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Review: Belles in Monica What D'Ya Need

Label: New Dawn

UK hip-hop is just like American hip-hop, but not really. It's still recognizable as hip-hop, but something's...different. Fortunately, Belles In Monica's MC Kruze overcomes his Glaswegian brogue (sounding almost like Chuck D) on this dark banger. Produced by Krash Slaughta and remixed by London's Unsung Heroes. Och, aye. Read more » 

Review: Imperial Element Erection

Label: I Exist

There's more to Atlanta's hip-hop scene than Jermaine Dupree and Outkast, but don't expect this 12" to change the city's musical image. MCs T.I.M.E. and Balance drift on and off of producer Aslan's murky beats and the trio never quite gels as a crew. Roll out. Read more » 

Review: Various Artists The Discerning Dancefloor Vol. 2

Label: Care In The Community

The second in the series from DJ Nick Name, this supplies its title's target well, this time with help from the US via Organic Grooves, DJ Angola, and Bolliger and Gloor. Four classy organic midtempo Afro/Latino cuts, good for any dancefloor. Read more » 

Review: Dug Infinite & No I.D. A Sampler

Label: All Natural

Responsible for some of Common's finest recordings, these two Chi-town cats combine effervescent jazz loops with rugged MPC3000 beats. These at-times dusty, at-times sci-fi-soul gems play like card table dominoes: challenging, syncopated and fun. What Primo and Extra P do for NYC, Dug and I.D. do lovely for the Windy. Read more » 

Review: John Tejada Streetmatik

Label: Fenetik

Tejada didn't hold back any vicious beats for his debut on Scotland's future jazz imprint Fenetik. Instead he delivers bombs for that azz-three to be exact-all precision-guided broken-funk jams with production cleaner than an Audi showroom. Wobbly bass, Tejada's signature Detroit-by-way-of-San Fernando techno melodies, and some of the fattest gated snares this side of Seiji's studio will rattle your brain and remind you of dance music's vital and transmutable powers. Read more » 

Review: Banda Favela Remix EP

Label: Head To Toe

Upstart broken-jazz label HTT goes samba for its sixth and seventh singles, inviting the likes of Bugz In The Attic's Alex Phountzi, North UK beat-master Wai Wan, Manchester's Riton and German Afro-fusionist Ras to make their impressions felt. Jumping, jagged future riddims back the Banda's shimmering Brazilian harmonies and, like a shot off Ronaldo's foot, every mix hits the back of the net. Read more » 

Review: Various Artists Victor Davies: Remixes

Label: JCR

The voice of London's East End singer/songwriter Victor Davies is one of elemental comforts, both earthy and airy. Consequently, Davies's self-titled 2001 album and newly released Remixes are quilted from warm, colorful patches of soul and samba, acoustics and electronics, the source material coveted by producers like Berlin's Jazzanova (head of Davies's label, appropriately). With a gauzy sheen of '70s folk/funk finesse, Davies recorded elements classic and contemporary, timeless and timely. Read more » 

Review: Various Artists Strewth!

Label: Synaesthesia

In the past few years, there has been a slew of excellent electronic music releases from Australian and New Zealand artists, such as Oren Ambarchi, Cray, Philip Samatzis and Rosy Parlane, to name but a few. Strewth! provides further evidence of the wealth of musical innovation occurring Down Under. Contributors include not only the relatively well-known musicians mentioned above, but also lesser-known artists with names like Delire, Zy'zx, Zonk and Squinch. Read more » 

Review: Various Artists The Orb: Back to Mine

Label: DMC

If the Orb's Back to Mine is to be believed, Alex Paterson's living room is patterned after the multi-hued chill-out room of an early '90s acid house club, all soft pillows and harsh edges. Kaleidoscopic melodies drift as phantom beats creep like spider legs through thin walls, caressing the scalp. Read more » 

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