Surging Retro-Soul Movement Stings The Killer Bees
(March 30, 2009 – Brooklyn, NY) New York-based vintage soul instrumental group, El Michels Affair are proud to announce the release of their highly anticipated upcoming studio LP, Enter The 37th Chamber. The album, full of adaptations of classic Wu-Tang Clan songs, will be available April 21st via Truth & Soul / Fat Beats Records.
At the core of a movement that includes Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings, Amy Winehouse, Mark Ronson, and The Budos Band, El Michels Affair are among the leaders of a retro-soul and funk movement causing a stir both in the streets and on the charts. Led by saxophonist/organist Leon Michels and producer/engineer Jeff Silverman, El Michels Affair comprises a collection of other musicians from The Dap-Kings, the Budos Band, and Antibalas. Although sharing similarities with these groups, the El Michels’ sound is its own – versatile enough to span genres including soul, funk, hip-hop, and punk rock. Always hard at work in the studio, El Michels Affair looks forward to stepping back into the spotlight to display that versatility on their new album, Enter The 37th Chamber.
For Enter The 37th Chamber, a name that pays homage to the title of the Wu-Tang Clan’s historic debut album, Enter The Wu-Tang (36 Chambers), El Michels Affair, took the time to interpret fifteen of some of the most legendary and well-known Wu-Tang Clan songs, including “Can It All Be So Simple,” “Protect Ya Neck,” “Cherchez La Ghost,” and “Incarcerated Scarfaces.” Also included on the album are the El Michel’s interpolations of Wu-Tang Clan anthems “C.R.E.A.M.” and “Bring Da Ruckus,” two songs fans will undoubtedly remember from their previous release as 7″ singles through the Truth & Soul label. Similar to the sounds found on those two records, on Enter The 37th Chamber El Michels Affair are able to bring their own astute musicianship, artistic touch, and soul vibe to each instrumental, breathing new life into already classic songs. It was that musicianship and versatile sound that led to El Michels Affair joining the Fat Beats family, and now, two years later, the album is finally ready for the masses.
El Michels Affair began as a series of informal collaborative sessions with musicians from top-selling acts Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings, The Budos Band, and Antibalas. In 2005, the group released their debut effort, Sounding Out The City on Truth & Soul, a label co-founded by Silverman and Michels. Since the album’s 2005 release, the El Michels sound has been prominent, even when the group’s name has not. A successful tour with Wu-Tang Clan member Raekwon led to the recording of two widely successful 7″ instrumental singles for “C.R.E.A.M.” and “Bring Da Ruckus.” Later, in 2007, Wu-Tang Clan member, Ghostface Killah sampled a track from Sounding Out The City, and most famously, in 2007, a horn part written and performed by Leon Michels was lifted and used for Jay-Z’s “Roc Boys,” the lead single from his wildly successful American Gangster album. Elsewhere, the Truth & Soul duo was enlisted by Amy Winehouse to remix her hit, “Love Is A Losing Game,” has played on sessions produced by Mark Ronson, Just Blaze, and Iggy Pop, and were hired by British singing sensation Adele to bring the patented Truth & Soul sound to her Grammy-award winning album, 19. 2009 plans to be a big year for El Michels Affair, as they prepare the release of Enter The 37th Chamber, available April 21 via Fat Beats Records.