Cork DJ Colm K is known for his considered sets of soul and house music as well as his own electronic productions. A former RBMA attendee, Kenefick is working away on new music for next year and DJ-wise, you can find him at residencies at Sunday TImes and So What! in Gulpd Cafe, Cork. Here are his tunes of the year.
Max Graef – ’No 5 The Gym’
Mac Graef has had a great year musically. His debut LP, Rivers Of The Red Planet, showcased the broad palette of sounds and influences that he uses in his music. However, this non album track appeared on 12″ only. No. 5 was huge for me this year. It has everything- chopped breakbeats to begin, nice jazzy stabs and then rests on a bumping house groove with a catchy vocal snippet.
Marvin Gaye – ‘Where Are We Going’
‘Where Are We Going’ is part of wonderful re-issue released in conjunction with Record Store day back in April. It is a previously unreleased version of the Donald Byrd track that Marvin Gaye recorded with the wonderful Mizell brothers. The EP consists of four tracks shared evenly amongst Marvin Gaye and Donald Byrd, but this is the pick of the bunch. A perfect mid tempo soul record.
TR One – ‘AfroDiscoBeatDown’
This track was given to me by the amazing Irish producers that are TR One. Not out yet officially, it definitely got lots of spins from me this summer. I played it on Rinse FM as part of a guest mix for Alexander Nut’s show [about 17 minutes in] and the feedback was instant, with lots of heads looking for details about it. A cheeky Tony Allen sample flipped into a hypnotic house paced groove coupled with some warm pads makes this a perfect summer record. Maybe it’ll see the light of day by Summer 2015.
Brief Encounter – ’Human/Total Satisfaction’
This is another re-issue that came late in the summer courtesy of the Sounds Of The Universe record store in London. I was after this for a very long time but never saw an original copy for under the €170 mark. Beautiful soul music that everyone needs to hear.
D’angelo - Black Messiah LP
Finally! The return of D’angelo. A different record from Voodoo, which is refreshing. The last thing we wanted was D’angelo’s third LP showcasing an attempt to top one of the best LPs of all time. As soon as I heard ‘Betray My Heart’ I was hooked. D’angelo with strings? Yes, please! Personal favourites to date include, Tutu, Betray My Heart, and Another Life. Unfortunately, we have to wait until February 2015 for the double LP.
Henry Wu – ‘Talk About It’
Over the last 12 months there’s been a great scene developing in South London. A bunch of like-minded artists, including Henry Wu, Jean Bassa, Mo Kolours, Reginald Omas Mamode IV, Al Dobson Jnr, and Tenderlonious have been producing some very interesting takes on soulful music spanning all tempos. One outlet for these releases is 22a, a record label set up and run by the same crew. The distribution is taken care of by Sounds Of The Universe so you don’t see these 12″s everywhere, but, if you do, be sure to check them out. The track I chose is from the label’s second release and this featured heavily throughout all my sets this year. Henry Wu has an EP coming shortly on Alex Nut’s Ho-Tep record label, which I’m really looking forward to checking as well.
Fatima – Yellow Memories LP
Yellow Memories is an amazing debut from Fatima. This LP has lots of highlights for me, such as ‘Biggest Joke Of All’, ‘Circle’, ‘Do Better’, and ‘Talk’. Production wise, Fatima’s enlisted quite an all star cast: Floating Points, Scoop DeVille, Shafiq Husayn (Sa-Ra), Theo Parrish, and Flako. I heard a few of the singles early in the year but, for me, it was some of the album tracks themselves that made this one of the best of the year. The dreamy, dark ‘Talk’ springs to mind, as does the sparse but grooving ‘Biggest Joke Of All’. Taylor McFerrin’s Early Riser LP is worth mentioning when considering soul music from 2014. His debut on Brainfeeder included some killer tunes; ‘Florisa’ and ‘Already There’ were both in heavy rotation throughout the summer.
Jack J - ‘Something On My Mind’
I was lucky enough to get a tip about this one as soon as it dropped. Since then, it’s become quite the tune. xlr8r rated it first in its best of 2014 listing. I’m not so sure about it ranking that highly for me personally, but it’s quote the groover. The drum track sounds almost live, surrounded by warm chords progression and airy brass samples. Jack J’s other work with the Pender Street Steppers is also well worth checking out.
Renee Geyer Band – ‘Be There In The Morning’
Athens of the North is a great new imprint run by Euan Fryer for re-releasing modern soul and disco music. This year saw AOTN re-issue some of the most sought after 7″s from the Modern Soul and Disco era (saving me a fortune on buying originals). Bileo’s ‘You Can Win’, The Split Decision Band’s ‘Watching Out’ and Nohelani Cypriano’s ‘Lihue’ are just a few personal highlights that came courtesy of AOTN this year. Another notable re-issue came courtesy of Tom Noble when he released the super rare Mystic Pleasure ‘Back Door (Getting Down)’, which is a straight disco banger with an amazing arrangement and vibe throughout.
K15 – ‘Yellow’
I was late to this one but it proved to be one of the best house pieces I heard this year. It has a very interesting arrangement and the drums really hit hard. This is certainly the highlight of the EP. Other notable mentions on the house front include both EPs from the always consistent Floating Points, namely ‘King Bromeliad’ and Nectarines both of which were super inspirational. Another LP worth mentioning here is the wonderful debut from Leon Vynehall.