Global e groove

Forget techno in all its many ,; disguises, 1992, for anyone willing g to listen, has been the year of super-smooth funk. Along with Galliano, Brand New Heavies have been this country’s finest exponents. Craig McLean tracked the band


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. __ v: A fig i '-. . . . '- dowp to Japffln to dlscover gIObal ‘1 don’t think we ever saw that as not being a i more than just superfly funkateers. ‘We did it domination 18 but a rare groove possibility; Kincaid admits, ‘but I personally I because we knew we could do it,’ says Kincaid of away. didn’t make that one of my aims . . . We did always ' their second album, Heavy Rhyme Experience take it quite seriously in the hope that it would pick _V01- 1 , reieased three months 389. Heavy Rhyme Ifitss loam on Sunday morning, it must be Japan. up, but it’s been a very gradual chain of events] 18 a C(iliCCthC effort, a collaboration thWCCI} the Cooling down in the Grand Hotel in Osaka, one Kincaid and fellow Heavies Andrew Levy and HeaVleS and assorted tap heavyweights “the d Jan Kincaid _ beatsman, prime mover and Simon Bartholomew have steeped themselves in eiOeked the band in the States and Wattted to hang possessor of an improbaon cooool name _ the funk since they were this high. Milling about in Out With these Upstart LONdOHeFS- Matti Source, considers the facts. His band, The Brand New the 5Pt0tttth8 London tare groove seehe Of the Gang. Stair and Master Ace are some or the guests’ Heavies, have been {unking for five years now. early eighties, they formed a band who liked funk, grafting hiP hOP and ragga onto the HetheS hind They’ve jammed and slogged and survived the played jazz, and were left on the shelf when House grooves- The ehd‘teSUtt W35 tough and tough» and hassle of being dropped by their first record label eehpsed Stteh tme’te'the'teets 705 the5~ a new angle 9" the Hcfmes‘ , after one single. They watched their first album ‘Cht'ysahs Signed “5 iUSt 35 the Tate groove thing says cha'd’ That S really how we: ve always . slip out on Acid Jazz then slip away largely ' was dying, and that was Why they Signed U5 they played’ m our, rah/est Sense’ end that S how W‘? St!" unremarked, only for it to re-appear a couple of were iUSt too late in getting 0“ the bandwagon, Ptey When we re Jamm‘qg' It 5 a,case of breaking years later- this time beefed up and bolstered by Jen didn’t mind being ‘tet 80’ by Chrysah5~ twe thmgs down to an organic level' . creamy new vocals courtesy of one N’Dea just dropped back into the background, and just And 50 the Party FONS Oh- .Amettea: Japan, Davenport. They took to the US R ’N’ B charts in carried 0" With What we were dethg and SOhdtthhg Europe - Brand NF?” “em/'65 and] the awfth a laidback stylee as ‘Never Stop’ zipped across the our aetf : duh V'be’ the Me Juice of the nine funk/r n black and college radio airwaves. Thus What goes around Comes around - - - New label b/Soultul cxpe.ncncc’ and d‘Sh It Qut’ uppenurbeq kickstarted, The Brand New Heavies party has Aetd Jazz and the HetheS hOOked UP- The hand ' by the "letcas‘ne qetheiand .dlmens'o"? 0f the" proved unstoppable. Cue Japan (for the second polished their sound, arriving at a sexy mix ofdeep i the aUdtehee- It 5 UP vtt 5 9091th ~3hd it works time this year), sell-out shows at lOOO-capacity i “hit, daheefloet eloquence» and commetetat a treat . . . venues, and, perhaps, a stadium funk band in the f aplemh- Their eponymous dtht album was , I.” ms hot?! {Com m Osaka‘ Jan chald Shrues‘ making, i re-jigged and re-released earlier this year. People : I JUStgtte5$1t S something We Fe ahie to do- - - The Brand New Heavies, onetime doyens Ofthe liked it, sucked in by this groovey retro-fashion. f Bfand New Heat’iesplay The Bar'OW/a’tdv elitistly hip London rare groove scene, as a global BUt it that was ittSt a Stage the ehthseehe was 5 Glasgow 0" wed 9' phenomenon? ’Fraid so. i going through, the Heavies proved they were E g sometime Shut Up And Dance ; Anyway. We’re here to talk clubs, not , topping against rippling Italian piano _ recording artist, sometime classical . history. ‘One oi my pupils is right into i and , on the SUAD remix, rampant 2 composer. The past lew years have 3 hardcore rave music, and he came to ' techno delirium. It’s a chalk ’n’ cheese 2 seen the Glasgow-based Prot dabble : me to ask how it was done,’ says the mix, but exactly the kind at i with pop production and soul 3 Prol. lie pondered tor a while, applying ' against-the-grain diversion Proiessor I I arrangements. But utilising that old ; his academic mind to the mechanics 0t ' Nick was looking ior. u n I I m ‘classically trained’ gambit he has also dance music. 3000 he tountt himself i ‘There are still bits about rave music . tocused his attentions on scoring torsaitinii albeit temporarllv- the , that puzzle me. Sometimes the way h t t concertos and symphonies, and 2 raritied climes oi opera tor the iuguiar ? that things are juxtaposed - dltierent o tanning out his expertise as a music i kictts to he had on the dancetloor. A keys that have got nothing to do with teacher. Looming large over these , couple 0t demos and a deal with each other, but they work. There's a ‘I enjoy pop music iorthe vibe about it, disparate endeavours, though, was his é ever-thrusting label SUAD later, ‘I Just kind oi atonality about it which you also but It can occasionally be somewhat I operatic treatment oi the Masada saga i Do What My Heart Feels’ is on the _ express in classical music, These days undemanding . . .’ So he wrote an -the year-long siege by the Romans at i streets. as a modern composer you have to look opera on the side, as you do it your a Jewish mountain-top lortress, which i The 12in ieattifes the tloatsome not just at what sounds nice, but at creative juices are insuiilclently culminated in the Jews’ mass suicide vocals 0t teilow Glaswegian Cathy what sounds horrible too!’ (Craig stimulated. lllck Cox is Protessor Love, ratherthan yield to their aggressors. i McCall". and sets ott this dream McLean)

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The List 4- 17 December 1992 57