If their was ever a time for a 17-member “disco orchestra”, the bleak winter of 2011 was it so the timing of Escort’s debut album couldn’t be better – old and new all mixed together to accompany you to the dancefloor – it’s time to party!
Escort (or should that be ESCORT?) is the disco love child of Dan Balis and Eugene Cho fronted by Adeline Michèle. They first made their mark back as Escort in 2006 with the 12” of a double a-sided ‘Starlight’ and ‘All Through The Night’. Both tracks make the album and whilst the the album kicks off with a the disco edit/mash up influences of that plunders the musical heritage of Michael Jackson and then a re-work Dillinger’s 1976 classic ‘Cocaine In My Brain’ as a knife, a fork, a bottle and a cork get straight to disco floor (a track given the holy Greg Wilson treatment last year).
What made Escort stand out is the clear musicianship with real feel for the glory days of the likes of Chic (talking of coke and disco, also check out today’s Outlook programme for the low down on the original ‘Le Freak’, see links below).
‘A Sailboat In the Moonlight’ is getting my Coati Mundi all ready for a hot horns in the mix (this one being originally a tune from the 1930s) whilst ‘Makeover’ and ‘Love In Indigo’ have some strong old skool charm themselves. Much of the style can surely be put down to the real musicians (like a big version of Kelly Polar with the vibrancy of Kid Creole and his Coconuts) and it’s impossible not to get wrapped up in a feel good dancing vibe.
The album ends on a manic percussive Indo-disco monster of ‘Karawane’ which is a big favourite at the moment in the FLY offices but you could make a case for all the tracks here, no fillers at all.
This album is steeped in New York club culture whilst means its appeal is worldwide and as the production cost must have been quite a revelation compared to today’s ‘PC in a bedroom’ approach, all the more reason to support such retro-originality.
Reviewed: Escort – Escort (Tirk Records) Cat. No. TIRK072 Release date: 14th November 2011
1. Caméleon Chameleon
2. Cocaine Blues
4. A Sailboat In The Moonlight
5. Why Oh Why
7. A Bright New Life
8. All Through The Night
9. Love In Indigo
10. All That She Is