The young Carole King in her prime – sounding really wonderful here on a well-recorded BBC set from the start of the 70s! As you can guess from the cover image, there's a nicely intimate vibe to the record – a strong focus on Carole's piano work and her unique vocal phrasing, all ... (Rock LP)
Blue Note, 1975. (reissue)
An incredible record that was one of the highest points of Donald Byrd's career! The album's the third one he cut with producer/arranger Larry Mizell – and of all Byrd's work with Mizell, this one's the funkiest, the tightest, the most soulful, and the most perfectly realized vision of the ... (Jazz LP)
Light In The Attic, Early 70s.
Never-issued solo work from the legendary Leo Nocentelli – best known as the killer guitarist in The Meters, but a completely different artist here on his own – and one who might well have taken the 70s world of soul music by storm, had this record been released! The record has a vibe ... (Soul CD)
Beat (Italy), 1970.
Really great music for one of the trippiest westerns ever recorded during the spaghetti generation – served up here with instrumentation that often has a lot more psychedelic touches than other western scores of the time! Mario Migliardi didn't do that much soundtrack work in the period, but ... (Soundtracks 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)
One of the great modern genre-busting debuts we've had the pleasure of being so stunned by in quite a while! Thundercat's Golden Age is dizzyingly brilliant mix of 80s clubby synths and keys, future soul & funky soundscapes, 70s soul jazzy atmospherics and more – but it's hardly a mere ... (New Grooves 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)
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)
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)
Blue Note, 1969. (reissue)
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 LP)
Easy Action (UK), Early 70s.
A hell of a record from soul singer Pat Hall – vocalist who mostly provided background work for UK rock singers like Marc Bolan – but who really gets to shine in the spotlight here, thanks to help from Bolan himself! The album's a searing funky nugget all the way through – almost ... (Soul LP)
Sublime Frequencies, Mid 60s.
You may not know the name of Phuong Tam – but you'll definitely get plenty of the surf, twist, and soul promised in the title – a very cool blend of American modes of the mid 60s, filtered through the cultural crossroads of Saigon, and topped with these beautiful vocals that are ... (Global Grooves CD)
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)
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)
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)
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)
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)
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 CD)
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)
Soulmusic.com/Elektra (UK), Late 70s/Early 80s. 5CD
A great run of music from Grover Washington Jr – five full albums, plus lots of bonus tracks too! First up is Paradise – one of those records you see so much it's easy to forget how great it is! Grover's a real genius with the sax on this record – taking a "less is ... (Jazz CD)
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)
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)
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)
The title and cover here really point the way towards the record inside – as Dam-Funk remains in a very special space that's all his own – that sublime blend of bassy bottoms and spacey keyboards that he still does better than anyone else – including all those newer artists who ... (Neo Soul CD)
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)
Atlantic/Real Gone, Late 60s/Early 70s.
Dusty Springfield on Atlantic Records – a match made in heaven, and one that's presented here perfectly in a batch of two dozen tracks that are all served up in their original mono mixes for 45rpm seven inch singles! Dusty had already been one of the most soulful singers on the UK scene in ... (Vocalists CD)
Fremeaux & Associates (France), 1962. 3CD
Stunning live material from the great Ray Charles – a 3CD set that brings together a wealth of stage performances from May of 1962, in setting that often lets us focus as much on Ray's incredible piano work as it does his trademark vocals! Charles' talents need no introduction from us, but ... (Soul 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)
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)
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)
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)
The great Louis Hayes has been giving us incredible records for decades – and this recent set still has the drummer very much at the top of his game – working with a soulful conception that few folks can match, and really getting the best out of the wonderful group he's got on the set! ... (Jazz CD)
Verve, 2021. (pic cover)
A very cool set in the "original grooves" series – that Verve Records creation that has a single side of a record offer up two tracks in the same space – playing a different one at random, depending on where the needle drops! The record first features the original Louis ... (Jazz 12-inch)
Mood Mosaic (Italy), Late 60s/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 CD)
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)
Esoteric (UK), 1971. 4CD
British music breaking through – served up here in a set of sounds that really reflect the massive musical year of 1971! As you might guess from the "underground" in the title, the collection's a bit one-sided – as it's not out to document the hits of the time, but instead ... (Rock CD)
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)
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)
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)
Jazz In Britain (UK), 1972. 3CD & Book
Legendary work from the British jazz scene of the early 70s – served up here by a group of important players who made some amazing music in the years before, two of whom would leave the planet not long after these legendary recordings! Splinters never issued a full album at the time – ... (Jazz CD)
Rainbow Blonde, 2021.
Singer Jose James has always had a classic vibe to his vocals – but that quality is maybe put forward even more here on this well-crafted Christmas album – a set that somehow manages to bridge the gap between classic Holiday records and the more contemporary work that James has given us ... (Holiday Music 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)
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)
Nyege Nyege Tapes, Late 40s/1950s/Early 60s.
Highly percussive sounds from the kingdom of Buganda – an area that predates the formation of modern day Uganda, and which has an equally ancient sound to its music! The work here is served up on a variety of instruments – percussion, drums, flutes, and stringed instruments – but ... (Global Grooves 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)
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)
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)
Frans Elsen Septet with Piet Noordijk
Nederlands Jazz Archief (Netherlands), Early 70s.
That's a Fender Rhodes on the cover, and there's lots of it on the record too – played by Frans Elsen with a wonderful sound, in a range of different settings – all heard here on rare tracks from the 70s that were never commercially issued at the time! Frans has a fantastic sound on ... (Jazz CD)
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)
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)
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 CD)
Midi/We Want Sounds (UK), 1985. (reissue)
A masterpiece of electronic work from Ryuichi Sakamoto – and a record that may well be reaching for the universal language promised in the title! The set's not nearly as pop-oriented as some of Sakamoto's other work from the time – mostly instrumental, and with a spirit that's like ... (Rock 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. 2CD
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 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)
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)
International Anthem, 2021.
A hell of a record from Irreversible Entanglements – a group we already loved on previous records, but who really knock it out of the part with this fantastic set! The mix of modes here is a bit hard to put in words – as the group blend acoustic and electric elements in the best ... (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)
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 CD)
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)
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)
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)
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)
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)
A collaborative debut from Tall Black Guy and Ozay Moore – a set that claims to "revive the pulse of hip hop's golden era" – and one that seems to do a pretty great job of living up to that statement! There's a nicely lean feel going on here – just well-crafted rhymes ... (Hip Hop LP)
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)
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)
Rhino, 1970s/Early 80s.
A double-stuffed collection of work from the legendary War – one of the hippest soul groups on the Cali scene of the 70s, and one who just kept on making great music as the years went on! This expanded collection is a great testament to the group's genius – and the way they started out ... (Soul CD)
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)
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)
Def Jam, 2021.
A posthumous album from the mighty DMX – mirroring his career in way, from rugged and raging street anthems to soulful confessions and pleas to family. Exodus is heavy on guests appearances – and under the circumstances that feels right and fitting, to give this legendary voice the ... (Hip Hop 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)
Truth Revolution, 2018.
Bold work from the Curtis Brothers – Luques Curtis on bass and Zaccai Curtis on piano – a pair who've got the energy here of some of the great earlier brothers teams in jazz! By that, we mean that there's a unified vision to the record – strongly soulful work right from the start ... (Jazz CD)
A really sweet take on the music of Stevie Wonder – one that takes the tunes in all sorts of directions we didn't expect! Part of the vibe is in line with the organ work of Pat Bianchi – more of a 60s soul jazz mode, of the sort that was big in the years before Stevie penned most of ... (Jazz CD)
Zeida/Vampi Soul (Spain), 1973. (reissue)
Elia and Elizabeth look wonderfully sweet on the cover, and they sound wonderfully sweet within – harmonizing nicely over a set of arrangements that are filled with all sorts of really cool and groovy elements! The pair get great help from arranger Jimmy Salcedo, whose La Onda Tres combo ... (Latin LP)
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)
Brewerytown, Mid 70s. (pic cover, reissue)
Very early work from the legendary Frankie Beverly – a rare Philly recording, done years before his wider fame with Maze – and in a groove that's very hard and funky overall! The tune's got some great horns that punctuate the start, but then rolls into a fierce bass/drum dance while ... (Funky 45's 7-inch)
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)
Koko Mojo, Late 50s/Early 60s.
A really great collection from a sometimes-overlooked stretch of vocal group music – a time in the 50s when a number of doo wop and early soul groups explored the use of Latin rhythms to change things up – an approach that makes for a mighty nice set of grooves to go along with the ... (Soul 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)
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 rare bit of indie jazz from the Bay Area scene of the 80s – but put together with a groove that's much more 70s overall! The group's headed by trumpeter Larry Douglas, and has a soaring, soulful groove that definitely owes a lot to the spiritual sound on labels like Strata East or Black ... (Jazz CD)
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)
Sony/We Release Jazz (Switzerland), 1975.
A great bit of electric jazz from the Japanese scene of the 70s – an album that easily rivals the best CTI work in the US at the time! Trombonist Hiroshi Suzuki heads up a quintet here – one that's heavy on electric piano and keyboards, played in a stretched-out sort of groove that ... (Jazz 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)
Blue Note (Japan), 1968.
A wonderful session by Andrew Hill – recorded in 1968, but issued only briefly in 1981 – and out of print for years! The session is a key one in understanding Hill's work – as it's a bridge between the arch modernism of his early Blue Note sides, and the more soul-oriented ... (Jazz CD)
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/Pure Pleasure (UK), Early 80s. (reissue)
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 LP)
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)
Blue Note (Japan), 1976.
Sweet 70s grooves from Bobby Hutcherson – an overlooked mid 70s gem for Blue Note – done in a style that's a bit more laidback than some of his other work for the label! The group here is similar to that used on the Waiting album – and Emmanuel Boyd turns in some great tenor and ... (Jazz CD)
AMS (Italy), 1971. (reissue)
A fantastically beautiful record – easily one of Ennio Morricone's dreamiest scores of the 70s! Although the film itself is a western, Morricone's soundtrack is far different than usual – with hardly any traditional western themes at all, and mostly just music that's in that mellow, ... (Soundtracks LP)
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)
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 CD)
Vampi Soul (Spain), 2021.
A smoking second set from Los Chapillacs – a group who work in the older modes of chicha and psychedelic cumbia that you'd know from the Peruvian scene, but one who also bring all sorts of weird and wonderful touches of their own into play! The record's got some of the dreamlike quality of ... (Latin LP)
Blue Note (Japan), 1976.
Funky, soulful, and completely sublime work from keyboardist Gene Harris – working here with some great help from Jerry Peters on arrangement and production – in a style that makes the album one of Harris' most compelling sets of the 70s! The backings are full, but tight too – ... (Jazz CD)
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)
Record Kicks (Italy), 2021.
Nothing sticky here – as the Grease Traps have a bad-walking sound that takes off right from the start, and which more than lives up to the best funky spirit of their previous funky 45s! The rhythms are nice and sharp, with plenty of great basslines next to the drums – and the horns ... (Deep Funk LP)
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)
Columbia/Music On Vinyl (Netherlands), 1973. (reissue)
One of our favorite albums ever from Weather Report – an album that has them picking up a bit more soul than before, and shaking off some of the experimental sounds of their roots – yet all in a way that still makes them one of the most revolutionary fusion combos of the time! There's ... (Jazz 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)
Quartet (Spain), 1971.
The cover's creepy enough – and the music is too – an instrumentally complicated score – one that features heavy guitars one minute, then strings, then stark, spare instrumentation the next – including weird bass bits and electric harpsichord passages that are very nice! ... (Soundtracks CD)
Quartet (Spain), 1984.
The cover's creepy, but the soundtrack starts with a beautiful theme – a spare piano number that sets things up nicely, before the music moves into more of the 80s electric horror styles that you might expect! Yet throughout the set, there's these moments of gentle soulfulness that really ... (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)
Quartet (Spain), 1969. 2CD
One of the grooviest soundtracks ever from Bruno Nicolai – a set that has him using all the genius he gleaned from his musical partner Ennio Morricone – then stepping off into some great territory of his own! Some numbers have a Morricone-like blend of wordless female vocals and bossa-s ... (Soundtracks CD)
Dead Oceans, 2021. 2LP Gatefold
A special set that brings together all the mysterious singles that Khruangbin were dropping during the course of 2021 – mostly untitled singles in very limited releases, finally seeing the light of day here in a proper package! As you'd guess from the title, the core material is from the ... (Deep Funk 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)
MGM/Big Pink (South Korea), 1969.
A really groovy psych album, and one by a short-lived group that has ties to so many other scenes too! The record was one of the wonderfully weird projects that Alan Lorber put together for MGM Records in the late 60s – and the quartet actually features a very young Chevy Chase, in pre-comedy ... (Rock 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)
A really tremendous take on the Source album from saxophonist Nubya Garcia – one that has new versions of the tunes served up by some of his hippest contemporaries – at a level that brings together his current work on the London scene with a global underground that has found a way to ... (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)
Robson Banda & The New Black Eagles
Nyami Nyami (France), 1986. (reissue)
A classic set from Robson Banda & The New Black Eagles – a group who were shining bright on the scene in Zimbabwe in the 80s, and work here with an upbeat groove that's not unlike some of the best South African work of the time! Rhythms are usually uptempo, but never too fast – and ... (Global Grooves LP)
BMG, Late 70s/1980s/1990s. 2LP Gatefold
They certainly got the title right on this one – because once Lemmy left Hawkwind and started Motorhead, the music definitely louder forever! This overstuffed set brings together a wealth of classic material from Lemmy and the group – mostly work from the first decade and a half, when ... (Rock LP)
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)
RR Gems (Estonia), 2021.
A sublime quartet, coming together here for a really unique session – one that's got a very modal vibe mixed with some freer moments served up by a piano-less group with a very special sound! Bassist Josh Werner got the whole project together, and the set's got a rock-solid foundation in his ... (Jazz LP)
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)
EMI/Polysom (Brazil), 2006. (reissue)
A real departure for Marisa Monte – an album of samba tunes done in mostly traditional modes! The style here is often simple and classic – bits of guitar, percussion, cavaquinho, and slight use of keyboards to warm things up a bit – but mostly in a way that allows for the ... (Brazil LP)
Sam Records (France), 1975.
Never-issued live material from one of our favorite jazz musicians of all time – the mighty Billy Harper, a tenor saxophonist who took the initial legacy of John Coltrane, then really ran with it in the 70s! The album is stunning right from the very first note – a perfect encapsulation ... (Jazz LP)
Blue Note (Japan), 1975.
A beautifully soulful set from Horace Silver – hardly the "with brass" session you might guess from the title, and instead a well-integrated album that really showcases a new level of arranging genius from Horace! The set is heavy on hip horns – with work from Oscar Brashear, ... (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)
Transversales Disques (France), 1975. Gatefold
A gem of a record from the legendary Pharoah Sanders – a set that's recorded right at the tail end of his famous years for Impulse Records, and which has all the best qualities of his last few records for that label! The vibe here is a lot like Elevation or Love Is In Us All – a return ... (Jazz LP)
Compost (Germany), 2021.
Web Web have really deepened up their sound here – much more spiritual than we ever would have expected before – but maybe no surprise, given that the record features guest work from giants like Charles Tolliver, Mulatu, and Brandee Younger! The core group features lots of great flute ... (Jazz CD)
Heavenly Sweetness (France), Early 70s.
A totally wonderful collection of Ethiopian sounds, circa 1972 – all pulled from a moment when the sound of the nation was really beginning to change in radical ways! The tracks here are sometimes funky, sometimes a bit more spiritual – and they showcase that bold new spirit that was ... (Global Grooves LP)
World Circuit, 2000.
The legendary Omara Portuondo is one of those Cuban music greats from years back – and one of a handful who were finally given some larger exposure to the American market during the Buena Vista Social Club project of the late 90s! It's not as if Omara had stopped performing – but ... (Latin LP)
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)
Blue Note (Japan), 1975.
Wonderful work from Horace Silver – part of a great run of late 70s sides for Blue Note that unlock a whole new side of his soulful talents! The vibe here is different than the previous United States trilogy – still very righteous, with an overt message too – but served up in ... (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)
Arista/Esoteric (UK), Late 70s. 2CD
A 70s gem from singer/songwriter Al Stewart – a set that was part of his long-overdue rise to global fame – after quietly giving the world a number of great and overlooked albums from the UK scene! The vibe here is similar to the preceding set – the classic Year Of The Cat – ... (Rock CD)
Three Blind Mice/Craftman (Japan), 1975.
A great tenor saxophonist from the Japanese scene of the 70s – heard here in one of his hippest settings ever! Seiichi Nakamura really knows how to stretch things out, yet still keep things interesting – working here with a strong sense of rhythm that's really augmented by the use of ... (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)
Night Dreamer (UK), 2021. 2LP
Drummer Sarathy Korwar has a great reputation for blending together Indian music and contemporary jazz – and in ways that are very different than similar British experiments from the late 60s! That legacy is moved forward a few strong notches here – as Korwar works with his Upaj ... (Jazz LP)
HoZac, Late 70s.
Really blistering work from this lost band from Cincinnati – a group who were part of the incredible Ohio scene of the early punk years, but never saw this material issued back in the day! Yet don't let that stop you from digging in – as the work here is incredible – hard, fast, ... (Rock LP)
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 CD)
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)
Alpha Pup, 2021.
Warm jazzy goodness from Katalyst – a west coast group comprised of musicians who normally back bigger names in soul, jazz, and hip hop – but who here work in a vibe that's all their own, on a set of tunes that are improvised freely, yet still have a groove! The music is often spacey ... (Jazz CD)
Night Dreamer (UK), 2021.
Mogollar are a legendary group in Turkish music – formed in the 60s, with a mission to explore psychedelic impulses amidst more traditional instrumentation – and all these many years later, the combo is still going strong, and with a sound that still beats most of the groups they ... (Global Grooves LP)
Rolling Stones/Geffen, 1981. 2CD
An album that some thought might mark the final years of The Rolling Stones – as it came out as Mick Jagger was reaching 40 – but one that instead marked a great rebirth of the group and its sound, and set a whole new standard for the group for years to come! The opening lick of the ... (Rock CD)
Sublime Frequencies, 1970s.
A wealth of wonderful work from Baligh Hamdi – an artist who had a huge impact on Egyptian music in the postwar years, even if he's not as well known on our side of the Atlantic! The tracks here all date from a time when Hamdi had been already recording for a number of years – first ... (Global Grooves 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)
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)
Capitol/Bear Family (Germany), 1964/1975.
Two of the most unusual albums ever recorded by Tennessee Ernie Ford – both small group sessions, with a very different sound than his other material for Capitol Records! First up is Country Hits Feelin Blue – one of the coolest albums ever from the great Tennessee Ernie Ford – a ... (Folk/Country CD)
Perfect Toy (Germany), Late 60s/Early 70s.
A great set of work from a space between the genres – music that's often by rock groups, but who have a very soulful sort of sound – serving up tunes that are sometimes their own take on soul hits of the time, sometimes original material – and always with the sort of funk and soul ... (Funky Compilations LP)
A creative blend of jazz and other musical styles from David Ornette Cherry – son of Don Cherry, and an artist who really shares a similar sense of boundary crossing as his father! Cherry provides vocals, piano, and "soundscapes" on the record – mixing acoustic and electric ... (Jazz CD)
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)
Show Boat/We Want Sounds (UK), 1975. (reissue)
A beautiful record that finds a great 70s expression of the longstanding love of Hawaiian music that's held fast in Japan for many many years – a set that was recorded in Hawaii by offbeat Japanese musician Makoto Kubota, in ways that offer up his own very personal interpretation of ... (Rock LP)
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)
A bittersweet farewell from The Beatles – a record that definitely shows the fracturing unity of the group, with lots of near-solo moments – but a set that also makes us really wonder what they'd have done with all this genius, had they managed to hold it together! There's great hints ... (Rock CD)
Yo!/Dope Folks, 1990. (reissue)
Pretty fantastic work from the Bizzie Boyz – an obscure group who get props on the album's back cover from Marley Marl and Chuck Chillout – both artists with a great match for the sound of this set! The group are obscure, but they've got a clever sense of songcraft that puts them up ... (Hip Hop LP)
Mosaic, Late 40s/1950s/1960s. 7CD
A stunning overview of these two key slices of work from Louis Armstrong – material recorded for RCA Records in the mid 40s, and then his huge Columbia Records comeback sides in the 50s – the latter of which is presented here with a huge amount of unissued material and alternate tracks! ... (Jazz CD)
Strut (UK), 2021.
A really great record from the Kondi Band – one of the few groups who can manage to combine the sound of the kalimba with more contemporary styles – and somehow make the whole thing come off without feeling like a gimmick! Sorie Kondi handles both the thumb piano and lead vocals – ... (Global Grooves CD)
Instant Composers Pool/Our Swimmer (Germany), 1977. (reissue)
A landmark record from the Dutch jazz scene – one that takes all the strong 70s years of free improvisation in that world, and helps it find a new sort of focus! As fans of the scene know, ICP stands for Instant Composers Pool – writing while improvising on the spot – a notion ... (Jazz LP)
Acta/Out-Sider (Spain), 1968. (reissue)
These guys are best remembered for their theme to The Brady Bunch – but this earlier album is far far better than that – a tremendous Sunshine Pop gem from the late 60s, baroque one minute, sweet the next – and always filled with a fresh sense of musical surprise! The group get a ... (Rock LP)
Geffen, 2021. Gatefold
Great work from a surprisingly durable pairing – one that maybe seemed to be something of an accident at first, but which has gone on to redefine the recent careers of Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga! The duo are in as fine form here as on their previous record – swinging with a very old ... (Vocalists LP)
Dudu Pukwana, Misha Mengelberg, & Han Bennink
ICP/Our Swimmer (Germany), 1978. (reissue)
A fantastic slice of sound from the legendary Dudu Pukwana – not his work with the famous Blue Notes combo, nor his globally-styled projects – but instead this searing free jazz date cut for the ICP label with Misha Mengelberg on piano and Hank Bennink on drums, clarinet, viola, and ... (Jazz LP)
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)
Arista/Soulmusic.com (UK), Late 70s/1980s/1990s. 9CD
An insane tribute to one of the greatest female soul singers to emerge in the 70s – the magnificent Phyllis Hyman, a vocalist who first began in jazz, then moved to soul music to help chart a whole new sound for the future – a new sort of sophistication that was key to a shift in the ... (Soul CD)
Nimbus/Pure Pleasure (UK), 1978. (reissue)
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 LP)
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)
An incredible lost slice of music from the young Bob Marley – an unissued set of recordings done at the Capitol Studios in LA, at a time when the Wailers were just beginning to rise in global power! The session came at an unusual moment for the group – they had come to the US to tour ... (Reggae CD)
Silver Age, 2021.
MF Doom left our planet all too soon, and he left behind a great legacy of music, too – including a previous collaboration with the Czarface collective, nicely matched by this posthumous set! The balance here is great, and the set brings the metal man of mystery into great play with his ... (Hip Hop LP)
Amaro (Brazil), 2016.
The first album from Brazilian pianist Amaro Freitas – an artist who's gotten greater exposure in the world through albums on the Far Out label, but who already sounds pretty darn wonderful here at the start! As with those records, Freitas has a very rhythmic approach a way of working with ... (Jazz CD)
Mack Avenue, 1987. 3LP
A well-done live set from the legendary pianist Oscar Peterson – and one that resonates strongly with his earlier material for the Pablo label, given that the group also features guitarist Joe Pass! The live setting is really used well here – as there's two extremely long cuts – ... (Jazz LP)
Jazz Refreshed (UK), 2021.
One of the coolest records we've heard from the London scene in recent years – and that's really saying a lot, given all the amazing music the city has given us! The group here have a way of mixing West African roots with all sorts of jazzy touches, both acoustic and electric – in a ... (Jazz LP)
The first-ever official issue of a concert that's gone on to be the stuff of legend over the years – a New York radio concert by the classic Little Feat lineup – and a set that has Lowell George and the group really sounding their best away from the studio! There's a lean, laidback ... (Rock 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)
Real Gone, Mid 60s. 2LP Gatefold
A fantastic collection from this legendary group – not just their Red Bird label material, but later great work for Mercury too! If you don't know them, The Shangri-Las are maybe the undisputed queens of the girl group sound of the 60s – able to blend heartbreak and pride, fragility ... (Rock LP)
Timeless/Tidal Waves, 1990. 2LP (reissue)
The title alone is more than enough to win us over here – as it's a great Duke Pearson composition that turns out to be a wonderful showcase for the most lyrical modes of pianist John Hicks! That tune's the leadoff, and it really sets the tone for the record – a gently soulful set that ... (Jazz LP)
Blue Crystal (UK), 2021.
A beautiful chapter in the continuing sonic evolution of keyboardist Greg Foat and guitarist Warren Hampshire – working here on a set that's got maybe some of their most complex combinations to date! As before, there's a wonderful ear for overall sound – a quality that comes both from ... (Jazz LP)
Steeplechase (Denmark), 2021.
Guitarist Nate Radley works here with a wonderfully rich sense of tone and color – a mode that's explained in the notes as partly a tribute to the late Vic Juris, as Nate works here with Juris' old trio of Jay Anderson on bass and Adam Nussbaum on drums – but a quality that we're more ... (Jazz CD)
Omicron/Dialogo (Italy), 1975.
A great set of keyboard work from the legendary Piero Umiliani – and one that's definitely heavy on the Fender Rhodes promised in the title! Piero first started out with a more jazz-based sound in the 60s, and that definitely returns here – but updated nicely with a sweet set of 70s ... (Sound Library CD)
Smoke Sessions, 2021.
Nicholas Payton shines in two different ways here – blowing trumpet, and handling piano and Fender Rhodes – often overdubbed, but with a unified sound that makes the album sound wonderful throughout! Part of the strength of the set is the rhythm backing – as Payton works with ... (Jazz CD)
Smithsonian Folkways, Late 70s/1980s/1990s/2000s. 9CDs
A huge dip into the history of hip hop – in a set that's something of a groundbreaking effort from the folks at the Smithsonian! If we're honest, we'll tell you that we're old enough to remember a time when folks thought that hip hop was just a fad – when it was a musical style that ... (Hip Hop CD)