Review: Four years deep into its disco, beatdown and edit adventures, Smokecloud's status is nigh-on impeccable. Here we find them uniting four of their most creative craftsmen for four straight-up dancefloor pacifiers. Highlights include the sludgy slo-mo Edwin Starr on acid flavoured "Caught Up" and the Diana Ross homage that is the sun-skanked reggae party jam "CC Tribute" by VinylAddicted & SMQ. Instant smiles.
Paul Johnson - "Better Than This" (Dego & Kaidi 2000 Black mix) (4:22)
The Chi-Lites - "I Keep Comin' Back To You" (4:04)
The Real Thing - "Love Takes Tears" (3:32)
Deodato - "Never Knew Love" (5:41)
Delroy Wilson - "Better Must Come" (2:47)
Laurel Aitken & The Gruvy Beats - "Kent People" (2:50)
The Crystalites - "Splash Down" (original mono recording) (2:56)
Stone City Band - "Little Runway" (feat Rick James) (9:34)
The Fantastic Four - "I Got To Have Your Love" (5:10)
Chanson - "Don't Hold Back" (4:25)
Baby Washington - "Think About The Good Times" (vinyl only bonus track) (2:43)
Review: Rob Da Bank always knows best. His Sunday Best imprint now brings us Good Times: Skank & Boogie, compiled by the one and only Norman Jay. This is in its 12th edition so you can certainly trust the DJ on this one. Starting out with a cover of the classic Pink Panther theme by Henri Mancini by St. Germain, it also features another brilliant cover of Steve Wonder's "Living For The City" by Michael McDonald (Doobie Bros./Steely Dan) but there's some super fine boogie in the form of Paul Johnson's "Better Than This (Dego & Kaidi 2000 Black mix)". There's classics too; the timeless wonder of Deodato's "Never Knew Love" from 1984 and Stone City Band's 1980 hit "Little Runway" featuring Rick James. All killer, no filler on this one, thank you Sir Norman!
Review: After the success of last year's inaugural Disco Reggae compilation from Stix, it's no surprise the long running reggae focused offshoot of Favorite Recordings have returned with a second collection. All the usual Stix suspects are present and correct here with Matcher, 7 Samurai, Mato, and John Milk all contributing to the nine tracks that will nice up any dancehall that's got a sense of humour. Stand out cuts include the 7 Samurai Electro Dub take on Levan classic "Stand On The Word" and the Grandmagneto cover of "Tainted Love". The Mato mix of "Happy" is as chalk or cheese as the original from that fella in the big hat.