Label: R2 Records
Seven Davis Junior is an alluring music anomaly all of his own creation. He’s that rare thing you’d miss if not happened upon him by chance. And it is by chance that led him to be found since debuting on Kutmah’s album for Gilles Peterson’s Brownswood label. Like an alien from another time and rhyme this brother from another planet’s musical awkwardness is another man’s genius. His acute sense of his sound is the influence of many an adroit sound and leftfield movement. Influences from funk through to jungle through to the Bristol resonance of Portishead and the classic aptitude of Burt Bacharach make the infusion of his sound. If you were to put George Clinton, Bowie and Diva Plavalaguna (opera singer in the film The Fifth Element) together, the obvious love child would be Seven Davis Jnr. Signing with iconic underground label Ninja Tunes for two years gave him the scope to present his style of cosmic-acid-electro-funk. 2016 sees him curating the sounds of the most obscure and far-flung acts and music one nomad could possibly find on his global travels to present Future Society.
Like a moth to a flame I’m hypnotised and drawn into the magnetic sounds of Clark & The Community on the track Jesus And the Stormtroopers. Already a veteran in the music game if you consider Chris Clark started writing and composing ten years ago from 16 years of age – he moved to New York develop. A nebulous, enigmatic sounds pan from left to right as the ambiguous vocals of ‘they’ flood the audio slipstream. Reverb and reprises bounce around perplexing piano scales and just as I feel the need to be pulled deeper I’m disconnected, abruptly – enchanting from a fellow Zappa fan. Hailing from Cork, Ireland is the dopest little number from Colm K. Soulful dub should be this man’s middle name as he has supported the likes of DeLaSoul, Jazzy Jeff and Mr Scruff as well as being part of the Red Bull Academy’s Rome expo in 2003, more future tracks out on R2 Records. Dream is a smooth bass-rolled chilled affair that’s still danceable. Cheeky filtered snares and slip alongside snappy percussion all keeping pace on the four – I’m totally into this vibe.
Taken from the Vibration EP is next track by Perlair, Dance With Me featuring Sharka. Native of Lausanne, Switzerland, Perlair describes himself as a sincere, authentic and passionate music lover. Releasing several tracks with the Boogie Bruk Kru on the Broadcite Music label in the past, comes this Afro-Brazilian-meets-deep number. Featuring his artistic partner singer Sharka on vocals, this is quite the floor-filler. Classic house pianos compliment Sharka’s Abba-esque vocal trails as deep jagged synths storm moodily in the background. A lot of atmosphere going on here, enjoy the ride. Ancestral roots is offered by Cervo in the track entitled Oshala. A co-founder of Sheffield-based Afro-collective Banana Hill showcasing everything Afro-coalition in music, hold parties across Manchester, Sheffield and London. African drums and beats that’s all I need it runs blood, it’s in my DNA encompassed in deep house overtones you just can’t go wrong.
God-damn what a track from Ügly Disco! I mean the score is called Nutz and it literally is just that, some crazy-ass bitched-out beats, seriously had me climbing the walls with glee. I’m like are you freaking me? I’m slapped with wrenkest bass guitar with triggered samples turned inside out and upside down on a cheeky two-step vibe; and a vocal sample urging me to ‘come on’. I just keep saying to myself ‘Yo!’ The duo Johnny Latenight aka J Lawrence originally based in Canada is a bassist with Future Soul and LRD JXN (Lord Jackson) was based in northern England DJ-ing and producing, hailing from Australia – now both living in Wellington, New Zealand. Ügly Disco I want your telephone numbers I need more of this!
Known and respected in Seattle’s hip-hop scene as a producer, musician, sound engineer and MC, OCNotes has refused to let himself be pigeon-holed by a particular music genre. His music range encompasses rock, house, indie, electronica and his reputation precedes him. My Religion is a heady experimental experience, if music were drugs this would definitely be acid. Psychedelic sounds paint visions of time relapses, purple orbs, strangeness, you get my drift. In contrast and back in New Zealand with Cave Circles track, Living With Everyone. The project by Riki Gooch a founding member of New Zealand’s reggae outfit Trinity Roots, is just one of the many faces he presents his music. Surrealism stomps in with bass-heavy programming as abstract vocals offer lighter tones to this dark and brooding electro cascade. It comes in and hits you over the head – piercing stuff.
Classic house get a Midlands treatment in the guise of Jonna & Samwell with their track Alright featuring Erik Riko. Samwell now based in Berlin came together through DJing and hosting parties in the city and the natural progression was music and the starting of City Fly Records by Jonna which has rocked up an impressive rosta of artists in its infancy as Simbad, Lay-Far and Thatmanmonkz releasing material. Well you would never know such a classy joint like this came out of middle England; I’m not surprised some great producers/musicians of the electronica era have, Goldie, Atjazz. Oozing quality of a track produced stateside this is an apt change of pace for the curation. Like a cross between a heady juke-joint of the prohibition days with mild flavours of disco and a gutsy rhythm and blues structure of Riko vocals make this a stand-out track amongst the sometimes monotony of house music.
I don’t know how I ever missed this track back in 2012, I don’t know how I never had this in my life but it’s here and nothing before its time is my usual motto. I, CED’s Forever was a track completed for Shiekh Shoes & Converse Rubber Tracks music competition and he collaborated with Om’mas Keith from Sa-Ra and Thundercat. I’m utterly blown away by the quality of the production, the vocals, the easy listening, the depth, the cause, the intention, the reason. It takes me somewhere – that I won’t tell you. Bonus CD track is one-minute affair Papi from Clark Community, the trippy reprise of them echoes ghostly on about dogmatic conscience and Messiah metaphors.
Vinyl-only exclusive, Present (Said I Really Want You Babe) is a sultry response to Raphael Saadiq and D’Angelo’s track Be Here from songstress/producer, SassyBlack. Co-founder of the self-styled lo-fi rebel hip-hop duo THEESatisfaction, she blew her entire college fund on her solo debut LP, No More Weak Dates. Miss SassyBlack aka Catherine Harris-White describes herself as weird (we love weird here), grew up in Hawaii but peddles her trademark sound in Seattle where she has already worked with Shabazz Palace. This predatory retort to track three from Saadiq’s Instant Vintage album is every bit provocative and exceptional as Black. Her vocals just slip under the covers and envelopes D’Angelo’s vocal sample runs as they’re given a spectre-like treatment. Simply delicious.
This work of art curated by Seven Davis Jnr like many works may not be everyone’s cup of tea but it will stand the test of time as something ground-breaking and possibly to be studied at a later date. His ear is a remarkable one as each artist delivers not only musically but as a whole visual concept. This one is for collector’s with abstract-minimal tastes who know the real value of their purchase. Davis Junior could successfully run his own label based off the back of what I’ve heard, there’s room for this it’s needed.
Review by Sandra Swaybe-Barrett
On General Release Now
Music | Future Society – Seven Davis Jnr