June 17, 2021 by Nigel
The new 45 from Australian funk outfit The Traffic comes out all guns blazing with two killer versions of Michael Jackson classics. Taking on ‘Beat It’ and ‘Thriller’ was always going to be a challenge and could have gone oh so wrong. But I have to give it to them. They have done it again.
The Traffic is the mastermind of drummer and producer Ivan ‘Choi’ Khatchoyan. Ivan started Choi Records back in 2015 as an outlet for his self produced covers of classic tunes. The Traffic is made up of some of Melbourne’s finest local musicians. Already with a string of in demand covers under their belt including Fire by Jimi Hendrix, Smack My Pitch Up by Prodigy, Superfreak by Rick James and White Lines by Grandmaster Flash. Each release has received the very unique, funky and hard hitting Traffic / Choi treatment. Every one of these releases is a dancefloor bomb and has received DJ support from some of the biggest names in the business. DJ Nu Marc and Craig Charles are big fans. High praise indeed.
This new 45 is no exception. ‘Beat It‘ starts off with funky drums that soon give way to some horns, the beat comes back and it’s not long before that instantly recognisable lick hits you. It’s all horns and guitar before the flute takes the lead. When dancefloors are open again people are gonna be getting proper freaky to this one.
Flip it over and ‘Thriller‘ kicks in with a laid back intro, followed by a drum break which in turn leads into that unmistakeable guitar-led riff. This time the sax takes the lead, giving this well known classic a real funky feel. If this doesn’t get you busting some moves likes its 1982, nothing will.
A seriously heavy 45, with two quality sides.