Be an asset to the collective”.
I have no doubt that the decision to only release two volumes of Now That’s What I Call Music in 1990 was strongly influenced by the Now Dance strategy. The end of February saw the appearance of Now Dance 901 – the inclusion of the ‘1’ a clear indication that more would follow. The day-glo sleeve [very Daisy Age] comes with the usual tagline “20 Smash Dance Hits – The 12″ Mixes” with the featuring credits going to Technotronic, FPI Project, D Mob, Mantronix, Soul II Soul, 49ers, De La Soul, Inner City “and many more!”
We lead with Technotronic and their second hit, Get Up (Before The Night Is Over). Like its predecessor Pump Up The Jam, this reached #2 in the UK charts and the Dance Action Mix features Ya Kid K. The FPI Project consisted of three Italian DJs named Fratty, Presti and Intrallazzi who then teamed up with British singer Sandra Dee Clarke for a top-notch version of Lamont Dozier’s Going Back To My Roots. Unlike several other CD appearances, we get the full “zippin’ up my boots” female vocal. Fresh for the new decade, D-Mob plundered the O-Jays’ Put Our Heads Together for the feelgood house of Put Your Hands Together. Nuff Juice came along for the ride. Brixton bass. It’s followed by Mantronix’s heady and sweaty jam, Got To Have Your Love (Club With Bonus Beats).
Dub Be Good To Me’s pumped-up version of the 1984 S.O.S. Band tune topped the charts all through March 1990. Beats International make it timeless and funky. Lindy Layton’s vocal is sweet. Soul II Soul’s second album Vol. II: 1990 – A New Decade was preceded by the smooth hip hop grooves of Get A Life. All credits to Marcia Lewis and the kids chorus. Watch out for the 49ers and the sexual longing in Touch Me before going into full disco meltdown as Jimmy Somerville sprinkles magic boogie dust onto the Sylvester classic. But the true life-affirming number belongs to Dusty Springfield. Reborn with Reputation; In Private was written by Tennant / Lowe and remodeled by Shep Pettibone into a hedonistic trip. The closing track on the first disc is the bass-heavy Sit And Wait (Stationary To Stationary Mix) from German-based Sydney Youngblood. Thought-provoking.
Three feet high and rising. De La Soul blend Bob Dorough’s Three Is The Magic Number into their own image. Rough sound, perfect beat. Gino Latino was the name conceived in 1988 by Italian producer Claudio Cecchetto to be used for Jovanotti’s early Italo productions. Welcome is proper old skool house that’s always fresh. The vocal sample “Welcome” sounds like Patrick Allen of Protect and Survive fame. Now for some demented victim narcissism: Lil’ Louis and The World’s I Called U. House with a short story. The woman with the vacant stare and the bread knife.
“Why can’t we start again”.
Balearic Beats is probably my favourite dance compilation ever. The opening track was Jibaro by Electra. Now here’s the follow up; the slinky Destiny mixing downtempo beats with jazzy breaks and Ibizan chants. Kudos to Paul Oakenfold. More superstar DJs getting their wings: Jeremy Healy and Simon Rogers of The E-Zee Possee with the piano-driven Love On Love. Dr Mouthquake aka Mr Dust on vocal duties. Elsewhere Whatcha Gonna Do With My Lovin’ gave Inner City their fifth UK top 20 hit. I still prefer the Stephanie Mills original although this remix by Kevin McCord is quite soulful.
Wait! It’s Kym Mazelle singing Jean Carn. The groovy Was That All It Was is firmly in the club’s red zone. Meanwhile the Neneh Cherry rollercoaster continued with Raw Like Sushi’s fourth single, a brand new take on the urban funk of Inna City Mamma. Living for the city: Encore was a massive club success for Tongue ‘N’ Cheek in late 1989; dope beats by Colin and Junior with a powerful vocal from Maureen. The last men standing are Age Of Chance. C86 survivors and sonic colliders of many styles. Higher Than Heaven is somewhat po-faced in its delivery but the message is sound. This Righteous Club Mix is expertly de-constructed by Freddy Bastone. Over and out.
Electra – Destiny (The Rave Mix)
Gino Latino – Welcome (Long Version)
Dusty Springfield – In Private (Shep Pettibone Remix)
Lest we forget
Lil’ Louis and The World – I Called U (Original Mix)