Drumpoems 2, Q-tip, Kamaal, Abstract, Fela, Kuti, Knitting, Factory, Giantstep, reissues
Here Come the Noisettes With Noisettes, it’s always best to expect the unexpected. That lies true in the London trio’s new album Wild Young Hearts. Produced by Jim Abbiss (Adele, Arctic Monkeys, The Rakes), the album shines the spotlight on soulful sand captivating front woman Shingai Shoniwa, joined by Dan Smith on guitar and Jamie Morrison on drums. “Some bands stick with the same style forever,” says Shoniwa, whose versatile vocals have seen her compared to everyone from Deborah Harry and Kate Bush to Billie Holiday and Diana Ross. “They get together because they share identical musical tastes, then never do anything different. We’re a gang, but we’re also three divas with different record collections, who constantly introduce each other to new sounds, whether it’s African music, jazz, Van Morrison or Black Sabbath. For us, making music means keeping our ears open.” What is most captivating about the Noisettes is the energy they put in to performing. Described as “the best live band in Britain” by The Guardian, a recent London show saw Shoniwa charge into the audience playing guitar and sing clinging a ladder suspended from the ceiling.
From the stomping electro-rock of “Saturday Night” and galloping funk grooves of “Don’t Upset The Rhythm,” to the glorious ’60s-tinged soul of “Never Forget You,” Noisettes have made what is set to be one of 2009’s most adventurous albums. Wild Young Hearts – it’s about feeling and acting young, whatever your age,” says guitarist Dan Smith. “It’s about having fun and not following the pack.
‘Drumpoems Verse 2’, a selection of tracks created by Zurich’s Drumpoet Community and compiled by label head-honchos Alex Dallas and Ron Shiller, draws heavily on the Alpine backdrop of their home city and its relaxed vibe. The artists have assembled a selection of exclusive tracks and one-off edits to reflect the rhythm of Zurich and it’s cosmopolitan feel. Coming from the Compost stable and founded in 2006, the Drumpoet Community’s initial aim was to remusicalise the cold and sometimes boring schemes of clubland, bringing sunshine and emotion back to the dancefloor. Essentially it’s music with soul – but don’t think vocals – it’s about the depth of the electronic music, and how, when executed with the panache of this group of Zoorichans, it moves your body and soul.
Friends of the community were happy to lend a hand on the album, and so we find brand new tracks from Cavalier, The Lost Men, Langenberg, Quarion, Kawabata, Azuni, Hunch a previously unreleased track from DC and special Edits from Manuel Tur & Dplay, Soultourist and Crowdpleaser & Ly Sander. Influenced by the legendary Detroit and Chicago scenes, the Drumpoets give everything their own refreshingly original stamp and have already won plaudits from the likes of Jazzanova, Carl Craig, Will Saul, Loco Dice, Laurent Garnier, Todd Terje and Henrik Schwarz. Not content with filling people’s record boxes, Drumpoet’s Alex Dallas also finds time to run Zukunft with Kalabrese, one of the most talked about underground clubs in Europe, and part of the reason for the city being hailed as ‘the new Berlin’ amongst clubbing cognoscenti.
Deep, warm, original and fresh; Drumpoems Verse 2- Check it from October 16 th!
BEAUTY & THE BEATS New music by Gu Zheng performer Bei Bei and Ubiquity producer Shawn Lee marries a unique blend of ancient tradition with studio trickery and spiritual jazz. This uplifting genre-bending soundclash recalls the afrocentric harping of Dorothy Ashby, the hypnotic style of Alice Coltrane, and the organic electronics of Fourtet and Quantic. Included on this limited edition 10” EP, are the original and instrumental versions of “Make Me Stronger,” with a vocal by Georgia Anne Muldrow, Plus a storming version of the Billy Paul psychedelic soul opus “East” and a remix by UK producer Floating Points.
Q-Tip Releases Kamaal the Abstract Originally slated for release in 2001 Q-Tip’s solo full length has finally dropped on Battery Records. The album has been re-mixed and re-mastered for sonic impact with a new track added, “Make It Work.” A bonus track, “Damn You’re Cool,” is also included on the vinyl version. A musical hybrid, Kamaal was commendably avant-garde at the time of its creation. Amazingly, it’s even more apropos in 2009; given the dearth of musical merit and capable MCs in today’s hip hop, the time is ever-so-right for Tip. Kamaal the Abstract is an intensely idiosyncratic and revealing record. To that end, Q-Tip produced the entire album himself, even playing several instruments. What comes from Kamaal is a daring mélange of soul, supa-cool jazz, head-nodding hip hop, and organic pop magic in the vein of Stevie Wonder or Prince.
Knitting Factory to Release Remasters of Fela Kuti Catalogue The Best of the Black President marks the birth of Knitting Factory Records. Earlier this year, KFR licensed the 45-album Fela Kuti catalogue. Over the next 18 months, they will release remasters of all the Fela CDs in unique digi-packs with the original artwork, as well as certain releases on vinyl for the first time in North America. KFR will also be giving the first official release to the entire Koola Lobitos catalogue- this was Fela’s highlife band which he fronted through the 60’s.
More news in the world of Fela Kuti: the first ever official Fela Kuti website has recently been launched (Fela.net) and a Broadway musical (Fela!) opens this November at Eugene O’Neil Theatre, a follow-up to the highly acclaimed off-Broadway show.