Alright it must be at least a couple of weeks since the last Busy posting, and any pretense about this not being partially a Mr Signal fanboy site disappeared sometime ago. As usual the man is chucking out tunes at a prodigious rate, and I just wish there was somewhere you could buy high quality downloads all kosher and above board, the JA music industry has really missed the boat there. Hanyways here we have a presumably unofficial remix of Busy's 'Up In Her Belly' which was originally atop a lively cut-up of Sergio Mendes's 'Magalenha'. This version still contains traces with the vocal chants, while ramping up the hyper-percussion patterns to make it even more of a soca stormer. In all honesty I'm not sure if it trumps the original, but it's been the best part of a year since that dropped, and I'm not averse to a refix to give Busy's splendid vocal track some more legs. Because we're nice like that I'll stick the original Sergio soaked version up too. Also a couple of clips from Mr Gordon's ongoing European tour.
Mr Sergio Mendes - legend.
From the same gig - Stinky grooves favourite 'Hustling', the rather dubious 'Rivers Of Babylon' and some crucial crowd participation for 'Jail'.
Can't resist slamming in this sweet cut from Tanya Stephens riding the perennial 'Norwegian Wood/Darker Shade Of Black' rhythm as (presumably) rendered by Fatta & Bulby at the Mixing Lab, under the Fat Eyes umbrella. I'm digging the cut of the rhythm, which heavily references the 80's Volcano 'Tu-Sheng Peng' version, and there's a few decent vocals - including Luciano and Queen Ifrica's duet (which finds the former re-emphasising the Frankie Paul memories in his pattern), Anju Kumbz, AJ Brown's bizarre 'Classical' version (doing what it says on the tin, as in more Herbert Von Karajan than King Tubby) and a bunch of vets ranging from Josie Wales, Cutty Ranks and Flourgon through to Terror Fabulous. It's only four years since Fat Eyes last did over this rhythm, but it is hard to argue with, and as always when Tanya Stephens avoids the fromage - she is excess essential.
The other big recent rhythm from Fat Eyes has been 'Mento' is another look back to the fertile 80's. Again the bulk of the artists might have you wondering what decade (millenium?!) it is but the performances aren't tired. Major Mackerel drops his squeaking immims on 'Bad Ras' while Admiral Bailey prescribes 'Fire Inna Har Hole' - maybe the less said about that and Red Dragon's humourous 'Inna Di Bush', the better. Sizzla is the junior of this group and his 'My Kinda Gal' doesn't rep that well for the younger generation overall, I guess the less aggressive, ribald, sense of fun that artists back then were able to muster just isn't on the menu these days. The butcher Cutty Ranks serves up 'Hot Girls', rocking a 'caliente' chant and the best flow he's had on any of his recent 45's, can't wait to run this in a dance. There's always space for The Stopper at StinkInc, and I've slung in the megamix too for a sampling of all the vocalisers.
Buy the Mento here , have yet to locate 'Darker Shade..' on 45
Listening to grime has predominantly felt arduous of late, the new Wiley didn't really channel my tunnel, Trim dropped well off the pace (a little like Durrty Goodz disappointing 'Axiom' follow up) with the latest 'Soul Food', and the plethora of freshmen out there aren't really fully calling me to attention either. The pick of the current litter, to these ears, has been Skepta and his 'Microphone Champion' release. At 18 tracks it's still too much information, but nothing like the mouth mountain of surplus some of his contemporaries have bestowed upon us. Skepta's last effort, and debut proper 'Greatest Hits', was positively incendiary - I'm not yet convinced that this is quite up there with that, yet. However it does feel solid and varied to the extent that I almost enjoyed the cringing hit 'Rolex Sweep' when it popped up, which is well out of character and I did say 'almost'. While grime is often about as competitive, aggy and bloodthirsty as it gets musically (barring oi! and opera) I seem to have a weakness for the more meditative, wussy grime tracks - 'Reflecting' is a prime example. Boy better know indeed.
Skepta & his bro JME on Westwood for any large canine readers
Next, something completely different....