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THE WEEKLY ROUNDUP :: Other Releases W/C 21/1/08
:: Alter Bridge :: Robyn :: The Raid :: Spilt Milk :: Guru’s Jazzmatazz :: Huw Costin ::
21 January 2008 / No Label Required / Various Formats
By Simon Brown

Robyn – BE MINE – Single – Konichiwa
www.robyn.com
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Strangely the boyish dance star Robyn, seems to have made a trademark of her 1940’s Germanic haircut, but her music is certainly distinctively modern. “Be Mine” is astutely arranged with synthetic strings (at least I think they’re programmed rather than live) but either way it’s a refined outing that proves she’s not just all out disco mad.

MMM


The Raid – WE KNOW BEST – Shifty Disco – Single
www.myspace.com/wearetheraid
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
This starts off well for the Hemel Hampstead quintet with big drums and the thrust of guitars, which show that their operators are enjoying every single second of every single note. Their image suggests that they’re heavily influenced by Cast and their rugged indie harks back to the underground of Britpop – “Show Me” is chuncky and rather dangerous, which marks The Raid as something to get rather excited about.

MMM ½


Spilt Milk – FRANK – Single – Happy Release
www.myspace.com/happyrelease
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Bromley’s Spilt Milk release what is essentially a demo, recorded rather shambolically but no doubt lovingly, with mixed results. The lo-fi charm allows the use of glockenspiels and barely audible guitars, to provide a subtle sense of indie credibility. Saved by the fact that this is quirky, sunny alt.pop, Spilt Milk are worth smiling, rather than crying about.

MMM


Alter Bridge – TIES THAT BIND – Single – Universal
www.alterbridge.com
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
An unusual name for a band that would have excelled in the early 80’s in the heyday of modern Heavy Metal. Classic stuff in the vein of Dio with more than just a hint of Nu Rock thrown in for good measure. I hope that they’re not too generic for the young fans out there, who these days prefer (if not insist that) their music has just a hint of the extreme.

MM ½


Guru’s Jazzmatazz - THE MIXTAPE : BACK TO THE FUTURE – 20 Trk CD – Rapster !K7
www.rapsterrecords.com
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Another, many say essential, compilation from the crucial, well honed label Rapster, this album provides a feast of hip-hop / Jazz funk fusion driven tracks. But this never dwells on a purists jazz theme, or the much trodden hardcore hip-hop path, preferring to instead combine the two. This results in Guru’s anti-Commercial rap solution providing an attraction for fans of Tribe Called Quest, Mos Def, De La Soul and Gang Starr amongst many – A welcome addition to Guru’s quite extensive catalogue.

MMM


Various Artists – DISCOVERED – A COLLECTION OF DAFT FUNK SAMPLES – 12 Trk CD – Rapster
www.rapsterrecords.com
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
For aficionados of post 70’s funk this is a little treasure trove of tracks from artists like Chaka Khan (Fate) and Sister Sledge (Il Macquillage Lady) combined with Breakwater, Tata Vega and Jerry Goldsmith. A discerning compilation that celebrates the harder side of early disco culture.

MMM


Huw Costin – FULL MOON AT CHRISTMAS TIME – Verdant – 1 Trk CD
www.huwcostin.com
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
It’s hard to say whether this has just been sent out late (arriving the second week in January) or is just a badly timed release, but Huw Costin’s nervous rendition of an acoustic, Flaming Lips styled sound eventually burns through – oddly out of season though.

MM ½


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