Italo Classics by KASSO Get Re-Edited by Jellybean Benitez

An Italo classic, New York and Chicago House staple from Best Record worked over by Jellybean with a magic that never loses its touch.

This is pure gold, and linking up the two names above the fold here was an act of artistic madness and pure genius. Kasso was one of the prolific Claudio Simonetti’s best known aliases, producing three albums over 10 years along with a clutch of gorgeous Italo Disco singles. Best Record (yeah, the Best Record which is central to nearly all credible Italo lore) has linked these up with Jellybean Benitez to work a magic that never loses its touch. Jellybean has edited so many damn records over the years (but especially in the wheelhouse of the ’80s and ’90s) that it’s hard for even him to keep track of them, but he has a special affinity for material like this which evokes so much of his own past as a DJ playing marathon sets and scouring the shops to find enough unique disco, cosmic disco and outright bizarre novelty records from Europe to fuel his dancefloor.

All three tracks here are essential, the jukebox selections of Kasso and Simonetti. “Key West” still sings with that sideways strut and shuffle. Jellybean retains the charming thinness of “Walkman” on the flip, with a nervous organ solo and the soul with strings that will never go out of style. Read the same on the uplifting “Kasso” which was the moment that Italo reach back into the grand ballrooms of New York for inspiration while adding his own flair.

Kasso Re-Edited by John Jellybean Benitez (Best Record)
A1. Kasso: “Key West” (Jellybean Re-Edit)
B1. Kasso: “Walkman” (Jellybean Re-Edit)
B2. Kasso: “Kasso” (Jellybean Re-Edit)