Archive for March, 2010

Pointer Sisters Queens Of The Disco!

March 26, 2010

So I was watching Donnie Brasco this week and happened to notice something I had never spotted before and that was the use 0f Pointer Sisters “Happiness” in the soundtrack used in the bar scene in Miami. the song itself is a classic piece of Disco funk which then got me thinking I should dedicate my whole post to the wonderful sisters this week.

The original group comprised of Bonnie, June, Anita and Ruth Pointer but became a trio when Bonnie decided to follow her own goals of achieving a solo career. Here is the first track I would like to draw your attention to and the one that gave me the idea to create this post.

Pointer Sisters – Happiness

I have strong intentions of someday sampling this song but for now I have no idea what to do with it so please enjoy it in its natural form before I destroy it haha.

I will now move onto another classic by the sisters which was released in 1985 and has been sampled by many artists. Here is the original video to “Dare Me” plus a link to the Mp3 I have also included Junior Jacks ” Stupid Disco” and Rico Tubbs “Dare” which both sampled this classic disco number.

Pointer Sisters – Dare Me

Now my personal favourite from the pointer family. I first came across this track while listening to Dj Scene’s 2080’s mix cd a couple of years back where he mashed Ciara and Missy with the Pointer Sisters “Automatic” and I instantly fell in love with the original. Released in 1983 this track was the follow up to the very successful release of 1982 Album “So Excited” here is the trio performing it live on Soul Train in 1984.

I don’t know how live this is but I will let you decide for yourself personally I don’t care because I think they look sexy as hell and I still think Destiny’s Child have a bit of work to do before they match these girls. Listen to the guitars and bassline in this number they are probably some of the funkiest in the 80’s. Heres a little treat!

Pointer Sisters – Automatic (Basement Jaxx Bootleg)

As I mentioned earlier Bonnie one of the 2 earliest sisters in the group decided to break away to follow a solo career and here is a little favourite of mine from Bonnie!

Bonnie Pointer – Heaven Must Have Sent You

I will leave you with this lovely edit made by the amazing French man Pilooski. Pilooski released this re-edit of “Send Him Back” as part of his 2007 album “Dirty Edits Vol.1” which achieved great underground success. I have also included the video with the original track and you can hear the clear differences. Enjoy!

Pointer Sisters – Send Him Back (Pilooski Re-Edit)

Hail one of the Royal Families of Disco!



Nish, Clish, Bang

March 19, 2010

After an 80s predominantly spent listening to fairly standard issue pre-teen pop, the late 80s and early 90s brought a very different musical world into my life. The main reason for this was the advent of Madchester, aided and abetted by close family ties to the city. A father working at Manchester Met with art students, and a brother studying at Manchester Uni meant that I was exposed to all the best that the city had to offer from a very early age.

Happy Mondays – Wrote For Luck (The Vince Clarke Mix)

My favourites were Happy Mondays. I loved them, and loved their insane record sleeves. I loved the fact that Shaun Ryder sounded absolutely demented, and that you then listened to his lyrics and realised he probably was demented. I loved their loping rhythms, and I loved their proto-dance remixes. Of course, most of all I loved Bez. Everyone loved Bez. The song that I was probably most obsessed by at this point was Wrote For Luck, and specifically the Vince Clarke (née Depeche Mode, Yazoo and Erasure) remix.

After the Happy Mondays, my next favourite was the Inspiral Carpets, now most famous for turning down Noel Gallagher as lead singer when he was roadie for them, but for a few years a genuinely major force on the British music scene. Something which looking back seems a bit weird, as their music has probably aged the worst out of the major player on the Madchester scene. They do have a couple of gems though, and they will always have a place in my heart for their unbelievably popular “Cool as Fuck” T-shirts (rumour has it they sold more of these than all their album sales combined). The G-Mex gig where a marching band came on during “She Comes In The Fall” was a highpoint of the scene, even if now it seems like nothing.

The Stone Roses – I Wanna Be Adored

A band who have stood the test of time slightly better is the one and only Stone Roses. Possibly the greatest British album ever made, their debut is an absolute masterpiece, even if they have never really got close to its heights before or since, save for the Fool’s Gold EP. Everything about them from their early years is legendary, for the “Stone Roses” grafiti around Manchester before they achieved fame, to their notorious appearance on the Late Show, to the Woodstock for the baggy generation, Spike Island. My oldest brother was lucky enough to go, and apparently it was as shit as the rumours suggest, but everyone was so wasted that it didn’t really matter. Indeed, that day inspired the song “Sorted for E’s and Whizz” by Pulp, which ironically came out the year Pulp filled in for The Stone Roses at Glastonbury. For me, the song that bests sums up the majesty, arrogance and genius of The Stone Roses is “I Wanna Be Adored”.

808 State – Cübik

On my 13th birthday I received my first ever 12″ record of my own, and what a record – 808 State’s Extended Pleasures Of Dance. An absolutely amazing trio of songs, for me Cübik was the absolute pinnacle of what I imagined anyone could achieve for a good few years. To my eternal shame I have never really explored 808 State’s catalogue apart from the obvious songs, and constantly keep it as something I’ll do soon, as opposed to something I’m doing.

But finally, the documentary that I stumbled across this week which inspired this blog posting. I remember recording this way back when, and watching it with my 3 brothers over and over, to the point where even now we have in-jokes harking back to it. Its absolutely amazing, in so many different ways, both good and bad. Marvel at the “fashion”. Wonder at what a cock James “media dick” Brown is. Be amazed by arguably the greatest rapper ever, MC Tunes. But this is a gem of a programme, and something that really brings back such vivid memories of when I was first stepping into the wide world of music, when “indie” actually meant something when you applied it to music. Enjoy.



March 12, 2010

Summer 2007, chilling in my best friends back garden browsing through peoples myspaces, listening to music psyching ourselves up to go out that night. You never seem to forget that moment where you instantaneously fall in love with something, something so amazing and fresh you just can’t stop listening. For me that was the day I fell in love with Drum and Bass, for I had found NOISIA. Drum and Bass had been around for almost 2 decades, it was something I was always familiar with but just never gave it the time of day. Back then I found it all a wee bit too generic, but that fateful moment my ears heard the work by genius’ Nik Roos, Martijn van Sonderen and Thijs de Vlieger. I was completely and utterly infatuated.

Fast forward a few years and here we are, I’m still completely obsessed with the Dutch producers and there’s no wonder. With three different record labels to their name, a string of fantastic EP’s, a FabricLive mix and an upcoming album coming out in April, I’m surprised I’m not walking around each day with a sponge in my mouth just to soak up the drool!

Ahead of the release of their first album ‘Split The Atom’, the three lads have released what can only be described as an absolute stomper. It’s dark, gritty, dirty and completely devoid of anything fluffy, cute and nice, I can guarantee you won’t find any easter bunnies here. Machine Gun is without a doubt – absolutely insane.

Accompanying Machine Gun on the release are remixes by the fantastically talented Amon Tobin, Spor and 16bit. Spor’s polished version has been banging on my eardrums since the release and it gets better with every listen. With grinding basses and a fist full of broken beats Spor has really done the original justice whilst giving it a more club orientated bounce.

NOISIA – Machine Gun (Spor Remix)

Machine Gun was released on March 8th on all the major respected digital outlets as well as the pre order for their album ‘Split the Album’ which will be out on April 5th, 2010.

Until next month! Keep Dancing 🙂


5 French House Albums You Must Own

March 5, 2010

I meet a lot of people that tell me they’re looking to delve deeper into the world of the French touch, but don’t really know where to start. Obviously everyone knows their Daft Punk, but what other over-shadowed and under-appreciated gems are there to be unearthed? Well, this is my guide to French house for the new listener. Enjoy.

Motorbass - "Pansoul" (1996)

Motorbass was composed of two of the key figures in the creation of French house: Etienne De Crecy and Philippe Zdar. I first came across this album on 12″ while randomly thumbing through a bargain bin in a record store, but made the fatal error of not buying it as soon as I saw it! Now, years later, I’m sat at my computer, listening to 128kbps mp3 rips of the album, wishing I got this on wax when I had the chance. Motorbass’ early EPs were more along the lines of deep house, but “Pansoul” is where the signature French touch sound really shines through, alternating between deep, almost ambient cuts to bumping house grooves, barely leaving the listener any time to catch their breath.

Motorbass – Wan Dence

Etienne De Crecy - "Superdiscount" (1998)

After Motorbass, Etienne and Zdar went their separate ways. Etienne went on to produce this beauty of an album with a whole host of guests. Standout track “Prix Choc” is a house classic, with a jazzy groove, pounding beats and a sampled reggae chant of “Sinsemilla marijuana…”. This album is widely regarded as being one of the first to exhibit the French house sound we know and love today.

Etienne De Crecy – Prix Choc

Cassius - "1999" (1999)

Zdar, on the other hand, went on to team up again with old friend Hubert Blanc-Francard, better known as Boom Bass. The two first began producing together as early as 1994 under the name La Funk Mob, a more hip-hop/downtempo flavoured project, but eventually, they morphed into a house duo known as Cassius. Their debut “1999” is essential for any French house collection, a hunk of pure funk gold with priceless gems like “Feeling For You”, “La Mouche” and “Foxxy” embedded within.

Cassius – NuLife

Modjo - "Modjo" (2001)

As with all good music, it’s only a matter of time before a borderline-cheesy vocal variant of French house popped up. This variant was Modjo, the disco house “boyband” made up of producer Romain Tranchart (formerly of Funk Legacy) and vocalist Yann Destal. The duo are best known for their track “Lady (Hear Me Tonight)” which topped charts all over the world. They released one self-titled album in 2001, as well as remixes for We In Music and Air, before parting ways.

Modjo – On Fire

Alex Gopher with Demon presents Wuz - "Wuz" (2002)

And finally, one of my absolute favourite records ever. All the electro heads among you will probably recognise the name Alex Gopher, but did you know back in the day he used to make French house? I know, it’s a shocker. This record that he produced under his Wuz moniker, with label buddy Demon, encapsulates everything that a great french house record should be. Funky, memorable grooves, chilled out synths and lots of perfectly placed filters all come together to form shimmering nuggets of modern day funk to make this an extremely underrated album.

Alex Gopher with Demon presents Wuz – Wuz

That’s about all from me this week, take care,

AY! x