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Shin Joong Hyun, Roberto Roena y su Apollo Sound, J Dilla, Mike Nyoni & Born Free, Donald Byrd, Wayne Shorter and Soul Jazz RASTAFARI.

Best New Reissues

Shin Joong Hyun, Roberto Roena y su Apollo Sound, J Dilla, Mike Nyoni & Born Free, Donald Byrd, Wayne Shorter and Soul Jazz RASTAFARI.

A right little tour of wide world sounds. Toots, beats and clatter. Great stuff!

We start this new week with a trip back through the vaults of South Korean rock ‘n’ roll supremo Shin Joong Hyun and two pretty essential sets on Light In The Attic. Firstly, the label’s absolutely scorching Beautiful Rivers And Mountains: The Psychedelic Rock Sound Of South Korea's Shin Joong Hyun 1958-74 compilation that first debuted back in 2011. Experimental pop with hazed out psychedelic tones. We also have a physical pressing of From Where To Where: 1970-79 that we *think* was only previously available as a digital EP to accompany Beautiful Rivers And Mountains.

Both releases are on super limited imported wax in wild colours and have great liner notes, including track-by-track notes from Mr. Shin himself.

My Own Thing is an essential anthology of Zamrock musician Mike Nyoni’s funky, psych-rock and folkloric 1970s recordings… and we mean essential! Prickling guitar tones on the edge of fuzzing out, misty eyed folk angst ballards and some really swaggering funk wah-wah. This anthology on Now Again Records collates works from his three 70s LPs - his first, with the Born Free band, and his two solo albums; Kawalala and I Can’t Understand You. A singular Zambian musician on par with any of the celebrated Zamrock greats.
Best New Reissues
Craft are bringing more than a little bit of flavour to the new week with a reissue of the self-titled Roberto Roena y su Apollo Sound LP, the Puerto Rico Salsa band’s debut for Fania. Full of great energy, form the big and bold to the more swooning Latin Jazz cuts. Great stuff.

+ Features (AAA) lacquers cut from the original master tapes by Kevin Gray at Cohearent Audio, this 180-gram vinyl pressing is housed in a vintage-style tip-on jacket. US import.

Two real beauties as part of the Blue Note Tone Poet series too this week. Firstly, Donald Byrd’s super-graceful 1975 LP, Byrd Blows on Beacon Hill. We’ve spent the last few years going wild for his soul-jazz, but hearing him in such light and swinging mode is tasty too.

A good decade later and absolutely swirling in fusion energy is Wayne Shorter’s Odyssey of Iska. Dark magic with such rich instrumentations, it really does create quite a headspace as it slowly winds.

Byrd is in mono, Shorter is in stereo, both reissues were produced by Joe Harley and mastered by Kevin Gray from the original analog master tapes. Pressed on 180g vinyl at RTI and packaged in a deluxe tip-on jackets with a booklet.

A right peach from the Soul Jazz Records back catalogue with their RASTAFARI - The Dreads Enter Babylon 1955-83 getting a fresh 2024 edition. This new one-off pressing is on limited edition Blue coloured double vinyl edition and the album includes new tracks that have all been fully remastered from the original edition. Thirty years of revolutionary music and links between reggae music and the Rastafarian faith. This really is highly recommended.

Lastly for today, Ruff Draft - the expanded edition of J Dilla’s 2003 EP - is once again back in press following a few editions over the last decade. Upon its original release, the set was a pretty big creative departure and not only showed off his abilities as an MC, but also the sort of experimental production that would lead into collaborations with Madlib and the iconic Donuts LP.