Crucial Material – Best Releases Of The Week (February 23rd, 2019)

Too much music too little time.

Thankfully, our Crucial Material is slowly but surely becoming one of the best weekly recaps in the world scanning the hundreds of new releases and sharing only the cream of the crop.

So here we go. Dive in!


TwoSpeak – “Twoism” EP

Genres: Jazz / Industrial Hip Hop
Label: Self-Released
Key Track: Egloskerry

Intricate rhythms, strong melodies and intricate arrangements abound on this fantastic debut EP from London-based TwosSpeak, led by Cornish saxophonist Ronan Perrett and featuring drummer Ben Brown of Waaju, Joseph Costi (Bahla) on keys and Ben Lee, guitar, with guests Adam Teixeira & Dr. Krakeb on percussion. Fresh & contemporary jazz absorbing influences from home & abroad – folk, electronic, funk, rock and beyond. Mixed by Alex Killpartrick (Waaju, Bahla) and mastered at the Carvery, you can bet it sounds excellent too. The guitar led passages on highlight “Egloskerry” recall classic Prefuse73/Savath+Savalas, but Dave De Rose’s remix of the same track gives it a halftime industrial hip hop swing feel reminiscent of Company Flow & Dälek.
– Selected by Oli Brunetti

Sanctuary “Life Classics 02”

Genres: Soul / Disco / Boogie
Label: Life Classics
Purchase Link

Four infectious, deeply-sourced edits get pressed to the second installment from the Life Classics imprint. Berlin-based duo, Sanctuary, deliver a compelling array of Soul-ish Disco & Boogie selections ready-made for your record bag. Each track is edited wisely, not over produced, nor over edited. Slight, careful, exacting. Executed well enough to attract the garner of one of the deepest Disco heads on the planet – Red Greg. As with Life Classics 01, quantities are limited.
– Selected by Jake Stellarwell

Murlo “Dolos”

Genre: Electronic / Grime / UKG / Ambient / Video Games
Purchase Link

The man with the undefinable yet unmistakable sound finally unveils his debut album after years of incredible EP’s, loose tracks, remixes and DJ sets. I could spot a Murlo track even if it was playing 4 streets away; a unique of blend of wild and quirky, playful melodies sitting at the crossroads of UK Grime instrumentals and Video Game soundtracks. The album is a conceptual story of a man who escapes the city in search of solace and takes the form of a 15-track album, a 36-page graphic novel and a series of limited edition art prints – everything handcrafted by Murlo.
– Selected by Lexis

Tzusing / M.E.S.H “Split”

Genre: Electronic / Techno / Industrial
Label: PAN
Purchase Link

Anything that comes out on the PAN label deserves your utmost attention. I love imprints that consistently challenge my boundaries of the music I think I like. This ultra-limited (why only 300 copies!!!?) double sided 12″ features two tracks from label mainstays Tzusing and M.E.S.H and sits at the crossroads of Grime, Industrial and Techno. Definitely not for the faint of heart. Oh and in case you’re wondering, it’s already sold out… Woomp womp 🙁
– Selected by Lexis

Jay Glass Dubs “Thumb Dub” + Tilliander “Expect Resistance”

Genre: Dub / Electronic
Label: Dub On Arrival
Purchase Link

A double dose of  7″ dubs courtesy of brand new label Dub on Arrival. Jay Glass Dubs follows his excellent debut album “Epitaph” released just two weeks ago with these two killer dubs. The man simply does not miss. Ever. As for the other 7″ courtesy of Tilliander (who I just discover with this release) it’s just as fantastic, going slightly more into the dub techno – Rhythm & Sound territory. Unfortunately there are no audio clips I can embed here so you’re just gonna have to trust me follow this link.
– Selected by Lexis

Houssam Gania – “Mosawi Swiri”

Genres: Gnawa / Moroccan / Gnawa Fusion
Label: Hive Mind Records
Purchase Link

Excellent cassette & digital album of gnawa music – traditional ritualistic Moroccan music know for it’s repetitive and trance-inducing chanting, hajhuj/gimbri (three-string lute) and krakebs (large iron castanets) – the debut album, in fact, of Houssam Gania, son of Maalem Mahmoud Gania (very famous gnawa master musician recently compiled by Hive Mind) and frequent James Holden collaborator. “Mosawi Swiri” appears to be quite faithful to traditional Gnawa ceremonial repertoire yet we hear some fusion with guitar, keyboard and drums on the opening track. An excellent introduction to gnawa music. Beautiful music throughout, worth a place in any collection, digital OR tape.
– Selected by Oli Brunetti


Dante “What Chu Been Up To?”

Genres: Synth Funk / Drum Machine Soul / Boogie
Label: Palace Outfitters
Purchase Link

Recorded by brothers Dante and Tyrone in Philadelphia in the 80’s, Palace Outfitters’ first release, ‘What Chu Been Up To?’, sets the bar way above high. The title track goes… and goes… and goes, but not because it’s lengthy, rather its just so damn cold! ‘No Parking On The Dancefloor’ on the flipside is nothing to sleep on either. Quirky lyrics & vox bumped up against fat backbeats & 80’s synths make for an easy number to nod and sing along to. I look forward to what the PO camp has in store for us next; with this first release, they’re off to a great start.
– Selected by Jake Stellarwell

Judy Pollak feat 33 1/3 “In Togetherness”

Genres: Jazz-funk / Soul / Disco
Label: Athens Of The North
Purchase Link

Original pressings of Judy Pollak & 33 1/3’s only LP from ’77 are currently going for nearly $800. Rare? Yes. Good? Hell yes. Worth $800? I don’t know about that. Judy isn’t convinced either, hence her willingness to work with AOTN on getting this gorgeous album back into the world for a reasonable figure. And, in my opinion, ‘Come With Me’ and ‘Fascinating’ are absolute must haves, so don’t think about it, just add this one to cart straight away.
– Selected by Jake Stellarwell

Max Rambhojan ‘s/t’

Genre: Zouk / Global Grooves
Label: Hot Mule / Secousse
Purchase Link

Responsible for last year’s reissue of Afro-disco masterpiece from Cosmic Sounds, the Hot Mule label returns with some more tropical dancefloor heat with four rare tracks by Guadalupe vocalist Max Rambhojan. Side A features two distinct version’s of the funky Zouk gem ‘Tou’t Jou Pa Min’, with two deep spiritual tracks rooted in Guadalupe’s Gwo-Ka musical traditions on the flip.
– Selected by TJ Gorton

Seeds Of Fulfillment ’s/t’

Genre: Jazz-Funk
Label: Mo-Jazz Records
Purchase Link

Mo-Jazz Records releases a welcomed reissue of the 1981 highly obscure jazz-funk LP from the Ohio-based septet Seeds Of Fulfillment. The self-titled session is a great mix of spacey Rhodes grooves, funky percussive rhythms, layered horn melodies, and improvised solos. The reissue is limited to only 500 hand-numbered copies.
– Selected by TJ Gorton

Rob “Rob” (Funky Rob Way)

Genre: Afro / Funk / Afrobeat
Label: Mr. Bongo
Purchase Link

The good folks at Mr.Bongo have reissued an Afrofunk gem from the ever elusive ROB giving us a chance to discover the ghanean frontman first album. Trying to carve out his on sound after playing with the likes of Poly-Rythmo, Rob took the band leader role and brings a JB like vibe to the whole album. Nowhere is this more evident than on the scorcher Boogie On, the tight rhythmic shcemes and horn blasts make this album a extremely solid foray into Afrofunk and we are lucky to have access to such a rare and sought after piece of music. As the man himself says, “Funky music is in my blood. What you hear is the coming out of my mind.”
– Selected by Asma