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Tom Moulton - A Tom Moulton Mix

Released on Soul Jazz, 5/16/06

Myself and many of my peers were too young to experience the disco heyday of the 70s, the hedonism and excess that accompanied it, not to mention the bold and striking fashion that went along with it. Fortunately, an album like Tom Moulton’s A Tom Moulton Mix comes along that seems to capture all of the spirit, energy, and personality of that era.

To provide context, Tom Moulton has been a seminal figure in the world of disco/dance music for over three decades. His work has influenced countless others. One of his current contemporaries Dimitri From Paris has assembled a handful of remixes that sound eerily similar to Moulton’s remixes in A Night At The Playboy Mansion and After The Playboy Mansion. Both of these albums are filled with 70s disco/dance inspired remixes that capture the spirit of this unique (and often maligned) musical period.

Not surprisingly, Dimitri lavishes Tom Moulton with praise, "Tom Moulton played a major part in laying the foundations of dance music as we know it today. Over three decades he has designed numerous Disco classics as well as Pop hits ranging from Harold Melvin and the Blue Notes to Robert Palmer taking them many steps above. Tom is definitely a man of sheer brilliance, a quality that is all too rare in our scene, meeting him was one of the best encounters I’ve ever had."

One gets an immediate impression of Moulton’s skill right off the bat with Eddie Kendricks’ "Keep On Truckin". While admittedly a bit hokey lyrically ("Diesel-powered straight to you/ I’m truckin."), this ecstasy infused track has a catchy beat that would keep any disco aficionado on the floor for hours.

Further capturing the mood of the era is the BT Express track, "Peace Pipe". One need not dig too deeply into the lyrics to get some sense of what this one is all about. BT Express implores listeners to put in some love, understanding, humanity, faith, and ahem…a few other things and pass it around! A little hedonism never killed anyone.

Isaac Hayes is quick to remind us of this in "Moonlight Loving", an ode to the countless pleasures one can experience via ménage a trois. Hayes vocals blend seamlessly with the various moans of the female vocal backing. If you’re looking for a tune to set the mood, you couldn’t do much better than this one.

Another standout track is Andrea True Connection’s "More, More, More". Really…how do you like your love? In decadent 70s fashion, the answer is simply "more". For kicks, you can check out the video for this song at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qCnD4s1QHZ8. Not too surprisingly, Andrea True was formerly a porn star. For those of you familiar with 1999's one hit wonder "Steal My Sunshine" by Len, you’ll recognize a hook played twice in "More, More, More".

Granted, the content of the majority of the songs captured in A Tom Moulton Mix can accurately be characterized as shallow, vapid, decadent, hedonistic, etc. But, independent of the content and lyrics of the songs, virtually every song has a catchy and infectious beat that is imminently danceable. Above and beyond this, it’s very clear just how much Moulton has influenced not only just dance music today but also virtually every genre. Get in touch with your 70s roots and check this one out.


Rating: 4 out of 5 stars