Single 1: Pure Silk ‘What You Do For Me’ Out Now
Single 2: Taffy ’Passion’ released 6th October
Full LP released vinyl and digital 13th October
Listen to ‘Just A Touch’ HERE
Over the past few years, London based DJ and curator Sam Don has shone new light into the Reggae sub-genre of Lovers Rock - London’s romantic reply to the overtly political roots reggae coming out of Jamaica in the 1970s. His deep, yet deeply accessible selections have opened the ears of many to the genre. With Just A Touch, available on Athens Of The North on 13th October, Sam Don shines his torch even deeper, this time through crates of UK Underground Soul, painstakingly researching and tracking down each producer to bring you some of the sweetest soul cuts that will ever grace your eardrums.
Just A Touch kicks off with Bô’vel’s 1991 stunner Coming Back; only ever released on a small pressing and considered the holy grail of UK Soul. From this genre defining track, Sam Don takes us through the lusciously laid-back Life by Sam and into the sultry Take Me There by Marcelle Moncreiffe before Kofi adds a more breaks-y feel with Step By Step.
The first single from the album, Pure Silk’s What You Do For Me (Released 29th September) is a beautifully produced slice of Street Soul with echoes of Neneh Cherry and Sade that will instantly become your new earworm. Sam Don then takes you back to the synth soul sounds of the late 80’s with the likes of Jenny B, Sonja Ryshard and Dennis Planter, whose I Still Dream of You has some delicious bass work.
The second single, Passion by Taffy (Available 6th October), is a record that always turns heads when played out, half a dozen hands reaching into their pockets to try and shazam this modern masterpiece. Weekend In Paris finish the LP with a beautiful ‘end-of-the-night’ track, leaving you reaching to turn back to Side A and return the needle to the start of the groove.
Sam Don explains: Whilst the US is most well-known for soul music, the UK has created its own take on the genre, due to the melting pot of cultures and musical styles that makes the UK so special. I didn’t ‘set out’ to make a compilation like this, but one night an idea came to me, and I sketched it out at home with my record collection. When I saw how well these sounds came together, I started my mission to find the people involved with them and ‘Just A Touch’ was created.
Pure Silk is a one-man musical production powerhouse named Anthony Brightley. You could write a book about the huge impact this man has had on London reggae music but as this energetic street soul track (What You Do For Me) demonstrates, his talent in creating masterpieces crosses over genres.
Taffy’s track Passion has been one of my favourite discoveries in recent years. Everyone I’ve played it to has been completely floored by it. It’s a lost Balearic soul masterpiece that has all the signs that it could become a massive favourite for so many others.
Buy Pure Silk ‘What You Do For Me’ (Single): https://aotns.bandcamp.com/track/what-you-do-for-me
Pre-order link for ‘Just A Touch’ LP: https://aotns.bandcamp.com/album/just-a-touch-pre-order
Sam Don / Athens Of The North Links