Rating: 7 / Format: 3xCD / Label: BBE
Dubbed out disco has rarely been more in vogue, with the likes of Prins Thomas, Dam Funk and Disco Bloodbath showcasing it in their DJ sets and using its heavy elastic grooves and low-slung basslines as a springboard for their own productions. But the early-mid ‘80s sound borne from the dancefloors of NY clubs like Paradise Garage and Danceteria has long been championed by comically moustachioed Frenchie Dimitri From Paris and London’s very own original disco-beard stoners The Idjut Boys, the former of which cherry-picked this selection of 12” for the latter to mix.
With a few notable exceptions aside (D Train, Imagination and, er, Wham) the artists featured on Nightdubbin’ are far from household names. As you’d expect, it’s the producers behind the boards on these club hits – Francois Kevorkian, Larry Levan, Paul Simpson, Shep Pettibone – that were the real innovators, melding the space dub and echo of Augustus Pablo and Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry with the exuberant vocal disco of the day to create something new, something that remarkably still sounds fresh and relevant 25 years later. Granted, three CDs of the stuff is probably a bit excessive for anyone but really creepy 38-year-old Prelude obsessives that still live with their mums, especially when several of the tracks are repeated in ‘Mixed’ and ‘Unmixed’ versions (not even a few dubby FX can disguise the fact that the Wham rap on ‘Enjoy What You Do’ really is quite shit). That said, the 32-page booklet that accompanies the package – which includes in-depth interviews with Francois K and Paul Simpson – is a treat.