Understated south London label releases a fine LP of jazz funk and fusion
Yussef Kamaal’s debut LP, Black Focus, was so well received in 2016 that it’s surprising the pair disbanded. That leaves a gaping void for their modern take on jazz funk and fusion that proved so popular.
Enter south London label 22a, which has been quietly releasing music of a similar vein since 2013. 8R1CK C17Y, the debut album by label boss Tenderlonious and producer Dennis Ayler, is sure to cheer fans of Black Focus.
The LP opens with Be Ur Friend, an atmospheric keyboard-led groove built around some frantic Afro drumming. Third track Funky Booda is, as its title suggests, an unmistakably funky jaunt, while Butterfly calmly nurtures an unhurried jazz-dance rhythm.
There are many other highlights on 8R1CK C17Y, although some songs are tantalisingly short spanning a minute or two.
On this page is a trio of album tracks that fans of Yussef Kamaal will doubtlessly dig — and, like Black Focus, 8R1CK C17Y is also among the year’s best LPs.
Head to 22a’s Bandcamp page to buy this 10-track album. It’s available on vinyl or as a digital download.
22a on Bandcamp
1. Be Ur Friend
3. Funky Booda
4. Smoke (Part IV)
5. Brick City (4pm)
7. Pepe’s Walk
8. Ferndale Gateaux
10. Brick City (4am)