Various: Beatdown Sampler Volume 1

Hardly an issue has gone by in the last six months without a review of something new from Sonny Fodera. It’s been from a different label every time (Amenti, Large and Guesthouse are a few I remember off-hand) – and each of those labels has a sound that’s pretty radically different from the others. The same can be said of the various staff here that has reviewed ’em.

This time, Sonny is giving the world an idea of how he’s harnessing that sudden renown for his own label, Beatdown, with tracks from four artists (and since they all have “Original Mix” in the title, presumably from four forthcoming singles). “Contact” from Sonny himself is the highlight of the sampler. It slides a bit into Swing House with an old jazz sample and a bass line that sounds like the Shocklee Brothers freebasing a cosmic speedball. James Shoji’s “Don’t Stop” has the same kind of funky Hip Hop vibe, with the swing swapped out for a glitchified scat sample. Tom Shorterz contributes “Cafe of Lost Love,” which chews up Disco and spits it back out, while Marc Spence & Dr. Love’s “What’s His Name?” features a big diva sample (Loleatta Holloway?) and goes in a direction I haven’t been down since I was visiting map-points and dodging glowsticks. It’s an intriguing collection, with at least one bona fide hit right off the bat that I can tell.