Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Don Tiki - the Forbidden Sounds Of Don Tiki

If you're an exotica fan and like the music of Martin Denny, Les Baxter, Arthur Lyman, Robert Drasnin, Eden Ahbez, or Hawaiian music you'll love this too. Martin Denny himself even makes a guest appearance on 2 of the tracks and his wonderful piano solo on "Forever and Ever" is alone worth the price of admission. Here is all the best of exotica - bird calls, jungle sounds, sultry female vocals, congos, bongos, xylophones, vibraphones, flutes and much more. Jim Howard's use of the flute, alto flute, and bass flute is particularly enjoyable and refreshing. There are a pleasing mix of styles and rhythms, some are slow and soft and others have a beat that will make you want to get up and dance. This is perfect music for your next Tiki party or Hawaiian luau, or you can play it like I do to just relax and let your mind pleasantly wander. For pure listening pleasure, it's like MaiTai for the mind.

1. Exotica '97 2. An Occational Man 3. Barbi In Bali 4. Hot Like Lava 5. Close Your Eyes
6. Maidenhair Fern 7. Terminal 8. Polyamore 9. Clutch Cargo Cult 10. Bam-Boozled
11. Itchy Palms 12. Da T'ing He Grow 13. Forever And Ever


Skinny Dip with Don Tiki

 The follow-up to Forbidden Sounds, Don Tiki's 2nd album again combines sweeping range of exotic, mellow, upbeat, and loungy tunes, moving the art of Modern Exotica forward into the new millennium. The vocals are more native/island sounding that your typical mainland-produced track from the 60's, but here it only adds to the atmosphere. It has my most favorite non-pc track of the genre – the very cool “The Natives Are Restless Tonight.” The liner notes are written by none other than Sven Kirsten, author of the Book Of Tiki. This is a must have for any Exotica collector to add to their collection. Pick this album up and listen to it, now. It's another glimpse into the almost non-existent genre of Modern Exotica.

1. All Quiet Flows The Don 2. The Natives Are Restless 3. Primitiva 4. Heat 5. Flower Humming
6. Bwana Banana 7. The Other Side Of The Moon 8. Wet Cave 9. Pinakbet 10. El Producto
11. Sweet And Sour 12. Axolotl 13. That Hypnotizing Man

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Don Tiki -- Adulterated - The Remix Project

Every couple of years we are treated to a new neo-Exotica treasure from Honolulu's Don Tiki. The new album, Adulterated, is a remix project featuring 11 tunes from their first two albums. Now I'm sure some of you are thinking this is a recipe for disaster (we are all too aware of failed "lounge" remix projects, right?). In this case, Don Tiki have done it the right way. As implied by the title, this is a remix of classic Don Tiki sounds, which pay homage to Martin Denny, Arthur Lyman and all the forefathers of exotica. Even repertory tracks have been mixed, reshaped, refined and re-invented by a coterie of top deejays - call it Martin Denny for the millennium - and the tunes take on new sass.For the most part, the remixes stay true to the vibe of the original songs, so things are mellow and relaxing and not hyper and kinetic. Some good tracks in this mode are All Quiet Flows the Don, remixed by 8FatFat8, and Close Your Eyes, remixed by A Certain Frank. Adulterated features three standout tracks, starting with DJ Jimmy B's remix of The Natives Are Restless. Now, we're big fans of the original song but Jimmy B's remix takes it up a notch. Extremely effective remix effects and nice spoken word pieces highlight this mix, along with chanting to die for. Br Cleve contributes a HiNRG "Bongo Congo" mix of Bwana Banana that somehow fits in even though this has a much higher BPM than the rest of the album. "The Other Side of the Moon," remixed by Ursula 1000 of NYC as heard on the Samsung Electronic worldwide TV campaign. Lastly, Clutch Cargo Cult gets a great remix from 8FatFat8 that includes a nice rap by Julio Davis. Now, things aren't all Mai Tai's for Adulterated. An Occasional Man has a syncopated remix style that I found annoying (honestly, I'm not a fan of the original version either) with several grating effects.

There's a mix of sultry, intermittent vocals with inventive instrumentals. This is party music that collates a myriad of styles, from exotic jazz to ska, from funk to pop. Light the tiki torches, turn on the lava lamps, haul out the tiki mask and start groovin!'

A review in Time Out/NY states, "Don Tiki have a sexy allure along with flair and a good sense of humor." The Honolulu Advertiser says, "Don Tiki captures exotic sounds, party spirit...this is Martin Denny for the Millenium!" This sensuous, flowing piece of work is an instant classic.
1 The Other Side of the Moon 2 Clutch Cargo Cult
3 Heat [Jack Fetterman's Tabuzack Mix] 4 Da T'Ing He Grow
5 An Occasional Man 6 Close Your Eyes 7 The Natives Are Restless
8 Polyamoré 9 Bwana Banana 10 Terminal [Perry Coma's Comatose Mix]
11 All Quiet Flows the Don
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