Author Archives: Richard Samuel

Ed Wizard & Disco Double Dee – Straight Up (2012)

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Dave Allison (aka Ed Wizard & Disco Double Dee) has been a prolific producer of funky, disco cuts for the last decade or so. ‘Straight Up’ is an edit of Benjamin Latimore’s classic ‘Let’s Straighten It Out’. The piano disco refresh and vocal makeover gives it a beach vibe for a sunny weekend.

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The Kinks – I Go To Sleep (1965)

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‘I Go to Sleep’ is a song written by Ray Davies and first released by The Applejacks. It was never officially recorded and put out by The Kinks, but a demo can be found on the reissue of their second studio album Kinda Kinks. But the reason that most know the song is because Chrissie Hynde and her Pretenders successfully recorded a cover in 1981.

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Ride – Future Love (2019)

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I watched Ride in my hometown Kingston-upon-Thames last night. I enjoyed this number off their new album This Is Not A Safe Place. In ‘Future Love’, they have been able to mix their guitars with a harmony to create something that wouldn’t be too offside from the recent output of Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever. A group reformed and reconstituted.

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New Order – Elegia (1985)

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One could argue that New Order reached their peak in 1985. The band’s third LP, Low-life, was self-produced at Jam Studios and Britannia Row Studios in London and loved everywhere it was heard. Its notable tracks are ‘Love Vigilantes’, ‘The Perfect Kiss’ and ‘Sub-Culture’. But for me, the sound of ‘Elegia’ is the one that gives me the goosebumps. It is said to be an homage to Ian Curtis.

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Ocean Colour Scene – The Riverboat Song (1996)

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My wife and I travelled through Moseley yesterday en route to Birmingham to see my daughter in a concert. I don’t know the area, save it being a hangout for artists and the inspiration for OCS’s second long player Moseley Shoals. The album’s opening track was ‘The Riverboat Song’ inspired by the river journey from Apocalypse Now and clearly the riff and all from Led Zeppelin’s ‘Four Sticks’. Have a great week.

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Four Tet – Locked (2012)

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Mixer, producer and DJ Kieran Hebden has been making music as Four Tet since 1997. 15 years in, he released a collection of dance singles as Pink, his sixth studio album. Continuing to draw from his Indian roots and his love of jazz, techno and hip hop, he opens the album with ‘Locked’. Cosmic dissonance abounf for a chill Saturday. Have a great weekend.

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Tevo Howard feat. Tracey Thorn – Without Me (Marcus Worgull Dixon Vocal Edit) (2011)

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The Chicago house producer Tevo Howard originally released ‘Without Me’ in 2008. But then in 2011, Marcus Worgull and Dixon’s vocal remix came about, putting Tracey Thorn’s magic vocals at the heart of the track.

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Pavement – Cut Your Hair (1994)

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Well I lost a day to the cricket yesterday; or more precisely to the rain. But it’s always great to catch up with old friends… banter and nostalgia. So I’ve woken up this morning and decided there’s still not enough Pavement on this blog. ‘Cut Your Hair’ features on the band’s classic sophomore album Crooked Rain Crooked Rain. I will make up for the lost day this weekend. Have a great day.

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Silver Jews – Random Rules (1998)

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David Berman took his own life last week. He leaves behind a world that is lesser for his departure. The man that coined the phrase “Slanted and Enchanted” had began Silver Jews in the 1989 with friends Stephen Malkmus and Bob Nastanovich. While the latter pair would go on to form Pavement, Berman’s project never lost their shared interests. Berman’s widest acclaim came with the release of the 1998 album American Water. Its opening track ‘Random Rules’ reminds me of Pavement’s ‘Range Life’. In fact, Malkmus had participated in the making of the early Silver Jews albums as a side project. But all the songs were masterfully written by Berman, even if a lot of what he said was “lifted off men’s room walls”. Last month, Berman released his first work in over a decade since the dissolution of Silver Jews. The self-titled LP by Purple Mountains is his epitaph. RIP DB.

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Prince – I Wanna Be Your Lover (1979)

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Good morning folks. Completing a run of posts from the late 1970s, like so many times before, my attention is drawn to Prince. In 1979, disco was eating itself, funk was in transition and drum machines were about to conquer all. Enter, stage right, Prince Rogers Nelson from Minneapolis. His breakout single ‘I Wanna Be Your Lover’ would tear up the dance floor jam and leave the world of pop music better. It would feature on his self-titled sophomore album. Have a great week.

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Ian Dury & The Blockheads – What A Waste (1978)

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A year after Iggy was striking out again, another remarkable performer was also playing his own tune. “I could be the driver an articulated lorry/I could be a poet I wouldn’t need to worry/I could be a teacher in a classroom full of scholars/I could be the sergeant in a squadron full of wallahs.” ‘What a Waste’ was originally released on Stiff Records as a single. Essentially a song about being in a job that makes you happy; for Ian Dury and his Blockheads, this included mixing Two-tone with glam and jazz funk.

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Iggy Pop – China Girl (1977)

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By 1976, the Stooges were history and Iggy had been on a downward spiral, including some self-induced time in an asylum. Longtime confidant, David Bowie stepped in to help him out. The two of them wrote some new material and produced The Idiot. It was far removed from the proto-punk of the Stooges, but it was new, different and full of promise. Take ‘China Girl’… underrated at the time, it was always destined for greater things.

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Boz Scaggs – Lowdown (1976)

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It may not be cool, but it’s Boz Scaggs. Having first made his mark as a member of the Steve Miller Band playing guitar plus writing and singing a few songs on the band’s first two albums, Boz set out on his own path. He’s probably best known for the slick R&B hit ‘Lowdown’ from his breakthrough 1976 album Silk Degrees. Blue-eyed soul.

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Karen O & Danger Mouse – Turn The Light (2019)

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Now for a different take on the sound that is funk. Karen O might be an unlikely source, but then she has teamed up with Danger Mouse. The production on ‘Turn the Light’ includes a glorious bass line and steady groove. It features on their collaboration LP Lux Prima.

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Lizzo – Juice (2019)

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Before I forget some holiday detail (and my usual morning slot), I need to post an earworm in the hope that I will revisit it one day as the throwback banger that it is – and not as the pervasive sound of my summer travels. ‘Juice’ was released at the start of the year as the lead single from Lizzo’s third album, Cuz I Love You. It was made for the dance floor, but not my cochlea. Have a great week.

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