Archive for the ‘Acid’ Category

The Poem – G. Cheung aka Nookie aka Cloud Nine [1993]
November 14, 2014

I heard a deep house track that had an almost identical baseline synth earlier this week which got me thinking of this cracker from Nookie aka Gavin Cheung. A man that needs almost no introduction as he is responsible for some classic early to Mid-Nineties Hardcore and Drum n’ Bass cuts.

This track has a real crossover flavour with shades of House, hardcore and even acid techno from around that period of late 93. Definately not a track you would have heard a lot of around that time, I dont ever recall hearing this on any mix, with the Wave Station track from the double A side of this EP getting the most air time. A shame really because this track really does feel light years ahead of its time.

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Kraze – The Party (Tunnel Mix) [1988]
January 9, 2014

There’s a riff, that I often find myself humming. On those rare occasions when I get a quiet moment, its a good chance that this riff will be there, floating around in the background. You might even say, its a riff that haunts me. That riff is the bassline to Kraze’s “The Party”. Its so damn perfect in its execution, its as if the sequence of notes were always meant to be played next to each other in this way. Like there really is no other way for them to be woven together.

Now that might sound a bit off the wall but stick with me. This came out in 1988, I was beginning to listen to House music, moving away from the hip hop and soul I had been listening to. There’s a good chance that I probably heard this, like so many others on a John Peel show on a Sunday night. But, like a handful of other tunes, this has a riff that has just stayed with me since that day. Its so simple, so iconic that its not hard to see why its such a beloved track by so many. Sure, the vocals can grate a little but you know you have a wry smile in the corner of your mouth when you head “Y’all want this party start right? Somebody Scream!”. Its a snapshot of everything that made these dance music releases so damn brilliant. Its got a huge slab of Detroit Techno in its veins with a bucketload of NY House sass thrown in for good measure. Its a song who’s sole purpose is to make you dance. At home, at work, on the bus, in a club, in a field, at your desk. Consider my Party well and truly started.

Underground Resistance – Kamikaze [1992]
January 10, 2013

Today’s slice of banging techno comes to you from a good mate of mine, John. Unfamiliar with this track prior to about 20 minutes ago, its hard not to wack a great big grin on your face with the bleepy goodness of this belter. The beginning is a cracking onslaught of the senses but the real fun comes about 2 mins in when the track lays down and strips itself bare before slowly reintroducing all the elements that made up the beginning assault. As you know by now, im a huge fan of really superbly layered electronic tunes and this belter is no exception, top dollar techno tune.

From Discogs
The introduction by Monte Markham, whose speech is taken from the series of documentaries Air Combat, aired on NBC in the early 1990s, gives way to the screaming sound of a crashing plane that sets the mood. Then, it is rave terror ahead, with a gentle Acid line, techno beats and a roaring hoover. The result sounds a little dated, really and is perhaps only worthwhile for nostalgia value. Yet the break at the end of the second third brings in deep, lush strings that only Mad Mike could have produced.

D.O.M. – Acid war [1995]
February 28, 2012

From one end of the spectrum to the other, this Acid Techno masterpiece from D.O.M rarely attracts anything but unapologetic joy and for good reason. This doesn’t destroy dance floors, this track obliterates them with extreme prejudice. Thats driving acid riff does not stop for the entire track, pulsing through you like a techno body snatcher from another world. There is no let up, no break, once it drops your in it for the duration. Your entire world is now nothing but possessed acid riffs, pounding bass drums and raw acid baselines. I cant adequately explain in words really just how incredible a track this is when heard live, surrounded by a sea of bodies but the reaction is just electric. An absolute masterpiece.

However, if this track is unbelievably not hard enough on the acid for you, there is a remix that may just fit the bill. Wah Wah’s Acid Intensifier Remix does exactly what it says in the title, it kicks the entire track up to 11 for seven minutes of the hardest acid bedlam your ever likely to hear. For me, its too much, the simplicity of the original is what makes it stand out for me, however I know many folks who ‘kin love the Wah Wah remix.

From Discogs
OK now, the original might come in handy every now and then, or serve for the odd occassion, but this whole release is all about the remixes, actually. For a change, yeah, the remixers really did elevate the original to whole new heights.

First off, Wah Wah’s remix is a blasting, who-can-count-that-fast-to-count-the-BPM-rate acid trancecore monster, with a hardcore touch moving at incredible velocity, with jarring and steel hammer hard acid riffs. Completely wild and off the hook. Definitely something to play during the peak of the night. No pauses, no breaks and no climaxes – just torrents of wild acid dropped for around five minutes after a brief intro and the initial build up.
Then comes Chris Liberator with one of his career calling cards. To my knowledge this is the first remix he’s ever done, and what a treat it is. Rolling, 4/4 percussion, with a funky as hell bassline as the sounds and acid leads slowly but steadily gain in loudness and intensity as they progress. By the time that final break comes, prior to the last stand-off, this track is already a wicked mental hospital, then for the last two minutes or so Chris goes completely mad, twists and tweaks with these insane acid melodies and plays a dozen tricks on your mind. Fun, danceable, funky and banging, and inclined to smack an ear to ear smile across your face – isn’t that what techno is all about? Absolutely essential for all lovers of London’s underground acid techno scene.

Cygnus X – The Orange Theme [1994]
February 28, 2012

Now here’s a track that inspires either flat out joy or absolute hatred in all that know it. Its one of those tracks that has been played to death for years, for me, thats for good reason, its a blinder of a track. Its a guaranteed floor filler, appealing to a wide slate of electronic music fans and perhaps thats one of the reasons it inspires such hatred in many. Its origins are from “A Clockwork Orange”, made by one Wendy Carlos who in turn took inspiration from Henry Purcell’s “March” from “Music for the Funeral of Queen Mary”.

Hoffman, under the Cygnus X moniker simply cranked the speed up, chucked in a bass drum and wavey ravey acid riff underneath and stuck it on wax. As you’ve probably noticed, im a big fan of simple arrangements and this is no different. There are hundreds of remixes, many of which make small insignificant tweaks to capitalise on the popularity of the original. The standouts for me being the Man With No Name mix released in 2000;

and the VERY crowd friendly, Moonman’s Orange Juice remix from ’99

Regardless of your opinion of the track, its hard to deny that The Orange Theme played an integral part of the techno and trance scenes. For good or bad its a track that can transport me back to dark, smoke filled rooms with lasers in an instant.

From Discogs
One of the best classical techno-trance themes. My guess is that it is techno-trance at its best. Unforgettable, but then again we must remember that the original melody was created by the genious Purcell, and beautifully worked by Wendy Carlos on the “Clockwork Orange” famous theme.

Eye Q reached the pinnacle of the classically melodic euro trance milieu with the ‘The Orange Theme’.

The Original Mix takes the ‘Vernon’s Wonderland’ (Vernon) approach, but raises the stakes to a quick 147+ bpm, and adds background bubbly acid line to drive it through. The result is a classical music masterpiece that has been often copied and remixed, but never bettered.

That is not to detract anything from the remixes here though, they are both worthy treatments.

Recreating a song composed by a classical music composer (such as Beethoven) into an electronica tune sounds like a good idea in almost every instance, but I have yet to really find an example of this that has really worked. The Orange Theme, which is also the main theme from the movie “A Clockwork Orange”, is just not very good. Granted, the Solar Stone remix is good trance, with a great build, but the main synth line is just not that good. It really isn’t that catchy, and is just plain cheesy. There are better trance anthems out there that are worth owning in this format.

I’ve always considered “The Orange Theme” a turd in Eye Q’s catalogue. It’s crude, in-your-face and unsophisticated, and reeks of UK superclubs and “Now that’s what I call trance” compilations.

But the flip side of this original release is magnificent. See, “Introspective” is just that – a pensive, poignant track imbued with the kind of warm melancholy often heard in the best early 90’s trance. You needn’t waste your time on the overplayed A side – this is the real deal. Beautiful.

ABS -My house is Your House [1991]
February 24, 2012

Cracking piece of Euro Techno. Heavv on the stompage with that brutal kick drum just punching you in the chest at every beat. There’s a generous helping of synth stabs but the special part of this for me is the hover type synth riff that comes in at the intro and weaves itself through the moog bassline and then throughout the track, its permanently there driving the track on. A proper shape thrower.

Sub Sub – Ecto-Jam-Sub [1991]
February 8, 2012

The B-Side to Space Face and a pretty clear departure from the laid back hedonism of the title track. This is pure northern sounds here, stacked up next to offerings from 808 State, I doubt you could tell them apart. Its got all the prerequisites, bouncy acid riff, deep sub base and a pounding bass drum. Not as prolific as the A side but a cracker none the less.

Sub Sub – Space Face [1991]
February 8, 2012

Another classic release from Sub Sub who would later be known as “The Doves”. This was actually their first ever release, tapping the popular breakbeat sound and throwing a funky as hell bassline behind it and tarting it up with some seriously lush strings and a cracking synth/piano riff combo thats just perfect. Naturally, like the Coast EP that came after it, this was MASSIVE and still inhabits a soft spot in many a heart, mine included. Magic on wax this one.

From Discogs
First heard this classic Mancunian track on a Pirate Manchester radio station called ‘Sunset FM’ back in 1992. The Mix Factory was the name of the DJ slot I think ?, also ‘Paul Walker, 808 State’ are the one’s I can remember. Management Kenny Grogan Underground Manchester is on the jacket credits.This could have some relation to Underground Records in Manchester where you could buy rave music, closed down many years ago some time after the Manchester bomb. Manchester has World class A1 Music and in my opinion this is one A1 class Mancunian delight. It is a classic drum/keyboard/string/mellow yet dark rave track that I haven’t heard replicated before. B side ‘Ecto-Jam-Sub’ could have been released as a A side single the quality is there.

Charles B & Adonis – Lack of Love [1988]
February 6, 2012

Good god yes. This just came up on the ole Ipod after a crafty weekend update and i’ll be damned if its been too long since I heard this banger. A seminal piece of classic Acid House, retaining the added distinction of being probably the only track of the time to have an entire vocal section included in it. While many lament the addition of the vocals, I absolutely bloody love the whole composition. The acid riffs complement the vocal perfectly, likely because the vocalist isnt actually all that good. Instead you get some raw lyrics over a ferocious acid riff with Adonis’ trademark squelchy 303 business. A track that is guaranteed to have you grooving to the very heart of acid house, what a cracker.

From Discogs
Lack Of Love is timeless, vintage gem of a track, and the fact I’m about to jot down a laudable line or two about it, twenty years after its original release date, only helps prove my point.
By combining really smooth vocals, great and subtle piano stabs and an infectious, yet instantly memorable and emotional acid riff, the track has potential to draw in both, the regular VIVA Club Rotation electronic music follower as well as the more underground orientated acid house freaks.
I haven’t really heard many DJs drop it that many times, but what I can tell is that it works equally well during the lazy morning after hours and during the peaks of more sophisticated house sets.
A trait of a true classic, no doubt. It has really aged with grace in my humble opinion. One of those tunes which will bring smiles to people’s faces another twenty years from today.

How does one combine brilliant deephouse with brilliant acid? By recording “Lack of love”! Most techno and acid fans hate it because it’s too soft and most deephouse fans hate it because it is too hard. But I think it is one of the best records ever!

The Charlatans – Nine Acre Dust (Chemical Brothers Rmx) [1995]
November 14, 2011

What a belter from The Charlatans and The Chemical Brothers. Back in ’95 the Chem’s were at the top of their game, their singles from Exit Planet Dust were epic in their own right but their remixes were untouchable. This being one of the very best as well, its “Big Beat” without the cheddar. Keeping the bulk of the Charlatans vocal samples but cutting them up with a brutally catchy breakbeat. But for me its the bassline on this beauty, its a low rumbling monster of a bassline, the kind that comes to get you on the dancefloor and drag you all over the club with a massive grin on your face. ‘kin Classic!