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Mo' Record Kicks [Album review]


There will need to be a significant improvement from record labels if they’re going to attempt to compete against Record Kicks’ output in 2011.  Not only can the Italian based label boast releases from the jazz-funk stylings of the UK’s Nick Pride & The Pimptones (‘Midnight Feast of Jazz’), along with Sydney, Australia’s afrobeat manifesto, as delivered by The Liberators in their self-titled debut [excitingly for us, both acts are in line for future LF features!]… on top of those releases however, we now have ‘Mo Record Kicks, Act 2’, as presented by Smoove - the producing half of contemporary soul duo, Smoove & Turrell - who not only gains credit for having a hand in this selection of treats but also delivering a few of his own remixes as exclusives for this compilation.

Billed as featuring b-sides, remixes and rarities, Record Kicks have unlocked the vaults and delivered an album that serves as, both, a perfect introduction to the contemporary soul and funk label and as something long-term fans can scoop bucket loads of excitement over with alternate takes on perhaps some of their faves.

There are few flaws or missteps on this one - the aforementioned Smoove remixes stand tall, as Nick Pride & The Pimptones’ ‘Waiting So Long’ and The New Mastersounds' 'Witness' are stripped and reworked as hard-hitting funk numbers.  Despite inclusions by The Baker Brothers, Floyd Lawson and Hannah Williams & The Tastemakers, funk isn’t the sole order of the day with this release as we’re also blessed with the charming disco-esque numbers by The Diplomats of Solid Sound (Lack of Afro remixing 'Give Me One More Chance') and Mr Comicstore ('Are You Ready'), the latter featuring the guest vocals of one Nicole Willis, whose is a massively welcome inclusion, particularly seeing as how criminally long she’s making us wait for the follow-up to her debut collaborative effort with The Soul Investigators, ‘Keep Reachin Up’.

A further notable mention is extended to Dojo Cuts whose short and subtle number ‘Ain't So Low’ creeps in at the end to leave you with the satisfying feeling of having nabbed the final chocolate chip-laden cookie from the jar.

Don’t let your introduction to Record Kicks stop here though as there’s a wealth of music to explore as this compilation demonstrates and there’s plenty to keep us occupied until (hopefully) another one in this fantastic series comes our way!

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