Kevin Saunderson/Inner City – Till We Meet Again (Carl Craig Remix) [2010]
February 1, 2013

Now this is an absolute masterstroke of genius from Carl Craig, turning one of the great Inner City classic’s into a pounding techno monster that gives the amazing “Bladerunner” remix a run for its money. This feels like a real return to the source, pure driving techno beats and a ridiculously catchy synth riff interspersed with snippets of Paris Grey’s amazing vocal. Time for me to revisit Mr Craigs catalogue I reckon!

Carbon Based Lifeforms – Euphotic [2010]
September 4, 2012

My apologies for the intermittent posting, work and life just keeps on getting wedged between me and my tunes. Ive not even put any new tracks on the the old iPod for months.

Not a big problem though, not when you have the likes of the excellent “Interloper” album from Carbon Based Lifeforms to keep you company. This track is definately one of the standouts on this cracking album though. Rather than the almost exclusively electronic offering found on the rest of the album, Euphotic goes one step by integrating a wonderful etheral vocal track that lifts this head and shoulders above many ambient EDM offerings.

It still features the peerless layering that CBL are known for, its just that vocal and accompanying string section that make this an epic tune. Get on it, close your eyes and drift away!

Bon Iver – Holocene [2010]
December 22, 2011

So here’s a change of pace for you. Ive been hearing the name Bon Iver a whole lot over the past 12 months. He found himself on KCRW one morning which I thoroughly enjoyed but ive never given myself over to taking a full listen of any of his works. I have friends that have gushed about him all year long, people going crazy about how amazing he is live. Well, today I finally got around to queuing up a stack of tracks on YouTube and giving myself an Iver breakdown.

The Verdict? Awesome. If you are not listening to the above track right now, stop reading and hit play. Then go buy this guys self titled album as its an hour of audio bliss. I cant put my finger on what makes this so refreshing, I can hear all manner of artists weaved into the melodies. You have natural Royksopp/Sigur Ros comparisons on the vocal front, there’s some downtempo electronica courtesy of Modeselektor, Apparat and Trentmoller. There’s the folksy guitar business of a thousand backroom jammers. Iver manages to weave so many familiar sounds into his compositions that you dont have to try too hard to listen. They are perfect tracks to put on and sink into, absolutely cracking.

Phill Most Chill feat. Paul Nice – Neva Stop Diggin’ [2010]
December 13, 2011

Oh man, if this isnt the definition of a head nodder I dont know what is. Seriously catchy bassline hook and beat with the lyrics containing a fantastic ode to vinyl addiction from Phil Most Chill.

From Werner Von Wallenrod’s Little Humble Hip Hop Blog
“Neva Stop Diggin'” first appeared online in 2006, when producer Paul Nice uploaded this track he’d just completed. The beat kicks in (after a funny Simpsons sample), and it’s an instant bumper. It’s got kind of modern soul production sound… where on the one hand it’s got that sort of boop, boop, boop sound, but the sampled instruments have a richer, more organic vibe than your average contemporary hip-hop track that does the same kind of thing but lacks the soul. This being Paul Nice, there’s also a bevy of fresh scratched-in vocal samples on the hook. And Phill rhymes what could be the definitive anthem for the current digging scene:

“You know I never stop diggin’;
It’s like my religion.
Ever since the days of Wild Style,
Flash in the kitchen
Cuttin’ Bob James.
Biz says he got a version with no bells;
But I ain’t never seen that for sale,
Definition of a Holy Grail!”

People were amped for this to come out. It was set to be on Paul Nice’s album, but that project wound up getting derailed. So for years later, people kept asking, “what about that ‘Neva Stop Diggin’ track – is it ever gonna come out on vinyl?” ((crickets))

But that’s not even the whole story. While all that was going on, there was a similar situation where Phill Most threw an obscure song up on his blog in a post about another hot producer. This time it’s “Smash!” with producer Jorun Bombay. Yes, that Jorun, who did all those sought after Haltown tapes in the 90’s and worked with Buck 65 before anybody knew who the heck he was. It turns out they originally recorded “Smash” with Jorun’s crew First Words (though only Phill raps on this) as a bonus cut on their 2008 Deadbeats album, Cheaters. I believe that was CD only, if not mp3-only, and definitely not about to see a vinyl pressing.

So, bam! DWG stepped in and made them both happen. A hot 7″ single with “Neva Stop Diggin'” on the A-side, and “Smash!” on the flip. This is barely limited – 1000 copies, which is essentially a full run, these days. The first 75 people to order copies, however, were treated to a version pressed on bright yellow wax. Either way, it’s a top quality release as always. It’s also not priced like a limited… roughly $10, depending where you get it from, and almost everyplace has got it available. So there’s something for you to keep an eye out for when you go out digging this Record Store Day.

Hercules and Love Affair – Leonora [2011]
August 22, 2011

I caught this catchy little ditty on KCRW this morning nestled between a cracking new release from Bjork and a forgettable tune by some people I didnt pay all that much attention too. This track however is a ridiculously catchy track off HLA’s second album, Blue. Its very sedate, even a little tedious for the first couple of minutes and had I not been driving, I probably would have skipped stations. However, after about 2 1/2 minutes, it begins to pick up before hitting its stride around 3:15 where it becomes lodged into your subconscious and you will be humming the melody for hours afterwards. Its not going to change the world but its a great track none the less.

Massive Attack feat. Martina Topley-Bird – Babel [2010]
June 24, 2011

Like pretty much every Massive Attack album after Blue Lines, Heligoland takes a fair amount of time to get into. On first listening, it has that rinse and repeat Massive Sound, some 3D chatter, laboured breaks. Give it some more listens and you begin to pick up the small nuances that make owning a Massive Attack album such a worthy purchase. Its rare that an album changes how it sounds depending on when your listening to it but Heligoland is without a doubt one of those albums.

Babel is the most commerically accessible track on the album, Topley-Birds vocals are absolutely perfect for this track, giving it an irreverent but engaging entry point before being smothered by the truly excellent soundscapes that lurk behind that vocal track. Amazing tune.

From Discogs
OK…If you haven’t heard this stunning work yet you are truly missing out. I consider myself a pretty jaded listener these days and find a lot of newer music missing something. This is missing nothing. Massive Attack have this innate ability to make electronic records that sound timeless…like Mezzanine for one. Heligoland weaves the dark with the light seemlessly. Love songs with darker messages and without missing a beat. There may not be any kitchy coolness or intentional underproduction to create a ‘sound’ (see Passion Pit) and why….because this is that good that each track is stand alone good. So good that they drip with class and stunning top-notch production. It never feels dated. It never feels forced. It feels like it fits into a pre-arranged space in your brain that has always been there waiting for it. But make no excuse, it isn’t predictable. This record is straight up smack. Download it, buy the wax, the cd…it’s meant for your brain.

AutomAte Podcast 009 – Nyx (UK) [2010]
May 13, 2011

Vodpod videos no longer available.

What a bloody incredible Dark DnB mix. Raw as fuck, totally rocking. A complete absense of Pendulum breaks in here, just chopped up shards of high hat destruction.  Wicked, wicked mix.

Little Miss Sunshine Radio Show #24 [2010]
May 12, 2011

Vodpod videos no longer available.

I caught LMS’ mix on the cloud a while back but this latest version is without a doubt her best. Really quality selection of Hiphop, soul and funk, well mixed. Helping me surf through the work day with easy.

Not Your Usual 90-91 House & Hardcore Mix [2010]
April 15, 2011

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Just finished this mix, its definately one of my favourites. It starts off quite progressive, I had originally intended this to be a sort of “Early Guerilla Records” type mix with lots of early Progressive House tunes. Then, after technical difficulties prevented me from using a bunch of tracks, I dug around my hard drive and grabbed a bunch of old favourites. Thus, this starts off quite understated before kicking off into overdrive and finishing up with some great late 91 hardcore piano business thats nothing up hands in the air awesomeness.

Enjoy!

Tricky – UK Jamaican (Kingston Logic) [2010]
January 4, 2011


(This is a re-edit since the original is rarer than pixie dust online)

This is what im TALKING ABOUT. Tricky takes the electro-house smash from Daft Punk/Terry Lynn and reworks it into a post-funk, bass driven electro-tinged BEAST of a track. I dont think there’s a point in this track I dislike, the lyrics from Lynn are perfectly rhythmic, the simply drum pattern is punchy and works perfectly with the funk riff. Its nothing like what I have ever heard from Tricky and I think this is a great thing, its a upbeat track as interpreted by the king of melankolic beats. Absolute catchy perfection.

Terry Lynn – Kingston Logic [2010]