That uncredited sleeve note in full:
“Presenting the year 1989 as seen from the eyes of the storm. Remember where we started? And how she changed my life and how she made it end. Some velvet morning when we’re straight? So who were the gifted ones? The sensual stars of our wildest dreams? We sampled everything that moved – so long as it moved in the right circles. Black Riot was caught in the fire of Rob Base’s ‘cross-over’ – Technotronic bowed to Todd Terry – the Italians played the piano – rappers got dirtier, so more people listened – new voices were heard – Adeva really sings – some never sang – but they looked as if they didn’t ever need to – James Brown got confused with a woman’s pleasure over and over ‘Ow! Ow!!’ Remember that night? This album is the end of the beginning – we can only grow – faster, deeper, sexier! Good to hear these things again – they’ve been scattered on the fields away from home where they don’t belong. You fingered the sleeves of ‘those’ compilations and they got dirty. ‘Deep Heat’ was always too hot to touch for longer that it takes to enjoy the flame. So we did it all over again, but we added some new flesh to old bones – check side 4 – you’ll grow to love Kimiesha Holmes – and the warm feeling Mac Thornhill gives is just the start of ‘The First Touch’. Soul found it’s way back home and the fusion of heritage and future fell in love. The critics couldn’t find the talent but Deep Heat was there and we, and YOU, found it – from the nervous eyes of moonlight kisses we always knew we belonged together, and you created your own street-level ‘A&R’. Most of the tracks on Deep Heat were never played on the radio. So how did you fall in love with them? Fate as always turned a friendly card to those who are born for each other. How can you tell when the voice on the phone will become the face of your dreams and night after night, as strange as it seems, the face, seen through a psychic’s eye, becomes the love you never believed possible, her long dark hair tamed by wild hands – eyes glowing with love, and the sound of her laughter will ring in your dreams. Don’t let ANYONE stop you dreaming. Dreams are the visions of the soul our hearts need to survive. To teach to dream is to learn to love. Look inside yourself – the truth always lies there. And it shines – like a star. The turn of the decade will bring a new ‘DEEP’ – keep watching – keep believing – read those words on the sleeves if you want to know the future. The clues are all there. Be young, be foolish, be happy – but most of all – keep the dream alive!!”
December 1989: KG Discs, Waterford. At first glance Deep Heat ’89: Fight The Flame looks like a re-hash of the first four volumes. A closer look reveals that just 15 of its 32 tracks have already featured in the series. That’s enough to close the sale. I get the fatbox home and press play. Party started. The Steiger is out. It’s nearly all radio edits here so five of the 15 common tunes are shorter takes than what originally appeared on the first instalment [Can You Party, Break 4 Love, Stakker Humanoid] and the third volume [People Hold On, Me Myself And I]. So just 10 duplicates.
Disc 1 is labelled Hit Blitz And Anthems while Disc 2 consists of two suites: (i) Euro Beat and Latin Heat and (ii) Cool Grooves and Nu Moves. Directly ported over from Deep Heat are Adeva’s remoulded Otis of Respect, Black Riot’s radical militant stance of A Day In The Life, Joe Smooth’s euphoric Promised Land and Hithouse’s ode to Jack. Three more classics appear in shorter alternatives forms – Royal House’s warehouse blinder Can You Party (Club Mix), Raze’s timeless all-feet-on-the-floor, all-hands-in-the-air Break 4 Love and a curious edit of Stakker Humanoid (Snowman Mix). You know the score.
Deep Heat 2 – The Second Burn deals us straight copies of Rob Base and DJ E-Z Rock’s synth masterpiece Get On The Dancefloor and the furious / busy vibes of LNR’s Work It To The Bone. The posse from Deep Heat 3 – The Third Degree: fresh then, super fresh now – A Guy Called Gerald’s Voodoo Ray churns up some Madchester magic. Plus Donna Allen’s souled-up Joy And Pain. A pair of radio edits too; Coldcut and Lisa Stansfield’s driving cut-up house of People Hold On, De La Soul’s self-absorbed Me Myself And I. Finally there’s two movers from Deep Heat 4 – Play With Fire – Starlight’s Numero Uno and Technotronic’s Pump Up The Jam.
Also included under the Hit Blitz and Anthems umbrella is Inner City’s revolutionary techno of Big Fun. It’s followed by S-Express’ feelgood Hey Music Lover with Monie Love’s upfront and crucial I Can Do This making an appearance shortly afterwards. Wee Rule punches above is weight here; its toytown rhythms sounding oddly powerful sandwiched between De La Soul and Joe Smooth. Meanwhile Farley “Jackmaster” Funk joins forces with the Hip House Syndicate for the righteous free James Brown groove of Free At Last. The Beatmasters featuring the enigmatic Merlin gave us the hip house cracker Who’s In The House while Lisa Stansfield made her solo debut that summer with the hot urban soul sound of This Is The Right Time. I remember hearing one of Dublin’s pirate stations play it that July while on my Cure weekend. Sundown on Sandymount.
Time for some Euro Beat and Latin Heat. Sueno Latino is mistakenly listed as The Latin Dream Edit [runs for about 3:50] but instead we’re treated to full monty – The Latin Dream Mix – which runs for 10:35 and would also show up on Dance Max. A seriously epic trip. You’ll need The Right Stuff Remix ’89 [on Stylus Music] for the edit and I will be reviewing it in due course. Another extended version is the Wild Mix of Raul Orellana’s dawn-is-breaking The Real Wild House. Dreams of San Antonio. Like pressing a happy button and being taken back instantly.
Cool Grooves and Nu Moves is largely concerned with the new. We start with the seminal Strings Of Life [Rhythim Is Rhythim] before checking out more unheralded pastures. There’s bashful and self-conscious hip hop from Digital Underground and then some quality R&B – Kimiesha Holmes’ pleading Love Me True and Jo Ann Jones’ I Don’t Need Your Love. The soul tip continues with Kelly Charles and James Bratton’s duet Keep On Reachin’ before Mac Thornhill’s booming piano-led Diana. Watch out for the New Order Fine Time sample. Humanoid pop up again with the vocal-led Tonight [honeyed words from Sharon Benson and Janet Cofie] before we end with the almost unknown House Master Boyz and the slow-burning menace of Do It Fast. Stop, start – aux 89.
Lisa Stansfield – This Is The Right Time
A Guy Called Gerald – Voodoo Ray
Joe Smooth – Promised Land
Raul Orellano – The Real Wild House (Wild Mix)
Lest we forget
Monie Love – I Can Do This (Uptown Mix)