May 6, 2016
With his new compilation The Ladies Of Too Slow To Disco out now, German DJ and edits man DJ Supermarkt has scoured the aisles for 10 summer time disco reworks that sound just as good on the dance floor as they do on deck.
Words: DJ Supermarkt
Who would have thought! Yachtrock is back, and officially approved by tastemakers, DJs and the arts/culture press. I personally prefer the words AOR-disco or yacht-disco, because it’s not the ’90s anymore, when the term was invented by a comedy TV series about those late ’70s musicians like Michael McDonald, Hall & Oates, Steely Dan and their mellow, breezy music and how it was perfectly suited to enjoy with a pina colada on your next cruise.
But 2016 is different. Small labels, curators, DJs from all kinds of backgrounds are embracing the late ’70s blue eyed soul vibe. And then there’s our Too Slow To Disco series, the Americana series on BBE, the AOR Global Sounds series on Favorite Rec. and reissue labels like Be With Records, who unearth and rerelease lost gems from the west coast among other things.
While it’s still music that you can listen to at home on your sofa (or on a yacht if you insist…), it has also arrived in sophisticated small clubs & bars, due in part to the kindred spirit of west coast AOR disco and the European Balearic movement. And this is in part because there are now many DJ friendly edits/reworks out there.
Here is a list of some of my favourites on vinyl, most of which take the original track into a completely different direction, which is the true art form of a modern edit. The track names are all a bit cryptic, for obvious reasons…
‘Brown eyes (Mau’s Discofied Tribute)’ from Erown Byes 12″
(Rimini edits #1, 2010)
Rework of a FM classic in a true artistic, breezy, extended way. A legendary 12″ inch from 2010, with all tracks produced by a guy called Magnus Östergren, who then disappeared.
‘California Eagles (Luxxury edit)’ from Luxxury Edits Vol. 1 12″
(Expensive Sounding Music, 2014)
Luxxury is L.A.’s new master of reedits/reworks. This version is an outstanding rework, loved by many people, but also famous for getting him into a whole lot of trouble…. He now releases his own disco music, which is great, check it out.
‘Harvest Moon’ from Harvest Moon & Sade 12″
(Poolside Music, 2013)
San Francisco’s mellow, sophisticated disco poppers and daytime-disco inventors Poolside released a few edits. ‘Harvest Moon’ is a track by Neil Young, but this is not an edit, this is a full on cover version, taking the original folky song into a groovy breezy daytime disco land. This is brilliant, and part of their debut album, which means it is an approved cover. B-Side is another beautiful rework, this time for Sade.
‘Bless the Rains / Not in Love Anymore’ from Tuff Cut 01 12″
(Tuff Cut, 203)
One of the most persistent edit/rework producers out there, from sunny Australia, which is no surprise…. This 12″ came out in 2013 and totally blew everybody away. It features edits for two of the most famous AOR-disco slow groovers. You won’t believe what happens on dance floors all over the world when these two versions are dropped…..
‘Sept-Amber’ from Revisions Vol. 5 12″
This most definitely has the French touch! The Reflex is from Paris, but lives in London. Unlike many of his edit colleagues, he only reworks if he can find the original stems (no idea where you get these, Mr. Internet…?), so he can completely restructure the whole track. He’s done so many great reworks, this is one of them, honouring the legendary Maurice White (R.I.P.) and guaranteed to rock every dance floor.
‘Eagle Flight’ from 12″
(Duff Disco, 2010)
I’ve been playing this track since 2010, when it was released. Slo-mo, dubby, groovy rework by British DJ, producer and Duff Disco label boss.
‘I Wouldn’t Wanna Be With You’ from Caribbean Path 12″
One of the first guys to rework a track by a classic “über-uncool” musician from the early ’80s. Stockholm producer Beatconductor released this 12″ back in 2008 and it has never left my Dj=J-sets. Respect.
‘Dreams (Flight Facilities remix)’ from Dreams 12″
(Not on label, 2012)
Australian electronic disco band take the most famous AOR-Disco track EVER by FM on an extended, slighty dubby ride, which works wonders on dance floors. Surprisingly this goes down well especially with youngsters, that weren’t even born when this was released… Weird modern world.
Dimitri From Stoke on Trent
‘I Wanna Be Your Lobster’ from The Nice One Innit Edits 12″
(Hands Of Time Gold, 2011)
One of the best edits EVER produced! Not yacht rock at all, but comes close to my view of AOR-disco, of course this is Dimitri From Paris reworking a Live version of an early Prince (R.I.P.) classic in a totally mind blowing way.
‘You Can Do It (DJ Supermarkts friendly extended edit)’ from The Ladies Of Too Slow To Disco LP
(How Do You Are?, 2016)
One of the standout tracks and the opener on our third compilation The Ladies of Too Slow To Disco. I did this edit ages ago just to make it easier to play it in clubs and bars. It turns out Evie Sands really likes the version! This is available on a limited 7″, which comes with the Record Store Day version of the double LP.