FUNKY DL – MARAUDING AT MIDNIGHT: A TRIBUTE TO THE SOUNDS OF A TRIBE CALLED QUEST
Funky DL's full on funky homage to A Tribe Called Quest's uber classic Midnight Maurauders – no samples, no breaks or loops pulled from the classic album or the samples therein – this is a freshly done, inspired set of beats, keys, programming and live instrumentation that covers the album track-for-track! It sounds like an ambitious undertaking – and it is – but what's so surprisingly cool about it is how laidback and breezy it plays. The Tribe album is laced with some of the group's best written rhymes, and production steeped in diverse jazz funk samples from giants like Cal Tjader, Roy Ayers, The JBs and Lou Donaldson – that's an astounding pedigree to replicate! Rather than aim as high as that, Funky DL wisely hones in the moody essence at the core, and succeeds pretty handily with a mostly instrumental effort with wordless backing vocals used to sublime effect. Same track list as the Tribe classic: "Midnight Maurauders", "Awaerd Tour", "We Can Get Down", "Electric Relaxation", "Clap Your Hands", "God Lives Through", "Lyrics To Go" and the rest. Dusty Groove.
A run of fresh funky titles from a variety of different acts – presented here with little in the way of notes or dates, but with a nicely unified vibe overall! Many of these groups mix live funk instrumentation with a fair bit of programmed and sampled passages – a bit like that first wave of funk revival groups from two decades back, but also served up with a lean, clean sound that also takes the sonic spectrum from late 60s to early 80s funk. Most tunes are instrumentals, but many include some sampled vocal bit – and titles include "Don't Deny It" by Green Street, "Funky Roids" by Krystian Shek, "Get Down" by Crackerjack, "The Party" by Mister T, "Bubblers" by Q Funktion, "Summer Joyride" by Singularis, and "The Props" by Sixfingerz. Dusty Groove
CLUTCHY HOPKINS / FAT ALBERT EINSTEIN – HI DESERT LOW TIDE
It's been a few years since we last heard from Clutchy Hopkins – and in that time, he definitely seems to have deepened his groove – coming up with a range of sonic textures and styles that nicely expand from the spare breaks and funk of his previous work! Maybe it's the collaboration with Fat Albert Einstein, or maybe it's just the passage of years – but whatever the case, the album's got a nicely deep vibe – spare currents of global elements and spiritual jazz, used to give a more organic instrumental sound to the whole thing – in ways that never sound gimmicky or forced. There's a few guests on the record, providing live tenor, flute, cello, and guitar – and titles include "Mojave Dervish", "Stutter Steps", "Nyack", "Juju Beans", "Lock Pop", "Pre Vintage", "Cholla Ballad", and "The Wash". Dusty Groove