Albums of the Year 2000
Year 2000 have been an exceptionally year for music with lots of quality records for dancing and listening pleasures.
Back in 1999 I began to pursue contemporary dance music, which were largely a new area for me as I always regarded myself as a soul head. When I came across a record I liked it was almost always a new discovery and it was with the beginner's enthusiasm I explored all this new and wonderful music. The year of 2000 turned out a deeper excursion in beats and rhythms aimed for both body and soul, following last year's formative impact on my selection of music.
During the past year there have been a great deal of deep and soulful house music on my decks, a lot of jazzy beats, a swinging selection of UK Garage and 2-step, some techno and various re-issues on CD. There have been so many singles, re-issues, sound tracks and compilations, that a full-length album by a single artist or group has been almost an exception in my musical fodder.
The list is divided into sub-categories in order to reflect the extended selection of music for year 2000 and, like last year, the most rewarding selections are to be found in the Single and Compilation sections.
The voice, the lyrics and the deep sub-sonic bass. A soft album made to be played loud - like reggae music. File it beside Gregory Isaac. A classic album!
Soulful and magic music from D´Angelo. A combination of Marvin, Smokey, Stevie and Prince in one genuinely talented person.
Luomo´s minimal house music is looped into funky and soulful disco. Endless small variations are merged into rhythmical subtlety with electronic flair and a touch of dub. The set includes the deep house gem She-Center and the jazzy grover Tessio, also released as a single.
Luomo is a pseudonym for Finland´s leading house master Vladislav Delay. He is bringing in vocalists from his past days as jazz musician and the outcome is a unique blend of deep minimal house music and soulful house. Lumous´ objective is to re-design house music and with three singles and this debut album in his backpack, all released in 2000, he sure is on his way to pave new paths for minimalistic deep house music.
The mysterious Kenny Dixon Jr, a.k.a Moodymann has finally released his third full length album Neverevermore. The album is political and deals with, at first glance, disparate issues like black peoples dreams, religion, the love for music and family. In the end it turns out that all those things are related in different ways. Moodymann sketches a world in which the love of jazz and soul music may be the only reason for maintaining in a society of oppression and violence.
The set contains a couple of stripped remixes of his glorious singles from the last year or so, as well as some new material. There is nothing retro about Moodymanns´ music, and yet he is paying respect both to the blues and everything thereafter. In the melting-pot of Moodymanns´ music there are snippets of techno, Prince and Motown added without visible effort. It all sounds so obvious.
I have never quite understood how Moodymanns´ music work on the dance floor since it is sparse and in many respects quite strange. I am not even sure if it should be regarded as dance music or if it is just music outside any narrow categorization, but it is jazzy and funky to the bone. And it works on the dance floor!
Sparse beats and funky grooves. Perfect for Sunday mornings.
Suzuki In Dub
The dub of Suzuki.
Only two hip hop acts made it this year and first out is Outkast´s Stankonia since it includes B.O.B and Ms Jackson. But there was a close shave between Jurassic 5´s Quality Control and The Nextmen´s Amongst The Madness.
|A hybrid that fuses house, techno, electro and dub and elegantly slip past any categorization. It also includes 1998´s stirring house-tech-beats groover Beau Mot Plage.|
|Rupert Parks ditched the drum & bass beats on his second proper album and investigated the realms of house music with assistance of Robert Owens. Fusing tech-house, London and Detroit into haunting house rhythms that is even better than his debut album. Essential!|
|For the love of music dealing with love and broken hearts. If you like this one, be sure to check What Another Man Spills which is nothing short of stunning and absolutely essential - regardless of musical preferences.|
|Some good songs on this one.|
DE LA SOUL
Art Offical Intelligence: Mosaic Thump
|Entertaining. The second most played album of the year. I have a strong feeling that this is a underrated album, and that it will stand the test of time. A classic in the making?|
All My life
|Maysa Leak soul-stirring voice has sparked the funk-jazz of Incognito into fame and is proving on All My Life, her second album, that she is one of the worlds most underrated soul singers. On All My Life she is paying tribute Gil-Scott Heron, Roy Ayers, Sade and Sara Vaughan. Essential!|
Romeo Must Die
Every year there is a soundtrack or two that are indespensible. In 2000 there were no less than four soundtracks that contained the creme de la creme of contemporary urban soul.
First out this year was the Romeo Must Die soundtrack with Aaliyah´s killer tune Try Again and Joe´s best effort to date Rose In A Concrete World.
It was on this album that Destiny´s Child proved that they had it going with Perfect Man. They have also contributed to the Charlie´s Angels soundtrack. Their next album will be nothing short of stunning if they maintain this level of quality. The Romeo Must Die soundtrack is without competition my most played record during 2000.
A Fusion Soul Classics Collection
A record with an outright ugly cover - but it delivers the goods on the CD. Sixteen hard to get classic dance soul smokers in one package. The set opens with Marvin Gayes´ You´re The Man, part 1 and closes with Gladys Knights´ If You ever Need Somebody. Inbetween are To Be Wanted with Paul Johnson, You And Me with Sean Oliver, Secret Rendezvous with Rene & Angela and the much sought after Gotta Lotta Luv with Lenny Williams, to mention but a few. There are no fillers on this one.
Ghost Dog - The Way Of The Samurai
There is something to be learned from a rainstorm. When meeting with a sudden shower, you try not to get wet and run quickly along the road. But doing such things as passing under the eaves of houses, you still get wet. When you are resolved from the beginning, you will not be perplexed, though you still get the same soaking.
The second soundtrack for the year was the RZA produced set for Jim Jarmusch´s film about the hit man Ghost Dog who lived and acted according to his interpretation of Tsunetomo´s book Hagekure: The Book Of The Samurai.
Yamamoto Tsunetomo was a samurai in the early 1700s. Forbidden by law from committing tsuifuku (suicide of a retainer after his master's death), he retired to a monestary. Though he never fought in any battles, he nonetheless felt that the samurai of his time had become soft. A younger samurai that visited Yamamoto over the years wrote down his words in the Hagakure. It has been translated many times, including a translation by the Japanese author Yukio Mishima.
The film is excellent and the soundtrack is an outstanding collection of songs by among others The Sunz Of Man, Black Knights, Royal Fam & LA the Darkman. The only thing missing is the haunting instrumental score by RZA from the opening sequence of the film. Good music.
SOUND OF THE PIRATES
The Garage Sound Of UK Pirate Radio
Compiled by Zed Bias
Dance to the beat of Y2K!
Various artist compiled by Kerri Chandler
Kerri Chandler compiled a selection of house music faves on tripple vinyl. Featuring tracks like Johnny Hammond´s Los Conquistadores Chocolates, Robert Owens´ I´ll Be Your Friend and Inner Life´s Ain´t No Mountain High. A classy package and a journey through the past and present.
THE LOFT - VOLUME TWO
David Mancuso Presents The Loft
Second volume from David Mancuso collection of classic dance groovers from The Loft in New York. The set features almost every song you will ever need to throw a House Party of your own. There are not a seamless mix in sight - every song are presented in its full splendor the way we spin records at home - following the philosophy of David Mancuso who did not use a mixer for his sets in the seventies.
BBE PRESENTS MASTERS AT WORK
The 10th Anniversary Collection
The best remixes from Kenny Dope and "Little Louie" Vega a.k.a Masters At Work collected in two boxes. Contains some fillers and some timeless stuff. These boxes will last for a long time. Check also the dance classics compilations from this enormously productive duo: Strange Games And Funky Things III compiled and mixed by Kenny Dope and Stop And Listen 5 compiled by MAW.
The third soundtrack of the year is the music for the remake of Shaft. It features two songs by R.Kelly; Bad Man and Up And Outta Here. Alicia Keys contributes with the driving Rock With U. The lovely Summer Rain with Carl Thomas is impeccable, and so is the relentless Automatic with Sleepy Brown. A really cool selection of big city music.
Nutty Professor II - The Klumps
The forth soundtrack of the year is the music for The Nutty Professor II. The album opens with Janet Jackson´s Doesn´t Really Matter and ends with R.Kelly´s masterpiece Just A Touch. We also get contributions from Musiq, Method Man, Brian McKnight, DMX, Redman & Eminem. There are not a filler in sight on this album. Flawless selection of the best artists in the business.
Carte Blanche - Volume One
The Aquanote Sessions
Miguel Migs record label Naked Music is the label of the year. A string of excellent singles and a couple of compilations of the singles. Carte Blanche features the jazzy beats of Naked Music mixed by Aquanote.
AZZIDO DA BASS
Timo Maas Remix
The Lost Tribes Of Ibadan 2
Groovejet (If This Ain´t Love)
THE PRINCE OF DANCE
featuring LISA ANGEL
Ferenc´s Bits + Pieces Remix
Soul II Soul Records
Here Comes The Lick
DJ South Central Remix
Can´t Take It
Planet E Records
Ain´t No Love/You Got Me Spinning
Learn To Give
"LITTLE LOUIE" VEGA
Featuring ARNOLD JARVIS
Life Goes On
Nice ´n´Ripe Records
DE LA SOUL
Featuring CHAKA KHAN
Tommy Boy Records
Good Vibes Recordings
Featuring SALOME DE BAHIA
Yellow Productions Recording
Ya Basta! Records
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