Ever order a kale salad and discover a neckbone in it? That’s funk. Ever written a love letter on a chicken grease-stained napkin? That’s funk. The Du-Rites are without a doubt the soundtrack to both of those situations, but by definition, The Du-Rites are a duo of New Yorkbased multi-instrumentalists comprised of Pablo Martin (guitar, bass, synthesizer) and J-Zone (drums, organ, bass, turntables, percussion instruments that require little skill). Funk comes from so many places that it’s hard to visit them all, but the duo manages to do just that on their self-titled (and almost wholly instrumental) debut LP on Old Maid Entertainment / Ilegalia Records (with Vinyl LP & Cassette Versions on Redefinition Records). From the greasy, lo-fi and syncopated grooves of the late ‘60s (“Bug Juice,” “Git’n Off,” “Ghetto Ferris Wheel”); to ‘70s cop show funk (“The Chief & I,” “Hustle”); to the slick stomp of the early ‘80s (“Du-N-It”), The DuRites have membership at both the rib shack and the discotheque. With influences ranging from the obvious (Booker T. & The MGs, Lalo Schifrin, Cameo, Kool and the Gang, The Meters, Jimi Hendrix, P-Funk, Motown, Herbie Hancock, and James Brown) to the obscure (overlooked late ‘60s funk bands Warm Excursion, TSU Toronadoes, and Willie & The Mighty Magnificents), The Du-Rites manage to bounce from improvisational, raggedy and psychedelic to tight and snappy with the skip of a track. Pablo’s proficiency in punk, disco, pop and Latin and J-Zone’s deep roots in hip-hop and jazz-funk combine to make one of the more off-kilter, but undeniably funky instrumental long players you’ll dig into.
Baltimore-based electronic trio, LLQUID SD, is back with new sounds from the Bureau of Sewers. Elevator ratio grimace music recorded in a single live improvised setting. Twig Harper rides a cockroach nerf orange. Jimmy Joe Roche sniffs finky argon jitter amplified twinkle. Stewart Mostofsky shatters powder, snorting grog synth skittles. Dare not to pass up a change to hear this fluttering floundering filet.
This 180-Gram White and Clear version is packaged in a deluxe gatefold jacket. Australia’s Gallery of Modern Art commissioned Xiu Xiu to reinterpret the music from Twin Peaks for their David Lynch: Between Two Worlds exhibition. Since then, the band has performed select concerts all over the globe culminating in a proper studio album of the compositions. "It’s difficult to overstate the cultural impact of Twin Peaks 25 years ago. Transferring his art-house cinema ethic to the small screen, David Lynch’s cerebral, surrealist murder mystery series towered like a desert skyscraper over the wastelands of mainstream US TV drama. A large part of the series’ appeal lay in the hypnotic, spectral soundtrack that won a Grammy for its composer, Angelo Badalamenti. Invited earlier this year to reinterpret that music for a Lynch retrospective at the Gallery of Modern Art in Brisbane, Californian avant-noise trio Xiu Xiu have now taking their work on a world tour." - The Guardian
Mixing witty, often hilarious, occasionally even heartbreaking observations with devastating self-assessment, Courtney Barnett’s debut album, Sometimes I Sit and Think, and Sometimes I Just Sit, cements her standing as one of the most distinctive and compelling voices in indie rock. These songs reveal not only an assured songwriter and guitar player, but also an artist who in just a few years has already proved highly influential.
Bright Eyes' Conor Oberst continues to earn his reputation as our most respected young troubadour with almost frightening ease. For the past few years he's been tagged "rock's boy genius" by the music press. These albums are a soundly articulated slice of modern life rolled into two very different records, both bursting with all the heartfelt poetry for which Bright Eyes' records have earned their acclaim. Of course, the rough edges haven't gone away - the palpitation of a splintering note, the crack of a voice as it overextends, the clumsy thump of a misplaced thumb. It's all still there. But there's a glorious new level of depth, a maturation of texture, writing and delivery. His best work yet.
A swirling, euphonious record, at times bursting with bombastic confidence and country swagger, and at others loose-limbed and mesmeric. If "I'm Wide Awake..." was the "New York City album", then "Cassadaga" is "the America album", in which Conor Oberst chronicles his travels around the country and articulates his sense of history in the landscape. Oberst's impassioned prose is still recognizable in every track, but the songs are rich with elaborate production, cinema-sized orchestration, and at times, sprawling, almost psychedelic atmospherics.
Deep in the city of Porto Portugal, lives the unique,deep groove floating dialogue of a modern funk artist known as SAIR. His debut self-titled album displays his natural ability to let the groove unfold in his arrangements. In a landscape of rising G Funk arrangements, SAIR's peeks through the horizon with an EP woven together with as many natural drum arrangements as there are programmed drum arrangements, giving listeners a diversity we haven't heard much of since post disco's golden era of 1980-83. SAIR's songwriting ability moves the conversation forward with intricate drum arrangements framing beautiful chords and passionate synths, that give SAIR a voice that will move many in the worldwide community of modern funk and beyond.
Originally from Brighton, Kutmah made his name while living in the US, releasing some acclaimed mix tapes and building up connections with the Brainfeeder & Low End Theory crews. In 2010 he was deported to the UK, lived in London for 5 years and now resides in Berlin (while still holding down a show on the East London-based radio station NTS). In Summer 2015, prolific leftfield beatmaker Kutmah released the 20-track instrumental beat album BLK/SMR on Bandcamp. During March 2016 he selected & sequenced his favorite nine tracks for a forthcoming limited-edition 10" vinyl version of BLK/SMR [HNR67] on HIT+RUN.
Superstructure has been blessing the world for 15+ years with underground cassette tape's and limited 7 inch records that have most likely been in your favorite producers collection since day one. Superstructure now unearths SUPERPOSITION, a six song EP guiding us through a secret valley of gems displaying his multifaceted songwriting ability, proving there is so much more to be seen in the landscape of modernfunk. Sonically baptizing listeners with sophisticated and intricate synthesizer arrangements before for carrying them on the backs of warm bass-lines through a journey of drums, where no detail is to be spared. The mechanics of SUPERSTRUCTURE immerses listeners in heady chords before ascension into dimensions previously unseen, giving listeners a perspective not to be scene but heard that transforms consciousness into its SUPERPOSITION.
San Diego's own The Sure Fire Soul Ensemble is back with their sophomore LP on Colemine Records! Cinematic soul is the order of the day from this west coast group. Covering a lot of soulful territory here: deep funk, soul jazz, breakbeats, and more!
Es-K (Essential Knowledge) was born in Holland, raised in Kansas City, Missouri, and currently lives in Burlington, Vermont. He starting seriously making beats as a teenager, with his first release coming out on the Cold Busted label in 2011. Es-K is also known for his monthly Spontaneous Grooves releases, where a set of instrumental tracks are created in one sitting, the result being truly ‘spontaneous’ and diverse. This exemplifies Es-K’s prolific and workman-like ethos of beat-making, with creative and top notch hip hop soundscapes constantly pouring out of his Vermont studio. Passages is Es-K’s latest release for Cold Busted and it shows his growth as a rhythm-obsessed music producer. With guitar and occasional keys by friend Max Bronstein-Paritz and a couple of crucial studio collaborations with fellow Vermont beat-maker Loupo, Passages adds extra depth and musicality to Es-K’s drum mechanics. The album opens wistfully with “IEV”, offering a minute and a half of instrument textures and snatches of percussion before the full beat kicks in. “Monastic” showcases Max’s funky guitar contribution, “Elevation” features some deep bass line play, and “Mistakes Made” is filled with melodic layers and melancholic moods. These are just some of the highlights from this twelve track album … Es-K satisfyingly goes beyond the beats throughout.
Jake One's discography reads like a who's who list of some of the greatest AND most successful artists in the history of hip hop. That's what makes him truly unique. Blurring the lines between the underground and overground. Providing sonic backdrops for such incredible emcees as De La Soul, Scarface, Freeway, MF Doom, Evidence, Casual, Elzhi, Brother Ali, and Rakim among others, but polishing that same formula and providing records for the likes of Drake, Rick Ross, T.I., 50 Cent, Snoop Dogg, J Cole, Wale, Dom Kennedy, and Royce 5'9", Jake One is one of the exceptions that has worked equally with both of these sides of the industry. Exceptionally. "Prayer Hands", a collection of instrumentals created from gospel sources, includes some of those recordings amongst others that all remind you that Jake One has pretty much become the go-to producer for any major artist that wants some real hip hop shit on their album. And understandably so. His discography is one of the most reputable in the game. On October 21st, Street Corner Music and Rappers I Know are proud to present Jake One's "Prayer Hands"
A 60 min Cassette Mix by Randy Hotthobo with a Two Step Boogie A Side and a Sweet Soul B Side. Artwork by Dyami O’Brien
Deanthoven, released by Leaving Records, is produced and performed live by Deantoni Parks, channeling Ludwig Van Beethoven. There are no overdubs or loops on this album. Cassette Includes exclusive “drumapella versions” of each track. Mixed & Mastered by Matthew David McQueen, cover art by Punk_Picasso. Machines/Instruments used: Human Body, One Hickory Drum Stick, Kick, Snare, Hi-Hat, MacBook, Interface, Midi Keyboard, various microphones and outboard equipment. “There is no treatise likely to be too learned for me. Without Laying claim to real learning it is yet true that since my childhood I have striven to learn the minds of the best and wisest of every period of time. It is a disgrace for every artist who does not try to do as much.” - November 2, 1809, to Breitkopf and Hartel, of Leipzig.
The author is VHVL, electronic composer Veronica Lauren, from Harlem, New York. Evn, a cassette release by Leaving Records, is an all-instrumental, 26-minute album of “emotive melody and passion-beats stirred with distortion detail.” A follow-up release is planned for 2017 on Leaving Records.
Chicago producers Scud One (Cult Classic, The Dirty Science, 2012) and T-White (The Gift Vol. V, Street Corner Music, 2014) have been working together in hip-hop production for more than four years. Scud One is a producer and lyricist whose work on Cult Classic and Don’t Drink The Kool-Aid - alongside artist Denmark Vessey - was called “organic and thoughtful, political and soulful, and without being quirky or removed from the streets” (Daniel Isenberg - Nahright.com, Complex Magazine). Scud One has worked, notably, with artists Quelle Chris, Guilty Simpson, and Exile, among others. T-White is a producer, animator and video director whose record debut was the fifth volume in the ten-volume “The Gift” series compiled by House Shoes (Street Corner Music). He has produced for Denmark Vessey on Don’t Drink The Kool-Aid and 2015’s Martin Lucid Dream;T-White produced the single “Don’t Smoke K2” which was featured on NPR’s “Songs We Love” “STEVEN TYLER” - a title derived from the combination of the first names of both artists - is a collaboration between Scud One and T-White focusing on the integration of beats, interludes and spoken-word comedy skits delivered with absurd - and sometimes sardonic - wit. It’s a packed album, making use of colorfully-loud, spacey artwork and irreverent humor throughout its tracklist. As a collaborative effort, it showcases the strengths of both its producers - Scud One’s lavish looping skills and sample choices, with T-White’s drum proficiency, interlude construction, and penchant for comedy. “Steven Tyler is hard as fuck.” - House Shoes
Seige Monstracity is an anomaly in the music industry. He rides the fence, providing the contemporary soundtracks for successful commercial artists such as YG, Tyrese, Keisha Cole, and Marsha Ambrosius, as well as producing grimey backdrops for underground artists like Bizarre, Bad Lucc, and Namebrand. This is a collection of the latter. Seige’s debut LP contains 12 incredible doses of heavy beats, chopped up breaks, and obliterated samples. A Detroit transplant in Los Angeles, both cities are omnipresent at all times on the LP. “Swahililand” is a west-coast interpretation of the classic “Stakes Is High”. “Careless” revives a classic David Axelrod moment. “Dirt Bag” sounds like a late night liquor store robbery. “Doves” takes a classic from one of our all time greats who we lost recently, and transforms it into a ride thru the hood on a beautiful day in Los Angeles This is not to be missed. Another classic collection of beats from Street Corner Music.
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Production legend J Dilla's legacy is still gathering momentum, his influence reaching far beyond his chosen genre of hip hop. His weapon of choice to share his music throughout his career? Tapes. Lots of them. BBE's close friendship with Dilla resulted in them releasing not only his debut solo LP 'Welcome 2 Detroit', but also his final, posthumously completed masterpiece 'The Shining'. For Cassette Store Day, and for Dilla, BBE is proud to present both trailblazing LPs on one single, strictly limited cassette tape. So open up the case, slide the tape into your Walkman, sit back and enjoy 2 hours of the most iconic hip hop of all time.
In celebration of the 15th anniversary of its release, Barsuk Records is pleased to reissue Death Cab for Cutie’s 2001 “The Photo Album” on cassette for the first time. This reissue includes rarity “Gridlock Caravans” which has previously only been available on the vinyl version of the album and on some version of the album internationally. Artwork has been newly redesigned for this release and each cassette includes a download code.
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Joseph Abajian (DJ Jab) founded Fat Beats in 1994 with nothing more than a shoestring budget and an earnest obsession with the music, the culture, and the brotherhood of New York’s burgeoning rap scene. What began as a simple vinyl shop in Manhattan’s Lower East Side quickly became an integral hub for artists, both aspiring and established, to convene and collaborate on new projects. Joseph’s timing couldn’t have been more impeccable. When the 90’s cultural zeitgeist – and, in turn, the music industry establishment – chose hip-hop as its new arbiter of cool.
International tourists and touring artists alike flocked to Fat Beats for rare vinyl, kindred spirits, and exclusive in-store performances from Jay Z, Eminem, Gang Starr, Outkast, Slum Village, Mos Def, and more. One thing was clear: the Fat Beats phenomenon could no longer be contained in a single basement shop.
In the late nineties, Abajian proceeded to open new stores in Amsterdam, Tokyo, Los Angeles, and Atlanta. He further expanded the company’s profile to include global distribution and record label branches. Distribution has since proven to be the company’s strongest and most enduring enterprise. Today Fat Beats Distribution stands poised as one of the country’s pre-eminent distributors of vinyl & specialty item records: a proud survivor in an industry now famous for its mortality rate. Despite market fluctuations, technology innovations, and stylistic revolutions, Fat Beats has remained steadfast in its commitment to the timeless vinyl format and to the loyal community who keeps it spinning.
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