Sunday, November 18, 2007

Trevor's extra strong mints.

Hey y'all!

One recent release that's barely left my CD player since I got my mitts on it is the latest in BBE/Rapster's The Kings Of... series. As you can see, this one is a two-disc offering of electro cuts, compiled and mixed by Trevor Jackson (Playgroup, Output) and Alter Ego (them of 'Rocker' fame). As with the previous entries in this collection, both discs try to offer a glimpse into the specified genre's past, present and future. With electro - as with most things, in my opinion - there's more fun to be had digging into the past (I didn't mean that to sound as retrogressive as it does. I'm as forward-thinking as the next man. Honest. I'm into dubstep and everything.), so it's Trevor Jackson's Playgroup mix that floats my boat the most out of the two.

It's not that the Alter Ego mix is necessarily bad, they just miss the point a little ('Doom's Night' = electro?! Yer kiddin'?!), whereas Jackson goes for the part of your brain known as the nostalgia reflex (it's real, look it up). His mix is chock full of 808s, vocoders, phased synths and pop-lockin' grooves, as characterised by its highly recognisable tracklisting ('Turbocharged' by Just Ice, Arkade Funk's 'Tilt' and C-Bank's 'One More Shot' are all present and correct). It harks back to a time when the future seemed like somewhere you'd really want to be, full of friendly, helpful - and preferably funky - robots, hover cars and buggin' fashions, not the future of today which is all nuclear war, lowered life expectancies and crippling debts. So, I guess in taking a look back, Jackson has kind of reminded us all that we should want to look forward, just like the futuristic sounds of early-80s electro. Does anyone know a channel that runs repeats of Metal Mickey?

Hashim - Al-Naayfysh (mp3)

Model 500 - No UFOs (mp3)

Speaking of Trevor Jackson (seamless segue there, I should work in television), the last word on his label, Output Recordings hit the shops last week in the form of I Hate Music, a two-disc compilation of some of the label's best bits all in one neat package (with bonus DVD, naturally). Output was one of the most intriguing, innovative labels of its time, so it was saddening to see it take a nosedive last year, even though it could be argued that its best days were behind it (a point highlighted by this chronological compilation's patchy final stretch).

This is a timely reminder of just how diverse and risk-taking a small, boutique label should be and covers pretty much all what made Output such a great label. It's a shame they couldn't license some of the early DFA releases (before DFA had EMI's backing, they entered into business with Output who put the early 12-inches from LCD Soundsystem and The Rapture out in Europe), but who really needs another compilation with 'House Of Jealous Lovers' and 'Losing My Edge' on it (the full version of 'Olio' would have been nice though)?

There's some really great stuff over I Hate Music's two discs though, from the likes of Gramme ('Crooks & Criminals', which I still think The Juan Maclean lifted the melody pretty much wholesale from for 'Give Me Every Little Thing'), Blackstrobe ('Innerstrings', forever to be their finest moment in my eyes), Mu ('Paris Hilton', but everyone knows 'Chair Girl' is way better - again this is probably a licensing issue as it was a co-release with Tigersushi, whom the Fultons fell out with rather acrimoniously not long after), two of Output's most-likely-to's, DK7 (represented twice, but, alas, they had to use the inferior album version of 'The Difference') and Colder (who would have been a great pop producer if he weren't so in debt to Joy Division and Gallic indifference) and a handful of great lost pop songs from San Serac (the brilliantly pervy 'Tyrant'), Kreeps ('All I Wanna Do Is Break Some Hearts') and Tall Blonde ('Don't Stop').

Jackson showed the rest of the UK how DIY was done for a decade and his label will be missed. Now we have this fantastic time capsule though, it's going to be difficult to forget at least.


Dempsey - ODB On The Run (mp3)

Fridge - Lojen (mp3)

Kreeps - All I Wanna Do Is Break Some Hearts (mp3)

San Serac - Tyrant (mp3)

And some that were criminally left off I Hate Music...

The Rapture - Olio (Full Length Version) (mp3)

DK7 - The Difference (12" Version)

Mu - Chair Girl (mp3)

I regret to announce that December's Get Girl. Kill Baddies. Save Planet. is to be the last. Yes, that's right, my favourite monthly shindig is calling time after just shy of a year in the game. In the typical live fast, die young, leave a good-looking corpse tradition however, they're bowing out with what could possibly be their most high-profile and best guest to date. D*I*R*T*Y Soundsystem's very own Pilooski will be manning the decks on December 7th and hopefully he'll be dropping some seriously bad-arse twisted disco bombs to take the boys out with a bang.

Backing Pilooski up will be Get Girl ressies, Grammar and Pasta Paul. There won't be a dry eye in The Roadhouse come 3am and if I don't hear the next two tracks at some point in the night, then I'll be severely pissed off...

The Pointer Sisters - Send Him Back (Pilooski Edit) (mp3)

Herbert - Movin' Like A Train (Smith 'N' Hack Remix) (mp3)


In other news: I have a Robyn live review up at High Voltage and I'm also on this week's Blog Fresh Radio, yammering on about the new Burial album. Get about, me, don't I?

More mixtape action coming soon...


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Blogger jonthebeef said...

Aww... I'm welling up already. *sniff*

11:11 pm  
Blogger NOTHING TO SEE HERE :O said...

Rapture olio brings me back goooood memories :)

Glad to see you posted a bit here James haha :D

Catch you soon!

8:09 pm  
Blogger jmatt said...

i wish we had clubnights where people played pointer you mind if i link to your site on my blog?

7:33 pm  
Blogger James said...

I don't mind at all, mate. In fact, I'll return the favour and link to yours too.

7:42 pm  

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