Volume 08: Free Blood

In the spirit of our occasional “non-dj” twist on the WMIG mix series, our buddy John from Brooklyn’s FREE BLOOD was kind enough to make us this awesome mixtape of influences, inspirations, and springtime newyorkness. Eddie Kendricks, Kid Creole, Freddie Mas; this “tape” harkens back to the high school days of yore when our mixtapes were top to bottom all full of awesome! Embrace the roughly polished sheen of FREE BLOOD and get to listenin at the listenin place! Be sure to download and be sure to check out theFADER.com.

Download audio file (wemakeitgoodmixseriesvol08.mp3)




1.EDDIE KENDRICKS- “My People…Hold On”
This is the title track off Kendricks’ best post-Temptations solo album (other tracks include “Girl You Need A Change Of Mind” and “Date In The Rain”). Pretty much a flawless soul record of the era incorporating romance, sweat, radicalism, psychedelic-ism and just a hint of ruffled-cuff shmaltz. This track in particular resonated with me in the weeks leading up to President Obama’s victory….yessssss!

2.HERMAN’S ROCKET-”Disco Woman”
A strange gem (of many) found in the basement of Brooklyn’s legendary vinyl graveyard The Thing. The flipside is also entitled “Disco Woman” though it sounds like a much more straightforward cosmic funk endeavor with great Labelle-esque vocals. I imagine this track was a playful attempt at cashing in on space alien mania surrounding “E.T.” and “Star Wars”….and hey, there’s a theremin in the corner of the studio. Why don’t we use that for something?

Yes, it’s backwards! At least most of it is another Coconuts track called “Yolanda” flip and scrambled, with Kid throwing fresh (forwardly) vocals on top. Total NYC downtown 80’s mayhem ensues! Guaranteed dance floor clearer!

4.ADRIANO CELENTANOS-”Prisencolinensinainciusol” (Greg Wilson edit)
This is a mysterious track that I had little insight into until I looked it up on the Picadilly Records site. Apparently Mr. Celentanos is Italian, though I’m convinced he and his minions are chanting in some kind of Cockney/Esperanto/Pig Latin dialect of their own invention. I love the mix of drone and hoe-down pushing it to the outer limits of what could be called disco.

5.LITTLE WALTER-”Mellow Down Easy”
The hoe-down drone continues…Little Walter (now being touted as the Tupac of his day) reminds the sweating, grinding, bopping speakeasy patrons to keep it copacetic before somebody gets hurt. Then he whips them into a life-threatening frenzy with his serrated harmonica.

Former Gorie, Mick Collins leads his new band through this appropriately fuzzed-out/dubbed-out version of the Curtis Mayfield single (another movie cash-in from the days of “Enter The Dragon” and “Black Belt Jones”??). This is from their album “Ultraglide In Black” on which they do raw garage covers of classic R & B songs from the 60’s and 70’s. Finally, an effective marriage of snot and soul….

7.CLOUD-”Learn To Fly”
I’m not sure about the original artist on this one, but it was part of the re-edit series by Cloud. Sounds like Heart slipping into a bathtub full of absinthe with Norman Whitfield.

8.WIGHT LIGHT ORCHESTRA-”Chaos & Consciousness”
Max Brennan’s return from spiritual upheaval/enlightenment on the mountain. Great for those who enjoy meditation background music with lots of popping bass, or conversely or house party hedonists who need a time out.

9.FREDDIE MAS-”Detail Of A Detail”
NYC’s unsung hero. A one-man tornado of rhythm, sweetness, bodily harm and good taste. A staple of my life pretty much since I moved to the city and a continual inspiration. He is threatening to discontinue the Freddie Mas franchise in favor of new, out-outer musical mindfucks. This track is a relatively subdued FM, tamed by the calculating hand of Champion Soul. I secretly want to keep Mr. Mas alive so more people can catch up to what I’ve been raving about for years.

10.UNKNOWN ARTIST-”Robotwerke” (Futurist Edit)
A nice warm buzzing feeling permeates this track amidst all the pounding robotic coldness. Proof that electronics can breathe, or at least wheeze.

11.CAMEO-”I Just Want To Be”
My stereo was acting weird while I made this mix and transformed this track into a stripped-down mono version, reducing it to mostly drums and vocals. I wanted to end the mix on an up note and this song typifies the fun style of funk I call “peanut butter”. Lots of bouncing bass, tickling guitars, goofy voices and an implicit wetness to the proceedings. There is some tie-in with the post-election euphoria and Obama’s willingness to “be [the American people’s] honeybee if you want [him] to be”, but I haven’t quite put my finger on it.

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