Monday, Apr 11 2005 | 12:07

The maturity and sensitivity of Nostalgia 77‘s music belie his relatively recent step into beat-making. Influences are wide ranging; the drums of funk and hip-hop are strong guiding forces, as is the melody of jazz and the atmosphere of psychedelic rock. Having consistently refined the quality of his musical selection while djing for a number of years, the fuller musical expression of actually making his own music was inevitable.

Debuting as Nostalgia 77 for Tru Thoughts Recordings with a heavy, new funk sound, he presents a more cerebral, jazz sound for Blue Juice and of course, Museum. Often to be found in close collaboration with Natural Self in DJing and production, Nostalgia 77’s commitment to patiently pursue a vision and constantly raise his game, will become ever more apparent in time to come.

Nostalgia 77’s debut solo release on Tru Thoughts was a hefty slice of 7″ 45 business in the form of “Brother / Lamplight”, which was swiftly followed up by the equally popular 7″ release, “The Goat / The Messenger”. With appearances on the MTV Mono compilation album and a stormer of a remix of label mate Natural Self’s classic “Solomon” on Shapes One, Nostalgia’s club-friendly horn-stabs and fast, loud drums are set to reach a wider audience.

Following on from these 7″ releases came the debut Nostalgia 77 longplayer, entitled “Songs For My Funeral“. More atmospheric and moody than earlier tracks, the album combined the hard, heavy breaks which had characterised “Brother” and “The Goat” with lush instrumentation and a weighty, cinematic feel. Filled with touches of jazz, soul and folk music in addition to the deep funk for which he is best known, “Songs For My Funeral” marks an important progression in the Nostalgia 77 sound, as well as being a beautifully-crafted, involving and emotional listen. The album won praise from reviwers, DJs, and listeners alike: Grand Slam called it “A brooding epic of sombre horns, acoustic bass, gospel voices, and crunching beats … An utterly enagaging debut”.

With his reputation growing rapidly, Nostalgia 77 is following up his debut with his new album “The Garden” on Tru Thoughts. This LP sees Nostalgia 77 explores his love of 60’s and 70’s jazz, soul, funk and Afrobeat sounds; decidedly moving away from hip-hop production towards investigating his love of spiritual jazz styles. Having worked with some fine musicians, “The Garden” fuses live instrumentation with computer programming, forging a unique and highly accomplished sound.

Nostalgia 77 – The Garden : Audio Samples

Feedback to “The Garden” LP :

“An absolute blinder. Essential!” Straight No Chaser

“This beats Blue Note silly, echoes the best of P-Funk and puts DJ Shadow to shame.” Record Collector Magazine

“Nothing short of a touch of genius.” i-DJ

“Brooding epic, and utterly engaging.” Grandslam

“Expertly played and programmed. Essential music.” Soul Generation

“Startlingly good second album. Definitely another one for the treasure chest.” The List

“An absolutely wonderful jazz fusion LP with a full live jazz combo. Feeling every track on this. Big Up to the Tru Thoughts Crew!” Kev Beadle, Solar Radio

“Excellent LP. Been looking forward to this for a while. Love the whole album, very strong and consistant throughout. Will be in my record box for a long time to come.” Simon S, Break Reform

“Awesome! A brave musical move for the artist and the label but an excellent one at that! Taking the N77 sound to the next level without losing any of the grittyness. Charting at Number One. LP of The Year!” Ben Smith, Best Kept Secret

“Beautiful album, everlasting quality. Will play it for many many years to come. We need more music like this.” Zeljko Kerleta, Cosmic Sounds

Nostalgia 77The Garden (Tru Thoughts) is out now.

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