Benjamin Ball – Flash a Flashlight (Cultures of Soul)
Ahead of a compilation which collects some of the most sought after and cherished South African boogie tracks, Cultures Of Soul have released Benjamin Bell ‘Flash a Flashlight’ as a taster for the album. With it’s reggae-tinged beat, intergalactic synths and wonky baselines, it is unlike many disco records you will ever hear. Gerd Janson clearly think so, as he contributes a DJ friendly edit, which ensures this will be a weapon for the more open-minded selectors this summer.
Various Artists – Digital Zandoli (Heavenly Sweetness)
With their Koute Jazz and Beach Diggin Series, Heavenly Sweetness have cemented a reputation as the buy on sight label for offbeat and obscure rare delights from the West Indies. The label continues this fine run, with the Digital Zandoli compilation, which brings together 13 tracks of synthesized boogie, soul, disco and zouk from the Caribbean. Like the recent Space Echo compilation, it details a exciting time when traditional styles began to fuse with the electronics of the future.
Spirit Of Love – The Power Of Your Love (Athens of the North)
As the last song ever played at Plastic People, ‘Power Of Your Love’ has become one of the most highly sought after rare soul tracks in recent memory. Luckily for those unwilling to fork out around the 500 pound for the original on Discogs, the ever dependable Athens of the North have thankfully restored and reissued the classic on a 7’ inch. As ever from the label, the track is a raw, gritty and joyous number which is certainly one you will hear at the end of many sets this year.
Various Artists – Cosmic Machine The Sequel (Because Music)
With DJ Harvey returning to London for a residency and Hunee confessing his recent love for Baldelli on social media, there seems to be growing interest in the often under-appreciated and forgotten cosmic genre. For those unwilling to search in dusty basements for this most elusive and sought after of musical styles, Cosmic Machine returns with a varied selection of French intergalactic disco and synthy disco from the 70s and 80s. Like the first compilation, it is an expertly curated selection with Francis Lai’s ‘Young Freedom, a re-edit of Queen Samantha’s ‘Take a Chance’ and Stereo’s ‘Moonshine’ being the standouts.
TCP – TCP (Disco Halal)
Carrying on with another cosmic classic, Disco Halal have reissued ex-Rainbow and Peter Gabriel collaborator Tony Carey’s 1984 self-titled LP. TCP is an intoxicating brew of languid funk, wonky disco, dubby fx, tribal rhythms, flamenco guitars, latin percussion, and all manner of unintelligible and offbeat sounds. Like Finis Africae’s recent reissue, TCP’s music is both indefinable and impossible to categorise, sounding impossibly contemporary, yet ancient at the same time.