CD & DIGITAL Worldwide Release – Available Now
Astral22 delivers a solid first ever various artist compilation release titled “Astral22 Presents…IMPERIAL”. IMPERIAL features a quality line-up of hand picked emerging and established independent soul talent. This spirited soulful “smooth”, “feel good” production showcases Astral22’s collaborations & re-works. The focus here is on the music, lyrical content, and this producer’s signature blend of Classic /Nu Soul; Jazz, Funk and Blues. Expect an assortment of jazzy melodic lush mid-tempo grooves, sophisticated funky up tempo bubblers, and the bluesy slow jams with which this producer is gaining prominence. Astral22’s inspiration and enthusiasm for the genre and artists represented here comes to fruition in this homage to the burgeoning Global Independent Soul Movement.
Trans Phatt Records debut compilation release titled “Astral22 Presents… Imperial” topped the charts and stayed at #1 on Starpoint Radio for 4 weeks, reached #4 on Solar Radio’s Sweet Rhythms Chart, received Top Seller Status on CD Baby, and was featured as the #1 Compilation Of The Year 2009 by Soul Brother Records, London.
Available for the first time exclusively on Bandcamp, Astral22 has compiled Volume 1 of never before released instrumental tracks, taken from the studio sessions of various single release projects and his full length various artist CD Imperial.
Brand New Remix Single Release – LeNora Jaye
*OUT NOW* on iTunes Worldwide, Amazon MP3, Emusic, CD Baby, and more.
First class seat…fly with me
Day to night…feeling right
Let’s get this poppin’
There ain’t no stoppin’
“It’s On Tonight (Astral22 First Class Remix)” – LeNora Jaye Producer/remixer Astral22 takes an unexpected uptempo luxury twist with his First Class Remix of “It’s On Tonight”, (which in it’s original form) appears on LeNora Jaye’s debut CD “The Story”.
Digital Worldwide Release – Available Now
Los Angeles based vocalist Katie Cole takes you on a jazzy, soulful, sun kissed Brazilian journey with this carefree uptempo remix release. Whether you’re lounging poolside, or making your way to the dance floor, “set yourself free” with this love infused remix offering by Astral22 & Katie Cole.
[Offered in 3 flavors, Main Mix, Radio Edit, and Buzios Edit].
Following in the footsteps of eclectic soul producers such as 4Hero, Eric Lau, and even the great Quincy Jones, Los Angeles’ Astral22 aka Armand Tulumello has brought together a talented assortment of vocalists and created his own unique vision of soul. The resulting album, Imperial, is a majestic feat in progressive soul featuring moments of sheer brilliance and more than a few breakout performances from the cast of rising stars.
With a handpicked selection of artists that includes La Sonya Gunter, Rogiers, and Stephanie Renee to name just a few, Astral22 paints a tapestry that embraces traditional soul, future soul, and spoken word in equal doses. The production throughout the album mostly remains in the downtempo grown and sexy vein but stretches into broken beat on the “Ism” rework featuring Heidi Martin and the equally gorgeous “Silent Prayer” with vocals by LeNora Jaye. La Sonya Gunter delivers an outstanding vocal performance on “Ready For Love”, her style gelling perfectly with Astral 22’s casual yet impeccable production. It all comes together on the brilliant “From Me To You”, a funky little future soul number featuring Shanell Rene’e that will recall the stylings of Eric Lau. Produced with precision and skill and with an instantly catchy hook, the track remains the album’s highpoint.
Coming strong out of the gate, Astral22 is sure to be an in demand producer on the soul circuit. If this first collection of progressive soul is any indicator, Imperial marks the debut of an impressive new talent.
- Norman Mayers
Just as the Kiki Dee bouncy pop song declares, “I got the music in me.” Since age eleven when he first started mixing reel-to-reel tapes, Armand Tulumello has been hooked to make music on his own terms. At the same time, he understands that when fellow independent artists are the forefront of a compilation project, he should respect their space and let them create their unique tapestry. The Los Angeles DJ/Producer known as Astral22 invested two years to complete his debut IMPERIAL Progressive Soul Collection Vol. I. Through this long period, he bonded and empathized with the soulful vocalists involved because of their untiring commitment in every step of promoting their own musical cause.
The Soul Tracks audience will recognize a few of the highly prolific independent soul stars on IMPERIAL, including Rogiers, LeNora Jaye, Simone and Rena Scott. The aforementioned plus the other vocalists clearly communicate a tremendous passion for the music inside of them. Nearly all the tracks are noteworthy and enjoyable. With his favorable debut, Astral 22 has convincingly graduated from his reel-to-reel decks to the production chair, mastering a disc of laid-back classic soul intertwined with dance, blues, funk and jazz.
Vocals: 3.5 stars
Lyrics: 3.0 stars
Music: 3.5 stars
Production: 3.5 stars
SoulTracks Call: Highly Recommended
By Peggy Oliver
2009′s been a vintage year for indie soul compilations and this new 15 tracker from Los Angeles’ Trans Phatt Records is right up there with the pick of the crop. However, it’s not quite right to describe this collection as a “various artists” set. Sure, each track features a different singer but the production and concept is down to Astral22, the alter ego of L.A. based writer and producer Armand Tulumello. His vision gives the album a distinct unity and direction that so many compilations lack, but don’t think that means that this album is samey and stuck in one groove. Far from it. Armand here works with musicians and singers from around the world and allows them to operate as free agents. His skill is in imbuing each cut with a kind of spirituality and his respect for the music is evident throughout. That spirituality, I guess, is most obvious on ‘Imperial Theme’ from Stephanie Renee. It’s a spoken word piece that has a hint of Jill Scott about it but it wouldn’t be out of place on those famed Ibizan Café Del Mar chill out albums. More up-tempo (though not frantic) are ‘In This Life’ from Rena Scott, LeNora Jaye’s ‘A Silent Prayer’ and Katie Cole’s ‘Think About It’. That last one has delightful retro feel about it and will delight sophisticated modern soulsters. Ms. Cole’s gentler ‘Back Into The Sun’ is another highlight… guaranteed to bring warmth to the approaching winter. There’s more gentle, insinuating soul on ‘The Reason’ from Rogiers, ‘Starting Over’ from Simone and Shuane’s ‘Make Me Wanna Fly’. That one offers just a hint of Latin rhythms while Fernando Cardo takes his vocal on ‘Nunca Sabras’ in Spanish, though his other track (‘You Never Know’) features English lyrics – handled with the album’s most overt old school soul vocal. More variety comes with the shuffling ‘Fair Play’ from Mz. Pat, the intricate rhythms of Heidi Martin’s ‘Ism’ and the languid harmonies of LeNora Jaye’s ‘Do You Wanna’. Astral22 holds all this together with his commitment to quality in new soul music. His label’s mission statement is to ‘Give you back what you’ve been missing’… he’s made a great start. Available from all the usual internet outlets.
(Bill Buckley) 4/5
Astral22 Presents Imperial is a musical triumph, and beacon of light in a sometimes gimmicky and monotonous world of today’s soul music.
There are many soul compilations to chose from what usually makes a compilation worth a listen is not the featured artists, but actually it’s the producer. The flaw in so many soul compilations is that they tend to lack cohesion. Mis-matched grooves collide and tend to miss the mark in the goal of soul music which is to create a soul stirring grooves. Astral22 Presents Imperial is a crowning achievement from start to finish.
Los Angeles based writer/producer Astral22 brings some of the best of the soul scene in a showcase of collaborations & re-works. With a strong focus on the music, lyrical content in the signature of of Astral22′s stylistic blend of Classic/Nu Soul, Jazz, Blues and Funk; Imperial is collection of soulful jams that takes the listener to a time where grooves were not looped a featured artists that can actually sing. Imperial opens with a throwback/ cookout jam Fair Play featuring Mz Pat. LeNora Jaye posed the question ‘Do you wanna’ in a laid back jazzy jam. Rogiers Delivers a soul stirring jam titled ‘The Reason’. Stephanie Renee delivered a poets lounge track to close out he tightly knit collection of progressive soul greatness. Perhaps the biggest triumph of all here is the consistency throughout; every artist attached brings their A-game but what else would you expect from this hand picked talents by tremendously talented Astral22.
The music in this project is the dawning of the Independent label Trans Phatt Records who strives to showcase quality soul music worldwide. “Nu groove with classic Muse” is the mission statement with Trans Phatt Records and is true to form with this compilation. This progressive soul masterpiece is a must have.