Genre: Electro-funk / Jazz / Boogie Disco / Deep House / Lounge
Region: Wellington, New Zealand
Artists’ Website: Lord Echo
Label: Bastard Jazz Recordings
Release Date: November 12, 2013
Wellington-based musician/producer Lord Echo (aka Mike Fabulous) just released his sophomore album Curiosities via Bastard Jazz. Evidently, both the artist’s and label’s musical preferences match completely in what is a big fusion of styles. Although not every track is the same engaging, the overall flow of the album is utterly enjoyable, apt for repeated listens.
There is a feeling of nostalgia diffused throughout the tracks. However, in this case it is not a sterile reproduction of the old in pursue of ‘authentic sounds’, it is rather a stimuli for playfulness and creativity. Although Lord Echo purposefully incorporates cliche elements in his music, he has invented a myriad of ways in order to bend them and trespass genre borders in structure and sound.
“Put In My Head” is a profound example and probably the creative peak of the album. The track starts with a long atmospheric intro which has a typical deep house build up and after the listener is convinced that it is a dance track he adds the horn section and emphasizes the polyrhythmic foundation to sculpt an innovative afro-beat crossover. The soulful vocal contributions of Mara TK (Electric Wire Hustle), which lie miles away from the typical rough afro-beat bravado, underline the hybrid nature and anthemic feel of the track. “Digital Haircut”, one of the most discussed tracks of the set (it was released a bit earlier as a single), is another evidence why Lord Echo’s music is so much fun. The track is almost ‘sketchy’, meaning that it evades strict formulae, with boogie percussions, retro space-age synths, bouncing basslines and funky guitar riffs.
Every track here explores a different shade of the eccentric music persona from soul/jazz to funk, disco, dub/downtempo and electronic music; as such it can draw the attention of music lovers from disparate parts of the music spectrum.
Review by DJ Life Fabrik
More funk & boogie at Freegan Kolektiva: