Far Out Monster Disco Orchestra ‘Black Sun’ LP/CD/Dig (Far Out Recordings) 4/5

Far Out are not simply adept at re-issuing material with a Brazilian tinge, but have made it their vocation to facilitate new hybrid sounds, and the Far Out Monster Disco Orchestra, is but one illustration, fusing Brazilian musicianship and the head days of disco. The CD version is the preferred option on this occasion for this writer since the orchestra operates best as an instrumental unit, with occasional background vocals where necessary. The CD version is just short of eighty minutes, with lengthy instrumental versions of five vocal tracks from the original album. All three original members of Azymuth are present with Fernando Moraes doubling up on various keyboards. An authentic retro disco ambiance is generated on ‘Step Into My Life’, with punchy brass and subtle Fender, while the disco workout of, ‘Black Sun’, builds into an epic number with catchy and repetitive riff. If anything co-producer and multi-instrumentalist Daniel Maunick sounds as if he has been taking notes from the Ashford and Simpson songbook of building into a crescendo-like intro and this is evident on ‘Flying High’. Syndrums and flute combine effectively on the 1970’s old school disco of, ‘Give it to me’, the title of which has graced many a disco/funk tune in its time. A second release, then, from the collective that previously released a self-titled debut album back in 2014, which then received the remix treatment. Likely to feature on many a dance floor in the months to come.

Tim Stenhouse