As someone who's always up for an enthusiastic ESL cover of an R&B tune, I had to pick up Fat City 's three-song vinyl EP of tracks selected from Andy Votel 's entertaining Songs In The Key Of Death megamix. The prog-funk of The Years Pass By on the A side courtesy of Hungary's General is nice, but the flipside is the business here. The Voltage 's phonetic massacre of Otis Redding's Dock Of The Bay - taken from the Japanese GS crew's R&B Big Hits album from 68 - is non-stop hilarity, while Marie Rottrová 's rousing rip through Ashford & Simpson's Big Chain is an equally head-scratching delight. It's about time someone compiled a disc of this nutty stuff.
Since DJ Shadow has built a lucrative career for himself on funky numbers recorded by other artists - often uncredited - it's only fair that Amsterdam's Lefties Soul Connection should seek a profile boost by covering Shadow's Organ Donor, which samples Giorgio Moroder's track Tears from 72's Son Of My Father album. The party-rocking Lefties version is out on a limited-run seven for Melting Pot that comes backed with a low-energy medley of the Isley Brothers' It's Your Thing and the Meters' Hey Pocky A-Way. Shadow fans and selectors should still grab it for the topside floor-filler.
One last Donut
Just before the sad passing of innovative hiphop producer/rapper Jay Dee , the Stones Throw label made plans to issue a picture disc 7-inch of material J Dilla recorded for his Donuts album. That single is out now in a super-limited edition, and the two tracks, Signs - which makes good use of Brenton Wood's Gimme A Little Sign - and the crunching Pandemonium featuring Roc "C" and Oh No are as good as or better than anything on the album proper. That's probably a reason why copies are already selling for $35 U.S. on eBay, but you can get one from Play de Record for $9.99 (one per customer) while supplies last.
Some reggae in you hiphop
The connection between hiphop and reggae has been long and strong, so it's no real surprise that the recent Upstate mashups work so well. Dr. Dre 's and Snoop 's Next Episode seems like it was made for the Wailers ' Fussing And Fighting riddim, while Jurassic 5 's Unified Rebelution rolls even sweeter when backed by the great Lyn Tait 's Soul Food groove. As you might expect, these Upstate sevens are in short supply, so if you see it, don't snooze.