It’s been three years since the U.K. deejay collective Horse Meat Disco last released one of their mixes for disco fans. Strut Records just ended the wait by issuing a new two-disc set from the group entitled Horse Meat Disco Vol. IV. The results reflect the group’s trademark mixture of house, boogie and sleaze disco sounds and does so in style.
The first disc is a custom mix session with Horse Meat Disco and it’s the work of a D.J. group that knows its chosen sounds well. They accentuate a joyful, effervescent style of dance music, deftly shifting from bass-driven electro grooves like Opal’s “Ain’t No Way” to sleek, minimalist house fare like L’Amour’s “Let’s Make Love Tonight” to orchestrated camp delights like Camouflage’s “Bee Sting.” The mixing is straightforward but deft, focusing on a smooth blending of beats, and the sequencing shows some cheeky humor, like when it follows a song entitled “Stop” with another entitled “Don’t Stop.”
The second disc offers twelve unmixed tracks drawn from the sixteen on the mix disc. Everything here stands up on its own, allowing the listener to concentrate on the different disco flavors the first disc effectively blurs together. Highlights include Shahid Mustaf MC’s “Getting To Know You,” a deft update of a vintage Parliament album cut that fuses house beats to 70’s disco band arranging, and Ish’s “Don’t Stop,” a solo venture from the Foxy frontman that offers a mesmerizing 9-minute trip into pure sleaze disco.
Also worthy of note is “Candidate For Love,” credited to Joey Negro Vs. Horse Meat Disco. It’s a stylish slab of disco-style house that cannily fuses old-fashioned, percussive strings and horns with some Moroder-esque dub synths and some grand, galloping drum breaks. In the tradition established by Horse Meat Disco, it deftly blends the old and new in dance music into something that feels fresh and classic all at once.
In short, Horse Meat Disco Vol. IV is another worthy set from this crew. If you’re already familiar with this series, you need not hesitate in picking it up. If you’re new to this collective, this is a fun way to experience their taste in disco.