Review: Many of you may be familiar with "San Sebastian", the 1979 Mediterranean disco slammer that was by far and away the biggest dancefloor hit for Celso Valli's Azoto project. Less well known is the album that it was taken from, Disco Fizz, which here gets a fresh vinyl reissue courtesy of the diggers at Mondo Groove. In some ways, it's typical of Italian disco of the period, taking cues from both electronic European disco (think Giorgio Moroder, Gino Soccio etc.), the hybrid synth-disco/orchestral disco of Rinder and Lewis (see bonkers but brilliant closer "Exalt-Exalt") and driving U.S disco anthems (the previously mentioned "Sal Salvador"). Intrestingly, opener "Fire Fly" sounds like a blueprint for later synth-pop influenced Italo-disco records.
Review: Cosmic don Baldelli commences a new six part project that will culminate in a mix and some beautiful six-piece 12" sleeve art collage. Igniting as he means to go on, each cut shakes and struts with distinctive aspects of Daniele's signature style: "Thyratron" is a ballroom jazz anthem-in-waiting with lavish piano splatters over an insistent disco chug, "Diffrazione" takes us much deeper into Baldelli's psyche with soaring, heavily processed guitars and synths freaking out over a pulsating bulbous bass bed while "Inner Light" brings us back into reality with a mildly Nordic piece of pop-oriented disco, all sensual, breathy vocals and a twinkling synth groove. Bring on the next chapter.
Review: Daniele Baldelli: Unquestionably one of DJ culture's longest-standing and furthest-thinking selectors drops the penultimate edition of his epic "Cosmic Temple" series with three more exception slabs of creative disco fusion. "Kata Sandi" is a cloud-leaping homage to the new romantic with just a dash of futurism with the trippy roboticised voice processing, "Esaedro" goes for a much more direct dancefloor approach with strong references to Moroder in the initial groove before daringly flipping to a much warmer, smoother jazz dynamic mid-way. Finally "Dioxide" closes the show on a freakier note as a beautifully processed human voice elements are twist inside out with an almost animated energy. Quintessential Baldelli.
Review: It's been emotional... A year and a half since "Cosmic Temple 1" first landed, Italian legend Baldelli hits the sixth and final chapter of his series. Across the collection we've experienced some of his wildest ideas and inspirations and it seems he's saved some of the best for last. Don't be alarmed if you lose hair, hours of your life and your mind to the dubby eastern horns and cosmic bubbling 303 of "Taxon", the glam psych guitar jamboree of "Kevlar" and slap bass and sparkling synth syncopation of "33 VS 45". Long may Baldelli continue to don the dance in this esoteric way.
Review: Federico De Caroli's Deca project has been waving the flag for Italy's ambient and mystique concrete scene since the mid 1980's. The man's albums, which span a wild and diverse set of experimental sounds, are a rarity these days; this particular reissue, Deca's debut from 1986, is going for near L300 on Discogs, so count this your lucky day. Mass, as the name curiously implies, is a rip-roaring fest of a journey through the deepest and most cavernous of coldwave sounds. With its high-speed pace on the drums and a grainy, grey-scaled coating to round it off, it feels like rave music way before the term was coined. Proto-techno also doesn't it do any justice because tunes like "Inseminoid" or "The Door" go much further than that, heading way out into unknown territories which then became second nature to artists like AFX about a decade later. If you're into your dance music on the industrial side, and if you like it cooked raw, then this will please you endlessly. Be quick, though!
Review: The follow-up to legendary Marcello Giombini's cult Computer Disco album, I Adore Commodore was created to sex up the new home computer and relate its music to the clubs. Complete with a sassy video, the album sees the electronic pioneer reconstruct and recompose soundtracks of the games at the time on a Commodore 64. The results are incredible and pack much more of a punch than the processing power might suggest. The spiralling arpeggio and slapbass of "Jupiter Lander", the fright night theatrical funk of "Space Invaders" and the seafront silliness of "Depth Charge" are just some of the whimsical, funky highlights across an untarnished time capsule album that will bring back many memories for those around the 40 mark.
Review: Since its' release in 1981, this quirky debut album from Louis' Band - a short-lived studio outfit put together by arranger and producer Louis Vanni - has become a sought-after item amongst record collectors. Happily, Mondo Groove has decided to make it available digitally for the first time. It's an eccentric but hugely entertaining affair, featuring a range of tunes that variously touches on jazz-funk, AOR disco, flute-laden instrumental soul, synth-laden rock-and-roll revivalism, sax-laden sleaziness, and the kind of oddball, library music style fair that some may consider 'Balearic'. Given that original vinyl copies are hugely difficult to find, this digital edition is well worth picking up.