Polydor/Universal (Japan), 1965.
A beautiful early album from Sadao Watanabe – a Polydor session recorded before some of his better-known albums for Takt/Columbia, but done with a similar mix of soul jazz and bossa influences! Watanabe's horn has really sharpened up from his already-great earlier sides – and he's ... (Jazz CD)
Brain/Gronland (Germany), 1971. (reissue)
The groundbreaking first album from Neu – maybe not the earliest record in the Krautrock generation – but a set that certainly set a new sort of standard after it was released! The group mix together slow-building rhythms and plenty of fuzz – all recorded by the great Conny Plank ... (Rock LP)
Grapefruit (UK), Early 70s. 3CD
What's Bubblerock you say? It's a moment in UK pop at the start of the 70s – work from a time when the Brit pop modes of the 60s were giving ways to new styles of production and presentation – including some of the cool, compressed studio elements that would also show up in glam in a ... (Rock CD)
Sundazed, Mid 60s.
The first-ever look at the soul-based legacy of the Jetstar Records label – a small Texas imprint in the 60s, and one that features plenty of work from the great deep soul singer Bobby Patterson and some of his key contemporaries! Jetstar never made the mark that it should have back in the ... (Soul LP)
International Phonograph, 1972/1977. 2LP Gatefold (reissue)
A seminal session from the St Louis scene of the early 70s – one that was humming nearly as much as Chicago was with the AACM at the time! As with the larger organization in the Windy City, St Louis had the Black Artists Group – of which Julius Hemphill was a key member, forming fresh ... (Jazz LP)
Decca/Music On Vinyl (Netherlands), 1972. Gatefold (reissue)
A massive Fender Rhodes set from early 70s Belgium – the kind of set that never shows up on this side of the Atlantic, and which is pretty darn rare in its home territory too! Keyboardist Jack Van Poll has a wonderful sense of space on this set – a way of letting the tunes build simply ... (Jazz LP)
We Want Sounds (UK), 1971. Gatefold
Beautifully slow-building work from Ennio Morricone – caught right at that near-perfect start of the 70s point when he was a master of understatement and spare musical elements! Many numbers begin with a sound that's often very spare – sliding out of the darkness sometimes with just a ... (Soundtracks LP)
Nyami Nyami (France), 1986. (reissue)
An album from the 80s, but one with a very timeless vibe – as the set is heavy on mbiri work from Dumisani Maraire – recorded in a way that mostly just features vocals alongside the sparkling tones of the thumb piano! The mbiri is likely amplified here – as it's got a resonance ... (Global Grooves LP)
Philips/Universal (Japan), 1975.
Lovely work from this overlooked Japanese pianist – a really great player who hits some warmly soulful grooves in this mid 70s set! The album features Kunihiko Sugano's trio working with an extra percussionist – a player who doesn't step in much, but who manages to bring a special sort ... (Jazz CD)
Fantasy, 1972. (reissue)
Very righteous work from Esther Marrow – an overlooked soul singer who works with a hell of a lot of pride and power! The set's an overlooked gem in the Fantasy catalog of the 70s, and it's one of only two secular soul albums cut by Marrow – and quite possibly the best of the bunch, ... (Soul LP)
Motown/Universal (Japan), 1971.
One of the few cases in the history of pop music where the record is worth all the hype! Marvin blew everyone's mind when he unleashed this amazing suite of political soul tunes – not only just because he'd moved past the simple love songs of earlier years, but also because he was working ... (Soul CD)
A tremendous early chapter in the legacy of Steely Dan – a set that was never issued at the time, and which represents some key work by the team of Donald Fagan and Walter Becker! First off, let us say that singer Linda Hoover is pretty great herself, and contributes some good original ... (Rock LP)
Sun/We Are Busy Bodies (UK), 1976. (reissue)
Really creative work from the South African scene of the 70s – a jazz record, but one that was done at that moment when musicians on the scene were throwing so many other great elements into the mix as well – really moving past any conventions in standard jazz, to create some very ... (Jazz LP)
Joe Gibbs/Doctor Bird (UK), Late 70s. 2CD
A pair of classic roots reggae albums from the 70s – brought together here on a single set with a huge amount of bonus tracks – many on CD for the first time! The work of Joe Gibbs is massive here, and happens with plenty of help from Errol Thompson as well – at a level that ... (Reggae CD)
Not the only time that Ella Fitzgerald recorded at the legendary Hollywood Bowl – but a fantastic unreleased set that has the singer serving up a stunning live version of her Irving Berlin Songbook material! The set features backings by Paul Weston, who'd handled the original record – ... (Vocalists CD)
Delicious Vinyl, 1992. (reissue)
A pivotal album from the early 90s – one that not only furthered the rebirth of live funk instrumentation at a time when ditigal elements dominated the scene – but also really opened up that mode to a whole new generation of hip hop as well! At a time when the music was all about the ... (Hip Hop LP)
Mustevic/Early Future/Finders Keepers (UK), 1979. (reissue)
A lesser-known set from groundbreaking drummer Steve Reid – issued on his Mustevic Sound label after the classic Rhythmatism and Nova sets! Reid's playing here with the New Life trio – a group that features his drum work next to the guitar of Brandon Ross and heavy bass of David ... (Jazz LP)
Blank/Fire (UK), 1978. (reissue)
A seminal album from the American underground of the late 70s – the unexpected debut of Pere Ubu, bursting forth from the Cleveland scene with a sound to challenge the greatness of anything coming from New York or LA at the time! The album's not exactly punk, not exactly art rock, but has ... (Rock LP)
Tru Thoughts (UK), 2022. 2LP Gatefold
Moonchild are one of those groups who just keep on rewarding us as we follow their career – but one who are also always so great, you can just drop your ears right in the middle of any of their excellent albums! This time around, the trio add in help from some famous collaborators – ... (Neo Soul LP)
Jamal/P-Vine (Japan), 1970.
A sweetly funky little set from Sonny Stitt – one of his hippest albums ever, and a rare date cut for Ahmad Jamal's short-lived record label! The sound here is a great combination of the late 60s tone that Sonny forged on other east coast indies – and some of the hipper, more open ... (Jazz CD)
Praxis/Strut (UK), 1983.
Really unique recordings from the Sun Ra Arkestra – material recorded in Egypt in 1983 – juxtaposed with sessions from percussionist Salah Ragab and the Cairo Jazz Band! The work here has much more of a "jazz meets world" sound than some of Ra's other recordings – and ... (Jazz CD)
Art Yard (UK), Late 70s.
Two great tracks here from Sun Ra – both presented in shorter edits that focus on the groovier side of the music! First up is "Dance Of The Cosmo Aliens" – a track that begins with fast percussion that skitters along nicely – while very cool, moody keyboards pepper the ... (Funky 45's 7-inch)
Atlantic/Real Gone, 1968. (reissue)
Fantastic stuff, and a record that was virtually the blueprint for spiritual soul jazz in the 70s! Although Max Roach first rose to fame during the bop years, by the time of this set he'd really stretched out a lot – moving past initial righteous projects in the Civil Rights era, to even ... (Jazz LP)
Bear Family (Germany), Late 50s/Early 60s.
Hank Ballard was one of the greatest singers in the pre-soul generation – the kind of vocalist who provided inspiration for so many others to come in the 60s – a raw lead singer who really drove his group to great heights – as you'll hear here in this hard-rocking collection of ... (Soul CD)
Giotto (Italy), 1962. (reissue)
Very groovy work from this legendary Italian combo – but that's maybe no surprise, given that the album's got "bossa nova" in the title! And, as you'd expect, the group takes on the new beat that was grooving the world at the time – fresh sounds from Brazil, given a 60s ... (Jazz LP)
Dave Rempis/Joshua Abrams/Avreeayl Ra/Jim Baker
Beautifully spiritual work from this wonderful Chicago group – a set that's maybe more in the vibe of some of the more recent recordings by Joshua Abrams than some of the other members of the group – but in a way that really shows the depths of the others' playing! Dave Rempis creates ... (Jazz CD)
Forager, Late 70s/Early 80s.
A really cool split LP – one that features a side each of work from the two singer/songwriters on the cover – each of whom created their own very groovy styles on self-issued records back in the day! Side one features material from two different albums by Roberta Vandervort – ... (Rock LP)
Death Is Not The End, Late 50s.
Maybe the deepest-digging volume in this really great series – a set that goes past the obvious to show all the many new styles of modern jazz that were brewing up in the British scene at the end of the 50s! The sounds here aren't just bop, but a nice variety of modern modes that bring as ... (Jazz CD)
MoWest/Universal (Japan), Early 70s.
The incredible lost album from the group Sisters Love – material slated for release in the early 70s, but never saw the light of day, save for a handful of singles – a mix of rootsier southern soul and impeccable west coast funk styles, finally brought to light! Sisters Love came to ... (Soul CD)
Schema (Italy), 2022.
Some of the deepest work we've ever heard from the Dining Rooms – a set that still has the well-crafted grooves of their previous records, but which shows a richer understanding of sonic properties as well – delivered in ways that make the record more than just a batch of tracks – ... (New Grooves CD)
Victor (Japan), 2022.
Soil & Pimp Sessions sound better here than ever – still working with a style that nobody else can touch – but in a way that's also a nice change from some of their previous records too! If anything, these guys have really perfected their ability to step out and soar – with ... (New Grooves CD)
Deram/Esoteric (UK), Early 70s. 3CD
British group Chicken Shack famously first got their start on the Blue Horizon label – but when they moved to Deram Records, they really stretched out and opened their sound – as you'll hear on the three albums on this set! First up is Imagination Lady – a fantastic album from ... (Rock CD)
Union/Cinedelic (Italy), 1969. (reissue)
Speed, space, and plenty more – all going on in the hands of a quartet led by drummer Masahiko Togashi – a Japanese player who's at his most youthfully creative on this album! Togashi was part of a new generation of musicians on his scene who were moving past conventional jazz modes ... (Jazz LP)
Astral Spirits, 2022.
A group here that features some key members from the American avant scene, but whose standout member might well be pianist Oscar Jan Hoogland – who contributed two originals to the set, and whose work on the keys seems to really direct the energy of this session that features fresh ... (Jazz LP)
Trilyte/Mississippi, 1971. (reissue)
Spiritual sounds and a heck of a lot more – served up by Ndiko Xaba, an expatriate South African musician who was working in Oakland at the time of this record – fusing together the roots of his homeland with some wonderfully free and open American jazz styles! At times, there's a bit ... (Global Grooves LP)
Playa Sound/Altercat (Germany), 1980. (reissue)
One of the most unusual fusions of styles you're ever likely to hear – as the set has Indian musician Magid Khan playing sitar over a set of Egyptian tunes composed by Baligh Hamdi – all in this amazing criss-crossing of cultural modes! The record features some larger arrangements from ... (Global Grooves LP)
Mayra/Altercat (Germany), 1978.
Fantastic keyboard work from Luis Vecchio – a player who was in isolation on the Canary Island when he recorded this album in the 70s – a monstrous bit of space jazz that was supposedly created after contact with aliens! Even without that backstory, though, the set's got plenty to ... (Jazz CD)
Forager, Late 70s.
A really unusual collection, but you might already guess that from the cover – a whole host of obscure 70s mellow grooves – most of which fall into a space between indie singer/songwriter material, and some of the more polished AOR grooves of the time! Make no mistake, the "polish& ... (Funky Compilations LP)
Mood Mosaic (Italy), Late 60s/Early 70s.
The cover's a bit cheesy, but the grooves are great – very much what we've come to expect from this long-running series that always serves up some great funky tracks! Mood Mosaic's been around for a long time, and they've got a great reputation for mixing together tracks you might not ... (Funky Compilations CD)
Happy Birthday/Cherry Red (UK), 1981. 3CD
Girls At Our Best only gave the world one album back in the day – but it's a hell of a set that has the British group standing strongly next to contemporaries like Au Pairs, The Slits, and Siouxsie & The Banshees! Given the vocal style of lead singer Judy Evans at times, the group ... (Rock CD)
Selection/Sdban (Belgium), 1975. (reissue)
A sound library album, but one that's got a lot more of a jazz component than most – no surprise, given that Solis Lacus was a combo who recorded other records on their own – led by the great Michel Herr on Frender Rhodes and other keyboards! The tracks are often quite long, most are ... (Jazz LP)
TSG/P-Vine (Japan), 1976.
The debut album from Cynthia Schloss – a reggae singer who'd go on to bring a whole new level of soul to Jamaican music! In fact, the album's maybe half reggae, and half soul – delivered by Cynthia with a range that would have been right at home in American soul in the early 70s, ... (Reggae CD)
Tribe/Now Again, 1972. (reissue)
One of the most classic albums on the Tribe Records label from Detroit – music that was too heavy for most of the world when it was issued in the 70s – but which has gone onto achieve legendary status over the years! Reedman Wendell Harrison leads the group in a set of soaring, ... (Jazz LP)
Tolimar/Past Due, 1979. (pic cover, reissue)
A really cool Cali group from the end of the 70s – stepping out here on their first EP – supposedly produced by Bill Withers, but more than great enough on its own without any sort of celebrity help! The combo's got a unique blend of cultures from different neighborhoods in San ... (Soul 12-inch)
Columbia, 1983. 2LP Gatefold
Early 80s live work from Miles Davis – done at a level that's a nice change from some of his studio work of the time! If you've ever heard Miles in a live setting like this from the decade, you know that such recordings are a great reminder of the way he can really deliver an extended solo ... (Jazz LP)
Past Due, Early 80s/2021. (pic cover)
Two great tracks from this legendary group – both with a vibe that works perfectly together! "No Money No Honey" is a cut conceived many years back by band leader Larry Akles – finally recorded in 2021, but with a snapping blend of beats and basslines that has a classic ... (Funky 45's 7-inch)
Legacy, 1985. 2CD & Blu-ray
A long-overdue audio presentation of the famous performance that was captured in 1985, and used in the concert film of the same name – brought together here as an audio release that stands as a tremendous document to the strength of Prince and his famous group of the time! This is the ... (Soul CD)
Blue Note (Japan), 2022.
Legendary drummer Takeo Moriyama joins the Kyoto Jazz Sextet here – and helps find a sound that's even stronger than their previous album for Blue Note! It's been many years since Shuya Okino first started giving us grooves under the Kyoto Jazz banner – and this sextet project is maybe ... (Jazz CD)
Motown (Japan), 1973.
A surprisingly nice album – even if you're not a fan of Diana Ross! Given that Marvin and Diana are standing back to back on the front cover, we kind of get the idea that there wasn't as much sympathy in the session as on some of Marvin's classic duet sides from the 60s with Tammi Terrell ... (Soul CD)
LPG/P-Vine (Japan), Mid 70s.
A killer of an album – a real corker from Lloyd Price, one of those singers who kept on growing tremendously after his early big hits! The album was recorded in Muscle Shoals, but it's got a smooth modern sort of finish – all compressed and slightly funky, in a manner that's partially ... (Soul CD)
Tangerine, 1972. (reissue)
A righteous early 70s set from Ray Charles – and a record with a much deeper vibe than you might guess from the image of Ray and some kids on the cover! Arrangements were handled by Quincy Jones, Sid Feller, and Mike Post – and the record is kind of a 70s take on the fuller modes that ... (Soul LP)
Astral Spirits, 2022.
A record that almost seems to live up to its artist/title promise of an iceberg in a thaw – as the trio really start out in this slow, building territory right at the start – then seem to move in broader ripples of sound once the record moves on – really working on this cyclical ... (Jazz LP)
MCA/Universal (Japan), 1976.
A solid bit of heavy funk – and one of the last strong-selling soundtracks of the blacksploitation era! Sure, you know the hit "Car Wash", but there's plenty of other great numbers that rank this set right up there with the best of its genre. There's a lot of nice instrumentals on ... (Soul CD)
Astral Spirits, 2022.
A Chicago group with a really great approach to improvisation – long tracks that seem to build out of a slow pulses of energy between the players – finding their "groove" at the start, letting things flow, then really adding a lot of their own voices to the mix! The main trio ... (Jazz LP)
RGS (Argentina), 1960.
Very early work from this legendary Argentine saxophone player – and a set that already shows the tenor of Horacio Chivo Borraro stretching out in ways that would be come more internationally known in the 70s! The format's a live one, as you'd guess from the title – and the group is ... (Jazz CD)
Skye/Modern Harmonic, 1968. Gatefold (reissue)
One of Cal Tjader's best albums ever – and a sweetly electric side that features Joao Donato on organ and Gary McFarland on vibes! The record is a brilliant extension of Cal's styles at Verve – a bit of Latin, a bit of jazz, with some easily grooving numbers that have just the right ... (Jazz LP)
Wax Poetics, 2022.
A great issue of the relaunched Wax Poetics – one that has the magazine back to all its early glory, with page after page of wonderful images and deep coverage of the music we love! This time around the split covers broadcast two of the issue's best articles – a long look at the ... (Books Magazine)
Triumph/Mad About Records (Portugal), 1975.
A lost spiritual jazz treasure from the 70s – one of the only records we've ever seen to feature trumpeter Jothan Callins in the lead – a musician who's best known for his work in the Sun Ra Arkestra during the 70s! Here, the vibe is very different – as Callins blows alongside a ... (Jazz LP)
Teichiku/Cinedelic (Italy), 1969. (reissue)
A fantastically free session from the Japanese scene of the late 60s – a set that really points the way towards some of the more dramatic, dynamic guitar-based expression to come in later decades! The group's a trio, with guitarist Takayanagi Masayuki very firmly in the lead – playing ... (Jazz LP)
Capitol (Italy), 2022.
One of the most ambitious-sounding records we've ever heard from Calibro 35 – but that's no surprise, given that they're taking on the music of maestro Morricone! If you know the group at all, you'll know that they do a tremendous job taking cinematic inspiration to really funky territory ... (New Grooves CD)
Bible & Tire, 2022.
There's a great criss-crossing of modes going on here – the best sort of classic and contemporary meeting of modes that we love from the Bible & Tire label – all set as the perfect backdrop for the vocals of Memphis legend Elizabeth King! Instrumentation is by the Sacred Soul Sound ... (Gospel CD)
77 Records/Sunset Blvd, Mid 70s. 2CD
A set that brings together great early work that Fenton Robinson recorded for the 77 Records label – plus a full CD of live material too! First up is material from the Monday Morning album – not the first recording ever made by Fenton Robinson, but a record that really brings together ... (Blues CD)
Mag/Vampi Soul (Spain), 1971. (reissue)
Orquesta Reve were one of the greatest modern ensembles during the Castro years in Cuba – but they actually recorded this killer set in Peru – as a rare date done for the mighty Mag Records label! There's a lean quality here that's a bit different than the expansive modes of Reve ... (Latin LP)
Hat Art (Switzerland), Mid 60s.
Familiar tunes from the John Coltrane songbook – but presented here in the kind of freewheeling live versions that really made concert work by the classic quartet so legendary! First up are two long tracks recorded in Berlin in 1963 – an 8 minute take on "Naima", and a ... (Jazz CD)
Verve, 1965. Gatefold (reissue)
Fantastic Verve Records material from Bill Evans – a set that follows the no-nonsense trio style of his Riverside material, but which definitely shows the evolving Evans style of the 60s! The group here is a nicely mellow one – bassist Chuck Israels, whose sound is tremendous – ... (Jazz LP)
RGS (Argentina), 1973.
A sweet set of 70s spiritual jazz from Argentine tenor player Chivo Borraro – one of his best albums of the time, and a really wonderful session with lots of nice touches! The record features Borraro playing keyboard effects, in addition to his usual tenor – and it also features some ... (Jazz CD)
Tava Tava Rare (Italy), 1969.
TV music from late 60s Japan, served up here in a very cool mix of jazzy tracks, mod instrumentals, and some of the weirder, wilder songs you might find in a Japanese crime film of the time! Some of the music was done for the show Play Girl, but it seems as if there's other work here too – ... (Soundtracks LP)
British Progressive Jazz (UK), 1968.
An album with a very colorful cover – which is a good indication of the sounds within from the great Graham Collier – music from that moment when his sense of composition and arranging were really opening up some strong new colors in British jazz! The set features a great group with ... (Jazz CD)
Svart (Finland), Late 70s/Early 80s.
The title's a bit misleading, as Giorgio Moroder didn't actually spend time on the Finnish scene – but the German superproducer had a huge influence on that nation's grooves during the 70s and early 80s – as you'll hear on this wonderfully weird and well-collected set! These are all ... (Funky Compilations CD)
We Want Sounds (UK), 1980s/Early 90s.
That's a pretty cosmic image on the cover, and the vibe of the album follows suit in a very nice way – mixing the best "future" modes of 80s music of the cassette generation with some more traditional funk and soul! The set opens our ears to a world we'd never have heard otherwise ... (Global Grooves LP)
RGS (Argentina), 1966.
A lost mid 60s session from famous Argentine bassist Jorge Lopez Ruiz – maybe even more compelling than some of his other albums of the decade, in that the entire set is based on his own compositions! Ruiz is a hell of a bassist and an equally great leader – and works here with this ... (Jazz CD)
Mad About Records (Portugal), 1981. (reissue)
An incredible bit of Brazilian jazz from the start of the 80s – and like so many of the best records from that scene, a set that's not easy to describe in more familiar modes! There's electric instrumentation in the lineup, with some especially nice guitar – but the record's not a ... (Brazil LP)
Ayler (Sweden), 2022.
A pair of duets, greatly expanded here – and taken way past their initial use as music for a really lovely film about the author Patricia Highsmith! There's nothing really soundtrack-like about the music – although the setting has given all the artists involved a chance to work on some ... (Jazz CD)
Abattoir/Aloha Got Soul, 1976. (reissue)
The sweet second album from this legendary Hawaiian soul group – maybe the island state's biggest musical export at the time, and for good reason too! Kalapana work here with the same tropical soul mode as their debut, but tighten things up in all the right ways – by stepping into a ... (Soul LP)
Gearbox (UK), 2022.
British tenorist Binker Golding has always been a compelling musician, no matter what the setting – maybe best known for his sharp-edged duo with drummer Moses Boyd – but here really stepping out with a fresh voice that's unlike anything we've heard from him before! There's a warmth, ... (Jazz CD)
Aleluya/RGS (Argentina), 1977.
Fantastic funky fusion from the 70s Argentine scene – a set that begins with a killer take on the Led Zeppelin tune "Black Dog", and only gets even groovier after that! Jorge Navarro leads the group on piano, Hammond, and Fender Rhodes – and the group is a tight combo with ... (Jazz CD)
GAD (Poland), Late 60s.
The depths of Jerzy Milian's talents seem endless with records like this – far more so than we ever would have guessed from the handful of commercial albums the famous Polish jazz vibist released in the 60s and 70s! As with so many other talents on his scene, chances to issue records were ... (Jazz CD)
Tava Tava Rare (Italy), 1970.
We mostly know Masao Yagi as a Japanese jazz pianist – a great one of the modern variety – but he's also got a sideline of soundtrack work, almost all of which is as great as his jazz recordings! This rare set from the star of the 70s does a great job of showing both sides of Masao's ... (Soundtracks LP)
Universal, 1982. 2LP (reissue)
Maybe the last really essential album from The Who – the second to feature Kenny Jones on drums, doing a surprisingly great job of filling in the space left behind when Keith Moon departed the planet – and a record that also has Pete Townshend working out some of his stronger mature ... (Rock LP)
RGS (Argentina), 1970. 2CD
Two rare sessions by Vinicius – back to back on one 2 CD set! CD one features a 1970 recording in Buenos Aires – with Maria Creuza and Toquinho. Creuza was at her best during the early 70s – and working here with the classic bossa team of poet Vinicius De Moraes and guitarist ... (Brazil CD)
VG+, Late 60s/Early 70s.
A really great lost slice of work from the moog underground of the late 60s – music that's very different than some of the more pop-based electronics that were usually issued under the moog banner – served up here by an artist with a much more freewheeling sort of approach! Doug ... (Rock LP)
Beat (Italy), 1973. 2CD
One of the richest 70s soundtracks ever penned by Piero Piccioni – a score for a film that was part action, part comedy – and which really shows the presence of both in the music! The film stars the great Alberto Sordi, but is set in New York – and Piccioni brings in all these ... (Soundtracks CD)
Strut (UK), 2022.
The first album in many years from legendary Brazilian singer Flora Purim – and a set that's maybe one of the best of her career – done in this soaring, free-spirited style that really takes us back to the qualities that always set Flora apart from the rest! Daughter Diana Purim sings ... (Brazil CD)
Finders Keepers (UK), Mid 80s.
Maybe the rarest work ever from composer Graeme Miller – tracks done for continued episodes of the Moomin animated series he scored with Steve Shill, but which were unused at the time, due to a shift in presentation of the series! The music here as all the charm of the other Moomins releases ... (Soundtracks LP)
Tony Lavorgna & The St Thomas Jazz Quartet
Antelope Records/Jazz Room (UK), 1982. (reissue)
An obscure one – but with some great funky jazz moments! The album features the work of The St. Thomas Jazz Quartet – a group that might conjure up images of the Carribean, but who were really just a great soul jazz combo from Cleveland. David Thomas plays some excellent Hammond B-3 ... (Jazz LP)
Animal/Mr Bongo (UK), 1982. (reissue)
A really great record, and maybe one of the few hip hop soundtracks to get at the real feel of the music on the streets – maybe no surprise, as the film for which it was created did the same thing! This isn't a fluffed-up Hollywood take on hip hop, with mainstream soul thrown into the mix ... (Hip Hop LP)
Beat (Italy), 1984.
An unusual score for an unusual Italian film of the 80s – one that presents outwardly as a bit of a comedy, but which has some darker moments too – all of which come through very nicely in the music by Fabio Libertori! Fabio's definitely in the spirit of the decade with his ... (Soundtracks CD)
RCA/Morello (UK), 1969/1970. 2CD
A trio of pre-stardom albums from Waylon Jennings – brought together here in a single set! First up is Just To Satisfy You – fantastic early work from Waylon Jennings – exactly the kind of record that shows how the singer could burst out of the pack, even in a familiar setting! ... (Folk/Country CD)
Four Flies (Italy), Late 70s/Early 80s. 2LP Gatefold
A set that's even better than you'd guess from the title – as the music here is from a really nice range of sources, and has a spirit that's very much its own – neither in the range of more familiar Italo Disco, nor some of the chintzier pop tracks of the time! Instead, the project's ... (Funky Compilations LP)
Gondwana (UK), 2022.
A wonderfully moody combo – one who are definitely in the more jazz-based side of the spectrum for the Gondwana label – but a group who also have a different vibe than label heavyweights like Matthew Halsall and Nat Birchall! There's a very loose, open approach going on here – ... (Jazz CD)
A set whose origin is partly hinted at by its title – as trumpeter Dave Douglas initially wanted to create a new interpolation of the classic anthem "We Shall Overcome" – then expanded on the energy of that collaboration to create a whole album in a similarly righteous style! ... (Jazz LP)
Pressure Sounds (UK), Late 70s/Early 80s. 2LP
Yabby You maybe wasn't one of the first to start experimenting in the studios of Kingston – but with work like this, he was certainly one of the best – especially in the classic period covered in the collection! The Yabby You approach often has a leaner, more stripped-down approach ... (Reggae LP)
Strata East/Pure Pleasure (UK), 1974. (reissue)
A really unique little album from tenorist Charlie Rouse – a player who's best known to most for his famous 60s recordings in the Thelonious Monk Quartet – but who stretches out here in a very different style for the Strata East scene of the 70s! The album's almost funky at times, and ... (Jazz LP)
Strut (UK), 2022.
A really great lineup of musicians from the London scene – coming together here in a mix of modes that's both electric and acoustic, jazz and more global-based – all with the far-reaching sounds you might expect from their previous work in groups like Collocutor or Comet Is Coming! ... (Jazz CD)
GAD (Poland), 1979.
Rare funky jazz from 70s Poland – excellent material from a group who have a really wonderful sound of their own – neither slavish to American fusion of the time, nor some of the more rock-based work from other groups of the Eastern Bloc! Instead, the tracks here mix all these great ... (Jazz CD)
Stax/Kent (UK), Mid 60s.
William Bell was one of the first great soul singers to record for the legendary Stax Records in Memphis – an artist who really helped set the tone for deep soul singles to come from the likes of Otis Redding and Johnnie Taylor – and one whose early work is still some of the best he ... (Soul CD)
Bureau B (Germany), 2022.
Multiversum is a great title for this one – as the set unlocks yet another slice of the musical multiverse in which Jimi Tenor has seemed to roam for the past few decades – always giving us amazing new sounds when he decides to shift dimensions! Here, the music draws on his recent ... (New Grooves CD)
Universal (France), Late 50s/1960s. 9LP
Nine incredible albums from the legendary Serge Gainsbourg – all presented together here in a limited box set, with very high quality vinyl, and half-speed mastering that makes the records sound even better than ever before! The set begins with a number of key early albums by Serge – ... (French LP)
Capitol/Music On Vinyl (Netherlands), 1982. (reissue)
LJ Reynolds' sounding great on his own here – stepping strongly away from his work with The Dramatics, and emerging as one of the best male soul acts of the early 80s! The groove here is a nice extension of his earlier group work – still produced by Don Davis in a mode that's ... (Soul LP)
El Palmas (Spain), Late 60s/Early 70s.
A really great collection of rare tracks from Venezuela – a really under-tapped source of music from the 60s and 70s – and home to some wonderful hybrids and styles! The music here is definitely in the Latin side of the spectrum, but the approach varies nicely – and makes the ... (Latin LP)
Old Town/Jasmine (UK), Early 60s.
Two full albums from one of the most popular jazz singers of his day – back to back on the same CD, with bonus material too! First up is the album I Worry About You – fantastic work from Arthur Prysock – a singer who really helped redefine the role of the male singer in the 60s, ... (Vocalists CD)
RGS (Argentina), 1973.
Argentine rock, recorded in Paris during the early 70s – a really unusual expatriate album that comes off with a sound that's pretty unique! Miguel Abuelo clearly draws inspiration from the heavier rock that was showing up in South America at the time – yet the overall execution of the ... (Rock CD)
The monumental debut of BT Express – and an excellent funk album that often gets overlooked by fans of the music because of the band's bigger fame as a disco group! This first record has the combo grooving hard and instrumentally – in the mode of a tight blacksploitation soundtrack, ... (Soul CD)
Jazz Line (Germany), 1986. 3LP Gatefold
The masterful Gil Evans was very alive and well in the 80s – working in ways that continued to push forward from his famous arranging modes of the 50s and 60s, and furthering some of the experiments with electric instrumentation that he began in the 70s! And somehow, the strength of Evans ... (Jazz LP)
Cadillac (UK), 2022.
A really wonderful overview of sounds from the contemporary jazz scene in Finland – put together with a fantastic ear for the heady grooves and really fresh solo modes that have been bristling up on the scene of late – all of which really come together in the impeccable track selection ... (Jazz CD)
The Richter here is Gerhard Richter – the important visual artist whose work has been so important over the decades – an inspiration for the music created here by minimalist Steve Reich, originally for the film Moving Picture! The set presents a beautiful live performance of the ... (Out Sound CD)
Schoolhouse/Frederiksberg, 1973. (reissue)
A record that manages to effortlessly tie together its horns and Fender Rhodes – wrapping them up in a seductive groove that makes the album a gem all the way through! The group are an obscure one, but they've got a very unique, individual vibe on this rare early 70s set – working with ... (Jazz LP)
Virgin/Panegyric (UK), 1982. (reissue)
A really beautiful record from XTC – one that seemed to unlock a slightly deeper spirit in the songwriting of Andy Partridge, and which also introduced some vaguely pastoral elements the group never had at the start! The style here is a bit hard to describe easily – still as catchy as ... (Rock LP)
Blacklake (Netherlands), 2022.
The second entry in this much-loved, much-lauded project – a set of jazz reworks of tunes made famous by Black Sabbath back in the day – transformed here to a completely different idiom by the work of the trio! The first time round, these guys tried to pass off their debut as a lost ... (Jazz CD)
King/We Want Sounds (UK), 1971. Gatefold (reissue)
The Japanese scene of the 70s had plenty of experiments that blended contemporary and traditional instrumentation – but this album-length jam from percussionist Stomu Yamashta may well be one of the most striking from the time! You'll no doubt know Stomu from some of his later records that ... (Rock LP)
Fremeaux & Associates (France), 1940s/1950s/Early 60s. 3CD
A huge overview of female gospel material from the golden age of the genre – and a set that's a mighty nice contrast to some of the heavy male group reissues that have dominated the market! Most of the groups here are smaller ones – not the large choir of a church, but the quintets and ... (Gospel CD)
Maple/Real Gone, Mid 70s. (reissue)
A hell of a record from the obscure George Scott – a singer who never hit much fame after this, but who really knocks it out of the park with a righteous deep soul style! Backings are more stripped-down than you'd expect from the date – much more like some indie soul set from the late ... (Soul LP)
America/Universal (France), 1964. 2CD
Charles Mingus recorded many great concerts over the years – but this huge double-length collection may well be one of the most likely to earn the title of "great" – as the lineup is superb, and the music really captures Mingus at a time when he was setting a new fire in his ... (Jazz CD)
Sub Rosa (Belgium), 2022. 2CDs
An amazing introduction to a world of sound that's hardly been caught on record – a scene that's maybe a bit more underground that familiar gamelan modes from Indonesia, but which uses a similar array of tuned percussive instruments! As you'd guess by the title, the gong is at the center of ... (Global Grooves CD)
Universal (France), Late 50s/1960s/1970s. 5CD
A wonderful overview of some of the key moments in the career of Michel Legrand – the legendary jazz pianist, film composer, and singer who helped really transform the sound of French music in the postwar years! The box does a great job of covering all different aspects of Legrand's career ... (Soundtracks CD)
Lovemonk (Spain), 2022.
A really strong record from JP Bimeni – a soul singer with a style that's all his own, yet one that's also set up here in some nicely classic backings! Bimeni has unusual vocal phrasing that may well come from his Burundian roots, but he also manages to put across a tune with a vibe that ... (Deep Funk CD)
Jasmine (UK), 1950s/Early 60s.
Vocalist Jackie Brenston recorded one of the key early singles in rock and roll – the seminal crossover cut "Rocket 88" – which has, over the years, gotten Brenston's contribution overshadowed by the work of Ike Turner – who put the whole thing together in the studio! ... (Soul CD)
Bad Boy, 1997. 8LPs
The second album from Biggie, and a set that was instantly poised to catapult him to superstardom – even before his tragic death ended up doing that before the release of the record! And yes, the title's a bit cryptic – and given the fact that the material came out after BIG was shot, ... (Hip Hop LP)
Hip Hop Enterprise, Mid 90s.
The long-overdue release of the full length debut of Paula Perry – the Queen Of Fort Greene, and a real up-and-coming rapper from the Brooklyn scene – lost to the shifting sands of time, due to the vagaries of major label shenanigans in the 90s! The album's a rock-solid effort with ... (Hip Hop CD)
No Business (Lithuania), 2002.
A great late performance by Sam Rivers – one that has the musician working with all the free-thinking imagination he gave the world on his groundbreaking improvisation albums of the 70s! Sam blows tenor and soprano here, but is also pretty amazing on piano and flute – and the rest of ... (Jazz CD)
Marmalade/Grapefruit (UK), Late 60s.
A key lost chapter in the career of Kevin Godley and Lol Creme – material recorded for the Marmalade label in the years before they burst forth to greater fame in 10CC – all with a very different vibe than the sound of that later group! There's still plenty of the heavenly quality of ... (Rock CD)
R&R/Real Gone, 1976. (reissue)
An obscure album of southern funky soul from Chuck Armstrong – an artist we know from his earlier funky 45 work in Chicago, but who sounds quite different on this set! The album was produced by George Kerr in New Jersey, but it's got a rolling, vamping approach on most cuts – a sound ... (Soul LP)
Dragon (Sweden), 1959/1960.
Lars Gullin at the end of the 50s – really stretching out a lot as a player, yet also still hanging onto his more boppish roots too! Bigger experiments were to come in the 60s, but here, Gullin's completely confident, completely on top of his baritone sax – blowing the instrument in ... (Jazz CD)
ESP, 1966. (reissue)
One of the few albums as a leader from bassist Henry Grimes – a hell of a great player who'd made his name working with Sonny Rollins, but who steps out here into much freer territory! The group features Grimes at the helm on bass, but also features killer contributions from Perry Robinson ... (Jazz LP)
Wonderful late work from piano legend Bill Evans – a set that was recorded in 1977, but not issued until after his death in 1980 – at which point it became an instant essential in his catalog! As with so many of Bill's 70s recordings, the session benefits from the bass work of Eddie ... (Jazz CD)
Resonance, 1972. 3CD
Fantastic lost work from Charles Mingus, from a very under-recorded time in his life – the same period in which he gave the world the seminal album Let My Children Hear Music! The setting's a live one – and as on some of Mingus' superb 60s concert sessions, there's a force and fire ... (Jazz CD)
Blue Note, 2022.
Fantastic work from Immanuel Wilkins – only the second album from the young alto player, but a set that shows that he's clearly becoming one of the rising stars on Blue Note! Wilkins originally hails from Philly, and the record has some of that boundless creativity that we've always loved in ... (Jazz CD)
An incredible treasure from a lost vocal jazz genius – the little-known Bobby Cole, every bit as great a singer as he was a songwriter, very unusual for the time! Bobby was probably best remembered as the house pianist at Jillys, but at the time of this 1964 recording, he was poised to ... (Vocalists CD)
Really heady sounds from Frightnrs – a group who've changed up their sound slightly since their last full length release – at a level that makes them even more interesting than ever before! The group still draw heavily from older rocksteady and soulful reggae modes – but it also ... (Reggae CD)
Universal (France), 2022.
A record that's as striking as its cover – a set from a Belgian duo, but one who take on important issues on the global scene – delivered mostly in English, which gives the record a really universal sense of appeal! Their style is quite unique – almost an older mix of beats, ... (Neo Soul CD)
A beautiful book, and one that's almost as enjoyable as finding a box of rare records from the funk and soul underground of the 60s and 70s! The book is a huge overview of funk and soul from Ohio – starting with the early 60s, and running up to the big years of Ohio funk that rose on the ... (Book)
Strata East/Pure Pleasure (UK), 1973. (reissue)
One of the most spiritual recordings put out by the Strata East label – and the album that put tenor giant Billy Harper on the map! Harper leads a hip group here – one that features George Cables on piano, Reggie Workman on bass, Jimmy Owens on trumpet, and Julian Priester on trombone ... (Jazz LP)
Blue Note, 1966. (reissue)
Pivotal work from trumpeter Freddie Hubbard – a tight, edgy quintet performance that's done with a modern jazz sound that approaches the Blue Note "new thing" sound, but which stays just this side of the fence to keep in line with Freddie's other soulful work of the 60s – yet ... (Jazz LP)
A solo set from Neil Young , circa '71, at a time when he was really soaring as a solo performer – there's perhaps no better time in his storied career to pour his songs over large, excited audiences in a way that sounds as big and beautiful as with his storied bands over the years. Young is ... (Rock CD)
Walt Disney, 1982. (reissue)
Wendy Carlos was known best for her important early experiments in electronic music – most recorded as Walter Carlos – but she had a great early 80s moment with this well-crafted soundtrack to the film Tron – a mix of her own electronics and some surprisingly strong orchestrations ... (Soundtracks LP)
Robinsongs (UK), Late 70s/Early 80s. 3CD
A career-spanning collection of work from the great Rose Royce – a group who first appeared on the scene with a crossover single from a big hit film – but who soon grew into a wonderfully cool, sophisticated soul act on their own! Motown producer Norman Whitfield was one of the more ... (Soul CD)
At Home Sound (Japan), 2022.
We loved the keyboards of Yusuke Hirado in the group Quasimode – but on recent solo sets like this, he's pushed his talents even more – to a point where he's stepping out with a soaring, soulful vibe that's somewhere between 70s Johnny Hammond and more contemporary work from Mark De ... (Jazz CD)
Universal (France), 2022.
The legendary Michel Legrand gave the world music in so many different styles and formats – jazz, soundtrack material, and even a huge legacy of vocal material too – the last of which is showcased in this great collection – which features a fair bit of more recent recordings, ... (Soundtracks LP)
Decca/Mad About Records (Portugal), 1965. (reissue)
An amazing debut from a groundbreaking British jazz big band of the 60s – an ensemble led by trumpeter Neil Ardley, and one with a sound that's a lot more modern than some of their contemporaries! The group here definitely earns their "new jazz" name – as it's filled with ... (Jazz LP)
Question Mark & The Mysterians
Cameo/Abkco, 1967. (reissue)
The second album from Question Mark & The Mysterians – even more obscure than the first, and harder and heavier too! There's an energy and brashness here that's undeniable – like the group have really gotten their isht together – and found a way to push past the simple ... (Rock LP)
Today/Octave (Japan), 1973.
Keyboardist Julius Brockington really takes off here – in a style that's not quite funk, not quite jazz – and which has some of the unique sophisticated changes that Gene Harris was bringing to his Blue Note records in the mid 70s! Like Gene, Julius already has a strong background on ... (Soul CD)
Treasure Isle/Doctor Bird (UK), Early 70s. 2CD
A really great look at the final years of the Treasure Isle label – a Jamaican imprint that was as important in the 60s as Studio One, and headed by the groundbreaking producer Duke Reid – a force maybe best known for ska and rocksteady, but still very much at the top of his game here! ... (Reggae CD)
Dutch Jazz Archive (Netherlands), 1970s/Early 80s. 3CD
A treasure trove of barely-heard music from two of the most unique players on the European scene of the 70s – Fender Rhodes giant Rob Franken, and harmonica jazz maestro Toots Thielemans – two players who sound better here in the company of each other than they do on their own! ... (Jazz CD)
Atlantic, 1961. 2CD
Wonderful wonderful wonderful work from the legendary John Coltrane – and even though it's probably one of his best-selling albums of all time, it's still a treasure – and has an essential place in just about any jazz collection! We've heard the original title version of "My ... (Jazz CD)
Chris' Soundtrack Corner (Germany), 1978.
A sweet 70s soundtrack that's filled with great little numbers – the kind of cuts that have a gentle groove and some really sweet keyboard lines – very much in the best spirit of classic work from the decade by contemporary Stelvio Cipriani! We've always loved the work of Roberto ... (Soundtracks CD)
Perception/Octave (Japan), 1973.
A seminal record in the transition from the funky 45 underground to the world of the full length LP – a record we'd put right up there with early classics by The JBs and Kool & The Gang! As with the latter, Fatback Band grew up first getting some great play on instrumental 45s – ... (Soul CD)
El (UK), Late 50s. 2CD
A really great document of a unique musical moment – one that happened overseas, but which started a wave of protest that's continued to this day! In the late 50s, London was a hotbed of nuclear protest – one of the first cities to express a strong resistance to the arms race that was ... (Folk/Country CD)
The first full length set from this mighty duo – Tim Gane of Stereolab and Jeremy Novak from Dymaxion – coming together in a set of stripped-down instrumentals that really get at the core of their contributions to those other projects! There's plenty of blips, bleeps, and echoes of ... (Rock LP)
Pacific Jazz/Blue Note, 1963. (reissue)
A seminal moment on the west coast scene of the 60s – a record that has the great Gerald Wilson pulling together some of the best elements that were going on at the time, and also pointing the way towards changes to come in the future! The set's not the first effort by Wilson on record, but ... (Jazz LP)
Vertigo/Esoteric (UK), 1972.
Jade Warrior have a sound that's unlike anyone else of their generation – a mix of percussion, flute, bass, and guitar – all with the kind of electric/acoustic interplay such a lineup with imply! The cover image of this second album maybe looks a bit dramatic, but the group actually ... (Rock CD)
Maple/Real Gone, 1971. (reissue)
The cover may look like some indie soul set from the 80s, but Mabu's Madness is a rare east coast funk combo from the start of the 70s – one who issued this killer set on the tiny Maple label with a mighty heavy sound! The album's got a vibe that's a bit like some of the best funk albums on ... (Soul LP)
Chris' Soundtrack Corner (Italy), 1978.
An Italian erotic soundtrack that's really a cut above – way more than just the kind of trashy music used in American films of this nature at the time – and instead a rich array of tones and colors that really lives up to the soundtrack legacy of Carlo Savina! The music has a sense of ... (Soundtracks CD)
Steeplechase (Denmark), 2022.
Trumpeter Jason Palmer does a great job here of updating older jazz classics and mixing in some really nice originals of his own – all recorded with a quartet, and in a manner that gives the leader plenty of room to shape the tunes with that unique phrasing we've always loved in his trumpet! ... (Jazz CD)
International Anthem, 2022.
A stunning solo project from drummer Daniel Villarreal – a musician you might know in the group Dos Santos, yet one who's in very unique territory here on his own! The album was recorded in both Chicago and Los Angeles – and it's got a vibe that really reflects that process – ... (Jazz CD)
Maverick/Run Out Groove, 1999. 2LP Gatefold (reissue)
A record that really marks the sophisticated transformation of the Meshell Ndegeocello sound – a move from the more straightforward soul of her earlier releases, to the complicated mix of sounds that's almost made her a genre unto herself! Throughout the years, Meshell has been as much an ... (Neo Soul LP)
Four Flies (Italy), 1968. (pic cover)
Three great tracks from this rare Italian soundtrack – all perfect here for a funky 45! "Girl With The Gun" is this fantastic mix of rumbling drums, electric sitar, and fuzzy guitar – peppered with a voice saying the title throughout the cut – but moving between talking ... (Funky 45's 7-inch)
Life Force Jazz, 2022.
A set of tracks recorded in the early 90s, unreleased until many years later – and an album that shows a beautifully sensitive side of the music of guitarist Calvin Keys! The title is sometimes very apt – as Calvin is often out front in the lead, crafting these warm lines built from ... (Jazz CD)
Black Fire/Strut (UK), 1977.
Incredible work by Oneness Of Juju – a lost third LP, recorded in the late 70s, but never issued until years later! The album has the group tightening it up a bit from the first two records – picking up some funky influences that are more than welcome to our ears – doses of ... (Global Grooves LP)
Masayuki Takayanagi & New Direction
Iskra/Black Editions, 1975. Gatefold (reissue)
A legendary album from the Japanese scene of the 70s – one that captures the intensity of the free jazz underground at its height, but at a level that maybe also points the way towards some of the Japanese noise in decades to come! Guitarist Masayuki Takayanagi plays unlike anyone else we ... (Jazz LP)
Criss Cross/Anagram, 1994. 2LP Gatefold (reissue)
A really wonderful early album from tenorist Mark Turner – a set that's got all those dark moments and sharp edges of his later recordings, but in a setting that's nicely warm at times – and which has Turner coming across with a bit more soul! There's a special sort of mojo in the ... (Jazz LP)
Ogun (UK), 1964.
A much-needed look at the early sound of The Blue Notes – a performance right before they left South Africa, and with a nicely different sound than some of their later London performances issued on the Ogun label! The group here are already very much in their own sound and spirit, but with ... (Jazz CD)
Denon/Everland (Austria), 1971.
Far Out indeed – an early 70s album from Japan's Far Out – the only album we've ever seen by the group, before they went on to work as The Far East Family Band! If you know that more famous group, you'll know the vibe here – a really unique version of psych, touched with a bit of ... (Rock CD)
Jazz Is Dead, 2022.
An album that has the legendary Jean Carne in the most righteous setting we've heard in years – a mode that hearkens back to the vocals she provided for organist Doug Carn on their classic 70s albums together for the Black Jazz label! Jean's a singer that we love in just about any format ... (Deep Funk CD)
Polydor/Big Pink (South Korea), 1974.
A really cool 70s album from the great Link Wray – done at the time when he was reinventing himself, and changing from a damn great instrumental guitarist to a singer as well – one with a much bolder presence in the limelight than ever before! Wray serves up some fantastic electric ... (Rock CD)
Thrill Jockey, 1995. (reissue)
A legendary project from Tortoise – kind of the "part 1.5" to their tremendous debut – as it features material from that record, remixed by members of the group and other key figures on the Chicago scene – all as a real testament to the many criss-crossing styles and ... (Rock LP)
Village LA, 2022.
A really powerful project from the LA underground – served up by a group led by Jesse Sharps, who you may remember from classic albums on the Nimbus label – and done at a level that unites the sound of his generation with some of the best currents of more contemporary years! The lineup ... (Jazz CD)
A set that's way more than just the roots and branches of LA jazz – as it also points the way towards a fantastic future in the city's spiritual underground – uniting older and younger players, and unfurling the kind of energy that's really helped to transform things in the 21st Century ... (Jazz CD)
Pharaway Sounds (Spain), Early 70s.
Freak and fuzz from an ultra-cool Venezuelan group of the early 70s – one who are as experimental as they are funky – effortlessly mixing together some wicked work on guitars and keyboards with some heavy rhythms on the bottom! The overall sound is more late 60s than you'd guess from ... (Rock LP)
Chris' Soundtrack Corner (Germany), Late 70s. Gatefold
Two very cool soundtracks from the legendary team of Guido & Maurizio DeAngelis – back to back on in a single set! The soundtrack to Keoma is a weird mixture of instrumental tunes that feature piano, guitar, and harmonica, sort of in a spaghetti western mode, but with more of a groovy ... (Soundtracks LP)
Strata East/Pure Pleasure (UK), 1974. Gatefold (reissue)
One of the standouts in a great 70s run of albums from trumpeter Charles Tolliver – standard-setting records for the spiritual jazz scene of the time – and maybe one of his most far-reaching records for the Strata East label! Toilliver's in very strong company – as the group on ... (Jazz LP)
Esoteric (UK), Late 60s/Early 70s. 2CD
A pair of wondeful albums – back to back in a single set, with bonus material too! First up is Answer – fantastic solo work from Peter Bardens – an artist who'd later gain fame as the lead singer of Camel, but who's even more fantastic here on his own – working in a trippy ... (Rock CD)
Survival Research (Italy), 1987.
Late 80s work from Clara Mondshine, and a set that's every bit as beautiful as some of her electronic classics from the 70s – but in a nicely different way! The technology has changed a bit here, and includes some digital elements – but still used with the sense of space and melody ... (Rock LP)
Sonic Healing Ministries, 2021.
Fiercely spiritual music from the great David Boykin – exactly the kind of record that puts him in a special sort of legacy that goes back to the glory days of the 70s! Boykin's always had this sort of quality in his music, but it feels as if in recent years, he's gotten even more righteous ... (Jazz CD)
Perception/Octave (Japan), 1972.
A key classic from the earliest years of the Fatback Band – one of the group's funkiest albums, and part of their original trilogy for the Perception label! The groove here is mighty raw throughout – but a bit more complicated than some of their funky 45 releases – a mixture of ... (Soul CD)
Verve, 1968. Gatefold (reissue)
Bill Evans' first famous appearance at the Montreux Jazz Festival – a great 60s trio session, with Eddie Gomez on bass and Jack DeJohnette on drums! The tunes are mostly relatively familiar ones, but the ensemble on the set gives them a freer and more lyrical feel than you might expect ... (Jazz LP)
Hot Casa (France), 1984. (reissue)
Funky genius from the mighty K Frimpong – an album recorded in Germany in the mid 80s – but a set that cooks like some of the best West African funk from the decade before! The sound is lean and mean, and there's plenty of grit in the grooves – a lot more bass and funky drums ... (Global Grooves LP)
Vanguard/Big Pink (South Korea), 1968.
A hell of a record from the Boston scene of the late 60s – a set that's more progressive than some of its contemporaries, with a dexterity of rhythms and keyboards that could even rival some of the coming greats on the UK scene! Michael Tschudin handles lead vocals and all the keyboards ... (Rock CD)
Esoteric (UK), 1973. 2CD
One of the most compelling early albums from Nektar – a set in which the group recorded live in the studio – as a way of capturing some of the spontaneous intensity of their concert performances, but at a more intimate level! The group here are very much in top form – ... (Rock CD)
Atlantic/Rhino, 1957. 2CD
Angular Monk meets hard-driving Art Blakey – in a session that's quite unique, and which has gone onto become one of the best-remembered Atlantic jazz sessions of the late 50s! The album features Blakey in that key non-Blue Note year of 1957 – a time when he was working with a variety ... (Jazz CD)
Blue Note, 1957. Gatefold (reissue)
An all-star quintet session from tenor genius Hank Mobley – originally recorded during his classic run for Blue Note in the late 50s – but then unissued for decades, until a CD-only appearance in Japan many years later! Hank's in tremendous young formation here – blowing with ... (Jazz LP)
Reprise/Light In The Attic, Late 60s. Gatefold (reissue)
One of the weirdest, wildest pop albums of the 60s – maybe the crowning achievement of both Nancy Sinatra and Lee Hazlewood – two artists who'd worked together before, but never with an intensity this great! The record is overflowing with all the great touches you'd expect from Lee ... (Vocalists LP)
Universal, Mid 70s. 2LP Gatefold
The Sex Pistols only gave the world one full album before breaking up – the monumental God Save The Queen, a set that testifies to the raw energy that made it seem inevitable that their light would burn so brightly, it would soon burn out! Yet alongside that set, the group also cut some key ... (Rock LP)
Mercury/Elemental, Late 60s. (reissue)
If you think that Chuck Berry only hit his heights at Chess Records, then get ready to change your mind – as this late 60s record for Mercury is quite a cooker! Side one has Berry working in a cool hybrid of blues and soul, but with some very weird production – handled by Chuck himself ... (Soul LP)
TSG/P-Vine (Japan), 1976.
A mysterious bit of group soul from the 70s scene – a record that's full of original material, and delivered in a style that's very much like the best New Jersey and Philly indie sides from the start of the decade! By that, we mean that the group's a little rough around the edges – and ... (Soul CD)
Pipeline/Mad About Records (Portugal), 1976. (reissue)
A rare bit of Cali soul – and a lot groovier than you'd guess from the cover! The music is rich in jazzy inflections – funky fusion used behind the lead vocals of Errol Knowles, in a blend that's quite similar to the best Bay Area funk of the time – particularly some of the ... (Soul LP)
Aladdin/P-Vine (Japan), 1980.
A sweet SoCal groover from Cecil Lyde – recorded in LA in the early 80s, with a great mix of funky club and mellow soul modes! Cecil's got a great ear for the grittier side of California funk at the time – tunes that still use the heavy bass and keyboards of mainstream work from the ... (Soul CD)
Sonic Healing Ministries, 2021.
Given the energy going on here, we can say that saxophonist David Boykin isn't sublimating any of his thoughts – as the record's got a wonderfully explosive vibe right from the start, then continues to soar in a mighty nice way! The format's a trio – Boykin's tenor next to the bass of ... (Jazz CD)
Buddah/BGO (UK), Late 60s. 2CD
Four full albums from Melanie – all brought together here in a single set! On Born To Be, Melanie's a folkie at heart, but one who's very open to new ideas too – as you'll hear in this surprisingly offbeat set from the late 60s! The record mixes Melanie's raspy, almost eerie vocal ... (Rock CD)
One of the hippest records we've ever heard from Esperanza Spalding – a set that almost feels as if she's stepping back into some of the more experimental, individual qualities that made her so different at the start! There's definitely some appealing, catchy songs here – but the ... (Neo Soul CD)
Blue Erro Soul, 2022.
Over the past few decades, there's been few contemporary soul singers who've won our hearts more than Eric Roberson – an underground hero who only rewards our faith in his music more and more as the years move on – a legacy that's certainly delivered on with this beautiful full length ... (Neo Soul CD)
Strata East/Pure Pleasure (UK), 1973. 2LP Gatefold (reissue)
An essential bit of 70s soul jazz – a real standout in both the catalogs of tenorist Clifford Jordan, and the Stata East label! This is one of those few records where every element is perfect, and all players rise together to a new level of expression – and we'd easily rank this one ... (Jazz LP)
BMG, 2021. 2LP
Anthony Hamilton's got a very classic look on the cover – and he definitely turns in a classic set here – the kind of righteous, well-crafted soul record that really takes us back to the golden age of the 70s! And yet, the music's not retro at all – it's very contemporary in both ... (Neo Soul LP)
A warmly well-rounded set of organ jazz from Bill Heid – maybe not the biggest player on the Hammond B3, but one who's been slowly building up an excellent legacy of records like this! There's an understated grace to the way that Bill handles the instrument – he's not out to blow the ... (Jazz CD)
Red Bird/Sun, 1964. (reissue)
The biggest album ever issued by the Dixie Cups – a set that has the trio's New Orleans roots given a bit of a New York kick through the production work of the legendary Lieber & Stoller! The duo still let the group's vocals run full tilt – that wonderful charm that made the Dixie ... (Soul LP)
Dizonord (France), 1983. (reissue)
A record that really lives up to its title – as the sounds within were created by a number of young musicians in France, but at a level that seeks to conjure up an older Mediterranean mode! The approach is a bit like some of the best experiments on the Crammed Discs label at the time – ... (Global Grooves LP)
Tribe/P-Vine (Japan), Early 70s.
Genius work from the Detroit underground of the 70s – one of the greatest records ever on the now-famous Tribe Records label, and a masterpiece of soul, jazz, and righteous spirit! The session's headed by tenor player Wendell Harrison – and it's got an all-star Motor City lineup that ... (Jazz CD)
Philips/Polysom (Brazil), 1976. (reissue)
A classic bit of 70s MPB from Belchior – one of the biggest Brazilian singers of the scene at the time, but one who gets some wonderfully thoughtful, sensitive sounds here – thanks to help from arranger Jose Roberto, who also plays organ and piano on the set! The music has a soulful, ... (Brazil LP)
Avco/Soulgramma (Italy), 1972. (reissue)
The coolest, funkiest, and most soulful set ever issued by Chakachas – a record that's way different than most of their Latin-based music – with a strong American funk vibe all the way through! There's still lots of percussion in the mix, but it's often used in ways that echo more of a ... (Soul LP)
RCA/Be With (UK), 1975. (reissue)
Maybe the best-known international album from Sidiku Buari – an artist who recorded some killer sets in his native Ghana, but who got a rare chance to work here in the US for this album – which features some tight funky elements by Bernard Purdie on drums, Paul Grivvin on keyboards, and ... (Global Grooves LP)
Munster (Spain), Mid 60s. 2LP Gatefold
Searing sounds from the Spanish scene of the 60s – a surprising hotbed of razor-sharp, guitar-driven, garage rocking bands! Other European scenes of the time are maybe better-known – especially the UK, Swedish, and German ones – but the work here is really stunning – and ... (Rock LP)
P-Vine (Japan), Late 70s.
A sweet bit of funk from Hawaii – and a legendary bit of free soul that's been winning global fame for decades! Lemuria is the brainchild of Kirk Thompson – who plays piano, bass, keyboards, and vibes on this very spiritual set of tracks. Master Henry Gibson was one of the executive ... (Soul CD)
Bible & Tire, 2022.
Soulful, spiritual sounds from North Carolina legend Johnny Ray Daniels – an artist who started out in soul, but soon found gospel more to his liking – then went on to create a decades-long legacy of wonderful music like this! The album's contemporary, but given a very old school ... (Gospel CD)
Trojan (UK), 1970. (reissue)
An incredible duo, and one who look more like an American soul team on the front cover – and manage to deliver a similar vibe in the grooves! The style is definitely reggae, but as you'd guess from the Nina Simone cover in the title track, Bob Andy and Marcia Griffiths are also reaching out ... (Reggae LP)
Fresh Sound (Spain), 1961. 2CD
Reedman Buddy Collette is best known for his west coast work of the 50s – his own albums as leader, his work with Chico Hamilton, and a number of other sessions too – yet his performances here in Italian sessions from the early 60s is completely revelatory – and arguably better ... (Jazz CD)
Keyboardist Jorge Luis Pacheco works here mostly in a trio format, but has a way of coming across with a much broader sound – partly through his surprisingly deft command of the keyboard, which you might not expect from his youthful image on the cover – partly through the combination of ... (Jazz CD)
Impulse, 1962. Gatefold (reissue)
A legendary meeting of two classic jazz talents late in their careers – in a setting that's ideal to bring out all the complexity of their well-honed genius! The approach of the album is mostly an Ellington one – as the group features some of Duke's stalwarts, like Ray Nance on trumpet ... (Jazz LP)
Tower/Pink Floyd, 1968. (reissue)
Pink Floyd rose out of the same London scene that gave the world a huge amount of psychedelic records in the late 60s – but with a set like this, they're clearly head and shoulders above most of their contemporaries – already working with a boundless sense of imagination and impeccable ... (Rock LP)
Now Again, 1969.
An insanely fantastic lost chapter in the career of pianist Denny Zeitlin – a never-issued session of electric keyboards and vocals – put together with his famous trio of the 60s, but lost to the world for many decades! Zeitlin was a hell of a pianist right from the start, and he also ... (Jazz CD)
Cinevox/Quartet (Spain), 1980.
A striking soundtrack for this Italian horror film – not really a zombie flick exactly, but one with a very similar bent – scored by the great Stelvio Cipriani with loads of cool keyboards and rhythms! The horror mode's definitely of the John Carpenter generation – which means ... (Soundtracks CD)
Ace (UK), Late 50s/Early 60s.
A deep look at a blues scene that doesn't always get its due – music not from Chicago, Memphis, or various points south – but some nicely gritty tracks that were cut in New York during the postwar years! Despite New York's fame as a hub of jazz, soul, and other styles – the city ... (Blues CD)
Z Records (UK), 2022. 2CD
A great range of fantastic jazzy cuts – all of them upbeat and funky enough to warrant the "dance" in the title – and served up here in modes that are way more than jazz fusion too! The set's the third in this great series by DJ Colin Curtis – and it may be the deepest ... (Funky Compilations CD)
Reprise/Real Gone, Mid 60s.
A great lost chapter in the career of Darlene Love – a soul singer who's maybe known best for her early work with Phil Spector in The Crystals – but who ended up with a long legacy in music, which is partly added to by this collection! The core of the set features some mid 60s ... (Soul CD)
Division 81, 2021.
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 CD)
Treasure Isle/Doctor Bird (UK), Mid 60s. 2CD
Overflowing greatness from one of the first key labels on the Jamaican scene – the mighty Treasure Isle, a hotbed of new innovation during the ska generation – presented here in a package that goes way past the hits and obvious cuts! As with other Doctor Bird collections, the dig here ... (Reggae CD)
Twin Quest/Frederiksberg, Mid 70s. (reissue)
A hell of a spiritual jazz session from trumpeter Milt Ward – a relatively obscure player who worked on the same 70s Boston underground scene as Stanton Davis – a friend of Milt's and a good comparison to the sound of this one rare album! The vibe is a bit like that of Davis' Ghetto ... (Jazz LP)
Discos Fuentes/Vampi Soul (Spain), 1976. (reissue)
Massive rhythms from this legendary 70s group – one created in the Discos Fuentes studios in Colombia – as a way to combine some of the bigger African and Caribbean rhythms of the time! The sound is very percussive, and very raw – lots of acoustic elements in the rhythms, mixed ... (Latin LP)