Wednesday, 10 October 2012

REQage, an Ambient mix of Req (One) material

REQage, an Ambient mix of Req (One) material

my first mix created with editing software, rather than live.
tracks used will be posted on Souncloud in due course.

Here's a little story of how it happened.

I subscribe to a mailing list for fans of the KLF, the long defunct rave act and all round post-punk anarchists Jimmy Cauty and Bill Drummond.

People on the list post snippets of info about anything relating to their current activities, or anything that might be of interest to fans.

A recent mail referenced a mix on soundcloud , a mix by DJ Food of DJ Shadow ambient snippets , wchih has artwork that pays homage to a classic KL long-plyer, "Chill Out".

I checked the mix and was, to use an owerworn phrase in its most literal meaning, inspired by it. So inspired that the night after checking it, I spent about 3 hours putting together this similar collage of ambient tracks and snippets from another abstract hip-hop pioneer, REQ.

The work involved cutting snippets from tracks, (some ripped from CD, and others from vinyl) then loading them into Audacity and arraging them in layers in an order that gave some structure to the whole mix.

Thursday, 17 February 2011


Well, after not being very successful with this, I've decide to retire the blogger page.


Self-evident that I've not been updating, I don't think blogging is my thing.

But the real problem is hosting the mixes.

I now have the ideal solution - a site dedicated to uploaded mixes. is my profile page and my most popular mix has over 500 plays an nearly 100 downloads!

so check out the link and grab my mixes there

Monday, 11 October 2010

Liquid City III

Just a quick post. I should have blogged this ages ago when I uploaded it to Soundcloud

Liquid City III is (as the name implies) the third in a series of Liquid D&B mixes.
This one veers towards the new trend that some call "micro D&B", (in a similar vein to minimal house - stripped down sounds), exemplified by the FabricLive 50 mix from d-Bridge and Instra:mental.

I gathered as many of their tracks and similar material I could to make this mix. Most of it fails to reach the extremes that they achieved for the Fabric Live release, but since making this mix I have acquired more, including most of Instra:mental's nonplus labels output, which will go into Liquid City IV !!

Anyway the tracklist is available at the Soundcloud Link for the mix

Sunday, 18 April 2010

Record Store Day

Well it's been a long hiatus. I have been really slack with the blog, but pumping out loads of mixes, so I need to catch up.

But first...

Yesterday was international Record Store Day, just google it for more info.

This is a celebration of the ever dwindling band of independent record shops, a cause close to my heart, as after clubbing, time spent in record shops was my second favourite pastime in the 90s!

Of course life has moved on for me, and working away from home, family, financial and other pressures make those relaxed weekend shopping trips a thing of the past, but of course with that the world around me has changed too, and the decline of physical media music sales has killed off the majority of traditional record shops, and this event took place to celebrate and promote those that remain.

To support the event dozens of artists and labels produced limited edition release for the day, with others offering pre-release availability of items that will not be normally available till Monday.

I got to my nearest record shop, Rock-a-Boom in Leicester at about 10:05, just after opening, hoping to fit a quick visit in between other commitments. By 11am I had actually managed to enter the shop, the queue was so long. And by 11:30 I got served, by which time I had missed my next stop-off (a quick phone call home saved my bacon), and many of the most sought-after items had gone, but I managed to bag a quartet:

Chemical Brothers - Escape Velocity (limited edition, single sided)
Jònsi - Go Do (limited 1000)
Jamie Lidell - Compass (on WARP, limited to 150 in the UK)
LCD Soundsystem - Pow Pow (limited 1000 copies, single sided)

the Chemical Brothers track seems to be more widely available from tomorrow, 19th, and is a precursor to a new album.

Not all of them are things that I would normally have bought, but I had to support the day and the lure of limited edition material by interesting artists is always too great for a vinyl addict such as myself.

Each purchase at the shop also brought with it a free 18-track sampler CD. Most of the stuff on there is guitar-based stuff which I have a hard time getting into, but there were some gems for me too.

So deep into last night I knocked together an eclectic if rather brief mix of these tracks:

Jamie Lidell - Compass
Oceansize - Legal Teens
LCD Soundsystem - Pow Pow
Falty DL - Discant
Hadouken! - Turn The Lights Out
Chemical Brothers - Escape Velocity
Blame featuring Ruff Sqwad - On My Own (Drumsound & Bassline Smith Remix)
Jònsi - Go Do
Yeasayer - Ambling Alp
Jònsi - Boy Lilikoi
Jamie Lidell - Lies Inside

I have to confess to cheating slightly - the FaltyDL track is not actually on the sampler CD, but was a secondhand promo that I bought in the shop at the same time, so it sort of counts.

In spite of the wide variety of styles here, I think I made a decent fist of it, in particular I was surprised by the way that the Chemical Brothers and Blame tracks ended up in the same key, and I hope that my beatmixing of the likes of Jònsi and Yeasayer demonstrates that these techniques are not limited to pure dance music.

I hope you enjoy the mix!

download it here

Friday, 4 September 2009

Brooklyn's In The House (1990 retro trip!)

Now is the time for a big mix.
It all started with a discussion on discogs about Centerfield Assignment.
What happened was this discussion ignited a chain reaction in my mind about links between tracks, and raised a number of ideas that had been brewing consciously and subconsciously for god-knows how long.
The mix is 2 hours and 9 minutes, and would have been longer had it not been so late and I got tired - I could have continued mutating the theme and working the decks with old tunes, but the original theme worked its course.
So Here's the lowdown on what was going on, first up the tracklist:

Sueno Latino - Sueno Latino (Derrick May Remix)
Flowmasters - Let It Take Control (Original / Bass Beats / Heartbeat Mix / Judge Jules Mix)
Flowmasters - Energy Dawn
Too Nice - I Git Minze
Hard House (Todd Terry) - Check This Out
Swan Lake - In The Name Of Love
Lake Eerie - Sex 4 Daze
Musto & Bones - This will Be Mine
Musto & Bones - Te Quiero
Todd Terry Project - Back To The Beat
Reese & Santonio - The Sound (Acid Remix / Exclusive Motor City Mix)
Reese & Santonio - Rock To The Beat
D-Shake - Techno Trance (Revisited)
Looney Tunes - Another Place, Another Time
Looney Tunes - You Are The One
Looney Tunes - As Long As I Got You
Musto & Bones - All I Want Is To Get Away
Bones & Musto - We Call It Techno (Brooklyn New Beat Mix)
Flowmasters - House The Crowd
Doug Lazy - Let It Roll (Dub)
Twin Hype Do It To The Crowd
Centerfield Assignment - Mi Casa (Original Radio / Mi Condo / Mi Garage)
Twin Hype - For Those Who Like To Groove
Nasih & M-D-Emm - Get Hip To This (Frankie Bones Manic Mix)
LNR - Work It To The Bone (Chicago Clubhouse Mix)
Reese - You're Mine (Bad Boy Bill Hardcore Hip House Mix)
Farley Jackmaster Funk feat Precious Red - Think
Mundo Muzique - Andromeda

Now, the thinking behind it.

Well the discussion thread on discogs not only opened up the ideas in my head about Centerfield Assignment and Twin Hype, the seeds of which were sown as early as 2005 , but it touched on links to tracks from Frankie Bones. And one of the mixes of "Mi Casa" has a sample of the cartoon Looney Tunes theme, clearly a reference to the Frankie Bones Looney Tunes EPs (I included the sample somewhat clumsiliy in the mix). The mix is all about links - the majority of the tracks in the mix are linked to their neighbours one way or the other.

I actually originally was going to start with "Let it take control", another Bones creation (with TommyMusto), but in the spirit of my "links" theme, I felt that it was important to include the track that provided the musical source for the major part of that tune, so Derrick May's mix of Sueno Latino had to take pole position.

That Flowmasters tune is so good and has so many versions that I decided to make an epic journey of it rather than just take the obvious route and move on to the next tune, and I also took the opportunity to include the Third World sampling "Energy Dawn" that originated on the same EP.

There is a vocal sample "I git hiiiiigh" in Energy Dawn that reminded me of Too Nice's "I Git Minze" and while it doesn;t seem to be lifted directly I'm still sure there is a common link here, maybe Bones & Musto stretched the sample or used a different mix. the Too Nice tune also came out around the same time as the Twin Hype tunes and these have always sat together in my mind as well on the shelf.

While in the mix I realised that I could dredge up 20 years of memories and I hit upon the right link- the bassline and in fact whole basis of "I Git Minze" is a Todd Terry Track - "Check This Out" credited to "Hard House". In the mix it goes...

More Todd Terry follows, with "Swan Lake"'s "In The Name Of Love" which includes a Thompson Twins sample!

The next link is a bit more obscure - Lake Eerie is Frankie Bones & Lennie Dee and apparently their inspiration for this tune (largely based around the bassline from Raze "Break 4 Love" - geddit?) from Todd Terry's slew of sample-based tunes at that time (Royal House, Black Riot, the above mentioned Hard House & Swan Lake, Orange Lemon, Todd Terry Project and even "Masters At Work" (There is a whole 'nother history around this name!!!)

The Bones connection continues (in fact he seems to form an axis about which this mix rotates) with a couple of tunes from Musto & Bones - This Will Be Mine and Te Quiero. the real treat from this particular release is yet to come however...

Te Quiero uses a bassline from some obscure 89 Detroit techno tune, but I just couldn't recall which one, so I went to another tune that used the same trick - Todd Terry's "Back To The Beat" which used a bassline from Kevin "Reese" Saunderson's "The Sound" and so enraged Saunderson that he bootlegged the Terry track and released it alongside a reissue of "The Sound" itself on one of his own EPs as "Back To The Beat (With "The Sound") in order to publicise the fact that his bassline had been ripped off.

So it's only natural that I follow this with "The Sound", in two different versions in this case, followed by another Kevin Saunderson creation, "Rock To The Beat", a very influential and important track with its intense, dark and eerie atmosphere.

"Rock To the Beat" was sampled by Frankie Bones & Lennie Dee on the first "Looney Tunes" EP to create "Another Time Another Place, and this was subsequently sampled by D-Shake to create "Techno Trance" - the (to me) superior B-side to D-Shake's "Yaaaaah!". I dropped from "Rock To The Beat" into "Techno Trance" and then back to the Looney Tunes track, still confused about the provenance of the sample at the time I committed this mix to posterity! My confusion was eliminated by another exchange on discogs. :)

I moved through some more of may favourites from the two Looney Tuens EPs next. "You Are The One" is a piece of simple electro perfection, a love song created with primitive sample technology - awesome. And I suppose "As Long as I got you" could be a love song too - this was ubiquitous that year and even got covered by euro outfit "101" in an indistinguishable mix. Such big tune had to be floowed by another, and "All I want is to get away" is such a tune, with those massive "Landlord" stabs and just sucha a great structure and feel! Only topped by "We Call it techno", which if it didn't lay the "techno bass" blueprint for the likes of Aux 88 then its only because they were following exactly the same cues. funnily enough, when I hear this in 90, I didn't think it sounded like "Techno" but I was not at that time aware of the link back to the "electro" of cybotron and was more fixated on the minimal 4/4 stuff that was current at the time.

After that peak, I just let things ease off, a breather for the dancefloor if you will, with the mellowest track from the Flowmasters EP "House The Crowd". Which of course sampled from Doug Lazy "Let It Roll", included here in its dub version. That in turn finally led to Twin Hype's "Do It To the Crowd" due to similar style.

So here I dropped 3 versions of Centerfield Assignement's "Mi Casa". this tune appears in a break at the end of "Do It to the Crowd", and I attempted to extend this break ,somewhat clumsily in restrospect. Meanwhile "For those Who Like To Groove" uses the same bassline as "Mi Casa" so was the obvious choice here.

from there we have entered hip-house territory, but keeping the Brooklyn Feel, I adopted Frankie Bones' mix of M-D-Emm vs Nasih's"Get Hip To This. M-D-Emm was a UK outfit including Dave Lee (aka Joey Negro aka Jakatta) and Mark "Ruff Ryder" both of whom went on to be involved in all sorts of projects. This track sampled a vocal "Let's Work" from "Work It To the Bone", a Chicago house track from LNR. I then continued the hip-house theme, but referencing earlier points in the mix, with Reese's "You're Mine" in the Bad Boy Bill remixed "Hardcore Hip House" version featuring the never-to-be-seen-again MC Slo Mello Flo.

At this point I couldn't resist dropping one of my faviourite Hip-House-influenced tracks "Think" from Farley Jackmaster Funk, the Chicago House originator who brought us "Love Can't Turn Around. This tune is a remake of a James-Brown JB's Band based track by Lyn Collins, which provided the "yeah -- woah" breakbeat that was so popular in 87-89 and was of course re-used in this tune.

At this point mI had strayed a bit far from my original theme, and the tangent was developing fast, while the hour was getting late and I was feeling the effects, so I decided to mellow out and drop my closing track, a classic from Mundo Muzique - Andromeda, held by many as a key tune of the era. unfortunately this last mix is marred by a key clash as well as a lack of obvious continuity, but under the circumstances I am fairly happy with it.

Listening back to the whole mix, I think it works well, and provides a great snapshot of a time almost 20 years ago, when so much was happening, I could probably do another half-dozen 2-hour mixes and still not cover all my favourite tracks from this period of time where the music was moving so fast that every big new tune would spawn what seemed like a whole raft of samples, copies/influences or even a new sub-genre!

Here's the link


Saturday, 15 August 2009

Bang up to date!

Right, I'm back

This time some fresh Drum & Bass Bisness,
I mixed this one this morning after breakfast, between about 9 and 10am. the first time I've been able to do that for several years!! We were just fresh back from holiday the afternoon before (caravanning in Yorkshire if you must know), and with 2 days to chill and sort things out before work, I just stepped up to the decks and based on the handful of new tune I had arrived before we went away, I just got onto the groove.

So, the tracklisting is:

Heist - Sprout (Breakage Remix)
Blu Mar Ten - Beyond words
J Majik & Wickaman - Crazy World (Afterlife Dancing At Sunset Remix)
J Majik & Wickaman - Crazy World (?Brookes Brothers Remix)
Shinichi Osawa - Star Guitar (Brookes Brothers Remix)
Hatiras - Spaced Invader (High Contrast Mix)
Lomax - Mercia
Sub Focus - Follow The Light
Jonny L - Microdaze
Spor - Aztec
(TC - Raise The Roof)
Sub Focus - Rock It
Jakes - Warface (D*Minds Remix)

So, what's it all about? Well, I was looking for a "Warm-up" vibe, and I had some new tunes knocking about, plus of course access to recent and old classics from my pile!

To start off I went mellow, but with a deep dubsteppy vibe - the Heist track turned up on a K-Mag (Knowledge) cover-disc a few months back and stood out a mile. Breakage's stuff usually does! Bought it from the labels parent website, Horizons music.

Blu Mar Ten, well there's a name I remember from back in the day, compilation appearances on Good Looking meant they were on the radar for me over a decade ago, although that sound was never core to my D+B interests back then. Anyway, my friend Adam came round for a mix session a little while back and brought this tune with him. To his surprise, this was the highlight of his box for me. The A-Side is a decent enough tune but this B-side just blew me away. If B12 and Derrick May were making Drum-n-Bass today, I'd like to think this is what it would sound like.

To ease me up to dancefloor tempos, I used J Majik / Wickaman, but starting with this CD-Only mix by Afterlife, who has mixed countless trance and house tunes into Ibiza beach friendly format (ref: many Chilled Euphoria mix CDs!). Building into the Brookes Brothers remix, we are now moving up a gear!

More from the Brookes Brothers, there glistening disco-tinged D&B a hit with me over recent months, this time a remix of "Star Guitar, a cover version of the Chemical Brothers tune, by Japanese artist Shinichi Osawa. To be frank, while I love the Chems' version (particularly for its hypnotic railway video!) I haven't heard his original version, but I caught this D&B version on the radio and had to get hold of it. By the way, listen to this song again, if you don't understand the lyrics, just imagine it from a clubber's perspective: "you should feel what I feel, you should take what I take", what could it mean!!??

Hatiras' "Spaced Invader" is a classic,on both house and D&B dancefloors, the latter for the J Majik remix, but on this occasion I though I would go for the more obscure High Contrast Mix, simply because it was a less obvious choice.

Moving on from there, I wanted to get some more of my newer tunes in the mix, and Lomax' "Mercia" was a good fit, with its Liquid intro and tougher insides!

This led me towards where I wanted to be for the end of the mix - the B-side of the new 12" from Sub Focus. this particular version of "follow the light" is from the picture disc and has vocals. It also tangentially lent its name to the mix "photon chaser" - geddit?

Something else that caught my ear on a recent Radio 1 show, was some new material from Jonny L , an artist who consistently breaks boundaries in D&B, primarily because he doesn't listen to the work of his contemporaries very much, he locks himself in the studio and gets on with it. This time he has come up with two old-skool inspired tracks and launched a new label, Munk.

Now we are building to the peak, and time to hand over from the warm-up DJ to the first big-name,. by playing the big tunes that everyone knows, but which the white-label-fed A- and B-list DJs are already ignoring, first up:

Spor - Aztec, and absolutely massive tune that was no.1 for several weeks in the D&B charts, and its ravey intro goes lovely over the Jonny L tune.

Next, the current big D&B tune across the land, from Radio 1's D&B show up to daytime play! It's Sub Focus again, with Rock It. By the way, that little vocoder vocal that says "Jump on it", is sampled from "Give the DJ a break" by Dynamix II, a classic piece of Miami Bass electro from about 1986.

I couldn't resist dropping a little bit of TC - Raise the Roof in at this point, as there is something about the Sub Focus track that reminds me of it.

To round things off I dropped Jakes' "Warface" (D*Minds Remix). This is a hilarious track with OTT marching beats dropped over a vocal sample from the movie Full Metal Jacket, to devastating effect. I spiced it up with an extra sample at the end just to finish off the mix with a little extra.

So, enjoy the mix, which is uploaded at this link

Friday, 31 July 2009

Dubstep Lives!

Great news.

Thanks to the excellent service provided by , some of my mixes are now becoming available again.

Check out the link in the right hand links bar for my profile, or try these direct links:

Jah Frequency (my first ever dubstep mix and first post on this blog)

Dubstep Chill (a new mix, tracklisting to be posted soon!)

Third Choice (from Nov 2008)

about time!