall and guitarist Charles Mallory – but ... (Jazz LP)
Universal (Japan), 1999.
Beautiful soundtrack work from Joe Hisaishi – done for a 1999 Takeshi Kitano film, and served up in a mix of some of the warmer sentiment he brought to his work for Miyazaki, and some more interesting modes that provide a nice juxtaposition – and which clearly seem right for the madder ... (Soundtracks LP)
Madlib Invazion, 2021.
The first album in many years from German jazz legends Embryo – and a set that hardly has them missing a beat at all from their famous work of the 70s! Part of the strength of the record might be its placement on Madlib's record label – but from the notes, it seems that all the credit ... (Jazz CD)
Lion, Late 60s.
A very heady batch of tracks from a young South African group – one who are working in acid-drenched territory years before the bigger fusions of the Zamrock generation – with a raw sound and very trippy vibe, and music that's overflowing in fuzzy guitar work! The music here was never ... (Rock LP)
Century/P-Vine (Japan), 1968. (reissue)
Tremendous early work from trumpeter Hannibal Marvin Peterson – an artist you might know from his long-spun spiritual jazz work of the 70s – but who sounds nicely different here on a rare early set from the 60s! The record was done when Marvin was part of the ultra-hip jazz program at ... (Jazz LP)
Two contemporary soul giants – coming together in a set that's even better as a whole than their work apart! As you might guess from the name, Bruno Mars and Anderson Paak are going for a classic old school style working together as Silk Sonic – soul music that's heavy on both 70s ... (Neo Soul CD)
A completely charming soundtrack for an equally charming film – a set that mixes together the instrumental music created by Alexandre Desplat for the Wes Anderson film The French Dispatch, and a number of the full songs that were used as snippets during the movie! Desplat's compositions are ... (Soundtracks CD)
Spark/Grapefruit (UK), Late 60s.
Rare gems from the late 60s UK Spark label – a small imprint founded by the Southern Music publishing company, as their own outlet for some of the cool compositions in their catalog! Many of these tracks were recorded in the basement of the company's London offices – often by the same ... (Rock CD)
Beat (Italy), 1971.
A dark and extremely avant garde soundtrack from the great Ennio Morricone – one that's done in collaboration with his own Gruppo Improvvisazione Nuova Consonanza – an ensemble with roots in film scoring, but expressions that are more in the mode of 20th century avant! The music is a ... (Soundtracks CD)
Buda/L'Arome (France), 1972.
A special vinyl release of one of the most striking volumes of the legendary Ethiopiques series – a set that focuses on the mad saxophone work of Getachew Makurya! The recordings on this collection are all from 1972 – and they feature the deep-toned Mekurya blowing in a strange and ... (Global Grooves LP)
Ghetto/Nature Sounds, Early 70s. (reissue)
An obscure salsa set from the start of the 70s, and a stone cooker too – thanks to top-shelf production from Joe Bataan – a great artist in his own right, and a surprising choice to helm this set! Yet the credit here really goes to leader Paul Ortiz – who plays piano and leads ... (Latin LP)
A fresh twist on a classic – as vintage Motown recordings are presented here with added orchestrations – all done at a level that lifts the soul singles up with even more majesty than before! A few of these cuts also feature added new vocals from British soul singers, but overall the ... (Soul CD)
Columbia (Japan), 1966. Gatefold (reissue)
A very groovy session from Japanese singer Miko – recording here in the US with hip grooves from the Billy Taylor Trio! The style is almost even cooler than some of Billy's own records of the time – as the rhythms are open and flowing, which makes for a really sparkling feel to the set ... (Vocalists LP)
Cosmic Disco Machine (Italy), Late 60s/1970s. 2LP Gatefold
Fantastic funky cuts from the glory days of the French soundtrack scene – a moment when some of that nation's film composers were really tripping out, but in a way that's very different than American or Italian soundtrack talents of the time! If you know the funky moments in the work of ... (Funky Compilations LP)
Beat (Italy), 1972.
An obscure Italian soundtrack, done for an equally obscure film – but one that gets some superb scoring from Vasco Vassil Kojucharov, who mixes light woodwinds with moody electric guitar to create these sounds that are both seductive and spooky at the same time! The record almost feels like ... (Soundtracks CD)
Mood Mosaic (Italy), 1970s.
A very groovy entry in this all-great series – a set of compilations that have been giving us really wonderful funk for many years, and which just seems to get better and better with each new entry! The tracks here are a hip mix of styles – not just familiar funk and soul sources, but ... (Funky Compilations CD)
Ogun (UK), 1977.
Maybe the most striking work we've heard from all the players in the group – and that's really saying a lot, given how many stunning records they gave us back in the 70s! The music here is wonderfully free and improvised, but also has a way of focusing on a specific element too – ... (Jazz CD)
Wide Hive, 2021.
A really great blend of two different sides of the genius Roscoe Mitchell – his ear for composition, and his strong legacy of solo performance too! The "Pieces" in the title of the set might make you think that Roscoe is delivering one of his ensemble creations from more recent ... (Jazz LP)
Trunk (UK), 1970.
A pretty fantastic soundtrack from a very unlikely source – a British film based on a 19th century story by Herman Melville, but recast with a scene in London of the swinging 60s! As such, the movie gets a superb score from the great Roger Webb – jazz pianist and sound library genius, ... (Soundtracks LP)
Paramount/Esoteric (UK), 1970. 4CD
A massive set of work from Affinity – a group who only gave the world one classic album, but have a heck of a lot more to offer too! The set begins with the self-titled album from Affinity – a British rock combo, but one with a distinctly jazzy feel – one that's often quite funky ... (Rock CD)
The first new record in many many years from the legendary Diana Ross – and the first to feature all new music since the 20th Century! Yet despite the passage of years, it's clear that Ross is very much at the top of her game – maybe even more so than some of her aging contemporaries, ... (Soul CD)
We Are Busy Bodies (UK), Early 60s. (reissue)
Maybe the coolest record we've ever heard from the team of Tom Dissevelt and Kid Baltan – a record that's every bit as groundbreaking in its use of electronics, but even more playful overall! There's a slight touch of jazz at times – almost a Dick Hyman/Moon Gas sort of mode – as ... (Out Sound LP)
Mood Mosaic (Italy), 1970s.
One of the coolest entries we've ever seen in this excellent series – a package that's heavy on rare funk tracks from overseas, most of which we're never likely to find on vinyl in our neck of the woods! There's a slinky, sexy groove to most of these cuts – very 70s, with plenty of ... (Funky Compilations LP)
Rogue Art (France), 2021.
Bassist William Parker and pianist Matthew Shipp are no musical strangers to each other – as they've been recording together for many decades, even on more contemporary albums that make the title here a bit misleading! And yet, there's definitely something special about the set – wide-o ... (Jazz CD)
Grapefruit (UK), 1965. 3CD
A fantastic collection, and one that really documents the British music scene at a key turning point – a moment when all the groups and singers were really finding a way to leave their own imprint on the sound of rock and pop, while still staying true to some of the American work that ... (Rock CD)
Beverly Hills/Liberation Hall, 1973.
A lost little gem from Chet Baker – recorded with a gentle, homey feel that we really like! The album's not one of the standouts in Chet's catalog, but it's got a personal, almost intimate quality that we find really compelling – almost a broken soul sense of playing, with Chet ... (Jazz CD)
Philips/SAM (France), 1958. (reissue)
A fantastic early recording from the great French tenor saxophonist Barney Wilen – best known as an artist who recorded famously in the soundtrack world of the French new wave, and with Art Blakey – but who's even more striking here on a rare small combo date from the 50s! The session's ... (Jazz LP)
Bear Family (Germany), Late 40s/1950s/Early 60s.
Here Comes Santa Claus – and a heck of a lot of other folks too – all served up here in a mighty nice collection of Holiday goodies from the postwar years – classic singles and LP cuts, all served up in a mix of jazz, vocal, and R&B modes! The set's a great entry in the ... (Holiday Music LP)
El (UK), 1940s/1950s/1960s. 4CD
A heady dip into the musical frontiers of the postwar years – a set that digs deep into avant classical, jazz, and other styles – all to come up with sounds that later provided inspiration for The Beatles, David Bowie, Pink Floyd, and other landmark groups at the end of the 60s! Yet ... (Classical CD)
Superior Viaduct, 1983. (reissue)
Crucial early work by The Ex – exactly the sort of set that shows why the group ended up becoming a genre unto themselves! The record has a story that lives up to its title – as the group recorded the set in the ruins of an abandoned paper factory – once home to hundreds of ... (Rock LP)
Doctor Bird (UK), Late 60s.
Fantastic work from legendary producer Joe Gibbs – a key force in helping Jamaican music find the darker side of its groove at the end of the 60s, thanks to some groundbreaking work in the dee jay mode, and some other styles that are definitely an earlier precursor to dub! The set brings ... (Reggae CD)
BBE (UK), Mid 80s.
Two rare albums from Ghana – back to back in a single set! First up is Omintiminim – a record with a title that's a bit hard to say, but a groove that's instantly infectious – as older highlife modes come into play with all sorts of great 80s keyboards – in style that has ... (Global Grooves CD)
Solar/Robinsongs (UK), Late 70s/Early 80s. 3CD
Four classic albums from Dynasty – served up here with bonus material too! First up is Your Piece Of The Rock – a set that has Dynasty working with snapping grooves with a nice sort of electro undercurrent –- all the handiwork of Leon Sylvers, who also plays bass and drums on the ... (Soul CD)
Division 81, 2021. 2LP
A long-awaited full length statement from saxophonist Isaiah Collier – a player who's been making magic on the Chicago scene in recent years, and who steps forth boldly here as a leader with a vision that cannot be denied! The set was recorded at Rudy Van Gelder's studio, on John Coltrane's ... (Jazz LP)
Blank Forms, 1968.
Here's a summer house we'd really like to visit on our next vacation – a legendary spot in Sweden, where Don Cherry created freely with some of the hippest players on the local scene in 1968! The tracks here were all recorded for later commercial release, which never ended up happening ... (Jazz LP)
A totally great cut from the glory days of Blondie – originally issued in 1981 only as a flexidisc, but every bit the same sort of hip hop groove as their classic "Rapture"! In fact, this cut might be even more of a hip hop cut – as it features Debbie Harry rapping alongside ... (Holiday Music 12-inch)
GAD (Poland), Mid 60s.
Rare 60s work from the world of Polish vibist Jerzy Milian – not sounds from his own group, but that of the Polish Radio dance band – headed up by Edward Czerny, and featuring here a whole set of original compositions and arrangements by Milian! Jerzy plays some solo vibes on the set, ... (Jazz CD)
Fremeaux & Associates (France), Late 40s/1950s/Early 60s. 2CD
An overstuffed package of classic work from the Caribbean – most of it from midcentury, at a time before reggae and other styles would bring even more exposure to the scene! The music here is in a nice mix of modes – separate by island identity, but drawn together in a good way by the ... (Global Grooves CD)
HoZac, 1981. (reissue)
A power pop treasure finally gets its due – as this set brings together the full music created by Adam Roth for the early 80s teen trash film Down The Shore! The music more than works away from the film – the kind of brash, upfront, stripped-down sounds that often had the power pop ... (Rock LP)
WFL/P-Vine (Japan), 1981. (reissue)
A nice little modern soul record – even if it is a gospel session! Fay Hill's got a good indie soul style, and she's nicely set up in a little combo that features some good work by Leroy Lovett on Fender Rhodes and Alpha-Synthesizer – two keyboards that really sweeten the deal ... (Soul LP)
Quartet (Spain), 1971.
A very spooky score for this film that's also known in America as "The Cat With Nine Tails" – the second collaboration between Ennio Morricone and noted horror director Dario Argento! The album's a bit different than some of Morricone's other work on horror films – and at ... (Soundtracks CD)
Corbett vs. Dempsey, 2021.
Beautiful solo recordings from saxophone genius Ken Vandermark – music that we don't normally hear in such a setting from Ken, given what a strong collaborator he is – and a set that's just a further reminder of the endless depths of his talents! The material was recorded at Vandermark' ... (Jazz CD)
Universal (UK), Late 60s/Early 70s. 2CD
A tremendous tribute to a fantastic moment in jazz – the explosion of new sounds that happened in the British scene from the late 60s onward – a moment of music that barely touched our shores, but which was equally important to the changes taking place in modern jazz in the US! England ... (Funky Compilations CD)
Philips/We Are Busy Bodies (UK), Late 60s. 2LP (reissue)
A wonderful album of early analogue electronics – originally issued with a title that billed it as "an astronaut's reflections while visiting the earth"! The sound here is way more outside than that, though – almost more as if the astronaut was an alien – with weird, ... (Out Sound LP)
The second album from this unusual ensemble – a group who maybe take the "dark" in their name a bit more strongly than the "jazz" – and who work here without any real connection to the culture of Kilimanjaro at all! Yet despite that distinction, there's definitely ... (New Grooves CD)
Catfish/Music On Vinyl (Netherlands), 1971. (reissue)
A record that might look a bit hokey on the cover, but which has a tremendous sense of power through and through – especially on side two, where the great Hans Dulfer is joined by some key avant players who were working on the Paris scene in the early 70s! Side one has this very unusual ... (Jazz LP)
Verve, 2021. Gatefold
A pretty striking album from vocalist Melanie Charles – a set that's even more musically dynamic than you might guess from its title! Charles is a singer who can take things straight, but also change them up with some really inventive arrangements – which you'll hear on a few of the ... (Vocalists LP)
Niktom/Modern Harmonic, 1975.
One of the funkiest albums ever cut by the mighty Nikki Giovanni – a set that has these fantastic arrangements from Arif Mardin that are in the best style of early 70s Atlantic Records soul – provided with drums from Bernard Pretty Purdie, keyboards from Richard Tee, guitar from Cornell ... (Soul CD)
NNA, 2021. 2LP
A stunningly beautiful project from JJJJJerome Ellis – one that deals with dysfluency in speech, but delivers the message in a mix of instrumental and vocal modes! Ellis himself suffers from a block stutter – but rather than see that condition as a disability he presents it as a whole ... (Out Sound LP)
Mono Jazz (Italy), 2021. 2LP Gatefold
The first record we've heard in years from Italian pianist Mario Rusca – and a set that really lives up to the strength of all of his classic material from back in the day! The album's a beautifully recorded set – done in mono, which seems to bring an even richer quality to the sound ... (Jazz LP)
Casablanca/Universal, 1976. 2LP Gatefold
A landmark album from Kiss – the set that really broke them out of the hard rock underground and firmly put them on the rock and roll map – thanks to an all-great set list, and overall presentation of the group at their best! Maybe it's the cover image, but there's a rock-solid quality ... (Rock LP)
Trova/Altercat (Germany), 1976.
One of the coolest records we've ever heard from this legendary Argentine pianist – a set that has Jorge Lopez Ruiz playing lots of Fender Rhodes, and mixing it in with both rootsy Latin percussion and a number of other keyboards too! The set's almost a South American version of some of ... (Jazz CD)
Tangential (UK), 2021.
A beautiful side project from Andy Compton – who you might know from his work in The Rurals – recording here in an equally soulful mode, but with a very different vibe overall! For the record, Andy took the trip to LA mentioned in the title – and works alongside Irantzu Pujadas ... (New Age LP)
Rhino, Late 60s/Early 70s. 5CD
An amazing dip into the archives of Joni Mitchell – one that features the Reprise Records label in the title, but which features all unissued material recorded at the same time as her bigger classics for Reprise! There's a wonderful blend of material here – some live tracks, some demo ... (Rock CD)
Husky Pants, 2021.
Beautiful sounds from two modern masters of the guitar – both playing here on a mix of electric and acoustic variations of the instrument, with sonic properties that unfold in wonderful ways throughout the set! Both Grubbs and Walker have a way of doing a lot with just a little – even ... (Rock LP)
Dreamland (Austria), 2021.
Completely stunning music from the marvelous Muriel Grossmann – a saxophonist who's become one of our favorite jazz talents over the course of the past decade – thanks to deeply spiritual work like this! The album's got a Hammond organ, something you're not as always likely to see in a ... (Jazz CD)
RCA, 1971. 4CD
A really special look at the genius of Elvis Presley in the studio – presented here on a set of recordings from a famous 1971 return trip to the studio in Nashville, with material that later came out on a few different records, but expanded here greatly by all sorts of unreleased tracks, and ... (Rock CD)
Righteous (UK), Late 50s/Early 60s.
Classic work from a time when the soundtrack scene turned heavily to jazz music – when both American and European directors moved away from using larger orchestrations, and focused instead on smaller combos and strong soloists who really gave the music a heck of a lot of feeling! The work ... (Soundtracks CD)
Turbo/Soul Brother (UK), 1970s. 2CD
An essential collection of work from one of the hippest funk groups of the 70s – the mysterious Wood Brass & Steel, who also participated in the legendary Skullsnaps record! The first part of the set features an unreleased album that the group recorded for the All-Platinum label in 1973 ... (Soul CD)
Sound American, 2021.
A really great issue of this well-done journal – one that grew out of an initial impulse to document the response of artists and musicians to the pandemic – yet which evolved into something far more interesting overall! The "life" in the title here is key – as editor ... (Magazine)
Zeida/Vampi Soul (Spain), 1973. (reissue)
A totally wonderful little set from the Colombian scene of the early 70s – very different than most other music of that place at the time – and with this sunny, groovy vibe that's got a very universal appeal! Elia and Elizabeth sing in Spanish, and harmonize over these bouncy backings ... (Latin LP)
GAD (Poland), 1977.
A really beautiful soundtrack from Polish composer Jacek Benarek – presented here with a great balance between solo acoustic basslines, and some wonderful use of electric harpsichord! The latter instrument is used in a few spots in ways that echo Italian scores of the early 70s – but ... (Soundtracks CD)
A fantastic addition to the John Coltrane catalog, and a set that's wonderful for so many different reasons it's hard to fit them all in one short passage! As the title implies, the album features a rare live performance of "Love Supreme" – done in 1965, when the work was new both ... (Jazz CD)
Jazz In Britain (UK), 1965.
Crucial early work from British pianist Mike Taylor – an artist who gave the world two classic albums of avant jazz in the late 60s, worked famously with both Ginger Baker and Jack Bruce – then seemingly disappeared for the rest of his time on the planet! This never-issued set predates ... (Jazz CD)
Seventy Seven/Real Gone, Mid 70s. (reissue)
The rare first album by The Brief Encounter – a mid 70s funk group from North Carolina, but one who doesn't feel like a southern soul combo at all – as they work here with a sweet, strong, and jazzy flavor that makes them feel like the best of the California scene in the 70s! The group ... (Soul LP)
Blue Note (Japan), 1967.
Beautiful late work from Lee Morgan! The last five years of Lee's life saw him really stretching out to do some fantastic writing, playing, and leading – and this record stands today as one of the best examples of that period – a pure act of genius, with a sound that really takes off ... (Jazz CD)
California Soul Music, 2021.
Cliff Beach has given us some wonderfully homegrown projects in recent years – but here, his approach turns out to be especially well-suited to the territory of a Holiday record – as Cliff reworks a host of familiar tunes, but with this very personal blend of jazz and soul that really ... (Holiday Music CD)
Knitting Factory, 1971. (reissue)
A great batch of rare tracks from the legendary Fela Kuti – unreleased for many years after their recording – which was done in London in 1971, when EMI sent Fela to the UK for a special session at their Abbey Road studios! The set benefits from the great production values of that ... (Global Grooves LP)
Stack O Hits/P-Vine (Japan), 1976/1981. (reissue)
A killer little soul group who recorded with John "Monster" Davis in the mid 70s – really soaring with a groove that rivals some of their bigger contemporaries on the east coast group scene! Touch Of Class sing in a style that's sometimes fragile, but often more suited to the ... (Soul LP)
Salaam Records/Gotta Groove, 1969. (reissue)
Amazing spiritual jazz treasure – the only album ever issued by this obscure avant trio from the Cleveland scene – a group that includes a young Abdul Wadud on bass and cello! The style is nicely loose and open, but also very different than the sound of the AACM at the time – ... (Jazz LP)
Impulse (Japan), 1965.
Brilliant work from the great John Coltrane – a set of material that was recorded in the 60s, but not issued until the late 70s – and only then, not properly in print until the release of this great package! The material is classic Coltrane Quartet – with McCoy Tyner on piano, ... (Jazz CD)
Death Waltz, 1969. 2LP
A key moment of genius from the legendary Ennio Morricone – a set that marked a huge step forward for his music – at a level that would have a huge influence on other composers (and filmmakers) for years to come! The score is an amazing blend of voices, keyboards, and off-kilter ... (Soundtracks LP)
Africa Seven (UK), 1970s/Early 80s.
A really cool little package, and one that looks at the rise of reggae on the African scene of the 70s – including many tracks that mark a moment before that big 80s wave of African-based superstars that rose up to larger global fame! The cuts here are maybe a bit more homegrown and unusual ... (Global Grooves LP)
A wonderful Holiday set from Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings – easily one of the coolest albums you'll ever hope to spin in December! The group really recreate the vibe of a classic Christmas soul album – like records from James Brown or Stevie Wonder – and do an excellent job ... (Holiday Music CD)
Impulse (Japan), 1967.
The last concert ever played by the great John Coltrane – and, as with some of his other recordings from 1967, a record that really shows the Great One stepping out into some territory we would have loved him to explore more, had he not left our world too soon! The group here has tremendous ... (Jazz CD)
Right On/Modern Harmonic, 1971.
An amazing setting for the righteous words and message of Nikki Giovanni – as the set has the poet working with backing vocals by the New York Community Choir, who also recorded a great soul album on RCA around the same time – and an overall approach that elevates Nikki's poetry into a ... (Soul CD)
Cherry Red (UK), 1981. 3CD
A huge slice of work from a crucial year in electronic music – all tracks from 1981, a time when the experiments of the 70s were giving way to more tuneful recordings of the 80s – at a level that would soon dominate the world of pop around the globe! Yet although some of these artists ... (Rock CD)
A decade's worth of funky photographs – served up here in a completely massive book! Photographer Bruce Talamon was clearly the man on the scene in the 70s – able to gain access to some of the best soul and funk artists of the time – both onstage and backstage, with some great ... (Book)
Corbett vs. Dempsey, 2021.
Tremendous solo work from the great Joe McPhee – recorded alone at home during 2020, as you might guess from the title – but a set that has Joe being wonderfully expressive, in the very personal way that you'd know if you've ever seen him live in performance! McPhee mostly blows tenor, ... (Jazz CD)
A beautiful book on horror film soundtracks on vinyl – one that starts with the earliest days of scores for famous early Universal monster movies, then really takes off when it hits the glory days of the 70s and 80s soundtrack! The book nicely moves past the classic generation – and ... (Book)
Rhythm & Blues (UK), Mid 60s. 2CD
A heady serving of instrumental soul tunes from the center of the 60s – work that really takes off from jazz and R&B modes from a few years before, and serves up music that reminds us that great soul sounds don't always need some lyrics in the lead! There's a nicely gritty vibe on most ... (Soul CD)
Fuel (UK), 2021.
You might know Jonny Trunk as the head of England's amazing Trunk Records label – but here, he demonstrates a completely different side of his talents, although one that's as aesthetically dynamic as the music he puts on his records! As the title implies, the book features two decades' worth ... (Book)
Rhythm Section International (UK), 2021.
A group of players with ties to other groups on the London scene – all working here together at a level that will really blow away your expectations of a familiar trio album! On paper, the record's got a familiar feel – bass from Cameron Dawson, drums from Dougal Taylor, and keyboards ... (Jazz CD)
Mercury/Esoteric (UK), Late 70s. 8CD
Spirit are maybe best known for their revolutionary work of the late 60s – music that took a more freeform style of jamming and focused it into some surprisingly tuneful ends – but the group were really firmly back at their best during the overlooked 70s stretch in which they recorded ... (Rock CD)
Trojan/Sanctuary (UK), 1981.
A soulful set from Carroll Thompson – the debut from the sultry UK singer, and a set that went onto become a key classic in the lovers rock genre! Carroll has a great way of mixing Jamaican styles with a bit more of a London vibe – coming up with a criss-cross of modes that really ... (Reggae CD)
Still Music/Past Due, 1984. 2LP
A great lost bit of 80s groove – the one and only album from Netwerk, a bouncing funky soul outfit that followed strongly in the spirit of BB&Q Band, Mtume, and other 80s groove heroes – maybe no surprise, as the group features a number of artists who played with those groups too! ... (Soul LP)
MAI/Far Out (UK), 1979.
A landmark bit of Brazilian from Europe – and a sweet groover from guitarist Agustin Pereyra Lucena! The set was recorded in Oslo, but it's got the warm sound of a Brazilian jazz set from the time – with Agustin on acoustic guitar and percussion – backed by a quartet that ... (Brazil CD)
Bear Family (Germany), Late 50s/Early 60s.
One of the coolest overviews of early Chicano rock we've ever seen – a set that really lays the groundwork for some of the bigger music to come – but with the sort of deep-digging style we love on other compilations from the Bear Family label! Most of this work was recorded in LA ... (Rock CD)
Svart (Finland), 1983/1991. 3CD
A pair of rare albums – plus lots of bonus titles too – all packaged together in one mighty 3CD set! First up is the album Picture In Three Colors – a really great moment in the career of the Finnish saxophonist Eero Koivistoinen – a player who'd been making huge waves on ... (Jazz CD)
Now Again, 2021.
A whole new side of funky genius for Karl Hector – aka JJ Whitefield, of Poets Of Rhythm fame – a set that takes off from his previous Afro Funk albums with The Macouns, but which has an even more stripped-down vibe overall! The group is just a trio – with Ebo Taylor's son Henry, ... (Global Grooves CD)
AMS (Italy), 1973. Gatefold (reissue)
An unusual album from 1973 – one that has Italian guitarist Franco Cerri working with larger backings, in a style that's almost a bit like soundtrack work of the time! Franco's guitar lines are clean and clear – right up front in the mix, over a range of strings, plus bits of organ, ... (Jazz LP)
Jasmine (UK), 1950s/Early 60s.
That's Billy Bland, not Bobby Bland – a really great singer who's got a wonderful range of material – equally able to sing jump blues, R&B, and even a bit of New Orleans soul – all of which is featured in this excellent collection of his work for the Old Town label – ... (Soul CD)
KPM/Def Presse, 2021.
A fantastic album from Damu The Fudgemunk, and a set that kicks off a whole new series in the sound library universe too – one that has contemporary producers getting access to classic samples from the KPM Sound Library catalog, while also adding their own music to the label too! Here, Damu ... (Hip Hop CD)
Contempo (Italy), 1976. 2LP Gatefold
Rare 70s live work from the legendary Italian group Perigeo – a combo who were very much both a jazz group and a rock outfit – and who work here in a concert setting that has the players really stretching out on their solos! You'll no doubt recognize some of the quintet's players here ... (Jazz LP)
A pretty amazing step forward for Neal Francis – a singer whose debut felt as if it were steeped in all the best influences from the southern soul and rock scene of the early 70s – and who now finds a way of pulling all those elements into a mode that bristles with stardom from the very ... (Deep Funk CD)
Brewerytown, Early 70s. (reissue)
A stunning female trio from Philly – one who record in this heartbreaking sweet soul style that's much more like most of the male groups from the time! "Why I Love You" has a guitar line woven into the midtempo rhythms – very blue-tinged and sad, and perfectly echoing the ... (Funky 45's 7-inch)
Tao Forms, 2021.
The title and cover of this one might make you expect a somewhat academic approach – but pianist Matthew Shipp is at his warmest and most organic here – spinning out a series of solo pieces that seem to unlock a whole new sense of poetry in his music! There's a really special vibe ... (Jazz CD)
Parlophone/Svart (Finland), 1972. Gatefold (reissue)
A massive harvest of sound from this fantastic Finnish group – a set recorded at the start of the 70s, and an album that set the stage for so many other Finnish hard rock giants to come! Lyrics are in English, and sung with this really great edge – one that cuts even more strongly on ... (Rock LP)
ECM (Germany), 2021.
One of the most fantastic records we've heard from bassist Marc Johnson in years – a wonderful solo set that not only furthers Johnson's legacy as a musician, but also ties it to the larger ECM Records tradition – but without having Marc just swim in the same waters as his labelmates! ... (Jazz CD)
Numero Group have turned their talents towards 90s reissues in recent years – and that shift is definitely covered in this issue of their magazine – thanks to a variety of well-penned features on some of the bands they've been reissuing! Mac McCaughan talks about Seam in Chapel Hill, ... (Magazine)
Cobra/WRWTFWW (Switzerland), 1977.
A really cool little set that's maybe a bit jazz, and a bit "something else" – instrumental sounds from keyboardist Roland Bocquet, who you might know from his work in the group Catharsis – served up here with all sorts of cool elements that move between jazz fusion, spacey ... (Jazz CD)
World Circuit, 2020. 2CD
A really fantastic collaboration between two pioneers of African music – and a set that nicely opens both into the jazziest side of their talents! Hugh Masekela blows flugelhorn, and Tony Allen handles drums and plenty of percussion – and although both artists sing a bit, the main ... (Global Grooves CD)
A surprisingly straightforward Christmas album from Chilly Gonzales – one that features spare piano on most of the tracks, usually handled with this really moody vibe that really gets the complicated spirit of the holiday right! It's as if Chilly knows that the season can be as sad for some ... (Holiday Music CD)
Nimbus, Early 80s.
A legendary album from the LA jazz underground of the 80s – one of a rare few sets recorded as a leader by the great pianist Nate Morgan! Morgan's something of a lost talent, but was a key part of the scene that was forming around Nimbus Records at the time – a great musician who has ... (Jazz CD)
Deutsche Grammophon (Germany), 2021.
A new standard in Holiday music, served up by some of the more contemporary artists to record for the legendary Deutsche Grammophon label! The vibe here is similar to some of the more ambient works of the Max Richter generation of talents on the label – but there's also some more pronounced ... (Holiday Music CD)
Die Kosmischen Kuriere (Germany), 1974. (reissue)
A landmark bit of work from the Cosmic Jokers – real heroes of the German prog era, and less a batch of pranksters than some serious prog rock heavyweights – given that the lineup here features Dieter Dierks, Manuel Gottsching, Klaus Schulze, and Harald Grosskopf – all coming ... (Rock LP)
Buried Treasure (UK), Late 80s/1990s/Early 2000s.
Over 20 years worth of unheard recordings from the writer/producer of The Delaware Road – work that's been pulled from an assortment of cassettes, DATs, and minidiscs – and which represent a similar evolution in electronics as the technology on which it was recorded! Some of the tracks ... (Sound Library CD)
Wonderfully righteous work from Burnt Sugar Arkestra – a group who've been giving us great records for years, but who are maybe even more important to the scene than ever before! The core of the record is the long title track – a very jazzy tune that builds up over loops set down by ... (Deep Funk CD)
Sugar/Decca, 1970s. 2LP Gatefold
A totally wonderful collection of music from the glory days of the Italian soundtrack scene – one that features some classic horror themes from the 70s, and also a fair bit of never-issued material too! The creepy image on the cover will give you a good idea of what you're in for here – ... (Soundtracks LP)
Omicron/Dialogo (Italy), 1975.
A second sound library trip to Africa by Italian sound library maestro Piero Umiliani – and one that's even groovier than the first! The music here follows a similar pattern – mixing elements of 70s sound library rhythms with some older exotic modes – a blend of electric and ... (Sound Library CD)
Polydor, Late 60s. 2CDs
A really well-done collection of tracks, designed to accompany the Velvet Underground film from director Todd Haynes – a set that mixes VU classics with some rare moments by the group, and a few tracks by other artists that help set the scene for their sound and inspirations! The package is ... (Rock CD)
Ebrau/Think (Japan), 1973.
A rare collection of Brazilian music from the early 70s – and a set that maybe feels more like some of the modernist bossa classics on the Elenco label from the 60s, right down to the black and white image on the cover! There's a fair bit of bossa nova elements in the instrumentation – ... (Brazil CD)
180g (UK), Late 70s/1980s.
A really fantastic entry in this really great series – one that shows just how strongly the spirit of invention continued in the world of Japanese music as it moved into the 80s! As with previous volumes, the work here is a unique hybrid of influences from American and Japanese sources ... (Funky Compilations LP)
Tribe/P-Vine (Japan), 2021.
Fantastic new music from Detroit reedman Wendell Harrison – working here with a renewed version of the Tribe Records scene, at a level that makes the album one of his best in many years! Wendell blows tenor and bass clarinet, and his group here is mostly younger, lesser-known players – ... (Jazz CD)
Cotillion/Robinsongs (UK), Late 70s/Early 80s. 7CD
All the best early years of Stacy Lattisaw – served up in one nice little set! And when we say "early", we mean early – given that Stacy was just in her teens when she sang a good number of the tunes on this collection! But although young, Lattisaw already had a depth that ... (Soul CD)
Daptone, 2014. 2CD
A fantastic presentation of all that's wonderful with the mighty Daptone label – one of the hippest, funkiest record companies of the past few decades – the company that gave the world Sharon Jones, Charles Bradley, and other great artists – all of whom are heard here in an ... (Deep Funk CD)
IRT/Vampi Soul (Spain), 1972. (reissue)
Soulful sounds from 70s Chile – and a record that easily rivals some of the best acoustic work from the post-Tropicalia generation in Brazil! Manduka's got a heady sound that's very much in keeping with his image on the cover – a freer sort of approach to the music than the decade ... (Global Grooves LP)
Sdban (Belgium), Late 60s/1970s. 2CD
A pretty incredible legacy of jazz from the scene in Belgium during the late 60s and early 70s – a place that never got the kind of exposure as the jazz worlds of the UK, Scandinavia, and Germany – but one that was making some really amazing work at the time! Take the "progressive& ... (Funky Compilations CD)
Dreamland (Austria), 2016.
A real step forward for saxophonist Muriel Grossmann – as the set seems to have a new sort of fire that wasn't there on her debut – as Grossmann and quartet open up to embrace the world of modal rhythms! The tunes here all have this fantastic sense of pulse – energy that comes ... (Jazz CD)
Quartet (Spain), 1969.
A great little soundtrack from Ennio Morricone – with music that sports vocals both by I Cantori Moderni and Edda Dell'Orso – both of whom are working in prime Mondo Morricone modes! There's a dreamy feel to the best numbers on the set – heard most perfectly in the classic "G ... (Soundtracks CD)
Bible & Tire/Fat Possum, 2021. 2LPGatefold
A fantastic little session of gospel music – contemporary work, but done in the same sort of "field trip" style of recording that takes us back to Alan Lomax and some of the great southern projects of the postwar years! In this case, the music all comes from a studio in Fountain, ... (Gospel LP)
Quartet/CAM (Spain), 1969.
Our favorite album ever from French soundtrack maestro Philippe Sarde – and maybe one of our favorite French soundtracks too! There's a really special quality to this music – as rich as some of Sarde's other scores, but maybe linked more towards the new wave of subtle expression that ... (Soundtracks CD)
Forever Living Originals (UK), 2021.
Fantastic music from Sault – a record that explodes way past some of their previous releases, and really shows the group evolving in their sound – even if they are still keeping their cover art in the same very understated territory! There's a sense of urgency as the album begins ... (New Grooves CD)
Four Flies (Italy), 1977.
A totally fantastic soundtrack from the 70s Italian scene – one that's filled with all sorts of sweet electric touches from Lallo Gori – including lots of keyboards over some pretty funky tracks! Gori did some more standard scoring in earlier years – but here, he's right up there ... (Soundtracks LP)
Rustblade (Italy), 1986.
That's a very 80s image on the cover, and there's a very 80s feel to the record – a set that's awash in the kind of cool keyboard work you'd expect from Claudio Simonetti, often served up with a lean style that owes plenty to the legacy of John Carpenter! The keys can move from deep and ... (Soundtracks LP)
Beat Rocket, Mid 60s.
A very hip group from the Michigan scene of the 60s – an all-female outfit, but one with a sound that's a lot more raw than the sweet girl group sounds you might be expecting! The Luv'd Ones have a great way with a bassline and sinister guitar riff – at a level that often gives these ... (Rock CD)
Rustblade (Italy), 2021.
An excellent tribute to the sonic legacy of John Carpenter – known to most as an actor and director, but loved by us for the huge musical impact he's left on the world of horror soundtracks! Here, some of Carpenter's contemporaries and musicians from a younger generation serve up a range of ... (Soundtracks LP)
Tru Thoughts (UK), 2021.
A beautiful collaboration between Quantic and Colombian singer Nidia Gongora – a set that's got a depth that we hardly would have imagined from Quantic's music at the start! Make no mistake, we've always loved Quantic's records – and he's gone farther than most of his contemporaries in ... (Deep Funk CD)
The legendary Phil Ranelin has been giving us great music for decades – yet he still sounds as fresh and vibrant here as ever – working in a small combo that really lets us focus on his phrasing and imagination on trombone, and his very righteous way of putting over a tune! Phil's ... (Jazz CD)
Black Fire/Strut, Late 70s.
A sweet set of spiritual jazz funk – a gem of a set from an Ohio group of the 70s, but one that was initially only issued on CD by the Black Fire label many years later! The ensemble's led by singer/pianist Clarence Young – and has a very message-oriented approach – sort of a ... (Soul CD)
The first-ever album by a musician we're sure to be hearing from in years to come – an incredibly rock-solid record, and one that will definitely put the name of tenorist Kazemede George on the map! George has a pan-cultural approach to his music – with strong influences from Cuba and ... (Jazz CD)
Cramps/Dialogo (Italy), 1977. (reissue)
A beautiful Steve Lacy album recorded during his fruitful time in Europe during the 70s – and one that's nicely different than some of his other material of the decade! The approach here really fits in with the Cramps Records style of presentation – as Lacy is maybe in a more ... (Jazz LP)
Cinevox/Cinedelic (Italy), Late 70s. (reissue)
A cool 70s crime thriller from Italy – and one that's scored with that mode that has the 70s cop show style hitting the clubs! By that, we mean that there's some disco rhythms mixed in with funky electric jazz – all at a level that creates a record that might have as much appeal to ... (Soundtracks LP)
Enja/Pure Pleasure (UK), 2002. 2LP (reissue)
The duo of Archie Shepp and Mal Waldron come together beautifully here – in a mode that echoes some of the duets that pianist Waldron recorded with other reedmen in the 70s and 80s, but which has an especially wonderful contribution from Shepp! Archie blows both tenor and soprano sax – ... (Jazz LP)
Blue Note (Japan), 1961/1962.
Obscure material from Dexter Gordon – some rare gems from his early 60s years at Blue Note – unissued back and in the day, but brought together for this sweet package at the start of the 80s! The album's great in that it shows Gordon really trying on some new things at the label – ... (Jazz CD)
Sire, 1984. (reissue)
Echo & The Bunnymen at the height of their powers – able to deliver music that's as majestic as it is moody, and which nicely avoids all the cliches of the artists the group influenced in years to come! There's subtle use of strings that really give the record a fantastic vibe – ... (Rock LP)
Liuto/Dialogo (Italy), 1976. (reissue)
A hip set of swinging urban tunes – recorded by Piero Umiliani in 1976, in a mode that recalls American "urban" jazz tributes from the 50s and 60s – especially some of the albums that were dedicated to New York! Yet the difference here is that he session's got a bit of a 70s ... (Sound Library LP)
EMI/Polysom (Brazil), 2006. (reissue)
Warmly mellow work from Marisa Monte – a record that's issued in conjunction with her samba-styled Universo Ao Meu Redor album, but which has a sound that's much more in keeping with her Memorias Cronicas E Declaracoes set from a few years back! The backings here are often mellow and ... (Brazil LP)
Cinevox/Cinedelic (Italy), 1980. (reissue)
A killer cop/crime soundtrack from the Italian scene – recorded a bit late in comparison to some of the more famous entries, but done in a style that's very much like some of the best from the 70s! Things are nice and spare, with a bassline on many tracks that feels like a heartbeat moving a ... (Soundtracks LP)
Edipan/Sounds From The Screen (Italy), 1975. (reissue)
One of the most obscure 70s albums from the great Bruno Nicolai – a smaller label sound library set, but one that's served up with all the depth of his famous film scores of the time – including his famous collaborations with Ennio Morricone! The music here is great – lean and ... (Soundtracks LP)
Ultra Vybe (Japan), Early 80s.
Live work from the great Art Blakey – a set that features two different performances from two really great groups! The first two cuts are from 1980 – from a time when the Jazz Messengers features up and coming 80s giants Bobby Watson on alto, Valery Ponomarev on trumpet, Billy Pierce ... (Jazz CD)
TP Orchestra Poly Rythmo De Cotonou
Albarika Store/Acid Jazz (UK), 1974.
Stunning early work from the Orchestra Poly Rhythmo – a set that's titled after a set of rhythms used in voodoo rituals in Benin – echoed here strongly by the heavy use of percussion on the record, which includes a giant drum reserved for use only in ritual performance! The sound is ... (Global Grooves CD)
Blue Note (Japan), 1956.
Jimmy Smith heard in the kind of setting that spawned him – playing live at Delaware's Club Baby Grand – just the sort of smoky little jazz room that initially fostered his talents! The liveness of the set brings a really nice edge to the album – a sound that's grittier than some ... (Jazz CD)
ECM (Germany), 2021.
Drummer Andrew Cyrille is a man of many modes – a player we first grew to love on his 60s recordings with Walt Dickerson, then his 70s percussion records from the underground – and over the decades, he's just kept on surprising us with his musical versatility! Here, he's definitely ... (Jazz CD)
WeJazz (Finland), 2021.
A really great record from Finnish saxophonist Timo Lassy – and one that's a bit different than you might expect from the title – as the set doesn't just feature Timo blowing with his trio, but also work from a larger set of strings, who really take the record into sublimely soulful ... (Jazz CD)
Three Blind Mice/Craftman (Japan), 1975.
One of the most unusual albums we've ever heard from Japanese bassist Hideto Kanai – maybe the only one to feature his King's Roar group, a magnificent spiritual avant ensemble who work through two side-long tracks with plenty of amazing moments! There seems to be a nice blend of structure ... (Jazz CD)
Nature Sounds, 2021.
The last album ever recorded by Gift Of Gab – a set recorded during his final years, which were full of health troubles – but music that definitely sparkles from the inspiration mentioned in the title! Gab's got that razor-sharp quality here that made him such a key part of ... (Hip Hop LP)
P-Vine (Japan), Mid 70s.
We don't know much about Bill Brown and his group – but they're a fantastic lost act from the 70s, and one who have a fantastic way of mixing warm soul harmonies with some very sharp grooves! The rhythms are pretty upbeat on most tracks, but the vibe is before the disco and club years – ... (Soul LP)
International Anthem, 2021.
The notes on the cover use the term "Latinx Futurist" to refer to the work of Dos Santos – and that may be one of the best ways we've ever heard to describe their really unique blend of modes – served up here with a sound that firmly places the group at the crossroads of some ... (Latin CD)
Criss Cross (Netherlands), 2021.
Maybe one of the most beautiful records we've ever heard from drummer Donald Edwards – a set that states its position strongly with the title, then features a suite of tracks that work together perfectly to deliver Donald's message! The record has a power and focus that's wonderful – ... (Jazz CD)
Cecil Taylor & Sunny Murray
Corbett vs. Dempsey, 1996.
A fantastic extended performance from the great Cecil Taylor – and a set that's really striking for a number of different reasons! First, the performance begins with some added voice work from Tristan Honsinger, Dominic Duval, and others – doing unusual vocalizations that are a bit ... (Jazz CD)
Liuto/Dialogo (Italy), 1972.
A totally wonderful set of sound library work from the legendary Piero Umiliani, working here under the name of Zalla – a set that mixes his great ear for electronic elements with some warm acoustic instrumentation too – a blend of percussion, baritone flute, and even a bit of marimba ... (Sound Library CD)
J.Bridge/P-Vine (Japan), 1976. (reissue)
A great record – and the kind of lost soul that has group collectors digging through the used bins year after year! Smoke hailed from Kansas City, and they were sweet harmony group in the mode of many of their east coast contemporaries. The record was recorded in 1976, but has a sound that's ... (Soul LP)
Polygram/Universal (Japan), 1969.
A seminal live set that brings together two giants of the Tropicalia scene – Caetano Veloso and Gilberto Gil, recorded here in a rough-edged performance from 1969! The format has the artists alternating songs throughout the set, then coming together for a duet at the end – and the ... (Brazil CD)
Atlantic/Soulmusic.com (UK), Late 60s. 3CD
A fantastic run of music from a group who were key to the rising sound of soul music on Atlantic Records during the 60s – but who sometimes didn't always get their due! The Sweet Inspirations have roots in gospel – as the famous Drinkard Sisters – and they've also got a legacy ... (Soul CD)
Asha/Soul Jazz (UK), 1970. (reissue)
One of the most beautiful albums ever recorded by DC flutist Lloyd McNeil – and one of the grooviest, too! Lloyd's work is always amazing – stretched-out, spiritual, and filled with life – but this time around, there's a definite groove to the record that's undeniable – an ... (Jazz LP)
Horace Tapscott & The Pan Afrikan Peoples Arkestra
Large-group genius from the legendary Horace Tapscott – one of the few recordings of his groundbreaking Pan Afrikan Peoples Arkestra! The music here is totally righteous right from the start – even more searching and soaring than Tapscott's trio or solo work – thanks to help from ... (Jazz CD)
International Anthem, 2021. 2CDs
Trumpeter Jaimie Branch has been giving us great music for a number of years – but honestly, she really knocks it out of the park on this live set – a record that's even more amazing than her previous two efforts with a similar title! The set's a double-length performance – and ... (Jazz CD)
Art Yard (UK), Early 60s.
A stunning package of work from the early days of Sun Ra & The Arkestra – three really wonderful tracks that are well-deserving of issue on a 45! "Angels & Demons At Play" is perhaps one of the greatest illustrations of the way that Ra took all of the exotic currents in ... (Funky 45's 7-inch)
Tum (Finland), 2021. 4CD
A fantastic package from trumpeter Wadada Leo Smith – one that's billed as "symphonies" in the title, but which instead features quartet jazz performances throughout – as you've maybe guessed by the name of the group! There's maybe a more compositional structure here than on ... (Jazz CD)
Northern Spy, 2021.
Strong solo work from saxophonist Darius Jones – a set that really lives up to both the "raw" and the "lone operation" in the title – as Jones blows here in a space that's very much all his own – with raw emotionality in the spotlight all the way through! Yet ... (Jazz CD)