Rhythm Section Big Kahuna Bradley Zero normally doesn’t have to leave his yard to find prodigious talent for his label. If Peckham strong though, god knows what Melbourne is at the moment. The water supply must be coursing with some mutant blues gene that makes even the nerdiest kids grow up with soul in their very bones.
Rhythm Section 11 is a slight sideways shimmy for the label and it’s going to be a tough act to follow. It’s the vinyl/digital release of an album that appeared on tape-only at the end of last year, much to the chagrin of of non cassette-heads. ‘Sacrifice’ is producer SILENTJAY and Hiatus Kaiyote crew singer/song- writer Jace XL’s instant classic E.P that fires them right up there among the most memorable and exciting male r’n’b duos you can possibly think of.
It’s an album that feels warm and familiar at the same time as individual and innovative. It has the joyful & light touch of Dwele’s ‘Subject’, the bedroom-produced simplicity and invention of ‘Living With Owusu & Hannibal’ and the rootsy vibrations of a young Massive Attack. Jace XL’s vocals are mighty – Mara TK raw and sprinkled with harmonic flourishes that invoke Anthony Hamilton and D’Angelo. ‘Sacrifice’ is a pasture wild and new but contains something well-tilled and sort of Usheresque. By the time the brilliant ‘Brisvegas’ builds to a beautiful climax with it’s elaborately layered guitar refrains, you’ll already be wishing you had a physical copy of this exceptional soul project. Let’s hope they get fully nurtured and loved by South London and can grace us with a load more of these seriously good vibrations.