Oscar McMillan’s Top Picks w/ Bonus

1. Lil Louis – Fable
A release that marks a turning point for Gramaphone Records as it is the record stores first vinyl recording. Armed with impressive remixes by such notable Chicago pioneers as Frankie Knuckles, Anthony Nicholson, Glenn Underground and capped with an extended edit of the original supplied by Lil Louis himself, easily makes this item a must have.

2. Monodeluxe feat Jaidene Veda – Change
For those that have both a deep appreciation for the artistic and sensual side of underground music and have been anxiously awaiting a vinyl release from producer/DJ extraordinaire Vick Lavender, wait no longer. This release surpasses all expectations. Dazzling.

3. Ron Trent – Raw Footage Part One
With this 4 track E.P. spread over 2 pieces of vinyl, Ron takes a walk on the dark side. He manages to capture a blend of Detroit and Chicago with slight touches of his signature organic rhythms. Think strong, bold and spectacular.

4. Glenn Underground – Legacy Of The Know E.P. 1 & E.P. 2
For those vinyl lovers that by passed Glenn Underground’s “Legacy Of The Know” full length CD, you have an opportunity to pick up two 4 track E.P’s. They are both without a doubt pure gold and carry a few unreleased mixes of signature titles from his album. I hope that that is inspiration enough to purchase both the full length and the E.P.’s .

5. Joaquin Joe Claussell – Unofficial Edits And Overdubs Samplers/CD’s
Not only is Joe a master of the decks and one of New York’s architects of organic and celestial rhythms, but he has also carved out a niche in the edit arena, by taking the process a step further… providing additional nuance to the splice.  I must say, that the task adds quite a might more imagination, depth and individuality to an indiscriminate selection. I’ve often wondered why many of those that fish in this particular pool have not taken the same steps. Hats off to you Mr. Claussell. Thus far, roughly 2 CD’s, five E.P.’s, a 7 inch and a few lone 12 inch singles have been released and I presume more will follow. There is a wealth of knowledge on each. Pick them all up.

Part 1 Promo : Dido – Don’t Believe In Love (DF Remix)
Yello – Bostich (Key A Pela)
Radio Head – Everything In It’s Right Place (Long Version)

Part 2 Promo : Yello – Bostich (Demo Version Number 2)
Lil Louis – I Called You (Long Version)
James Mason – Sweet Power (Your Embrace)

Part 1: Michael Wycoff – Come Into My World
Jermaine Jackson – Erucu
Unknown Artist – Gift of Gnawa
The Escort – Disco Party

Part 2: Can – Vitamin C
Perfect Touch – This Is Hot
Dogs Of War – Future Jungle
The Harrison Simon Group – Wind Chant

Part 3: Instant Funk – It Ain’t Reggae, But It’s Funk
Thom Yorke – The Eraser (Odiba Long Version)
Ronnie Law – Nothing Bout Nuttin
Herbie Mann – Rhythmatism

Debbie Jacobs – Don’t You Want My Love (12 inch Edit)

Michael Jackson – You Are Not Alone (12 inch Edit)

Womack And Womack – My Dear (The Letter) (12 inch Edit)

Joaquin Joe Claussell – The Unofficial Edits and Overdubs Volume 1 CD

6. Glenn Underground – The Wilderness
Known for his fantastic finger work and as CVO (Chicago’s Very Own), Glenn’s sound is rich, unmistakable and seemingly boundless. Enlisting a mesh of acid and soloed keys as the back drop for his latest 12 inch, he tastefully captures the spirit of genius.

7. Various – Modern Artifacts 4
Two track rare classic goodness, both reworked by Ashley Beedle. The A side is occupied with a compelling version of “I Love My Lady” by Chic and Johnny Mathis. The flip is consumed by a lengthy instrumental by Willie Williams And The Sound Dimension entitled ” Addis Ababa.

8. Angela Johnson – Forever I Do/Chinahblac – Till You Go
This project is produced by Josh Milan, one half of Blaze and offers the best in traditional vocal dance music. It is difficult to categorize this project as merely house, because it is filled with the kind of effort present in dance music that garnered radio/club play in the late 70’s and early to late 80’s. If this 12inch is not enough for you, check out his full length. Supreme.

9. Various/ Italian Records
This E.P. hosts four 80’s Italo gems, but the signature attention grabber is “I.C. Love Affair” by Gaz Nevada, which by the way, was a treasure that garnered major play by Frankie Knuckles and Ron Hardy.

10. Chris Forman feat. Jon Pierce with Stephanie Cook – It’s In You
As one part of a 2 man production team (Stealvybe), Chris Forman steps away for an effort on Phuture Soul Recordings, featuring two highly gifted and well respected vocalists in the dance music arena. The chemistry between each of these entities is nothing short of dynamic.

Bonus: Phil Asher – Rhythmical Whims E.P.
Phil Asher can easily be classified as the gold standard of underground dance music culture and this latest 3 track piece is proof of that. Drop the needle on Piano featuring Dwala and Juno in particular, not only will your system come alive…it will take flight.

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