Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Native Sol - Whats My Name (1996)

Not much is known about their origins, but it's assumed that Mary Ridley and Morie Bivins teamed up as Bas Noir (French for black stockings) in the late 1980s. They teamed up with the Burrell brothers Rheji and Rhano, who as Burrell released an album in '88 and had some success with the track I Really Like . The Burrell brothers applied their smooth house sound to the ladies' first single (on the Nu Groove label), My Love Is Magic and became an underground club hit in the US. Ten Records picked the song up for the UK the following year and it reached the lower end of the UK pop charts. They followed it up with I'm Glad You Came To Me, which made an even bigger impact on the dance charts. This attracted the attention of Atlantic in the US, who commissioned an entire album, with the Burrells producing most of the tracks. They also brought in Kerri Chandler and Dee Dee Brave; however, for the first single from the album they chose the song Superficial Love, the only track not to be produced by either team. It was produced by Michael "Nice" Chapman & Tomi Trent, and was definitely amore of a R&B track. This was probably released to attract a wider audience, but instead it seemed to alienate their existing fan base, who were hoping for another house stomper. (This fate befell another Atlantic house act, Jomanda, though Jomanda managed to have a few big hits before they turned to R&B and effectively ruined their career.)The Kerri Chandler remixes housed it up and the song managed to reach the dance charts, but it was too late for the album. Subsequent singles Shoe-B-Doo and Addicted 2 U had diminishing returns. They were dropped from Atlantic (along with a slew of other dance acts) and it seemed the end for the duo. 
However, in 1995, the song What's My Name by Native Sol was attributed to the ladies, and it appeared that they were forging on together in a new direction, this time getting much more soulful and exploring Acid Jazz. the track was released on Talkin' Loud record, a label  founded by DJ's Gilles Peterson and Norman Jay in 1990.
Nothing else was heard from Native Sol, however, and nothing much can be found about either lady since. 


Retail release 12":

And the two-disc promo 12", with the demo and jazz remix:

Monday, 9 February 2015

Basil - Out of My Face (1991)

Basil Clarke possesses an outstandingly beautiful singing voice; he’s also a very fine songwriter. Why he isn’t a global superstar is a total mystery to me. He started out as lead vocalist in a Manchester-based band called  Yargo in the mid-late 1980s, featuring former members of Biting Tongues, with Phil Kirby (drums) and Paddy Steer (bass guitar) together with guitarist Tony Burnside. They mixed jazz, blues, soul, reggae and rock, with Clarke receiving comparisons with Marvin Gaye, and made their debut in 1986 with the Get High EP on the Skysaw label, featuring Andy Diagram on trumpet.
Their profile was raised by a performance on Channel 4 music progamme The Tube. Their debut album, Bodybeat, was released in 1987 on their own label of the same name. In 1988 they were signed by London Records, who reissued their debut album and followed it with Communicate in 1989. Also in '89, they recorded the theme to Tony Wilson's Granada Television show The Other Side of Midnight, which was also released as a single. They reverted to the Bodybeat label for a live album in 1991, which proved to be their final release.
Clarke then recorded as a solo artist, releasing the Out of my Face single in 1991, and made a guest appearance on the Future Sound of London album Accelerator in the same year. He also contributed vocals to The Strange Parcels' album Disconnection album in the mid-1990s.


Tuesday, 3 February 2015

Hustlers of Culture - Flipjack (1992)

Hustlers Of Culture are a group that came out of Lewisham, London in Jan 1992, comprising of Matt Dykes, Richard Yori (latyer of Spice Of Life) Phil Dykes and Adrian Cox (of Pushmypullu). They released two albums and a small handful of singles, of which this is was their debut release and probably their most well-known.
It features samples from Kool & The Gang's 1969 track Give It Up and The Jive Samba, a 1963 song by the Cannonball Adderly Sextet.