Haywyre has finally returned to inject his signature electro-jazz stylings into a more dance-friendly canvas with “Tell Me” — the first offering from his forthcoming six track EP called Panorama: Discover. After two long years in the lab, it’s the clear the genre-blending producer was rearing to go. Fans are in for a slew of funked-up new favorites on the upcoming record, it seems, based off this shining self-released number.
Haywyre has disco’ed before – take slap bass extravaganza “Memory,” for example. But, the full on nostalgic thrill of “Tell Me” is something truly special. Bright strings and creamy talk box vocals set the tone, and the groove burns bright and steady before the decks are cleared an extended piano solo.Instead of handing the first beat section an encore, however, the artist puts his vocal synth through its paces. Expressive runs and lightning quick fills jolt the funk into overdrive as the track comes to a head. For those who like their dance music a with a little more soul, Haywyre’s November 30 EP release is shaping up to be well worth the wait.
Ed Banger mainstay Thibaut Berland, better known as Breakbot, is back again with new music, delivering a short and sweet five-track EP, roping together three new original works and and two accompanying remixes, including one from fellow French veteran Yuksek. Another You brings the return of Breakbot’s frequent collaborators Ruckazoid and Irfane on the project’s title track and “Devotion” respectively.
Another You is a quick listen, coming through as a lean collection of infectious new disco bops, riding plucky bass lines, sexy vocals, and fleeting, dreamy percussion accents across five new tracks. The EP is a fun exercise in collaboration, including a feature by Berland’s girlfriend on “Don’t Stop The Dance.” Lace up your dancing shoes — Breakbot’s latest is bound to get you moving.
No song is safe these days from a Goshfather flip. The producer’s infectious retro disco stylings have spiced up tracks from artists ranging from JAUZ to Skrillex. The remixes follow the same cheeky dance-first ethos as his originals on labels like Spinnin’ and Hysteria. Now, Goshfather is follows his “Nice For What” remix up with another full makeover, this time taking on Kanye West and Lil Pump‘s internet-burning track “I Love It.”
The original track’s highly NSFW verses were built around the instrumental’s undeniably groovy bassline, and Goshfather’s take most definitely follows suit — but that’s about the similarities end. The remix is a sped-up disco romp that drops the track’s slow and slinky feel into a ’70s bowling alley. Slap bass is joined by wailing saxophone and an uptempo four-to-the-floor beat, and the effect is almost enough to distract from the rappers’ raunchy lyrics still tucked into the rework. Goshfather’s take proves any track can go disco if he puts his mind to it.
Jenaux has dropped a digital trophy as a celebration of a stellar 2018, after releasing multiple singles that reassert his funky electronic style, including “My Friend” and “Give It Up.” Now, the New York City-based producer is sending out a reminder of his career history in DJing with a new extensive mix. Funk Tape ’18 debuted on Apple Music’s home page this week and includes 15 unreleased original mixes, as well a special edits of his two latest singles. The hourlong mixtape shows Jenaux’s style in full force. With each new edit, nu disco and electronic crossover production are pared with groovy basslines and exciting guitar riffs.
Multi-instrumentalist, Flamingosis has released the third installment off of Sundae Sauuce‘s Chocolate Drizzle funk compilation, “Think Back And Remember.” With a serenading electric guitar laying atop a bed of sultry synths, the the track is carried by a pleasing, jazzy drum arrangement. The hook picks up with a wailing guitar melody and sparkling synths, giving the new tune a venerated, vintage disco aesthetic.
New Jersey-based producer/beatboxer/DJ, Aaron Velasquez, is known for his smooth, crisp production sensibilities, proctoring relaxing, mood boosters that lean on sonic subtleties in their appeal. His sound is heavily influenced by beat makers like J Dilla, Flying Lotus, and Madlib. Reach for “Think Back And Remember” for a cruise with the windows down, or study session buried under headphones and let Flamingosis take you away.
At long last, Chromeo have shared their fifth studio album, Head Over Heels. An ode to all things disco, the album explores the sub-genres of funk — roping in synth pop, sultry R&B, and nu-disco sensibilities into a retro-inspired dance record built for the 21st century dance fan. And while Chromeo have always maintained a creative affinity for vintage stylings, Dave1 and P-Thugg are celebrating their newest release in the most contemporary way. Can’t make it out to New York’s iconic Terminal 5 for the album’s live debut? No problem — cut a rug from the comfort of your own living room.
In conjunction with Oculus Venues, the Funklordz will live stream their performance in VR for fans across the world to enjoy. The show will air tonight (June 15) at 9:30pm EST/6:50pm PST, broadcasting Chromeo’s newest material from Terminal 5, replete with all the visuals, lights, and sounds of a full concert experience. Head Over Heels, the duo’s first full-length project since 2014’s White Women, features contributions from DRAM, The-Dream, French Montana, and more is available now via Big Beat Records.
Nile Rodgers has proven his knack for writing hit songs over the past five decades, with collabs from Duran Duran to Daft Punk under his belt. Keeping up with the newest names in funky pop music, Rodgers and Chic have taken to the Jools Holland show on BBC Two with Mura Masa and NAO to premiere their funky new track, “Boogie All Night.”
NAO acts as the main vocalist on the track, pairing her breathy, high-energy vocals with Rodgers’ classic guitar riffs. Mura Masa also takes the stage wielding a guitar, holding his own against the funk and disco legend. With a new album from Nile Rodgers and Chic set to arrive later this year, there is no telling what kind of groovy collaborations will be seen.
Colby J is building a name for himself concocting well-rounded blends of disco, funk, soul, and blog era house, bringing his deep crates together to create a growing series of dynamic mixtapes. While there’s no shortage of LA-based up-and-comers tinkering with 808 drum arrangements and 909 snares, Colby J rather draws his inspiration in the likes of LCD, Soulwax, Tiga, and Holy Ghost, among others, and his indie-dance sensibilities undoubtedly shine in his newest mixtape titled “Mid Summer Night’s Dream.” For those with a sophisticated palate looking for an exceptionally well balance mix, reach for some headphones and turn on Colby J’s newest mixtape.
With a growing list of upcoming shows, and with his debut original material rumored to be in the works, expect Colby J to keep providing soothing sonics all summer long.
T R A C K L I S T
1. Shock Machine – “Open Up The Sky” (Soulwax Remix)
2. Mura Masa – “Love$ick” ft. A$AP Rocky (Four Tet Remix)
3. Robert Palmer – “Every Kind Of People” (JN Multicultural Multitrack Mix)
4. My Neighbor Is – “Little Freak”
5. Sadevillain – “Hold On Vaughn”
6. RockNRolla Soundsystem – “Morganton North Carolina”
7. Led Zeppelin – “Whole Lotta Love”
8. Adrian Gurvitz – “New World”
9. Mary Wilson – “Red Hot” (NY Edit)
10. Minako Yoshida – “Black Moon”
11. Devandra Banhart – “Santa Maria de Feira”
12. Cerrone – “Hooked” (Kon Remix)
13. JKriv – “The Queen On Her Throne”
14. J.M. Black – “Lipstick” (Shout)
15. Jean Guy Ruff – “Covergirl”
16. Paul Rudder/Tete De La Course – “Makin’ The Magic”
17. Stephene Deschezeaux – “On The Line”
18. Dimitri From Paris – “Flight To Jamaica”
19. Felix Leifur – “Berg Toppur” (Hidden Spheres Rocky Top Remix)
20. The Revenge – “Conkers”
21. Sharpio – “Dance Drone (We Can Make Your Body Move)”
22. Oliver Boogie – “Can’t Get Away”
23. Blutch – “Time After Time”
6.2 – The Echoplex (Silverlake)b2b Rambo w/ Darius, Kartell (Live)
6.20 – Friends w/ Benefits @ The Friend Bar w/ Adam After Hours
7.21 – The Saguaro (Palm Springs)w/ Sabio
Legends Carl Cox and Eric Powell remain heroes in the house and techno sphere. Despite clocking in three decades each behind the decks, their passion for their craft and drive to continually move forward musically allows them an endurance that has stood the test of time. Paired with this endurance is a profound connection with their dance genres of choice, stemming largely in part from their roots.
Jazz, soul, funk, and disco are as deeply embedded in house and techno as they are in Cox and Powell’s musical backgrounds. Both their parents exposed them at a young age; Carl, for example, recalls a childhood playing classic records at family gatherings. Similarly, Eric’s hunger for jazz and funk led to him sneaking out of school to ravishly consume new albums. Hearing of their pasts greatly clarifies the present — it seems as though curating and purveying these soulful sounds that moved them so much, in one form or another, was a path they were both meant to travel down.
Three decades after earning their stripes on the DJ circuit, it’s time for Powell and Cox to pay respect, and revive the jazz/disco/funk side of them. Their evolution subtly made its introduction a decade ago, when the two began throwing their Mobile Disco (MD) parties across Australia. Throwing events simply wasn’t enough, however; there was a desire for something deeper, more tangible. Thus, both icons converged their talents and creative vision into a brand new project based around the Mobile Disco brand: MD Funk Connection.
The main M.O. of the project aside from its event arm is to gather new and old live artists currently upholding the music that is the backbone of Cox & Powell’s existences, and output music alongside them. Based off the first single, what we have is a refreshing endeavor that elicits an organic, empathetic response in its listeners. They’ve taken Mass Production’s classic “Shante,” and remastered it with a bit more of a modern flair that preserves the original’s integrity. In the future, more original works are expected.
Curious as ever, Dancing Astronaut flagged down MD Funk Connection to spill some details on the project’s inspiration, the profound influence their roots have played in their dance careers, future plans, and more.
Obviously both of you are very familiar with just how much funk, disco, & jazz have influenced/helped the birth of dance music. We’d love to hear you guys give us a history of this influence in your own words!
We both have West Indian heritage – Carl’s parents are from Barbados and Eric’s dad is from St Kitts, Carl grew up in the south of England and Eric grew up in the north of England, listening to soul, bluebeat, reggae, funk and jazz.
In our teens we went to All Dayers – Caister/Blackpool Mecca – great times and great music. Amazing self contained bands – Slave, Mass Production, early Jeff Lorber Fusion, Funkadelic, Parliament, Maze, Brass Construction, Eric says he always thought he was a rebel sneaking off from school to listen to new jazz/funk albums. A ten year old Carl Cox would play records at his dad house parties. Spending your last five pounds on an album, having to walk home because you had spent your bus fare on records. When we old enough to go out, it was at the end of disco for some people, but looking back it was the start of house music, with the benefit of hindsight you can see the musical progression.
What is it about jazz and funk that make them such soulful and timeless genres, in your opinions?
The musicians, the singers – gospel vocals mixed with experimentation of jazz and the locked down groove of funk – the perfect storm allowed the genre to grow and develop.
Who were your favourite musicians growing up that have played the most influence in your sound?
Nile Rodgers, George Clinton, Ronnie Laws, Randy Muller, all grooved based producer musicians and all little bit different – Nile Rodgers and Chic was disco with soul, George Clinton the ultimate funk producer, Ronnie Laws, including his sisters and brother Hubert Laws, Debra Laws, Eloise Laws, Randy Muller and Brass Construction almost rock but never with out his unique brand of funk, probably our favourite producer was Jimmy Douglas – he was so young when he produced “Slave” Eric Powell thinks those albums were his heaviest influence especially “Snap Shot”.
Carl’s favourite “Slave” album is “Just A Touch of Love”
On that note, did you two have any specific songs, artists or eras within funk/jazz/disco in mind to emulate while writing ‘Shante?’
Shante is a version of Mass Productions “Shante”, its a track we had been playing at our Soul and Funk parties, other tracks are “Welcome Aboard” – Webster Lewis, “Lovers Holiday” – Change, P-Funk All Stars – Hydraulic Pump
Who are your favorite acts in jazz and funk at the moment? Dream collaborators for future tracks?
We have a house/disco collaboration with Nile Rodgers that we are working on, we would love to work with Jimmy Douglas, on the U.K. side we are also hoping to do something with the Incognito guys and we are really excited about a revisit of a George Clinton classic – we got access to the original twenty four track tape.
We read that MD Funk Connection arose from your Mobile Disco parties that you’d throw in Australia. Any plans to bring those parties out to an international setting?
We are just about to do a “Mobile Disco” party in Bali, the location is off the hook – Ulu Cliffhouse, absolutely amazing venue, Both of us are looking forward to doing something in Europe and the States in the near future.
Tell us more about the decision to create a whole project around Mobile Disco in general. Why is now the right time to unleash it, and was there a particular moment that made you want to evolve the project past simple parties in your localities?
We have been doing our soul, funk and disco parties for ten years now, after seeing the response to some of those classics and the hard to find tracks we personally thought we were at a stage were we could re-imagine some of the tracks, write some originals, we have got a fantastic producer/engineer in “Joe Roberts” in the U.K. and Chris Coe in Australia plus an amazing array of musicians in both Australia and the U.K. – the timing was just right for us and we think that we could do justice to the soul funk disco genres.
What is your methodology for recording music under the MD Funk Connection project? Do you employ live instrumentation? Do you write through jam sessions and edit on the computer, or are all your sounds synthesised already and you mostly produce as you would a usual track?
So far all the tracks have been live musicians, We have a brain storm, talk to Joe and Chris, work out if we can find the right musicians and vocalists, then off we go – it is really exciting, its a different way of working than when you are solo in front of the computer. We are still into writing tracks in front of the computer but this gives us a slightly different creative outlet.
Which record stores are your favourite for finding jazz & funk records for your collection? What other places do you go to to search for records?
We both have extensive record collections, its more about disappearing sorting through our vinyl, coming up with tracks and artists that we forgot about. A track might come to mind then its scouring online retailers rather than going to record shops, we don’t live that close to any vinyl stores.
When did you two first start building your collection of jazz and funk records? Carl, I believe I read you began during your childhood?
We both started as kids – very young around nine years old could have even been younger, its amazing how similar, both of us would ask for albums for birthdays and Christmas.
If someone wanted to know more about jazz and funk, which tracks would you tell them to start out with?
Expansions by Lonnie Liston Smith, Jazz Carnival – Azymuth.
What other plans and ideas do you have in store for MD Funk connection in the future?
Its pretty organic project – no rush, enjoying ourselves in the studio, working with live musicians – we are finishing of a reggae track at the moment, the next track will be on a latin tip maybe.
Mind Enterprises served up a heavy dose of funk in his recent single, “S.H.A.K.E.” Now, he’s passed his tune off to French electro icon Breakbot to cast it in a brand new light.
The original’s high nostalgia levels are kept in place in Breakbot’s remolding; however, the Ed Banger signee decides to conjure this sentiment by way of disco grooves. It’s a subtle, yet effective change, and this new canvas Breakbot’s put in place works well when dressed with “S.H.A.K.E’s” distinctive bass guitar riffs and lo-fi vocal samples.