Music Reviews

Club Bogaloo

Unlimited Freestyles Out of Nowhere

Spinning Wheel

OK, when you think of the dope-ass music scene in Bavaria, you think of ultra-sexy lederhosen, funky tubas, tankards of beer, funny hats and mustaches, and the super-soul beat of the oom-pah-pah. Well, think again, mein friend. It ain’t all Oktoberfest in southern Germany. There’s a new sound. Nu Jazz. This dark, moody dance that breaks a beat like Poland’s back in ‘39 while incorporating jazzy textures and attitudes is rapidly beating other electronic forms like red-headed stepchildren. It’s a strange mixture of sophistication, seduction, and dance that is really only rivaled by 2step in its creativity and power.

For those fans, this is a must-have. For those out of the know, jump in with Club Bogaloo. Named after the famed Bavarian nightspot, this compilation’s a sparkling example of the genre’s diversity, with tracks that traverse the sampling landscape with an ease that’s perfect for the dance floor or chillout session. Boozoo Bajou contributes its “Down And Out,” a dubby downbeat gem that somehow also mixes an organic blues sound with its Howling Wolf sample. Soulpatrol’s “Release Your Mind” is a foot-pounding dance track that ultimately loosens up with Palmieri-like piano chords that really inspire. And Les Gammas offers a masterpiece, “People Getting High.” With its throaty flute, deep synths, afro-hippyesque vocals, and penetrating groove, the jam reminds one of Ramsey Lewis in his Sun Goddess days or Roy Ayers at his jazz-funkiest. In fact, listening to this CD makes me think that this is the direction fusion jazz should’ve gone in after “Mister Magic” instead of the Chuck Mangione, Najee, Kenny G. atrophy we’ve suffered for far too long. Nu Jazz is able to tap back into that danceable spirit that jazz possessed before bop became king, and Club Bogaloo is the perfect medium.

Spinning Wheel Records: • Club Bogaloo:

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