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The World of Arthur Russell Import

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Audio CD, Import, February 26, 2004
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (February 26, 2004)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: SOUL JAZZ
  • ASIN: B0000YDXY6
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #152,062 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Go Bang (Francois Kevorkian Mix) - Dinosaur L
2. Wax The Van - Lola
3. It It All Over My Face (Larry Levan Mix) - Loose Joints
4. Keeping Up - Authur Russell
5. The Light Of The Miracle - Arthur Russell
6. A Little Lost - Aruther Russell
7. Keeping Up - Aurther Russell
8. A Little Lost - Loose Joints
9. Pop Your Funk - Arthur Russell
10. Lets Go Swimming (Walter Gibbions Mix) - Arthur Russell
11. In The Cornbelt (Levan Mix) -dinosaur L
12. Treehouse - Arthur Russell
13. Schoolbell Treehouse (Walter Gibbons Mix) - Indian Ocean

Editorial Reviews

While Russell was formally trained as a classical cellist, he was very much a multi-faceted musician, having produced the first 12 inch single for Seymour Stein's Sire label ("Kiss Me Again") and co-founded the Sleeping Bag label himself. Sleeping Bag releases were the heart of the underground disco music scene that operated well below the radar of the pop hits that dominated the charts. Under the guise of Dinosaur L, Russell released "Go Bang" to great acclaim (remixed by Francois Kervorkian). Sleeping Bag releases were regularly played at Larry Levan's Paradise Garage and other haunts of true discophiles. Here is a wonderful compendium of the man's lifetime of work, that life cut all too short by AIDS in 1992.

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Felix Gonzalez on July 16, 2007
Format: Audio CD
I knew Arthur in NYC pretty well from about 1977 on. I spent a lot of time hanging out in his funky apartment on E. 12th street. (Like Proust's madeleine, I can still smell the distinctive, slightly moldy odor inside.) I remember him pointing out Richard Hell's place in the same building through a window. He didn't have a buzzer, so I would have to stand on the steps of the church across the street and yell out "Arthur" so that he could come down and let me in. He was a very generous and fun guy - as well as a whiz at tape editing with a safety razor. I got a lot of his LP's from him as they came out, and it struck me even then - although I was still in my teens - how peculiar that he should have dance hits as well as more "serious" works recorded by orchestras. One time he took me to a Tibetan Buddhist meditation center on W. 16th. Green as I was, I had a very hard time trying to keep from laughing, since everyone was so serious. I miss him, although I really treasure the memories of the time that I spent with him. Felix Gonzalez, Berkeley CA.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By M. Starr on May 13, 2004
Format: Audio CD
A lot of respect is in order here for Soul Jazz Records, who continually represent the lost sounds of the dance genre(s). Whether it's dub, reggae, ska, disco, funk, or a culmination of all the above, these music archeologists always dig up some of the finest forgotten rarities on the planet. When the label re-introduced the fine music of A Certain Ratio in 2002, they opened the eyes and ears of many music lovers to an interesting, yet departed, variety of music that I'll simply call disco-punk-funk. Soul Jazz Records is back again this year with a posthumous release of Arthur Russell's avant-garde and late-disco works.
Arthur Russell was born in Iowa, studied in California, and eventually became part of the artistic, and always interesting, New York scene of the late 70s/early 80s. This particular release, appropriately titled The World of Arthur Russell, focuses on his entire catalog from the early days of disco and no wave to the more obscure avant-garde jazz pieces. Since Russell only released a minimal amount of records, the styles of these songs change on a rather frequent basis. Sometimes even shifting back and forth between genres, rather than showing a natural progression of sound. Regardless, they all are representative of his love of carefree music.
As the album begins with "Go Bang," we are immediately reminded that Russell changed a lot musically over the course of his career. This particular song highlights the very early stages of his no wave influences, where even a cello shows absence. We're immediately taken into the next era of his catalog with the bouncing bass, cheesy vocals, and minimal disco flair of "Wax the Van.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Larry White on April 15, 2004
Format: Audio CD
Arthur Russell was a Midwesterner, classically trained on the cello, who found his way to New York City and into the world of electronic, dance music. Oh, let's call a spade a spade, it was "Disco". This is music that we wouldn't even consider when it was in its prime in the 80s. Thankfully, our mind and our tastes have broadened a bit since then and we can now say, at least in the case of Arthur Russell, disco doesn't suck. (Although, we're not yet ready to make a case for Rick Dees and his duck). Russell's brand is subtle, hypnotic, pretty; with elements of jazz, African, and classical music. There is a confounding co-mingling of repetition and exploration. The beat pulsates metronomically while the melodies take off. Instruments you wouldn't expect to hear in this genre (like a singular cello) are used while voices and instruments you would expect are used in a manner you wouldn't. Arthur Russell died in 1992. This is a newly released sampling of his work over the course of his career. If you are a dancer, an adventurer, or you just like something rhythmic and compelling, we recommend this.
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