Music Week "Best of 2011" - Lucien Etori

Lucien Etori
DJ/Brand Consultant/ Style Council member 
New York City

Top Albums of 2011

Americana  Rock Your Soul : Blue Eyed Soul and Sounds from the Land of the Free (compilation)
Skillfully and stylishly toeing the line between proper rock and groovy soul music, this compilation of often completely unknown (to me) American 80s artists was by far my favorite record of the year

Prommer and Barck  Alex & The Grizzly
Alex Barck and Christian Prommer are two pioneering German DJs and producers that I've been listening to since the mid-90s, on this collaboration they engage in a gorgeous alchemy of house/techno/nu-disco-esque beats and basslines seasoned with impressively languid vocals from Mr. Barck himself.

Bad Bad Versions
This is a remix version of the outstanding Bad Bad Things album by French reggae band Blundetto. Lots of flavorful reggae-lectrified new versions including an absolutely killer dancehall meets techno version of my favorite track, My One Girl.

Little Barrie   King of the Waves
One of my favorite rock bands does it again. Based on a really simple formula of: driving rhythms and powerhouse raspy vocals with more than a little bit of funk sparkle thrown in the mix. King of the Waves could have held its own in the 1970s when rock bands weren't afraid to pay homage to real rhythm and blues of yesteryear.

Jazzanova  Coming Home
Jazzanova are a Berlin based DJ collective that's been active since the early 90s and I own literally everything single record, compilation or single they've ever put out. They're one of a handful of musicians/producers that are automatic "I don't even need to listen to the record, I'm buying it." Their taste level is off the charts perfect and is displayed splendidly on this compilation which is a little electronic, a little indie with a lot of soul.

Nicola Conte   Love and Revolution
Bari, Italy - based jazzman Nicola Conte released a very very strong jazz record in his very own trademark, funky, club oriented style. Lots of sunny vocals this time around to keep the energy up. As always he uses the best jazz musicians in Italy to create flawlessly executed yet completely modern music

The Step Kids   The Step Kids
Great new member of the Stones Throw roster, another - by this point you can tell I love record that don't adhere to one stye of music - hybrid sound that borrows heavily from Motown era harmony soul music but is fimly rooted in contemporary indie rock. Clocks in at a succinct 36 minutes but a super easy fun listen. I love this record.

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