Showing posts with label Hardcore Continuum. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Hardcore Continuum. Show all posts

Friday, 1 February 2019


Darqwan - Said The Spider
What is this? Apart from being a wobbly racket, I guess it's proto-dubstep. Is it even garage anymore? More like a drum n bass//bleep/hardcore hybrid. In 2002 this sounded pretty unhinged. Now that the bro-step era has gone by perhaps a tune like this might get a reappraisal or maybe not quite yet. I couldn't find Darqwan's more garage-y tune Pipe Dreams anywhere.

Active Minds - Hobsons Choice
Another terrible project name. Maybe that's why some white labels just say Hobsons Choice. We're back to pure speed garage gold here.

The Dub Monsters - Waiting
Waiting is the flip of Scott Garcia's bona fide speed garage classic A London ThingDub Monsters were a project for Garcia and another bloke. Waiting's all about the sugar rush of the vocal science. This was an odd little double A 12" of the best variety! 

Tuesday, 29 January 2019

UK Garridge V

Sunship - Try Me Out (Chunky Beats)
Noice. I've heard this before, I mean how could I forget right? The flip of this might even be better. I might post that next time.

Phaze One - Nicole's Groove 
Ooh that bass. You think this is just gonna be a whatever garage tune then all this shit happens. UKG!

DJ ZINC - 138 Trek
I dunno if this one is strictly garage but I like it a lot. It fits in that liminal space of not quite drum n bass and not quite garridge either and it's a bit aaciiidd. Like it matters right.

Wednesday, 23 January 2019

More UK Garridge Gold

G.O.D. - Watch Ya Bass Bins (1997)
Another tuuuuune from 97 I didn't know until this week! I'm a sucker for time-stretching and reggae/ragga samples. Oh and then there's that fucking bass. Watch Ya Bass Bins!

Box Clever - Treat Me Right (1998)
This one might not seem immediate but just hang on, it's insidious and by the end of the track it will be under your skin. This is meticulous, mesmerizing and magnificent. Love that organ sample.

Zak Toms - Bring Me Down (1998)
Another state of the art speed garage nugget that I don't recall. Worth it for the bass drop at 1 minute 29 alone. Bring Me Down is another lovely, slinky and hypnotic production.

Tuesday, 22 January 2019

UK Garridge

Ruff Driverz - Don't Stop
The following three tracks were the ones I discovered for the first time on that top mix from the previous post. This is pure gold. I cannot believe I missed Don't Stop. How good is the 1 min 13 moment?  When that steppy bass enters. Then the 2 minute 27 bass change. Two tunes for the price of one in the true spirit of hardcore. Mental tune. Menacing.

Danny J Lewis - Spend The Night (H-Man Dub)
How's that beat, bass and vocal sample? There's an Australian connection here, Nissan Cedrics singer Dannielle Gaha recorded a dance tune Secret Love that was a minor hit in the UK in 1993. Five years later Danny J Lewis sampled it here.

Jhelisa - Friendly Pressure (Midnight Mix)
I cannot believe this was not a number one chart topper.

Thursday, 17 January 2019

On the UK Garridge Tip

& A Bit Of Ye Olde Jungle

Found this choice UK garage mix today. It treads that fine line between classy, trashy, rootsy and poppy. The rhythms and sonic innovations are undeniable though. It's got classic faves Find The Path, It's a London Thing, RIP Groove etc. Maybe I haven't heard or don't remember half of these tunes which is refreshing. There are some revelations here like Don't Stop (Deeper Mix) from Ruff Driverz, Spend The Night (H-Mans Groove Dub) by Danny J Lewis and Jhelisa's very commercial Friendly Pressure (Midnight Mix), which I can only assume was a big hit in the UK. I think this gear stays really fresh because I wasn't into the scene at the time and only came to appreciate the music much later. It's not like 'ardcore/darkside/jungle where I've heard, you know, Mr Kirk's Nightmare, Bombscare, Finest Illusion, Terminator, Here Come The Drumz, Renegade Snares et al. 1000 times. Anyway this was a really spot on mix until the final three tunes which didn't seem to fit, starting with that Tori Amos track which was more like funky house. So I'd fade out the mix at around the 1 hour 12 minute mark.

Double 99's speed garridge gem RIP Groove from 1997 led me to the above mix. I'm pretty sure this is the original 6 min track.

DJ Gunshot's 1994 jungle tune Wheel 'N' Deal was sampled on RIP Groove was it not?

Wheel 'N' Deal put me in mind of this all time classic jungle Amen smasher Drum N' Bass Wise from Remarc. Wow this still sounds fucking remarkable (pun intended) and current and future... It's from bloody 1994. That's ages ago! I don't even wanna say the amount of years that is. Is 94 when the future died?

This whole sonic journey started here with Grant Nelson's classic Step 2 Me because this tune was posted at Energy Flash several hours ago.

*Some previous posts on UK Garridge:
Proto Dubstep, Speed Garage & Recreations.
UK Garridge With Simon Reynolds.
UK Garridge 101 Part 1.
UK Garridge 101 Part 2.
Uk Garridge 101 Part 3.

Thursday, 18 January 2018

'ardcore Smokey Joe

Gotta love hearing some early 90s rave-y hardcore that has never crossed my eardrums before. Thanks to Simon via Energy Flash for alerting me to this Red Bull article on ridiculously overpriced rave records. Some of these tunes I'd not heard until today.
I love me a bit of kitchen sink hardcore: Breaks, scratching, Italo piano riffs, more breaks, synth riffology, chipmunks, hoovers, cheesy 80s synth samples, pitch-shifted divas, squelches, references to rushes etc. Kiss My Neck has got the lot.

Then there's this, a stone cold 'ardcore classic! Boomzabang, which is less cluttered than Kiss My Neck, has got fabulous beat science, riffs built on rhythms, time-stretching and melodic beats then the hardcore hoovers move in at 3.40 and by 4.20 it's mentastic. Next the track delves into dark lulls with a sampled diva, closing out on a classic break that could go on forever. How I've not come across this before is astounding because this is superior 92 into 93 hardcore slipping into darkside.

Smokey Joe is bringing the joy to my fuckered back and this sweltering heatwave.

Sunday, 12 November 2017

Obscure Darkside Mix - DevNull

You can always depend on Pete DevNull to come with something fucking cool around Halloween for lovers of the darkside of the hardcore continuum and this year is no exception. This fabulous mix, that was posted a few days ago, is some of the most shadowy old school jungle you'll ever hear. According to Blog To The Old School some of these tunes are mega rare white labels and unreleased trax from back in the day. I reckon I only recognise 3 or 4 of the platters in this set. You know the score!

If you love the darkside I suggest you go through the BTTO archive of mixes. One year (2012?) Pete did an epic 3 hour set for Halloween which is one of my favorite all time dj mixes. There's a bunch of fantastic darkside sets from DevNull that should keep you going out of your brain for some time.

Thursday, 13 August 2015

What's On The Hi-Fi Part $?

DJ Extreme - 1994 Jungle Volume 10
I can't seem to get out of 90s zones. This is a cracker of a mix. I've been working my way through DJ Extreme's mixes at Hardscore. Listened to all his 92 and 93 hardcore mixes and now I've reached Volume 10 of his 94 Jungle mixes. This is a fabulous trip into the 90s. We've got funky drummers, half-time bass lines, divas, ragga muffins, chipmunk traces, r&b dudes, sinister synth stabs, washes of ambience, drum splatters and just plain mental bass. This mix is worth it for the array of bass lines alone. You tend to forget that in amongst the euphoria of 90s hardcore a darkness lurked just as much. This mix contains big names like Dillinja, Ed Rush, Doc Scott and DJ Phantasy as well as 2nd and 3rd level playaz. Jungle was so good in 94 the B, C & D grade artists are fucking great too. The quality went deep and the beat science rewards were endless. Volume 10 isn't relentless with the beats, space has it's place here as well. Sometimes you think the darkness is going to envelope the whole set and the drums are going to conk out. That never happens though until the end, I guess. Big Ups to the Extreme.

DJ Extreme - 1994 Jungle Volume 9
Here's another DJ Extreme mix which is a bewdy too. This mix starts out with gold ie. DJ Dextrous & Rapid's Rapid. The House Crew, Tango, Marvellous Cain, Dillinja and D'Cruze all pop their heads up in this ace mix. I can't get enough of this shit and let me tell you there is a bounty of it at Hardscore. Time-stretching, remnants of hip hop, traces of 70s reggae, Ragga, Rave sirens, Amens, House, ethereal lulls, elastic booming bass, dubbed out divas, cymbal splashes, bleeps, mini ponds of euphoria, occasional swells of thick bass goo that leap into the drum n bass future and much more feature here. What's amazing is how different Volume 9 is from Volume 10 which is a testament to the genre's flexibility and breadth of vision and probably why the Hardcore Continuum would continue on for another decade before running out of steam. "They played that bloody Jungle music all night!" And why wouldn't you with choice tracks such as these.

The Church - Hologram Of Baal
Ever since Reynolds posted those Go-Betweens & Church film clips a week or two ago it has been hard to get out of these Aussie zones. You might have noticed I was/am quite the Church fan. I seem to have lost 1996's Magician Among The Spirits so I gave this another listen and wow what an underrated little gem this is. By 1998 they had probably lost at least half of their 80s fan base but that didn't mean they weren't still making legendary music. By this stage of the game we'd all ditched the paisley shirts and pointy shoes long ago but The Church continued on their merry way making druggy journeys into sound. I guess their only contemporaries at the time were Mercury Rev (a friend once described Yerself Is Steam as The Church meets Butthole Surfers), The Flaming Lips and Spiritualized. The Kranky label had been releasing psychedelic space rock for a while too by this stage but the Church weren't following trends. They just did what they did best and made one of their best LPs while they were at it. Hologram Of Baal is The Churchiest of 90s Church LPs. It solidified their 90s experimentalism while containing all of what made them great in the 80s making this an album of consolidation for the band. This LP is like a Church progress report of where they had come from, where they had been and where they were going. More gold.

Now this is a state of the art rap mixtape 2015 style. With most mixtapes you can usually tell which region of America it's coming from ie. Drill & Bop (Chicago), Ratchet (California) trap/weird (Atlanta/The South) etc. but Bricc Baby Shitro throws them all onto this mixtape making it hard to tell where he's emanated from. It makes sense then that he's from LA but now hanging out in Atlanta. Even though Bricc Baby's got a handful of producers here, the mixtape remains pretty cohesive. Having Young Thug on your mixtape is a blessing and a curse. Thugga will give your recording a higher profile but he's most certainly going to upstage you no matter who you are. That puts the starpower of Young Thug into perspective ie. no one in the rap game can come close to him and this has been the case since his 2013 classic 1017 Thug. Anyway this is a genre mixtape that considers the state of where hip hop is in 2015. You may not like having this plethora of rap sounds all in one place but it's almost definitive of the year or at least the decade in which it was made.

Wednesday, 22 July 2015

On The Hi-Fi Part ??? - Jungle/Tech-Step Special

I can't really remember how I found this mix. I'm not even sure who Basic Rhythm is but this is a mix of some choice mid 90s jungle cutz. Dillinja is in there and DJ Krust. Plus a whole bunch of stuff I've not heard, heard and can't necessarily id. 

Keeping the hardcore vibes going, I finally got a copy of Techsteppin. After re-appraising Tech-Step a while back when listening to the excellent No U-Turn comp Torque, I thought I'd check this out. While it's still got very faint traces of jazz (the darker side of 70s Miles Davis) there no lightness like there was was in in intelligent or jazzy jungle. Distress, claustrophobia and paranoia are at the heart of darkness in these tunes. Torque, released a year later, would pummel out any source elements of jazz in Tech-Step. Actually by the end of this cd that's pretty much what's happened anyway. This is Drum & Bass that's all about the bass. While the beats keep to an almost military-esque stringency like industrial but vaguely funky, the bass is like subterranean scud missiles breaking through the earth's crust. This thick bass goo hits you like a vengeful blow to the body. Techsteppin contains tracks from No U-Turn luminaries Ed Rush plus Trace & Nico under the aliases of Skyscraper and Rollers Instinct. I guess Doc Scott is like the godfather of Tech-Step who was from the original milieu of Darkside Hardcore (NHS EP, Here Come The Drumz etc.) and he shows up here with a sterling performance on Machines. His Tech-Step swarms, buzzes and drones with astonishingly ominous dread. Techsteppin's harsh urban nowhere reached a bleak dead end and I mean that as a compliment. This is another reason to prove that getting off the hardcore continuum around 1995/96 (which is what I did) was wrong. Get numb.

*"It's too purple. Reading that felt like someone doing a bad impression of you."

*Special comments from Mrs Space Debris. She doesn't pull any punches does she? She didn't appreciate me describing the bass as 'like underground thick pools of mutant goo'. So I rewrote it. Is she my new editor? I don't necessarily take purple as a criticism. I mean the best part of reading Melody Maker in 87/88/89 was the purple prose they used to excite me about the likes of Young Gods, AR Kane, My Bloody Valentine, Loop, Butthole Surfers etc. I was never disappointed when I got my hands on those records either.

Continuing on with the hardcore........Pearsall presents a mix of the aforementioned Doc Scott. This set includes Scott's remix work for the likes of System 7Spring Heel Jack and Goldie. Then we've got his own solo tunes plus those under the pseudonym Nasty Habits. Pearsall points out Doc Scott never phoned in his remixes, he makes them his own. Doc's own trax are even more outstanding. Another mix that's a bewdy from Mr Sonicrampage!

Friday, 20 March 2015

Jungle Gold

Tear Down - Dillinger (This tune went missing off the youtubes so I'm not sure if the re-upped version is the one I was talking about or not)

This is a bunch of jungle tunes I've only come across this year or at least ID'ed anyway. The jungle music jungle is vast indeed. I had a severe migraine earlier today so I was drugged to the eyeballs. After many hours the pain abated. I was still in a drug haze when I decided to listen to a mix I'd made earlier this year, before my computer crashed. I had found a stash of choice jungle tunes on the interweb I hadn't come across before but now I can't recall how or where I found them. Anyway it was a great decision to listen to this mix while I sunk into the bed finally feeling better and able to enjoy a snippet of life. The quality goes deep on these tunes. One thing I loved about hardcore and jungle was the amount of different sections to a song there were. If one bit wasn't doing it for ya it didn't matter because a new section would have probably arrived before you even realised. Tear Down is a bewdy. Total drum and bass science. These artists were so damn crafty, you have to admire their commitment and dedication. 

You Must Think First - DJ Hype
This is great mental jungle. Fucking crazy bass, kung fu samples, beats to die for, killer synth stabs and a lovely reggae vocal loop. What more do you need? You Must Think First is relentless.

Tune missing. It was obviously Dubb Hustlers but which bloody tune?

This really sounds like music from a Jungle at the start. Then the beats roll in, followed by a diva, then killer bass and breaks. The drums on this are incredible. This was a culture on a high and Dubb Hustlers were bringing their A game because you had to otherwise you'd be fucked as everyone else was raising the bar as well. Shit two sport analogies in the same sentence, I think I need to have another lie down.

Tune missing. It was Junglist Soldier by Chris Jay but not the 95 lick version. Whatever version it was, it's no longer on youtube!

There's something comforting about the sirens in this tune. Junglist Soldier has passed both tests ie. the bike one and the bed one. The beatz are amazing on this and that 80s Prince-esque synth is fabulous and unusual. Perhaps amongst the choppage here is a Prince drum sample. I think I'm hearing Devo drums as well. Maybe they're just the same drum machines. I don't know. When you think all is said and done an unexpected mental bassline kicks in at the 4 and a half minute mark which is pure gold. You could say that bass was proto-dubstep but that would kind of cheapen it I reckon. This is prime jungle, dubstep doesn't come anywhere near this shit man. 

Set It - X-Project
Lets face it music sounds better on drugs. Lets face it everything's better with drugs. Why do you think its such a massive worldwide industry. This sounds good when you're straight too. Its just that the last time I heard it (an hour and a half ago) I was off me head. Hoover soundz along with sweet soul vocals is a great combo as is bit of a chipmunk vocal, great keyboards, synth strings and a reggae sample. 

Monday, 16 March 2015

Rufige Kru - Dark Metal

Just saw this got the reissue treatment this year. I'm not sure I even know it. It wasn't on that Goldie comp from a couple of years ago and it was originally released after I stopped listening to jungle which had then become drum'n'bass and tech-step. This is pretty tech-steppy and I like a very lot. The dub space opens at one point and becomes extremely cavernous. I thought Goldie had stopped using the Rufige Cru/Kru name way earlier than this (97).

Who could have imagined this music (even a year or two earlier) it was upside-down-sideways and around the other way reversed but still had a bit of sweetness to it. This still sounds amazing today. We're still waiting for this future to arrive or are we? Have we given up on it to listen to the Take Me To Church guy?

This is really fucked up. They were really pushing the boundaries of what was a song weren't they? This is a lofty peak in mental darkside hardcore. The future's not half as delirious as the old imagined future. In fact the future turned out to kinda be the opposite to this didn't it?

Wednesday, 18 February 2015

UK Garridge 101 - Part 3

Here it is then one of the two Steve Gurley remixes of Lenny Fontana's Spirit Of The Sun previously mentioned in the post UK Garridge 101 Part 2 in a discussion with Simon Reynolds. We believe this to be the Full Vocal Mix by Gurley. Feel free to correct me if Simon is wrong. The Ballistic Beatz Dub version remains unfound and unheard by me. It's a mystery. Where is it?

I've found The Ballistic Beatz Dub in a mix from DJ Cemtex called rather creatively Past Garage Vol. 1. 

It's A London Thing from Scott Garcia & MC Styles, another 97 speed garage classic! I only discovered this last year too. At some stage last year I had an epiphany about Speed Garage which I just didn't dig at the time after being a jungle fiend. I thought it was backwards disco pop shite. I didn't pick up on 'the encoded traces of hardcore and rave'* ie. the way jungle skills were transposed onto vocals and other bits of 2-Step. The rhythms weren't as fucked up but traces of the deranged remained intact in more subtle ways and in other areas of the tunes. It was those recent Deep-Tech trax that made me reassess the garridge genre. Now I can't believe how many great tunes there are which is exciting as I'm discovering good stuff all the time. Sadly I don't see this happening with Grime. Hey I quite liked Boy In Da Corner though and I have been known to change my mind. I had this great homemade speed garage mix I made but my computer died (think I lost all files). Trying to piece it back together. Don't trust zipcloud, bunch of arseholes!

Richie Boy & DJ Klasse - Madness On The Street
Uh huh! This is the version I know. Fabulous. It's even got guitar samples in it! Are they the same people as the Stamp Crew who also have a version on youtube? Maybe they just changed their name. Who knows? This garridge/2-Step thing is confusing at times. So many versions of one track, different names, white labels etc. This one is true gold though.

Back to hardcore now. Speaking of unfound tunes I cannot find the version of D'Cruz's Bass Go Boom remixed by DJ SS & E.Q. on youtube. Several uploads of the remix seem to have been taken down. The Bass Go Boom remix was on last year's Suburban Base compilation and it's an absolute killer, one of the best jungle tunes ever made according to these ears. It was another tune I had not consciously heard before, previous to buying that compilation but I believe I would have remembered it as the time-stretched out of control drums and distorted bass are unfuckingbelievable. Anyway we're stuck with the original here which is good but not a patch on the DJ SS & E.Q. remix. Hey do yourself a favour it'll be the best $1.69 you ever spent on i-tunes. I think I'm gonna spend a dollar sixty nine on the other remix. Imagine if it's better than the DJ SS & E.Q. one?!

*Almost forgot this footnote. A quote from Simon Reynolds in a piece on his Energy Flash blog.

Monday, 9 February 2015

UK Garridge 101 - Part 2

This one is from 94 and is a gem. My files have disappeared and my computer is dead till I get someone to look at. I'm not hopeful though. I'm using the Mrs computer. I don't think I had this as an mp3 track, it was definitely on a mix though. So this is a Ray Keith alias and there is some Foul Play connection as well. I think they did something on the flipside. I don't know if Ray went onto garage or continued on with drum'n'bass.

Now this is Wookie from 99 and it's garridge gold. I don't think I knew this one at all. That organ sound plus the drums and bass seem so simple and that's what makes this so great. Then there's that cool serene outro, nice.... I guess it reminds me a little of some of those early hardcore trax that were really minimal like 2 Bad Mice but Wookie does it in garridge form.

Ha, now we're back to Steve Gurley who may or may not have had anything to do with that Renegade B-side at the top. I think I'm lovin the dub (below) even more than the vocal mix. Gurley did both of these versions. Gee he had a knack for this shit. The way he seamlessly went from hardcore to jungle to garridge is something to behold. Nobody probably did it better as far as I know (future topic perhaps?) He was born to do wonder what the original is like?


Part of a discussion with Simon Reynolds, author of Energy Flash & Retromania, and me lifted from the comments box.

heard lenny fontana 'spirit of the sun (steve gurley remix)"? also tuuuuuuuuuuuuuune.

I found the 'Full Vocal Mix' on this mix at Soundcloud

This is a pretty cool mix from Revealomaniac, no relation.

The 'Full Vocal Mix' & 'Ballistic Beatz Dub' are not on i-tunes or Beatport. I don't get these guys and the way they treat their own archives?

yes the mix in that Soundcloud thing (which i downloaded last year now i recall) that is the same as the one described as 'Renegade Business Mix' - so i wasn't wrong all along after all. phew!

i suppose it's not an archival culture really, as much as there are fanboys clustered around all different stages of the hardcore continuum who track stuff like who engineered which jungle or hardcore tune and auteur trajectories of producers etc - the actual core of the culture is not archivally conscious. all these great tunes we fetishise were done as fast-money music, it was about getting the track out for the weeks or few months it was blazing on the pirates and making quite a lot of quick money for the label and the producer. they weren't thinking that far ahead and many would have gone out of business. i mean is the label that put out the gurley rmx even in existence any more? is there anyone with an active financial interest maintaining the archive? probably not. but you would think that the artist would want to keep their work out there in some form. however i got the sense that Gurley was burned in his business dealings, that's the story i heard from somewhere, that he was locked into something iniquitous. so perhaps the whole period something he wants to put behind him, or even doesn't own that music. i mean a remix is usually a flat fee payment for a service, the remix is owned by the original artist / label no matter how different the track is at the end of the process.

Lenny Fontana has Hundreds of trax on Beatport and Gurley even has a few. They're just not the one's I want. Maybe there are some issues like you say with certain tunes. Steve Gurley did acknowledge and recommend that Soundcloud mix though. It's a funny old world innit?

***Both Victor Romeo's Inside You and Lenny Fontana's Spirit Of The Sun were issued on Public Demand Records which I don't think has a current release schedule. Probably shutting up shop in the mid 00s by the looks after 2-Step and UKG were superseded by Grime and Dubstep. In 2013 there was some archival (I think?) audio file release activity from the label. They do have a twitter account.

Saturday, 7 February 2015

Twisted Mentasms

Keep It Coming (Dem 2 Twist Up Dub) - De Souza feat Marcell Duprey.
Holy Fuck this is a tuuuuune!!!!!!! This has to be one of the best records ever. I don't think I even knew these 2 tunes until the other day so they're new to me and they're fantastic. This one from 98's got subtle and slinky Mentasms. I can't believe how much I like garage now. I was certainly one of those guys who didn't get the paradigm shift. It didn't really matter because there was still loads of other types of music happening but then by the early 2000s even that had dwindled to a trickle. Never even heard of De Souza and according to discogs this was the only thing he did. Don't ya love that? Make an all time classic then skedaddle. Of course Dem 2 are always good. Did they do anything shite?

The Twisted Mentasm - Bizzy B.
Bizzy B man of many top tunes but this one totally passed me by. I'm wondering if there was a different version of this though but I can't seem to find it. Like Second Phase's Mentasm wasn't fucked up enough Bizzy B had to fuck with it some more in 1993. This is pure hardcore gold.

Mentasm - Second Phase.
Why the fuck not? Hey while I'm in the mood we might as well hear the most seminal rave track ever. What more can I say that hasn't already been said. Mentastic!!!


*Some people say my blog goes over their head a little. I guess I take for granted my knowledge & do expect a certain amount of pre-knowledge from my readers on the subjects discussed. Or I think 'hey they're on the interweb if they don't know what I mean, finding out is just a click away.' But people are lazy and will quickly lose interest. Anyway this is something I endeavour to correct. There's not much point preaching to the converted, or is there? There must be something in it as the same people go to mass each week. This would be a good essay topic. Anyway what I'm getting at here is that mental noise on Mentasm. When I say things like Mentasm Stab, Mentastic or Mentasms this right here is what I'm referring to-The tune Mentasm by Second Phase which was Joey Beltram & some other guy. It was released in 1991 on the legendary techno label R&S Records from Belgium in 1991. This sound became treasured and had to be had by every hardcore artist for the next few years in the 90s. It kinda actually was the sound of the 90s wasn't it? Hey it's even been back recently on some top 40 hits from the likes of Rihanna. I'm boring myself. Being a teacher must suck. Next week's class: The Hoover Sound.

Wednesday, 4 February 2015

Dolphin Jungle Part 2

Didn't know this Nebula II track from 93 at all till Simon pointed it out to me. Those first 2 records from Nebula II were so good I don't know why I didn't follow them beyond that point. There was so much happening in the 90s music-wise you didn't know where to look or what was coming next. There's another version I see there on the label which doesn't seem to be on youtube though.

The classic Bukem track Atlantis from 93 that needs no introduction. Been listening to so much obscure drum'n'bass that you tend to forget how good the main players were, early on anyway.

This Nebula II tune from 92 Flatliners isn't too dolphin e is it? Bit of Tone-Loc in there and a whole bunch of other stuff. Not heard this like. 'ardcore!

Then there was this one too from Bukem, maybe it was on the other side of Atlantis no it was the follow up single. It's from 93 anyway. I recall enjoying this one. It must have been on a tape. God, maybe I'll get out some post-Rufige Kru Goldie.

Now this one is a crackin tune. I love that swallow/marine life (whatever the fuck it is) sample that I guess we all first heard on 808 State's Pacific State. I think I read somewhere that was just a standard sound setting that came with the ??? instrument. No one had to go searching for this sample on an obscure wildlife documentary. The beats on this are frenetic. A true fucking classic of Dolphin Jungle even if it's perhaps not as calm as some of the other tunes. I think this was Bukem's first 12". What a way to start huh?

Dolphin Tune - Aquarius

I'd heard this back in the day but didn't realise it was called Dolphin Tune. Is it really? Is this where the term Dolphin Jungle comes from? Is that even a term or do I just think it is? Or did it already exist so he was just taking the piss out of himself. I was a sucker for this stuff back then, the good tunes anyway, still am i suppose. This is a bewdy, I reckon. Perfect for my current headspace. It just seemed an unlikely hybrid that juxtaposition of ambient/new age and jungle beatz/choppage. Did someone say ambient jungle? The flip is fucking wicked too probably even better, especially if you get a couple of versions going at once like 40 seconds apart. When I first heard jungle I guess some time in 92 on RRR or PBS in Melbourne on a show called Roots, Ragga & Dub where they started having like monthly jungle specials, which I used to tape but those tapes are long gone, dammit! Anyway that's what I reckon they were doing playing the same track out of sync with at least two records possibly even more or other tunes entirely. It was like music being beamed into my crappy East Brunswick bedroom from a planet inhabited some super hyper spazzoid aliens. Don't let the fact that this is a Photek alias put you off. This isn't as methodical or detached as some his other material.

Forever grateful to the Professor of 'The Hardcore Continuum' Simon Reynolds who adds another contribution to my blog in the comments box:

"probably does come from that tune, but also Bukem was doing things like "Atlantis" and the whole sound of Good Looking / Looking Good is just aqueous isn't it?

there was 93 track by Nebula II on Reinforced called "Eye Memory' that actually has dolphin noises on it! The title is based on that idea that if a dolphin looks you in the eye, it'll never forget you."

I remember Atlantis but not sure I'm familiar with Eye Memory. Funds back in the day went mainly on gettin wasted so it was radio, tapes or clubs where you heard the music. Import 12"s were bloody expensive as were styluses. Loved those Nebula II trax on those Reinforced comps though.

Monday, 2 February 2015

Come Easy - Run Tings & Liftin' Spirits

Didn't Know this track until I bought that excellent Suburban Base Compilation last year. It just came up whilst I was on me pushy today. Gee there's some great choppage happening in there. Then you've got those strings which are just lovely and that quintessential female voice. like a lot. Don't know anything about them except they, Run Tings, had a run of 5 or 6 records on Suburban Base. This did lift my spirits today. I don't know if it's like a split single deal or a collaboration. So I checked out the flipside (below) Invincible which is more your pure dolphin jungle but that's not a bad thing with me. I quite like it. There's a nice dark bit in the middle. It's hard not to resist that drummage, no matter how absurd and fusion e it is.

Saturday, 17 January 2015

Steve Gurley/Foul Play

This one's is from 93. An all time classic no doubt. 4 horsemen was a Foul Play pseudonym. There's an unmistakable 4 Hero sample in there from Mr Kirk's Nightmare. The flipside We Are The Future is just as stunning.

This one from 92 co written and produced by Gurley and 2 High. Actually the other version Dub In U might even be better than this, might dig that out to compare.

Steve Gurley had a lot to do with 'ardcore and Jungle before he went Garridge. I'm pretty sure this was just him on the remix of Omni Trio's Renegade Snares (Foul Play remix). God I love Omni Trio. I never tire of them. They are a gift. What was it Kodwo Eshun said about Omni Trio? Something about them 'being so kind'. He's right they have been kind to me for creating such great music and giving me so much pleasure through the years.

Thursday, 16 October 2014

UK Garage With Simon Reynolds

"Double 99 and Gant are just pure classic speed garridge. Deekline is sort of 2step turning into breakstep (breakstep really not a good development in my opinion, with a few exceptions - although he liked to call it Nu Rave, Deekline - sort of starts to merge into the nu skool breaks scene which you may nor may not recall - Rennie Pilgrem and others that my memory fails to dredge up. Stanton Warriors were the big breakstep act as I recall. But all of it -- speed garage, 2step, breakstep, proto-dubstep like Horsepower Productions, proto-grime like Pay As U Go Kartel, Oxide & Neutrino, and So Solid Crew - could be subsumed under the rubric "UK garage". Which runs from about 1996 in its earliest stirrings through to 2003-4 when grime and dubstep broke off as separate entities - so that's like an eight year period of great music and ferment in the UK dance underground, but also spilling into the charts. "I Don't Smoke" was a hit single."

*This was left by Simon Reynolds in the comments box of the previous post. Seeing as nobody clicks on the comments box I've put it here, hope you don't mind Simon.
As I've said, this is around the time I got off the Hardcore Continuum. I Don't Smoke went to number 11 in the UK chart for DJ Dee Kline in 2000, the year after it's original release. Horsepower Productions feature prominently in that J Rolla Proto Dubstep Mix with 3 tunes. Nu Rave & Nu Skool Breaks are familiar terms as I would have tuned into radio shows playing this music at the time but obviously got turned off by it. This is also around the time (99) I stopped going to clubs. I gave 2step a go but I just couldn't get into it. As far as Grime went I didn't hate it but I didn't love it (like I loved jungle) either, I guess that's indifference or at least tolerance, if it was within earshot. Having said all that it seems I'm open to reappraisals as some Speed Garage, 2step & Breakstep are now seeping into my consciousness in a very good way.

Oh Boy - Fabulous Baker Boys
This is a beauty from 97.

Destiny - Dem 2
Also from 97 and heading into 2step

187 Lockdown - Gunman (Original Mix)
This is a "Tune" from 97 as well.

Breakstep Questions Answered

Is this strictly speed garage though or more like something on the peripheries of speed garage?

This is a question I asked on the weekend, on this here blog, in regards to these tunes- DJ Dee Kline's I Don't Smoke, Double 99's RIP Groove and Gant's Sound Bwoy Burial. As if in answer to this Reynolds posts a bunch of I Don't Smoke remixes and calls it a breakstep classic. I wonder if this is a sub genre named in hindsight? Was breakstep a micro-genre post 2-step pre Grime? Perhaps it ran parallel to 2-step in the nuum.  Anyway there you go.

What about this one Soundscape's Dubplate Culture? It's got a bit of everything hasn't it? The micro-genre geeks must have had a hard time with this one. Whatever it may be, it's a classic.