Hand picked records important to the history of Soul Strut.
Ranked #166 in the Soul Strut 200
Dante Carfagna has made a name for himself as the ultimate researcher / record digger / DJ / author having discovered and tracked down oodles of lost soul and funk musicians from the 60s and 70s , bringing their music back to life in the modern era. He also emerged in the late 90s and early 00s as a talented hip hop producer lending his skills to the Public Enemy camp and forming an underground instrumental hip hop collective entitled Memphix. In 2003, Carfagna went solo and released this blazing downtempo masterpiece in the vein of DJ Shadow and RJD2. In fact, it's well known Carfagna and Shadow have a close relationship in the record digging world.
2003's Express Rising cross pollinates organic dusty drum breaks with moody melancholy samples and instrumentation giving it a distinctive slot in the annals of instrumental hip hop releases of the early 00s. Highlights include "Ithaca Summer", "Comfortable With Failure", and "Dead Mall". He went on to release a couple more Express Rising albums ditching the drum breaks and overall hip hop ethos for a more snoozy electronic sound.