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Review: Soussol Take Control Mas

Label: Real Estate

Dare anyone try to improve on a house classic like JM Silk's foundational 1987 track "Let the Music Take Control"? In his Soussol guise, Chicago's Richard Gow does indeed, weaving piano and flute extracts from the original into his rich, dub-tinged version, which Brit producer Chris Simmonds augments with a tighter rub. And although satisfactory, the flip's jazz-housey "Backwards Motion" doesn't quite measure up to the dancefloor power of the a-side. Read more » 

Review: Various Latin Soul Fusion Volume 2

Label: Clubstar

Daniel Klein, boss of the Mallorca-based Flamingo Discos imprint, was an obvious choice to handpick the best in house-styled Latino grooves. Klein has put together a selection which stands out for its musicality and tangible live instrumentation. Solid Groove Productions' "Keep It There" holds things in the right place, courtesy of spiraling strings, a preoccupied harmonica and a dazzling sax. Axwell remixes Elements of Soul's "Head Above Water" into a sub-aqua gem, where buoyant keys act as a float for hopeful strings and submerged vocals that question the partner's commitment. Read more » 

Review: Bad Company Egyptian

Label: Greensleeves

Dancehall continues its Diwali-like trend away from stabbing two-beat jump up towards more fluid syncopation with the shuffling snake-charming sexiness of the Egyptian riddim, while Bad Company keeps it ruffneck via metallic two-beat stabs and wobbly, jittery horns. Read more » 

Review: Family Tree Virgo Iomos Marad Each 1 Teach 1

Label: All Natural

Chicago's All Natural label continues to realize its dreams. Accompanying the uplifting Family Tree album track "Push, Move Build" is DJ Spinna's opaque remix of "Virgo" (featuring MCs Mr. Greenweedz and the effervescent Rita J.), and the huge previously unreleased battle track "Regardless," featuring Prime and Daily Plannet, with hot cuts by Madd Crates. Meanwhile, MC Iomos Marad offers three tracks of primo now-school conscious rhymes off his new album, Deep Rooted, highlighted by "Appetite to Write" featuring J Live. Quite simply, this is the real hip-hop. " Read more » 

Review: Mety Ogre Feat. Robust & Rift Napalm Flibbertigibbit

Label: Galapagos4

Chi-Town underground producer Meaty Ogre has worked with Sage Francis, Qwel and Offwhyte, but this time locals Robust and Rift Napalm get the nod. On Flibbertigibbit," Robust keeps it real: "I'm not your hero/I'm just a fuckin' weirdo." His witty flow fits the lazy, bass-heavy beat nicely. Rift Napalm drops SAT vocab over heavy guitars on the flip's "Long Dirty Word." Read more » 

Review: Aural Float Presents Space Night Volume IX

Label: Electrolux

By the late 1990s, the terms "downtempo" and "chillout" became synonymous with flat, coffeehouse-friendly dreck peddled to the masses under such titles as Ibiza Beach, Pure Moods and related swill. Despite that, there is good chill music out there, evidenced by the ninth volume of the German Space Night series curated by Elektrolux artist Aural Float. The two-CD set has its share of obligatory filler tracks, but contains new works by veteran artists such as The Orb, the Black Dog and Funki Porcini as well as contributions from R?yksopp and Pascal FEOS. Read more » 

Review: Various 4 years

Label: Wabi

Canadian design firm Wabi digs on all things minimal-both in music and graphic imagery. 4 Years is a retrospective of microtech music created mostly by Canadian producers for use in Wabi's live sight-and-sound events. Artists such as Fairmont, and British Columbia's Nassau weave subtle mumbled vocals and steady throbbing sequences, while Polmo Polpo's "Losing My Tentacles" blurs numerous post-techno and ambient subgenres, anchoring them to beats that escape from funk's humid regions to cooler climates. Read more » 

Review: Antibalas Afrobeat Orchestra Che Che Cole

Label: Daptone

Brooklyn Afrobeat kings go the Latin route by saluting Fania Records singer Hector Lavoe with this remake of his top moment, 1969's "Che Che Cole" with Willie Colon. It's all about razor-sharp horn section lines, giant percussion and the capable vocals of the lovely Mayra Vega. The flipside rocks a Dibango-ish makossa version of the same tune. Both versions are solid-don't hesitate on this. Read more » 

Review: Daedelus Rethinking the Weather

Label: Mush

Blending tapered-knicker nerdiness with hypermodern digital effects, So-Cal producer Daedelus is wedged between the Burberry-scarved world of Godard and the cyborg-dominated world of Ghost in the Shell. Rethinking the Weather is a pastiche of instrumentals from his 2002 release The Weather-for which Daedelus teamed up with the droll, space-cadet-ish emcees Busdriver and Radioinactive. Read more » 

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