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Well over a decade has passed since the birth of Dedication, Mikey Yamada and Felix Dickinson’s collaborative band.
The project was born way back in 2005, during one of Dickinson’s frequent DJing trips to the Far East. While staying in Japan, the Cynic Records boss found himself in Yamada’s studio, alongside new friend Tsuyoshi Kosuga (a bassist and guitarist most famous for his work as part of Cro-Magnon), and carpenter-turned-keyboard wizard Botch. The name Dedication was borrowed from the clothing brand Yamada had been developing for some time.
Felix took the recording of that first session back to the UK, where Kyle Chandler (his partner in Foolish and Sly) added some vocals. That track, ‘It’s A Dedication’ was released on Cutting Edge in Japan the following year.
Since then, Dedication material has slipped out frustratingly infrequently, a reflection of the occasional nature of their recording sessions. Aside from a high profile – and well received – 12” on DFA in 2014 (“I Ain’t Gonna Tell You”, which was backed with a scorching rework by DJ Kaos), the outfit’s output has been limited to a handful of tracks on hard-to-find compilations.
Here, two of those in-demand compilation cuts appear on 12” for the first time, via Claremont 56, the long-running label operated by Dickinson’s old friend Paul “Mudd” Murphy.
On the A you’ll find the sublime “Let Me Rock You”, a track that first emerged on Jason Kincade’s Mangiami collection, a tribute to the legendary NYC bar-turned-midweek party venue of the same name. Tactile, groovy and emotion-rich, the track sounds like a long lost, late ‘80s remix by Frankie Knuckles – perhaps the Godfather of House’s legendary reworks of Womack & Womack’s “Missing Persons Bureau”, and Chaka Khan’s “Ain’t Nobody” – with Botch’s fluid piano solos recalling the similarly superb work of Satoshi Tomie. It’s little less than a dreamy, wide-eyed dancefloor hug.
On the flip you’ll find “Pito Deep”, a track named after a deep underwater trench that was recorded after Dedication’s band members swapped instruments. Powered by a headline-grabbing synth bassline, tidal guitar flourishes, crunchy Clav lines and spacey synth solos, the track has been in demand since it first appeared on Mule Music’s CD-only The Definitive Japanese Scene compilation way back in 2009. Finally, this winding chunk of deep disco brilliance has finally made it to wax.