Music Reviews

Show: New reviews | Artists beginning with: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z 0-9 | Compilations
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The London Cologne Journeys of Travis Blaque and Shareholder Tom / Travis and Tom

Travis and Tom - The London Cologne Journeys of Travis Blaque and Shareholder Tom

Buro 9

The seeds of Travis & tom were planted in 2009 when London based MC Travis Blaque and Colonge producer Shareholder Tom first met. This was during the recording sessions for Shareholder Tom's debut album. A friendship formed over the years and it was only a matter of time before they would collaborate for a LP.  The result is "The London Colonge Journeies of Travis and Shareholder Tom" Travis's smooth flow shines on the Afro funk grooves of "The Good Good" and the reggae flavored "Lisa. You have to Change". "I've got To Get Away" is a tropical infused pop tune certain to generate good vibes. .This is another gem to emerge from the Cologne Germany based Buro 9 label.

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Reg Dancy, 07/16

Tread 4 / Tread

Tread - Tread 4

Third Ear Recordings

Here is the next instalment from Japan's multi-talented Hiroshi Watanabe, also known as Kaito (Kompakt) and of course Tread. 7 tracks of the deepest house music that's you'll find on the planet. Lovely warm productions and lush keys that will appeal to fans of the Detroit house heads aka fans of Moodymann and Theo Parrish. Of course you knew this was going to be good because it's released on Third Ear.

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Simon Harrison, 09/05

Relationships / Trevor Lawrence Jr

Trevor Lawrence Jr - Relationships

Ropeadope

The name Trevor Lawrence Jr may not jump off the page at first but when you dig a little deeper you'll find that the Los Angeles native has been drumming for everyone from Bruno Mars, Kendrick Lamar to Stevie Wonder just to name a few. If that wasn't enough he's also the drummer for saxophonist Terrace Martin's new group, The Pollyseeds. Somehow he found the time to craft his full length debut entitled "Relationships". Lawrence's debut illustrates his musical vision of traditional soul, jazz, hip-hop and funk. Among the highlights are "B-Side" a seventies inspired soul layered with wah wah rhythms and sultry vocals. "The Guts" is gritty street soul featuring Shariff Simmons on spoken word and tasty trumpet riffs from Nicholas Payton. "Bring The Party" is a catchy up-tempo jazz funk instrumental. "Tiptoe" is blissful RnB enhanced by live and programmed drums and features Neka on vocals. There's an enormous amount of talent emerging from LA and Lawrence Jr is the latest example. He's certainly one to watch.

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Reg Dancy, 10/17

Twenty Years Of Talking Tabla / Trilok Gurtu

Trilok Gurtu - Twenty Years Of Talking Tabla

Manteca

Spanning a most significant period in jazz, Trilok's fusion with the likes of Don Cherry, Pharaoh Sanders, Jan Garbarek and John McLaughlin are just some of the amazing musicians he has worked with and presented in this milestone release. Trilok's Tabla work on this release does not highlight his excellence but rather shows how he compliments other musicians creating a soundscape of jazz rather than indo-jazz as found with other musicians. For those of you unfamiliar with his work this would make for a great window into his world. Other recommended releases by Trilok are 1990's 'Living Magic', 'African Fantasy' from 2000 and my particular fave 'Miles_Gurtu' from 2004. Either way you play it, there is some great music with this man behind it and in front - go explore the world that is Trilok Gurtu.

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Steve Williams, 08/07

Made In Sao Paulo / Tupiniquin

Tupiniquin - Made In Sao Paulo

Curve Music

Debut CD from Tupiniquin and already he’s credited with helping restart the tropicália movement, one of the most important styles in Brazilian music from the late 60’s and 70’s. You get here the sounds of the city of San Paulo and all its influences so we get afro-samba, tropicalia, bossa with beats and rock to stir the mix. Superb.

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Graham Radley, 09/08

Junkyard Gods / Two Banks Of Four

Two Banks Of Four - Junkyard Gods

Sonar Kollektiv

Rob Gallagher (Earl Zinger/Galliano), Dillip Harris (Demus) and the crew are back with their third album as Two Banks Of Four. As with previous releases ‘Junkyard Gods’ fuses deep jazz sensibilities with modern production techniques to create a twisted yet beautiful soundscape. Valerie Etienne is on hand to provide her gorgeous vocal tones on delights such as ‘Queen Of Crows’, the spiritual ‘Shadowlands’ and the waltz ‘Dead Afternoon’. With other strong moments including ‘Go’ and ‘Flags & Words’ this makes for an unmissable and innovative album.

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Andy Allen, 03/08

A Work Of Heart / Ty

Ty - A Work Of Heart

Jazz Re:freshed

Brixton's own veteran rapper Ty returns with his fifth LP entitled "A Work Of Heart". Ty's effortless wordplay is on full display as he weaves through a number of personal topics. In addition he's enlisted some of his ultra talented friends to spread his message. On "Brixton Baby" featuring vocalist and fellow Brixton resident Mpho he pays homage to his hometown. The track strikes a resemblance to the Roy Ayers classic "We Live In Brooklyn". On "Somehow Somewhere Someway" Ty is joined by the legendary Umar Bin Hassan of the Last Poets to address some of the injustices within our communities. "Eyes Open" featuring Rootz & Deborah Jordan is another thought provoking track about interpreting fact from fiction from the news we receive. "World Of Flaws" featuring underrated rapper John Robinson speaks to our imperfections and how we judge each other. Ty seamlessly delivers his razor sharp bars on top of head nodding beats and live instrumentation. As he states on "Somehow Somewhere Someday", "You won't hear an empty song from me". As you listen with pure satisfaction there's no doubt about that.

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Reg Dancy, 03/18

Special Kind Of Fool / TY

TY - Special Kind Of Fool

BBE Records

In many ways, Ty is a throwback. He is a rapper who is comfortable in his own skin without feeding into the hype of being someone he’s not. Nor is he interested in being trendy, instead he moves you with intelligent yet engaging lyrics, not to mention unlimited energy. As he states, “I’m old school, I can rock a party all night”. His latest release, “Special Kind Of Fool” provides all the proof you need. Filled throughout with top shelf production, “Special Kind Of Fool” may be Ty’s best work to date..The first single “Emotions feat Shaun Escoffery” has a irresistible groove. “Get 2 the Sky feat, Vula Malinga and Terri Walker” is easily one of the strongest tracks on the disc. Ty waxes poetic about elevating from the hardships surrounding us to getting to a better place. On “Happiness” Ty utilizes a Hubert Laws hidden gem to fulfill his wish for peace and unity for everyone. If Ty set out to entertain, enlighten and inspire then his mission was accomplished. “Special Kind Of Fool” provides all of that plus beats galore that will have your head nodding throughout. This is a very strong record that will certainly satisfy long time admirers and will no doubt appeal to newcomers as well.

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Reg Dancy, 07/10

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