Sally Shapiro’s breakout album, Disco Romance, is getting the reissue treatment from Paper Bag Records. Producer Johan Agebjörn and vocalist Sally Shapiro (that’s not her real name and to this day, it’s unknown to the public) met as co-workers and bonded over their mutual love of Italo-disco. In my opinion, I think we’re rather fortunate these two crossed paths. Johan and Sally are catering to an extremely small niche and outside of the Italians Do It Better label, you’d be hard pressed to find modern Italo-disco acts. Disco Romance is a record that will take its time – nothing feels rushed. The way this album is sequenced flows well enough, but a sign of a strong album is that all of its songs can stand on their own in a “single” context. If you feel like joining Sally and Johan to dance in the snow (not that snow) or you just like having fun in general, Disco Romance is for you. Check out the Spotify stream of Disco Romance below and see what you think of it. Cheers!

The Details


Sally Shapiro’s debut 2007 release Disco Romance is set to be one of this years head-turning, ear-popping albums, written and produced by Johan Agebjorn and released by North America’s very own Paper Bag Records. Shapiro’s sound is one that fuses exaggerated electro beats reminiscent of a neon, bygone era whilst preserving an understated innocence, elegance and light. Shapiro’s 2007 release marks the beginning of a journey into the depths of the cool, hollow sounds of an isolated and detached dance floor, wrapped in an abundance of warmth and character that cannot be compared.

From a relationship born out of mere office acquaintances in 2001, Sally Shapiro and Johan Agebjorn found common ground in 2004 when an exchange of mix tapes revealed their shared musical taste which included such artists as Madonna, Limahl, Visage, Savage and Fun Fun. After recognizing the potential of Sally’s voice during a session of Christmas carols, Johan wrote the hit single ‘I’ll Be By Your Side’ in early 2005 with the intention of creating something that could capture the sound of the underground 80’s Italo Disco scene. The online release of ‘I’ll Be By Your Side’ in 2006 proved to reveal the undeniable value of the disco-pop track. Within 24 hours, two record labels had offered to release the track to vinyl with an eventual agreement being made with the Austrian label Diskokaine.

The snowball effect off this new label agreement saw ‘I’ll Be By Your Side’ premiere on Swedish P3 along with an interview with Johan and the release of the B-side track ‘Time to Let Go’. However, Shapiro remained somewhat of an enigma throughout the success, turning up to the release party incognito, at the Disco Manic Club in Gothenburg Sweden for the original 12” single ‘I’ll Be By Your Side’. The remaining tracks for the album were completed by mid 2006 with ‘Anorak Christmas’ and ‘I Know’ spread on the web, radio and dance floors with a special web radio broadcast of a DJ mix by Johan, baiting audiences for the forthcoming Sally Shapiro release.

The breakthrough ‘Disco Romance’ European release on December 11th 2006, was hailed with much critical acclaim, slightly shadowing the release of the ‘Anorak Christmas/ I’ll Be By Your Side’ remixed 12″ on December 4th. ‘Disco Romance’ soon became one of the years diamonds in the rough, earning an 8.5/10 and “Best New Music” at Pitchfork in early 2007, a number 11 position in the iTunes US electronic charts and numerous featured interviews in publications such as Vice and XLR8R Magazine’s with the reserved and ambiguous Shapiro.
2007 has marked a new phase in the Shapiro journey with the release of the ‘Find My Soul (Norwegian electrojazz mix)’ on the ‘Ibiza Global Radio Moods Vol.2’ double CD compilation and the filming of the highly anticipated music video for her new song ‘Jackie Jackie’. Aside from guest vocals appearing on Johans track, ‘Spacer Woman from Mars’ on the ‘Milky Disco’ compilation, Shapiro remains a mystery to many of her followers, quietly yet surely, shining a light down onto the ‘Disco Romance’.

Paper Bag Records releases Sally Shapiro’s ‘Disco Romance’ in North America on October 30th (October 16th in Canada) with the addition of three brand new tracks, ‘Skating in the Moonshine’, ‘He Keeps Me Alive’ and ‘Jackie Jackie’ written by Roger Gunnarsson especially for Sally Shapiro.

Track Listing

I’ll Be By Your Side (Extended Mix)
I Know
Find My Soul
Time to Let Go
Anorak Christmas
He Keeps Me Alive
Hold Me So Tight
Skating in the Moonshine
Jackie Jackie (Spend This Winter With Me)
Sleep in My Arms
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Price $26.99

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