During the ‘80s, Compass Point Studios in The Bahamas, set up by Island Records MD Chris Blackwell, became a magnet for artists as diverse as Roxy Music, B52’s, AC/DC, Talking Heads, Ian Dury, Grace Jones and The Rolling Stones among many others. The more experimental of the bunch, eager to inject their sound with some Nassau magic, called on the genius of Sly & Robbie, engineers Steven Stanley and Alex Sadkin, and the Compass Point All-Stars house band.
Most people would recognise the sound from hits by Grace Jones or Tom Tom Club, an unmistakeable fusion of great, often quirky song-writing, dub production techniques and low end funk, extended into spacious and unhurried 12” versions. This was vibe music which has remained timeless on dance-floors ever since. Compass Point studios and its All-Stars team spawned landmark albums such as Grace Jones’ ‘Nightclubbing’, Talking Heads’ ‘Remain In Light’ and Tom Tom Club’s eponymous debut.
For the first time, Strut presents the story of Compass Point from 1980 to 1986 bringing together acknowledged classics by artists whose sound was indelibly shaped there including Grace Jones, Ian Dury and Gwen Guthrie. The album also highlights selected lesser known tracks by French DJ Guy Cuevas and Scottish post-punk band Set The Tone who both feature on this album with highly collectible Francois Kervokian and Steve Stanley mixes of ‘Obsession’ and ‘Dance Sucker’ respectively. Queen of trash disco and ZE Records fixture Cristina is also featured alongside her label mate Lizzy Mercier Descloux.
The album comes with extensive sleeve notes and artist interviews by David Katz, author of the official Lee Perry biography, ‘People Funny Boy’ alongside rare photos and image library for press use by Lynn Goldsmith and Alison Jarvis who were regularly in Nassau to capture the spirit of the era.
Track List: CD
- Grace Jones – My Jamaican Guy (12” version)
- Tom Tom Club – Genius Of Love (12” version)
- Talking Heads – Born Under Punches (The Heat Goes On)
- Guy Cuevas – Obsession (The Nassau mix)
- Set The Tone – Dance Sucker (Francois Kevorkian mix)
- Gwen Guthrie – Padlock (Larry Levan mix)
- Bits & Pieces – Don’t Stop The Music
- Sly Dunbar – River Niger
- Lizzie Mercier Descloux – Sun is Shining
- Cristina – You Rented A Space
- Ian Dury & The Seven Seas Players – Spasticus Autisticus (Version)
- Chaz Jankel feat. Laura Weymouth – Whisper
- Will Powers – Adventures In Success (Dub Copy)