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New Music

Explore New Music [June] Sleeve Notes

todayMay 10, 2023


Any avid vinyl collector will recall the joy of familiarising oneself with album art, sleeve notes and a general sense of curiosity about the musicians, artists and context to the vinyl they were listening to. We are big advocates of making a deeper connection to the record label, the musicians and the artist through discovery and appreciation. Sure, you can make an arguably closer connection through social media and other channels but the thing that led us here can quickly get lost in that semi virtual world. It’s about the  music, and so with that, I welcome you to Nu Music sleeves – my modern day reinterpretation on the art of crate digging. Get to know about some of the amazing artists we’ll continue to source for you and check out our dedicated shows and tributes to the craft that brings us all sooo much joy and well being.  If you want to know, be sure to check out the Nu Music Charts.

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On 26th May 2023, Reel People release the Blue Lab Beats remixes of Deja Vu. Featuring Grammy-nominated US singer-songwriter Raheem DeVaughn, the track is taken from Reel People’s first original album in over a decade, Love2.

Produced by core collective Oli Lazarus, Mike Patto and Toni Economides, and with a fresh vocal line-up including Raheem DeVaughn, Muhsinah, Chantae Cann, Michael Champion, Paula, Jill Rock Jones, Eric Roberson and Arrested Development’s Speech, this super-fine, 10-track opus marks a further powerful evolution of the Reel People sound. Weaving contemporary R&B sensibilities into the collective’s classic grooved-out flow, Love2 embraces the out-and-out euphoria of love but offers an entirely unique voice.

Hailing from London, Blue Lab Beats are Jazztronica duo NK-OK & MR. DM. The boys signed to legendary label Blue Note Records in 2020 and are a shining light of the modern UK Jazz scene which exploded in the last 5 years.
Blue Lab Beats were nominated for Best Jazz Act at the MOBO Awards 2021, nominated at the Jazz FM Awards 2022 in three categories including Album of the Year and UK Jazz Act of the Year and won a Grammy award in 2022 for their production on Angelique Kidjo’s Mother Nature LP (Best Global Music Album).

‘Light’ is the final part of Dejector’s breathtaking mellow EP. Written with The Naked Eye, it’s an organic track with downtempo broken rhythms & glittering arps that seamlessly weave around emotive vocals. “Light started out as a voice note – Frenchie (The Naked Eye) was walking out her front door and quickly recorded this little vocal idea and sent it to me. It was really lo-fi but just so beautiful.” – Scott

The song’s production captures the essence of the 2010-era post-dubstep scene, but with Dejector’s own unique twist, resulting in a beautiful and captivating sonic experience. 

The return of Norwegian producer, musician, graphic / fashion designer and erstwhile goalkeeper Espen Horne is something quite momentous for Wah Wah 45s. The label’s debut release, the now seminal Magnetica, was produced by the man himself, and in the best part of 25 years that followed he never lost his connection with the label and remained very much part of the Wah Wah family.

Now, almost a quarter of a century later, Espen returns with his first solo material under his own name since that club classic from 1999. Having produced music under the pseudonym of Bobby Hughes (his goalkeeping moniker when playing for Wigan!) and alongside soulful reggae vocalist Caitlin Simpson as Kinny and Horne for Tru Thoughts, Espen is back with another vocalist of a similar ilk, and one who is well known to fans of Wah Wah 45s.
Faye Houston was one of two great front women for the label’s much loved, and much missed, dub outfit Resonators. Here she returns to the fold with Espen on the deeply spiritual soul-jazz beauty Bakeren. It’s the first taste of Espen’s debut LP for the imprint, The Anatomy of Serene Eloquence, due out this summer.

The opening spoken words set the scene:

“For han bor helt alene på en bitteliten øy” which translates to ”Because he lives all alone on his tiny island” and sums up perfectly how Espen lives his life in the beautiful, lush Western Norwegian coastal town of Bergen, surrounding himself with nature and focusing on it as one of the main inspirations for his new music.

This was never more the case than during the pandemic, when Espen began work on his new album. Grateful for the natural wonders that surrounded him, but keen to reach out to fellow humans to collaborate with, he started sharing musical ideas on-line with Faye, organist Rory More and bass player & vibes master Alexander von Mehren. Adding Eirik Blästernes on keys and Ivar Thormodsceter on drums were the finishing touches that created a very special and very moving piece of music that sets the scene for the album. The love and respect that the musicians share for each other, and their surroundings, is explicit in this song. A song which, rather wonderfully, draws its inspiration from an early 1970s Norwegian children’s record, naturally.

Dope Demeanors, hailing from the vibrant city of Midland UK, is a dynamic duo that has been making waves in the Jackin and Tech scene.

With their undeniable talent and infectious energy, their music brings hard and chunky drums and deep basslines to Jackin House making them a staple in many sets powered by releases on Downtown Underground, Hi! Reaction, and their own Smokin Joe imprint.

Bringing a fresh new twist to the already catchy tune, Bellaire drops his remix of PNAU and Khalid’s ‘The Hard Way’.

The French producer infuses the track with his signature funky, disco-inspired sound, adding layers of groovy basslines, playful synths, and infectious beats that will get your body moving. The remix perfectly complements Khalid’s soulful vocals, creating a feel-good, dancefloor-ready banger.

Currently climbing the radio charts in France, Ireland, Netherlands, Denmark, Belgium & Australia…Whether you’re a fan of the original or just looking for a new summer anthem, the Bellaire remix of ‘The Hard Way’ is not to be missed.

Originally released in 1976 on the Swiss label Delta Production, Contrast is a highly collectible and very rare example of Swiss Jazz that is now re-issued by BBE Music.

Its new release is due in no small part to the diligence, enthusiasm and curatorship of IF Music’s Jean-Claude. With mint copies of the original going for upwards of £350 the release of J&F Quintet’s Contrast is a gift to all serious Jazz heads and collectors.

Recorded by founding band members Stefan Schneller, Donat Beer and Toni Schädler, with the addition of drummers Gieri Bievi and Peter ‘Huck’ Hug and bassist Andri A Piorta, Contrast fuses Jazz with music from the Swiss-Romansh traditions to create an absolute masterpiece of a debut album. Surprisingly, Contrast also constitutes the only release by J&F Quintet as the members were subsequently to go their separate ways to work on other projects.

It is thanks to Jean-Claude’s determination and ear for great music that we are able to hear this fantastic album. After hearing it played to him at a record fair, Jean-Claude set about tracking down the original members of the band with a view to re-issuing Contrast. Post pandemic he was able to contact the band members who, rather fortuitously, still had the original master tapes. It is from these tapes that the album has been beautifully remastered ready for release on BBE Music. Contrast by the J&F Quintet will be released on BBE Music and will be available as both vinyl and high quality digital formats.

“Runaway” is Chef Sean’s new radio hit featuring Ben Official and Bz Bwai. The record is streaming on all digital outlets, and is distributed by RobStar Music / Empire. 

If you like original, progressive disco, then you’ll dig this. There’s a lot of same same stuff out there but this track has levels! There’s hints of nostalgia to the production whilst having a refreshing groove to the finished article. It’s brilliant, you can’t go wrong.

The Cult welcomes on board Scottish producer Colin Wright, who has built the profile of his own label Wirelab Records over the last eight years while simultaneously releasing exceptional music under his CJW moniker. Here he joins the fold for a solid release of deep and sonically adventurous house music that showcases his production mastery and his deft touch for conjuring emotive melodies.

‘Damage Limitation’ starts with a chugging groove that sees filtered strings gradually weave into the track before lush stabs take the track to a crescendo. ‘Remote’ turns up the BPMs and introduces a motor city bassline to revolve that track around. Halfway through, the track breaks into gorgeous sustained chords, building to a peak before diving back into the depths. ‘Sunbeats’, as the name suggests, breezes along with shimmering stabs and fizzing deep house chords that keep on rising. Finally, ‘Bleeding’ rides on a deliciously dark bassline before string stabs elevate the track into the stratosphere.

Overall, an effortless foray into deep techno and house from the Scottish producer, with emotion underpinning each track. Primed for the dancefloor but full of detailed sound design, this is an EP to light up deeper discothèques.

A major fulcrum within Iceland’s music scene – DJ, producer, and music collector Intr0beatz delivers his two-track EP ‘More Cowbell Please’ on Stay True Sounds. Known for exploring house music’s deep and soulful side for close to three decades now, Intr0beatz’s innate groove is evident with this forthcoming project that stays true to his undeniable sonic quality. Intr0beatz’s signature amalgamation of rumbling basslines and smooth chords can be heard on both tracks, with the second ‘Can’t Wait To Meet You’ an up-tempo dedication to his newborn. An influential creator with a unique soundscape, ‘More Cowbell Please’ further demonstrates the Icelandic producer’s commitment to presenting the very best in deep and immersive beats.

The vocal ensemble Dames Brown have been a big part of the Defected family since their first release on Classic six years ago, leading up to their Defected Records debut with ‘What Would You Do?’ featuring Andrés and legendary soul musician Amp Fiddler in 2021. On release, the Detroit natives showed their exceptional talents and effervescence at every turn, snatching the attention of UK radio legend Trevor Nelson and in demand selector Dan Shake. Now the trio return with a follow up single produced by a fellow Detroiter, underground mainstay and Bling47 label founder Waajeed. Soul, funk and gospel come together for ‘Glory’, a record soaked in sunshine and euphoria; the rich electronic history of Dames Brown’s hometown intersperses with the acoustic, live sound of worship for yet another release steeped in authentic house excellence.

Written by: Station Manager