Buscrates Shares Electro-Funk Song “On My Way”
The only track with vocals on Steel City electro-funk wizard Buscrates second full-length album is “On My Way,” where Soraya Watti’s smooth and soulful tones prove to be the perfect addition to the Buscrates machine. This is exactly the kind of cut that used to cause rewind buttons on boomboxes to get their wear back in the day. It’s a great indicator of the mostly-instrumental delights which await you on Crates’ much-anticipated album release.
It’s been a steady process of growth and a long time coming to arrive at this sophomore full-length for the man known in his native Steel City and beyond as producer/keyboardist/DJ Buscrates, and every minute of it can be heard and felt on these ten funky and highly evocative tracks.
The finely-honed balancing act between vintage-80s-synth goodness and neck-snapping 90s boom bap, all coated with just the right amount of soulful melodic sensibility never falters at any point on the album. For a more specific comparison, Manzel’s Midnight Theme LP updated for these strange times we’re in seems to fit the bill, especially on tracks like “Prisms,” “Floating In The Wind” and “Early Morning.” This is the funky instrumental mood music you desperately need right now whether you realize it or not, and Buscrates is here to serve it up. “Buckin'” is prominent among the many highlights of the Pittsburgh producer’s album, strongly evoking the likes of Paul Hardcastle, Atmosfear and the Art Of Noise while simultaneously paying homage to the funk/R&B roots of Detroit techno pioneers like Juan Atkins and Derrick May. And all in only two and a half delicious and tantalizing minutes that leave you wanting more. The album’s sonic journey culminates in “On My Way,” the only vocal track on the album and which features Soraya Watti’s lovely vocals, which one can easily imagine on the playlist of NY’s WBLS in the early 80s. Soraya’s smooth and soulful tones prove to be the perfect addition and act as a kind of sexy ghost in the Buscrates machine. The album as a whole feels like nothing so much as an updated, postmodern version of the kinds of sleek, funky grooves oozing from your Cadillac’s 8-track deck circa 1972.
It’s music that’s “smooth” in all the best possible connotations of the term: music that’s smooth on the streets and also smooth between the sheets. It’s sleek, sexy and very, very funky, which will come as no surprise to Bus’ 12,000 Twitch followers accumulated over the course of his weekly Friday stream which started shortly after the beginning of the pandemic. Notable fans and supporters of his include Jazzy Jeff, Francois K, Dâm Funk, Rich Medina, and Spinna. Even more believers in his funky gospel have come as a result of his increasing road gigs in cities like Berlin, NYC, Detroit and Washington DC.
This new album is both a culmination and the beginning of a glorious new phase. Buscrates’ time is right now.