THE MIGHTY MOCAMBOS & THE ALLERGIES @ THE PRINTWORKS HASTINGS
The Mighty Mocambos
The Mighty Mocambos and their many incarnations have released dozens of 45s and several albums on their own imprint Mocambo Records and other labels such as Kay Dee, Truth & Soul, Tramp, Légère and Favorite Recordings, to name a few. They have collaborated with musical legends such as Afrika Bambaataa, Lee Fields, Ice-T, Charlie Funk, Peter Thomas or Kenny Dope, put new talent like Gizelle Smith and Caroline Lacaze on the map, brought Caribbean steel drums to funk clubs with their alter ego Bacao Rhythm & Steel Band, and have toured through all civilized parts of the continent and beyond for the better part of the last years.
Their unique style and trademark sound are loved by peers, fans and critics alike and distinguishes them from mere retro-copycat-acts as well as overproduced plastic soul. The Mighty Mocambos continue to deliver their brand of funk with blazing horns, soulful guitars, driving drums and basslines combined with an extra bit of quirkiness. When not producing records for one of their many incarnations and collaborations, the band is touring steadily. Whoever witnessed a concert will tell you about the musicality, passion, energy, humour and joy that the band loves to bring to the people.
What started out years ago as a take on “deep funk” and its associated vinyl culture has completely grown into its own oeuvre d’art. With the launch of their production studio and record label in 2006, things started to gain momentum. Apart from self-releasing the group’s own recordings, Mocambo Records became a household name by putting out highly collectable vinyl 45s by today’s best funk outfits as well as unearthing lost library funk treasures.
The Mighty Mocambos however did not restrict themselves solely to their own label. Their interpretation of the Furious Five classic “The Message”, released under a pseudonym on an obscure phantasy label without proper distribution, got picked up and remixed by Grammy- nominated producer legend Kenny Dope (Masters at Work, Bucketheads).
Their first single with UK funk singer Gizelle Smith, “Working Woman”, became an overnight smash and a prime-time club favourite of funk & soul DJs worldwide. Initially released on the Finnish private press imprint Old Capital, it got the remix treatment by Kenny Dope and a re-release on Kay Dee Records as well.
After earning their credits through vinyl 45s, the band stepped up their game with the full- length “This Is Gizelle Smith & the Mighty Mocambos” in 2009. The album received rave reviews, got lots of airplay – and sold a bunch of physical copies too. Its success led to an extensive tour throughout Europe with club dates from Marseille to Oslo, performances at massive festivals such as the Printemps de Bourges in France and live radio appearances at respected FMs such as the BBC and Radio Nova.
With the following album „The Future Is Here“ (2011), the band stepped further into the spotlight and explored new sounds with features by hiphop legends Afrika Bambaataa and Charlie Funk, French singer Caroline Lacaze and German rare groove queen Su Kramer, while manifesting their unique raw funk sound and refining their unmistakable instrumental style that had long gained international reputation. The album was toured extensively, including a legendary performance with Afrika Bambaataa at Hamburg’s Reeperbahn Festival (covered by ARTE TV), support gigs for Lee Fields and headline shows at renowned venues such as Amsterdam’s Paradiso, Islington Assembly Hall in London, Paris‘ Bellevilloise, Tempo Club in Madrid, or at home at Hamburg’s Mojo Club.
After producing the critically acclaimed debut album „En Route“ (2013) of French soul singer Caroline Lacaze, where they adapted their sound to deliver a stunning mix of French Beat, Soul & Psychedelic Rock, the band went on to record a full length under their moniker Bacao Rhythm & Steel Band. Their interpretation of 50 Cent’s P.IM.P. had long become a cult classic and was often mistaken for the original sample. The group’s approach in stretching the boundaries of funk by adding Caribbean steel pans caught the interest of Brooklyn’s finest label Big Crown – who signed the band and released their albums „55“ and „The Serpent’s Mouth“, an explosive mix of funk and hip hop cover versions as well as original compositions that showcase the band’s singularity in today’s funk circuit.
“The Allergies are neck deep in the world of scratchy samples…This is truly funk and soul for the 21st century!” – Craig Charles, BBC 6 Music.
Since forming in 2012 The Allergies have made it their mission to reshape funky vintage sounds for the modern dancefloor.
Both skilled turntablists in their own right, and known for their 45 only vinyl sets, the duo of DJ Moneyshot & Rackabeat first bonded over their love of classic hip-hop and beats, then decided to pool their knowledge and skills into making their own music.
“We like breaks, funky basslines, horns, and dancefloor grooves. We’re inspired by the golden eras of funk, soul, disco and hip-hop, and we try and cram that into three and a half minutes”.
Along the way they’ve racked up two ‘Tune of the Month’ awards in Mixmag, topped download charts, and helped headline the BBC 6 Music festival in their native Bristol last year.
In 2015 they were snapped up by Jalapeno Records, and dropped their debut album, As We Do Our Thing, a year later. On release it gained ‘Album of the Day’ status on 6 Music, and became the bestselling hip-hop album in the iTunes and Juno charts.
The LP took in all their funk, soul, disco, hip-hop and breakbeat influences, and featured guest vocals from HypeMan Sage, BluRum13 and Ugly Duckling’s Andy Cooper, who mesmerized in lead single/video, Rock Rock.
The Allergies’ second album Push On charged up the UK’s official indie album charts on its debut and became album of the week on Juno. The singles started racking up serious plays on BBC 6 Music and BBC Radio 2 in the UK as well as across Europe, with a second 6Music ‘Album of The Day’ and a coveted ‘Album of the Year’ award to crown things off in 2017. Not to mention a feature in national paper – The Observer and another album of the year award from Juno Records.
Both Moneyshot and Rackabeat were successful DJ’s in their own right before hooking up to form The Allergies. Moneyshot was a long running DJ on Ninja Tune’s Solid Steel radio show while Rackabeat was a Drum & Bass producer before being drawn back to the funk.
Ugly Duckling frontman Andy Cooper has been a co-writer and performer on several of the album tracks in a fruitful relationship which has seen the LA resident touring regularly with The Allergies to add some lyrical science to their DJ shows.