MIMS Forgotten Treasures


Forgotten Treasure: Black Ivory “Mainline” (1979)

I found this album (which has been on my Discogs wantlist for quite some time) at a local record shop just days before djing a disco-only after-party. It’s not rare, it’s not worth much, but it’s good (and that’s what counts). Once in my hands, I couldn’t stop romanticizing the most ideal scenario at which to drop the dance floor-burning “Mainline”. Well when that moment finally came, the amp blew out. I know I’ll get another chance soon, but till then I might as well share the joy with you guys right?

Here on Hangin’ Heavy (Buddah Records), Black Ivory teams up with great singer/songwriter/keyboard player/producer Leroy Burgess (“Get Down Friday Night”, “Release Yourself”) as well one of my favorite disco songwriter/producers Patrick Adams (Phreek, Inner Life, Rainbow Brown, Bumblebee Unlimited). With this information in mind, the masterful arrangement of horns and strings in combination with the catchy-yet-clever choruses come as no surprise.

After hearing some covers and a handful of house tracks which sample Mainline, it’s safe to say that nobody even comes close to the magic that happens on the original. In fact, just as I was writing this I saw that Tensnake is releasing a very uninspiring version himself, so I’m glad I get to share “the real deal” with you before this song title gets overloaded with a bunch of undeserved hype.

Organic instrumentation wins this round. You can’t deny the power this track has when it ditches it’s narrative verses before the halfway mark in favor of a loopy disco hook, percussive-break down and cheerful lyrics that will stay in your head forever. Please play this by my bedside if I ever end up in a coma. Seriously.


Also, check out this Leroy Burgess interview on Red Bull Music Academy


About the Author

Doc’trin is an up-and-coming dj/dance machine/lady killer who brings a unique selection of disco/house/funky/bass/2-step/techno/beats to the Montreal scene. He plays anything from bus-stop sets to corporate fashion shows and is an after-party enthusiast.

  • http://twitter.com/AzueroSound AzueroSound

    Nice one, Leroy Burgess is the MAN. You’ve got to check out his lecture at the RBMA. He’s the cool uncle you wish you had. Great stories about his time with Black Ivory, Universal Robot Band etc. Check it! http://web.rbmamedia.net/video-archive/lectures/leroy_burgess__boogie_on_burgess

    • http://www.musicismysanctuary.com/djlexis Lexis (MIMS Founder)

      Dope Vid! Thanks for the share.

  • DoctrinMTL

    Hey man, thanks for the heads up! Watched the entire interview a few days ago and have been suggesting it to friends ever since. Really makes me want to make music. He’s a bit of an awkward dude, but what a legend and his heart seems to be in the right place. Had no idea some of my favorite jams came from him under different aliases (Logg, Phreek, Universal Robot Band, Convertion, etc). Wow. Thanks for that. I love when people post up on these reviews. Doesn’t feel so one-sided and makes for sick discoveries.