Chanan Hanspal: The Garden Sessions (Here and Now Recordings.)
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UK release date 26.10.2011
A few years ago, I was sent a track called "Only Just a Garden" by Chanan Hanspal on indie label Here and Now Recordings. The track was something I fell in love with, a real downtempo nu-jazz affair with a lovely orchestral introduction courtesy of a Yam Who rework. The musicianship on the track was second to none, electric guitars reminiscent of the old Balearic flamenco sound, beautifully mellow chords and a very grooving bassline that was subtle but effective. Well, fast forward to 2011 and the release of Chanan’s first album, "The Garden Sessions" is something I have been awaiting with baited breath.
We kick off with the aforementioned "Only Just a Garden" which still sounds fresh and exciting, something quite unusual in dance music, albeit in a different vein of dance. "Life Goes On" is next, another really chilled but beautiful slice of vocal pleasure.
The album packs 10 tracks including the gorgeously re-mastered "Footprints in The Sand" (which is probably my favourite song,) along with "Maybe Buddha" and obviously "Only Just a Garden" coming a very close second.
This isn’t a four to the floor album though, you won’t find one house track one here but that’s the point! Good dance music doesn’t have to revolve around house and a 4/4 beat.
A whole host of UK soul and jazz artists make appearances on this album including Imaani from Incognito, Charlie Creed-Miles (who starred in the cult British film ‘Nil By Mouth’) on drums and many more.
This is a beautifully crafted album that I urge anyone feeling remotely down to listen to. If you don’t feel happiness and warmth after listening to this, you can’t be human!
Words GARETH MORGAN