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Strange Breaks & Mr. Thing Vol. II / Various Artists

Various Artists - Strange Breaks & Mr. Thing Vol. II

BBE Records

If you’re like me and you can’t get enough of the rare groove sounds don’t despair, BBE records have come to your rescue with “Strange Breaks & Mr Thing”. Mr Thing is known for spicing up the crowds with his infectious blend of hip-hop, soul and funk so you should expect nothing less here. While most of these gems will probably be unfamiliar to you, that won’t stop you from moving and grooving along with each track. Selections like “Searching” by Jake Wade and the Soul Searchers will get your body revved up. If you’re familiar with The Meters, then you’ll no doubt enjoy this one. Other notables include “Love is just a word” by Johnny Griffith, Inc, which has that soulful orchestrated sound reminiscent of the Love unlimited Orchestra so you know that’s gonna be hot. As I continued my spins through the disc, I immediately smiled when I listened to “You made a believer (Out of me)” by Ruby Andrews. This track was sampled by Q-Tip on The Renaissance and was one of my favorite songs on that disc. No wonder, the soulful vocals by Ms Andrews and the thumping bassline makes it funky enough to stand on its own. There are a couple of covers like The Jacksons “ABC” and Sly and the Family Stone’s “It’s a family affair” that are just okay. The Jimmy Castor cover of “It’s just begun” by The Hot city Bump band is much better. There is little else however to diminish the overall quality of material featured here and is certainly worth checking out. As long as we have DJ’s like Mr Thing digging in their crates, the rare groves and funky breaks will always stir up those good vibes and have us heading towards the closet for our dancing shoes.

Reg Dancy, 11/09