Album of the week – One More Step by Henri-Pierre Noël
‘One More Step’ by Henri-Pierre Noël is Eastside Radio’s album of the week.
Kicking off the month of July we are bringing you an album full of funky sounds, as pianist and singer/songwriter Henri-Pierre Noël works his fingers in a very special way to show us his tropical background of Kompa Funk. With disco and afro-funk elements blended in with touches of contemporary North American jazz that come together to make for his unique brand of dance floor fusion. Bringing lots of fun and sway to his piano playing he certainly doesn’t go the traditional route as he uses the piano in a very percussive and syncopated way, almost like a drum.
This particular album by Noël that we are featuring for the week is his re-issue of the 1980’s dance floor friendly ‘One More Step’. Having being originally released over two decades ago there was only ever a very limited amount of record presses given out, however on the 21st of July 2014 we all got to hear the wonderful sounds re-mastered and available on heavyweight vinyl, CD and digital formats. Throughout the album we get to hear sounds that have been influenced from Noël’s original home of Haiti, having moved to Montreal and establishing himself as an artist there, his signature sound was a hit on the disco dance floors.
It was Dom Servini who is a stalwart of the eclectic music scene in London and runs the established record label Wah Wah 45s that heard and visioned Henri-Pierre Noël’s talented work, Servini decided that this mans music needed to be heard by the funk lovers of today. Given that Wah Wah 45s re-released Henri’s 1979 album ‘Piano’ in 2012, and two years later after diving into the archives further it was only right to give Henri’s later album ‘One more Step’ the re-issuing it was well and truly deserved.
Throughout the album we are greeted with some real funky numbers such as ‘Afro-Funk Groove’ and ‘Latin Feeling’ with lots of percussion sounds it was really such a unique style of music from a pianist, that was nearly before it’s time. Mid-way through the album Noël has added some female vocals into the mix to change it up a little in ‘Funky Spider Dance’, not that it needs much changing as every track is a whirlwind of energetic music as he does it himself.
If you want to get your hands on an album to make you boogie, maybe you have heard of the limited private presses of Henri-Pierre Noël’s talented feel good tunes from the disco era. Either way if you know of the Jazz legend from Haiti or if you are only hearing of him for the first time through our review this is a record that needs to be given the recognition and appreciation it deserves. It has been fully re-mastered from the original multi-track tapes by Kevin Moonstarr in Canada and also comes along with full sleeve notes from Reveal Records boss, Peter Riden. This is an album that is to be kept on the top shelf as it is special, groovy, funky and unique.
Afro-Funk Groove 04:58
Latin Feeling 04:06
Back Home… Sweet Home 05:18
Will Come A Day 03:58
Roller Skate Rhapsody 03:20
Funky Spider Dance 05:19
Joy To Me 05:18
A.M. – P.M. 04:07
Step (Fan) 04:31
Proud To Be 04:30
Bluesy Mood About05:59
You can follow HENRI-PIERRE NOËL’s career at wahwah45s.com/artist/henri-pierrenoel/. For an extended listen to the album, tune in on Thursday from 1.30PM – 2PM for ‘Album of the Week’ with Josh Crosbie. Don’t forget to also listen out for your opprotunity to win a copy of ‘One More Step’ all week. You must be a supporter to win so make sure to sign up at http://eastsidefm.org/support-us-2/. Don’t forget you can also stream the station at WWW.EASTSIDEFM.ORG.