GOLDEN RULES is a German label. Based in Leipzig, their mission statement (or “golden rule”!) is to “give access to a rich culture and amazing music stories from the past… but also to try to be a spotlight for the best in contemporary funk soul and positive vibes”.

Over they last few years they’ve issued plenty of intriguing and (often) experimental records like the raw ‘Rhythm-2’ from Russian soul/funk quartet, THE SOUL SURFERS. That in itself will tell you something about where Golden Rules are coming from.

If you have adventurous ears you can sample the best of Golden Rules via a new compilation, ‘The Originals, 1’ – an envelope pushing sweep of all kinds of sounds from all kinds of places. This is not your usual soul compilation and I’m guessing most soul collectors will switch off now. Your average soul fan is (sadly) hugely conservative – witness their love of retro sounds and dismissal of anything with a rap! But those with broader minds and a higher toleration threshold will always find plenty of treasures.

Here on ‘The Originals, 1’ there may be not a lot that we could call “treasure” but for sure there’s lots to provoke and intrigue…like ‘Shinjuku Strut’ from German organ led, soul and funk band The Drawbars. Then there’s Nashville Tennessee’s Gripsweats with a moody and atmospheric ‘This City’. There’s also an archive track, ‘Jonny’, from one time The Mighty Mocambos lead singer Gizelle Smith.

The label call this album. “a colourful bouquet of real soul smashers, psychedelic grooves and funky breaks from talented artists from all over the world”. It’s out now via Golden Rules.