- One of the few recently-released tracks that will seamlessly mix into any of Prosumer and Murat Tepeli's Serenity is, unsurprisingly, one that's nearly 20 years old. Armando's 'Don't Take It' is one of those "lost classics" that less-than-reputable bootleggers try to sell you from behind their poorly constructed 1995-era Geocities websites and consonant-heavy e-mail addresses. Except, you know, 'Don't Take It' is actually the real deal. (Even though it may still come from a poorly constructed Geocities-esque website anyway.)
Armando Gallop died in the mid-'90s, so it's unclear where Let's Pet Puppies' label head Thomos dredged it up, but be glad he did. His edit of the one-take Armando's acid epic and Sharvette's women's lib session is unimpeachable. (Sample lyric: "A strong mind and a strong car will get you anywhere".) The acid line twists, tumbles, decays, dies, resurrects itself and dies again over the course of its too-short eight-and-a-half minutes. On the flip, Johnny Fiasco reworks the tune, adding a bit of heft to the original and stripping the vocal. Fiasco doesn't do much, but then again with a track like this, the less fussing around, the better.
Thomos seems to have a good deal of Head Studios' tapes lying around, which can only be a good thing for collectors jonesing for that authentic old-school sound, but it's hard to imagine a track like 'Don't Take It' coming out of the coffers again any time soon. Sharvette's vocal is so deliciously strange, complete with the sort of vocal hiccups ("This is Sharvette and I'm here to, uh, bring a message to the ladies", "a classical example of 'wham bam thank you ma'am'") that would undoubtedly be edited out of the Ableton Age. Grab this one while you still can: it's not so much a classic as it is an antiquity. And those, unfortunately, are few and far between.
A Don't Take It (Thomos Edit)
B Don't Take It (Johnny Fiasco Mix)