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Carmichael Musiclover – Lifeline | Album of the day 5th of August 2020

One-man soul music industry Carmichael Musiclover returns just months after his top-selling ‘Best Thing Yet’ album from earlier in the year and ‘Lifeline’ continues in that familiar vein, proving that he is still on top of his game. The upbeat, positive vibes of ‘My Money’ kicks off this fourteen track set and the uptempo grooves continue with the vintage feel of ‘House Party’. ‘Hey Sunshine’ is another highlight – a real old school slab of Chicago soul – while the stepper ‘When The Storms Come’ takes the tempo down a little. The fast paced title cut ‘Lifeline’ closes out the...
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Reggie Andrews and the Fellowship- Mystic Beauty | Album of the day 4th of August 2020

Pianist, composer and band leader Reggie Andrews was a one-time member of Karma, The Chocolate Jam Co, and Willie Bobo & The Bo Gents, but in 1969 he gathered a talented group of musicians under the moniker of The Fellowship and laid down this now legendary album that is virtually impossible to find on its original issue and commands astronomical four-figure sums. The blend of gentle Afro-Cuban vibes as in the easy, laid back title track to the punchier, Latin jazz of 'Song For J' demonstrates the scope across the nine cuts here. Apart from the sultry, close quarters version...
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Jazz Is Dead 001 | Album of The Day 29th July 2020

Producers Adrian Younge and Ali Shaheed Muhammad join forces with a stellar cast of jazz legends on this 8 track offering that both respects the traditions that the collaborators helped to forge while also remaining inventive in outlook. Roy Ayers' 'Hey Lover' sounds like an unreleased session from his 'Everybody Loves The Sunshine' era, at nearly 80 years of age Gary Bartz still brings something fresh on the angular grooved 'Distant Mode' while Brian Jackson's lilting flute breezes over the mellow 'Nancy Wilson'. Pianist João Donato features on the pacy 'Conexao', Doug Carn's organ swirls around the gentle 'Down Deep',...
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Kamaal Williams – Wu Hen | Album of the day 28th July 2020

‘Wu Hen’ is the brilliant second album from Peckham’s highly talented Kamaal Williams and for this set he’s assembled a stellar team of players to give shape to his musical visions. The spiritual opener ‘Street Dreams’ features Miguel-Atwood Ferguson’s lush, cinematic strings, the heavily syncopated funker ‘One More Time’ is driven by Greg Paul’s (of Kalayst Collective) drums, the beautiful, mellow ‘Toulouse’ ebbs gently while the pacier ‘Pigalle’ rides on a hard bop groove. ‘Big Rick’ blends feels of 70s Brit Crime drama TV themes with a heavy, laid back vibe while the thumping dancer ‘Save Me’ has a bolshy,...
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Earth, Wind & Fire – That’s The Way Of The World | Album of the day 16th July 2020

Soundtrack to a 1975 film that featured the band. This was the album that really put EWF into the soul mainstream and to go to become probably the most popular band of the 70’s. The beautiful mid tempo stepper title track is still one of their best ever with great vocal harmonies. ‘Happy Feelin’ is a vibrant horn backed dancer with nice instrumental sections, ‘Africano’ a kicking jazz funk instrumental, ‘Shining Star’ a funky dancer, and ‘See The Light’ a mystical track with many musical changes later covered by Eddie Russ. ‘All About Love’ and ‘Reasons’ are great soul ballads....
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The Notations – Still Here (1967-1973) | Album of the day 15th July 2020

Fantastic look at a selection of the Chicago legend’s The Notations’ catalogue, selecting some of their best known and lauded work. Produced by many stellar names including Syl Johnson and Curtis Mayfield, The Notations had the ability to embrace the sweeping changes in both music and society and create a sound that echoed the times. The wonderful ‘A New Day’ is a socio-political message song set to a fabulous crossover groove while ‘Trying My Best To Find Her’ is a rolling funky northern burner originally issued on TAD that commands serious $$$. Both sides of the Numero/Cash 7” are also...
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Gary Bartz And Maisha – Direct To Disc sessions | Album of the day 14th of July 2020

The third release from Night Dreamer’s essential “Direct-to-Disc” sessions was recorded direct-to-disc at Artone Studio, Haarlem, The Netherlands on Tuesday 29th Wednesday 30th October 2019. Gary Bartz & Maisha’s Night Dreamer Direct To Disc album, is a five track offering and documents the results of a meeting between legendary US saxophonist Gary Bartz and leading UK spiritual jazz ensemble, Maisha. The set features two Bartz classics (extended to include improvised grooves) namely “Uhuru Sasa” and “Dr Follows Dance” and three brand new songs written by both Bartz & Maisha. Of the new cuts, the superb, funky ‘Harlem – Harlem’ features...
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Don Bryant – You Make Me Feel | Album of the day 9th July 2020

Following his acclaimed 2017 album ‘Don’t Give Up on Love’, soul/blues man Don Bryant returns with another set of southern soaked tunes that both mine his own back catalogue and comprise new work. His 50 year marriage to legend Ann Pebbles is celebrated as ever on the touching ’99lbs’, the heartwrenching ‘Is It Over’ and the more uptempo ‘Your Love Is To Blame’ are previously unheard while the more sneaking R&B feel of ‘Your Love Is Too Late’ is another highlight. The sumptuous ‘I’ll Go Crazy’ is a sublime slab of deep southern balladry while ‘A Woman’s Touch’ is another...
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Greg Foat – Symphonie Pacifique | Album of the day 7th of July 2020

Pianist and composer Greg Foat was in a rich vein of form in 2019 with an armful of albums and collaborations and this year sees no let up as he follows his joint project with Linkwood with a sublime album of jazz, classical and ambient. The surging title track brings to mind the likes of GoGo Penguin, the pulsating ‘Anticipation’ is a swaggering slab of sax lead jazz while the muscular ‘Yonaguni’ is carried along on bubbling percussion and a chunky bass that gives it an irresistible groove. ‘Island Life’ has a raw, funky head nodding groove that brings it...
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Izo Fitzroy – How The Mighty Fall | Album of the day 6th of July 2020

Izo Fitzroy returns following her superb 2017 offering ‘Skyline’ with an even better album in the form of ‘How The Mighty Fall’. Izo’s background in gospel gives her incredible voice a strength that, when met with the blues, takes it to another plane. The emotive, defiant ‘I Ain’t Here For Your Pleasure’ is a gritty blues number that sets the tone for this brilliant album that is both confessional and a declaration of intent. The musicianship is totally on point here and the breadth of styles works incredibly well to give the set a self-contained cohesion. ‘Red Line’ is a...