Sunday, July 12, 2020



A bit of a theme - this is the track that immediately follows it on the album!

Saturday, July 11, 2020

Gerald in disguise

what a great little tune that i somehow never heard it

Detroit-Hulme nexus

there's a bunch of Juice Box releases that aren't A Guy Called Gerald  - either him in alter ego mode, or other egos altogether

Wednesday, July 1, 2020

warpdrives (the crystl vision)

"Warpdrive" had such an impact on me back in the day

Photek remix I never heard before, or heard of.

This was the other Crystl monstertune - "Let it Roll"

So beautifully produced (in fact, anticipating Photek glistening 3D "The Rain" type sound design, Rupe's main selling point I think)

And then the rmx

And then the Photek remix, from 2004  - some special connection there clearly

Crystl had lots of other good tunes, but those are the two that stick with me

Now wasn't there supposed to be a DJ Crystl album in the works?.

I  vaguely remember speaking to him for the ambient jungle piece, or intending to - either nothing came of it, or he didn't have much to say. In the event, kept it focused on Omni / Foul Play / Goldie / Gerald / Neil Trix (yes that's the inclusion that seems retrospectively a puzzler, but at the time,  he seemed of great promise).

Crystl was among that very first batch of junglists to get signed to a major with a view to being an album artist, I seem to recall. But said album never materialized.

Was there talk of him veering in a hip hop direction?

Ah, it seems I am not wrong, about the album deal. At Discogs:

"Signed for London Records/Payday on a reputed 5-album deal." 

And there was this hip hop flavored EP on Payday called Perpetual Motion:

But it was a bit underwhelming

Certainly no match for e.g. this

The deal must have fizzled

Clearly one of those big-seeming deals, potentially involving large sums of money and multiple albums, that is dependent on the impact of the first single or singles, or EP in this case. Where the major has the option to decline to take up the option.

After that, came this single

This is what it says on Discogs about what came next:

"Now retired from music and working as a personal trainer."

Tuesday, June 30, 2020

shoegazetronica slight return (even slighter return)

Ah, missed this - The Drum Club remixing Lush, under their alias Never Never

Friday, June 26, 2020

shoegazetronica slight return

with Emma from Lush on guitars and voice (although I can't hear either to be honest)

also (it says on Wiki) guitar on this

and (says Discogs) on this

and indeed much of the Everything Is Now album


sounds quite Slowdive-meets-One-Dove

The Drum Club were Spiral Tribe connected and had one really great tune

But after that nothing quite came together

It was all a bit wishy washy proggy housey and well yes Guerrilla Records

This verdict at Discogs is close to the mark I think -

"These guys are very floaty, hippy-esque, and loose...  No offense, but I have come to believe that pagans are weenies from listening to these guys, PWOG, and exquisite corpse. I like more oomph in my music. There needs to be more gusto to life than this."

Went to the actual Drum Club the club, at the Soundshaft on a Thursday ...     it was no Rage let's say (not that I ever got to Rage).  Mild and floaty. Probably heard records by Fluke and such like.

Nice chaps though -  shared a car with them (or one of them? can't remember), a whole bunch of us heading down to Castlemorton and not knowing what was in store for us

On the way, one of them explained what a "Doet" was -  as referenced in this track by the Tribe - or at least, what its effects were

Ah, didn't realise the name is actually the chemical abbreviation for a Shulgin creation, rather than a mangled injunction "Do It!"

Now that's actually a good track - I remember it from the Hardkiss comp / mix. Tasty bit of guitar. Crisp 'cussion.

Tuesday, June 23, 2020

amnesia shredder

I really enjoyed Another Life and Amnesia Scanner are nice guys with an interesting line of patter

But this is a pretty devastating slag-off of their new "EDM-adjacent" effort Tearless here by Robert Barry  for the Quietus

"If I'm honest I think what I liked about them was that they basically sounded like Skrillex but were somehow less embarrassing to namedrop. I mean, fuck it, 'Scary Monsters And Nice Sprites' is kind of a tune in a rather crude, brash, dumb sort of way. That first Amnesia Scanner record, when it comes down to it, is no less dumb. But it is a lot less colourful and playful. It's a kind of po-faced Skrillex....

"...  their new album sounds uncannily like a Limp Bizkit B-sides collection.... The likes of Korn and Papa Roach always seemed to thrive on a particular kind of impotent acting-out, a carefully cultivated image of transgression pieced together in the most sterile laboratory conditions. Wacky haircuts and red-faced gurning. There was a lot of foot stomping. But at least, I guess, they could be bothered to try and look like they cared."

I dimly remember someone doing a very detailed structural-musicological analysis comparing nu-metal and .... not EDM precisely, but brostep - and concluding that they were more or less the same thing.

Here's a counter-(re)view, from Chal Ravens, for Pitchfork, that is more positive if still not exactly making the record sound like a lot of fun really.

"Where Another Life felt bright and alert, shimmying towards oblivion like lemmings in a conga line, Tearless is burned out and overwhelmed. This is ugly music, even at its most melodic. The shadow of nu-metal and hardcore hangs over tracks like “Flat,” a collaboration with metalcore act Code Orange, where busted electronic drums and shredded guitars recall Deftones and Nine Inch Nails. On “AS Tearless” a chant-along punk riff is torn to pieces by distortion.... 

"... Aside from those sharply focused highlights ["AS Acá", "AS Going"] and a brief climax of power chords and blast beats on “AS Labyrinth,” the atmosphere is claggy and subdued. Tearless ends as it began, in slow, exhausted strides. “You will be fine if we can help you lose your mind,” sings a distorted, uncredited voice on the final track, a lighters-in-the-air lament for the party at the end of the world."

I suppose it's the ultimate strategic-slumming move in the hip taste game - to not just hone in on the kinds of dance music that are most demeaned as "it's just the new heavy metal" (gabber, hardstyle, etc - lumpen-rock-like in fantasy heroics, mid-freq blare, speed, punitive splattersthetic, trashy pulp graphics, puerility) but to go all the way across and directly interface with metal and its descendants directly.

Sunday, June 21, 2020


what a tune, and what a video!

alongside Dekker's own performance - the strange stuff he's doing with his mouth, and his pelvis - also love the couple togged out as Bonnie & Clyde, which was a fashion trend that year, as well as playing off the line in the song "I don't want to end up like Bonnie and Clyde"

Friday, June 19, 2020

steaming jungle

not his finest moment by a long chalk, but tickled by the title

Wednesday, May 27, 2020

type beat

what wouldn't i give for an official instrumental of "Motorsport"?

it doesn't exist, so I must sate the craving with ersatz - the "type beats"

none of these re-productions quite capture the ethereality, the mistiness  of the original by Murda Beats & Cubeatz  -  like systems music screwed, a few bars of Michael Nyman looped in a deep tranquilizer trance

but fun to listen to all in a row - or even simultaneously

likewise what wouldn't i give for a vocal-free "Goosebumps" beatscape?

What would Adorno say about this?

Or about the phenomenon of loop-makers  -  hustling cottage-industries churning out not even beats but sub-beat components, in hopes of a way into the biz

Theodor's concepts of pseudo-individuation and part-interchangeabilty fit the way almost all contemporary pop is made, where there isn't even a singular hit factory but multiple sites of constructions. Component elements are developed in different studios round the world, by people who never actually meet;  extreme specialization rules (a guy whose only job is working on the vocals, another on beats, yet another on the mix of the final assemblage).  The loop-maker sweatshop-of-one is  the ultimate extension of these Adorno-ite principles -  somewhere between vagabondage, longshoremen crowding the dock in hopes of getting some work that day, and unpaid internships

The sample packs with kick drums etc on peddled by labels or producers with a rep are related, but from the other way around: a name selling off their trademark sounds, FX, etc to hopeful aspirants. 

I think also, on the subject of type beats, of the ceramics sculptor Ken Price and his remark: "A craftsman knows what he's going to make and an artist doesn't know what he's going to make, or what the finished product is going to look like."

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Strong Island

one of the first tunes I heard on pirate radio - way way before ardkore - in the late '80s, when the fare on the air was soul and reggae and a bit of hip hop

i'm not sure if I heard it first there, though - might have actually bought it as an import... may even reviewed it

perhaps that's why i didn't catch the pirate bug then -  there wasn't the same sense of "you can only hear this music through these illegal channels" or "these stations are already broadcasting from the future"

the stabby sample-riff is quite hardcore .... you can hear the transition from UK b-boyism to breakbeat house as a pregnant potential already

in fact there's a H-core tune or two that always remind me of "Strong Island"

is this it?

no actually i think it's this one - the riff-blare that comes in at about 1.40

much more manic though, obviously

going back to the mid-late 80s rap  - lots of odd little one-offs in those days

ah never realised that was a Marley Marl production

Sunday, May 24, 2020


never knew this video existed!

from Droid's ongoing great Dissensus thread on 95 as jungle's peak year 

more rave rainbows

no mention of rainbow in the title but a rainbow colored video for a sky themed rave masterpiece

Friday, May 22, 2020

Burning Bells

used to love these tunes - perhaps even more than the Mantronix stuff

interviewed T La Rock - but i don't think I ever wrote it up (possibly because disappointed by his third single in that sequence)

here's one my comrade at MM, Frank Owen, did - also appearing, Arthur Russell


I suppose this tune is why he has a footnote in the Official History of Rap - as sampled later by Nas

Don't remember this one at all

the album

seem to remember he had a thing about how LL had bitten his style

Ah he went hip house, Todd Terry on production

and before that there was a track with the word "Ecstasy" suspiciously prominent

Thursday, May 21, 2020

McShane in the membrane (annihilating riddim redux)

The voice of Ian McShane, the words of I Punman

But in this case for once "annihilating rhythm" is not used

Points for cleverness there

And tuff little unit of a trakk too


Bonus "annihilating"

Appears here in one of my favorite 80s hip hop tunes, but without the "rhythm"

Apparently it's also in 808 State "In Yer Face" but I can't hear it

“song’s manacle and its demonic charge… the original breath… the whisper of unremitting demand” - IP, voiced I McS

almost certainly cued by the rending and writhing of Bataille i'd wager

Tuesday, May 19, 2020

son of donk

a bloke on Twitter jests, "don't tell Simon Reynolds about this lot"

so of course I had to check them out didn't I

Bradford's finest - Bad Boy Chiller Crew

"we get more gash than you've had warm dinners"

warm dinners? why not hot?

the return of donk, isn't it

except on t'other sound of Pennines

well, the sound is not donk - the sound is bassline, but less rococo in the bass-wibble department than peak-2007 bassline  - here serving as unflashy functional backdrop to the, ah, textual effusions of the Crew....

but everything else about the BBCC reminds me of the Blackout Crew - the fast flows, the clothes, the complexions, the ah thematics

it's not just the BBCC, there's a whole scene of this stuff in Bradford 

it's like hyperlocalism, or micro-regionalism - the lads are stars in their hometown, can't walk around the city centre without getting stopped 

apparently their management has plans to take them national and have been holding back for some kind of proper release - but i daresay the virus lockdown  put a spanner in those works

unfamiliar with the term "charva" - the internet says it's a Geordie word -   the BBCC wield it as an inverted insult, a reclaimed stereotype - "chav and proud of it"

Getting a bit rap'n'B / trapoTune

Saturday, May 16, 2020

shoe3 (dreampoptronica)

Cardrossmaniac chips in to the shoegazetronica discussion

His mention of MBV (specifically the bonus single instrumental with Isn't Anything -  breakbeat overlaid with ghostly wavering) and A.R. Kane's "A Love From Outer Space" reminded me that the precursors to shoegaze had dancey moments.

Well, there was M.A.R.R.S. obviously....

But A.R. Kane did a one-off single as A R K that was their stab at house

Possibly motivated by desire to prove that they'd contributed more to "Pump Up The Volume" than a coloursplash of guitar? Or perhaps to show that they could do full-on dance music if they wanted to....

Comrade Oldfield oversells the side project a little bit in this 1988 Singles Page.

Paul makes it sound a bit more enthralling and achieved than it actually is. But that's how we rolled in those days ("inflation of meaning" yunno). This review is an example of what one Melody Maker editor teasingly referred to as the National Geographic school of reviewing then prevalent at the paper (at least, with my crew).  Moraines, escarpments,  that kind of thing...

Rudi and Alex had already showed their dancey tendencies on the flipside of "Pump Up the Volume" with this beauty, to which Colorbox lads contributed only a bit of drum programming.

A remix I have no recollection of ever hearing.

Then, as referenced by Cardross with "A Love From Outer Space", there were several boppy tunes on i.

"Crack Up" was a favorite.

Another vaguely housey chugger

There was even a remixes mini-LP or maxi-EP in 1990 - the typographically clever Rem'i'xes

Several of the remixes - "Miles Apart", "Crack Up", and "Crack Up (Space Mix)" - were actually done by Robin Guthrie. But they don't seem to be available on YouTube.

Tuesday, May 12, 2020


Jon Dale points me to the press release for The Primitive Painters reissue

"Deciding to make their tribute to this style of music the duo turned out 10 tracks of gauzy, melodious electronica in a white hot fever, one after another over the ensuing months. Settling on a name for the new project they picked ‘The Primitive Painters’ taking inspiration from the band Felt. 

“We are both children of the C86 movement,” explains Jörn. “this attitude of noisy art school influenced rock like Primal Scream, MBV, The Jesus & Mary Chain really inspired us to take a DIY approach to our music.”

So it is confirmed! 

Something in the air? At Pitchfork, Philip Sherburne reviews an album by Auscultation wherein producer Joel Shanahan "expands his palette, mingling shades of ’90s ambient techno with distant echoes of the Cocteau Twins’ dream pop."

Meanwhile, Ian Hodgson writes in with some of his favorite shoegazetronica tunes of t' 9ties - mostly shoegaze groops remixed by Electronic Listening Music notables. 

This is his All-Time Fave

Never heard that, although I liked Slowdive and Bandulu

Another Slowdive remix suggested by Ian  - this one by Global Communications alter-ego Reload

Clean forgot this lot....  seem to remember reviewing a single of theirs that toted a hefty load of ELM / IDM remixes. Perhaps it was this very one? 

Curve were such music press faves, weren't they? Well, Melody Maker faves, let's be honest - but I like to think of MM as being the music press by 1990 (always amazed to come across people who were still reading NME by that point). A group that's completely itself evacuated from popular memory. I must say I was never really convinced by them - a bit too much the canny ZeitGeist surfers, I felt,  like the Eurhythmics in their day.   My colleagues went gaga for them, though. 

Another band I completely forgot existed

I do appreciate the name, though - something of a reference point for your post-Lacan theorists of jouissance as "ineffable pleasure-spasm", Theresa. Perhaps it was the Hildegarde of Bingen tune by  The Beloved ("The Sun Rising"?) that turned these dreampoppers in a techno-ish direction. Or maybe they heard the dark-bliss pleasure-spasm of One Dove's "White Love"... 

Of this next track, Ian says "10/10 this one I reckon"

I had a major Cocteaus jag the other week -  tried to do that daft thing of listening to the entire urrrrv in one go, from start to finish (well, I didn't bother with the twilight-phase albums when Elizabeth starts singing in very plain English). The stretch from Head Over Heels and Sunburst and Snowblind to Aikea-Guinea via  The Spanglemaker and Treasure is sublime and almost immaculate .... as is the stretch from Love's Easy Tears via the Harold Budd collaboration to Blue Bell Knoll.  Before the first flush of genius, they're warming up, finding their unique voice; after the second flush, they're losing it, losing their way, heading into the diminishing returns zone. But there's that mysteriously middling and unmemorable patch of Victorialand, Tiny Dynamine, Echoes in a Shallow Bay, where the magic touch just goes away for a bit. And then it comes back, full strength - perhaps more even more consummate. Very odd - who else has that happened to?

Ah I remember, there was a whole album of Chapterhouse remixology wasn't there?   

Seefeel are exactly in the zone

And this is the ultimate shoegaze into ambient techno nexus - one of my own abfavs and a pinnacle of t' 9ties

Ian points to Mark Van Hoen as a key figure in this blurry indietronic zone. And also Ulrich Schnauss as the one who inherited and furthered the idea.  

He also mentions M83 as a later iteration 

M83 and Ulrich S fall into "the same box: sort of quality hi-lush electronica that crosses over (good songwriting)", Ian notes, adding mischievously, "And ends up as soundbeds on motorsport montage clip shows."

For me, the problem with a lot of it is that it gets a bit too wispy and clean-sounding.... and pious. A sort of saintly pallor. 

(A religiose vibe that actually came back a bit in the 2010s). *

It picks up the aforementioned "The Sun Rising" / Orbital "Halycon" etc vibe in the chill beatific side of house ... and melds it with the "mist gathers at the base of the ruined abbey, ghost choristers waft sighingly through the cloisters" vibe of lots of shoegaze.... 

Which I did love with this Slowdive-covering-Syd beauty

Well blimey, that is actually a release on the Sonic Cathedral Singles Club.

"Sonic cathedral" being the parody meme taking gentle piss out of the kind of praise prose poesy that wrapped itself around Cocteaus, 4AD in general, dreampop etc etc, back in the day - yours truly being a perpetrator

Ah and this has reminded me of another nexus in the shoegaze / electronic-listening / ambient / early post-rock / Stereolab-Saint-Etienne typestuff / etc confluence - Darla Records

Who started a series of releases called The  Bliss Out - named after a certain book

Here's a best of The Bliss Out

*    from that 2012 post on the New Exquisite / New Religiose i.e. Juliana Barwick, Julia Holter, Grouper

the hallmark: those pure airy vocals, more often than not wordless, or blurred to the point of indecipherable... multitracked into a choir-of-one... warp 'n' wefted... tapestried... heavy on the reverb ... where plainchant meets enchantment

the sound of the Ineffable... being effed

i don't think the intent is particularly retro or to hark back to anything (other than to the pre-modern or primordial)... but clearly it's influenced by the late Eighties... and it can't help reminding of that moment, if you're of a certain vintage yourself

where late 80s post-Goth/4AD-type stuff connects to current conditions of music-production is that Goth-Lite was primarily studio music, it was all about layers, sound treatments, effects... it broke to large extent... with the performance model of rock recording (Cocteaus DCD et al did play live, of course, but their live shows were attempts to duplicate the textural richness of what was concocted in the studio, rather than the other way round: the studio recording as attempt to simulate/approximate the energy of a live performance). So obviously that translates to the solo artist + digital audio workstations in a bedroom scenario of today, where live performance is an optional afterthought to careers created through blog-buzz

artificial reverb, that other hallmark of the New Religoise, figures as an irresistible temptation to producers looking to add "space" to recordings that are otherwise by their mode-of-construction a bit airless and dry

along with the outerspace/innerspace associations of the "sonic cathedral" effect...

Monday, May 4, 2020

DJ Records

those girls seemingly plucked from the pages of iD and turned into a style-bible cartoon

that wonderful video / tune, although not actually part of the phenom, led to me that little spate of records in 87-88 that  - while congruent with / shoved in with the house acieed moment -  were really hip hop in methodology: kinetic collages of samples (sampling not being something you got that much of in house, outside of Todd Terry, and certainly not sampling-as-citation / recognisable quote)

"DJ records" they called them

Sort of hip-house - but rarely with any rapping element (unlike your Doug Lazy etc type records)

More iD/ Face fashion-spread images sprung to life.

Loved that one in particular. Interviewed Mark Moore of S'Express around the next record and mentioned "Hey Music Lover" as a fave and said "you were going for a Sly Stone vibe with that right?" And he gave a little sly smile and said "yeah, that's what we were going for". Of course I realised much later, it's a Sly and the Family Stone cover - part of a medley of music-celebrating songs on Dance to the Music.

in a way, a root of hardcore - but also of big beat

e.g. Norm's early effort - preFatboy

Thursday, April 30, 2020


Says Chal Ravens, "really enjoying The Primitive Painter reissue coming on Apollo – glittering cybertech waters, distant polygonal islands, '90s digiutopics, that sort of thing"

Now I was wondering if the artist name (an alter ego for Alter Ego, apparently - i'm stealing a Youtuber's quip here) was a reference to Felt

... and thought "nah, more likely it's directly referring  to Lascaux"

But lookee here, a nod to The Waterboys

and "Cathedral" - as in the proverbial "sonic cathedral" for 4AD-ish religiose reverb aesthetic?

Felt had this proximately titled song

and this even more proximately titled song

ah - and, stop press - as Cesar in comments points out, there is also this Felt song 

so clearly formatively rooted in mid-80s Anglo-indie this The Primitive Painter chap - or chaps, rather, since Alter Ego = duo 

now I'm wondering if that song is named after the House of Love offshoot captained by Terry Bickers of vitreous-guitar showering you with crystalline splinters renown?

The shoegaze into post-rock evolution is well documented and logical

But the shoegaze into the electronic listening music / chill out / IDM side of techno is less delineated

Chapterhouse got that album remixed by somebody or other IDM-ish (Global Communications? Future Sound of London? )

Morr Music

a German friend of mine Heiko Hoffmann - long time editor of electronic music magazine Groove, until recently - did a shoegaze compilation back in 2003

the texturitis and blissy feeling of dreampop / shoegaze was a gateway drug for E-lectronic dance and non-dance, for some, maybe

for me as a writer, maybe that applies too - texture-attentiveness (texture > text) vis-a-vis MBV et al, sets me up well for texturrythm-attentiveness about rave .... ditto "the politics of ecstasy" becomes "the politics of Ecstasy" (although in both cases I would say now that it's more like an "anti-politics" - for better or worse, and increasingly, i think worse) 

but as a listener I was into club music and synth-abetted funk right from the start of the 80s

and in fact would write about things like Mantronix  in that engineer-as-poet / new sonic architecture mode well before I became a raver - at the exact same time as I was hymning A.R. Kane in similar sort of terms (not man-machinic but certainly the human figure disappearing into the miasma of sound)

same kind of becoming-abstract, depersonalized, sensation-not-significance approach

"against interpretation" (before I'd even read Sontag's essay)

Deleuzian, before I'd ever cracked open A Thousand Plateaux 

one instinctively know what is right

and this was the right response to what the music was doing 

the missus reviewed this gig (where they were supported by The House of Love) 

later we saw Felt's final gig together 

Wednesday, April 29, 2020

fashion and style

was listening to a 2step era pirate tape - Ice FM I think - the other day and heard the MC use the expression "fashion and style"

one of those buzzphrases that comes out of dancehall

"Dancehall cyaa dead yeah
Gyal haffi go spin pon dem head yeah
Fashion and style haffi set yeah
Star haffi born wa yo check seh"

It made me think of this drum and bass track by Mr Size 

But also of the UKreggae label Fashion

which had popped back into my consciousness this week anyway because music press archivist Nothing Else On has got to early 1985 and these NME articles came up in his scan-tweet project

a piece on Fashion and Earthworks

and then the following week

Any excuse to repost the videos of Smiley's two top tunes

Here's a TV mini-profile of Fashion Records

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Murder Most Foul

by far the best tune with this title

(and it's not even in the Top 15 Foul Play tunes)

Sunday, April 26, 2020

Mystery Tune #29 - Yodeling Pixie Ragamuffin Mi Rude Boy

and that i think is the last of them

at least of this hefty batch

may well generate a few more as i trawl through old tapes

shout going out to the tune-identifier massive, bigupyachess and ta v much

Mystery Tune #28 - Whispery Shivery Scuttler

Have i done this one already? I'm really not sure!

Friday, April 24, 2020

Rudewhy for years (that's why they call it a continuum, folks! pt 203048372)

Not just a titular nod to A Guy Called Gerald (with inflation effect on "28 Gun Bad Boy" - now up to 42, or is it 32 as the label of the record actually says?), but also earlier-still bleep-era samples from Unique 3 (right?)

This tuff tune via Rudewhy's triffic Speed Garage Top 100 thread at Dissensus, where this track stands at  #15. As you go higher up the chart, he starts writing some nice commentaries on some of the selections - how he found a certain record, the quest for elusive tunes, what it sounds like, strange collisions of influences.

In this list are some  Nuum-nodding tunes I'd never come across, joining the company of well-known refixes like the "Hurt You So" remake "Oh Boy' by Fabulous Baker Boys, the "Truly One" garage update by  Strictly Dubz IV ("Small Step") et al

This one nods not just in the sample from "Euphony (Just 4 U London)" but with the name - Bodysnatch / Bodysnatchers, haha

Omni Trio love shown

"Whatcha Gonna Do" / Da Intalex reflections

"Long Dark Tunnel / Valley of the Shadow" echoes in this one.

Rudewhy's focus is very much on speed garridge, not UK garage (so very little in the tasteful and deep-deep-deeper zone) and the selection cuts off before the 2step sound takes over. So it's a sweep across a sound-strand that lasts a bare year, maybe two years top  (although bassline oop North carries on doing the Double 99>DJ Narrows line and 4-to-4loor tunes pop up here and there on the London scene even after the overall sound-of-the-pirates has switched to the less banging, bump 'n' flexy 2step, with R&B flava battling it out with house vybe for control.

I downloaded all the tracks, plus a few other Dissensian suggestions, and played them as one huge bloc. It took me two and a half days! (Had to keep taking a break - after about 4 hours of this heavily scenius-not-genius, functional floor-filler in a single session, onset of diminishing returns as it all became a bit of a blur!)

It's crammed with slammige - but what surprised me was that nearly all of the selection were unknown to me. That doubtless reflects me being in NYC at that time, where only a smatter of speed garage 12 inches dribbled over to record stores, because there was zero scene for it in the USA. The junglists hated speed garridge and only later on did some of them come around to 2step; NYC house bods were not having it AT ALL. I did get my mitts on some good tunes on vinyl import, but mostly my access was through CD compilations. Tape-wise, I have hardly any speed garage 1997 ones, whereas later I have a shitload of the 2step era pirate tapes. (Gonna be digitizing and sharing to the commonwealth those soon actually).

It was a moment of generic-but-good churnage and monster over-supply....  mercenary opportunists jumped on it but still came up with the goods....   Scenius principles rule i.e. "positive unoriginality" syndrome aka depersonalizing alignment to the state of art.

All of it  - first-division, second-division, third-div - imbued with the magic of that Moment.

Still,  it's interesting how rarely the Rudewy selection overlaps with what would generally be considered the canon of that year-plus  - and almost never coincides with my own quirky faves.

Below is a messy list mixing up obvious anthems and personal peccadilloes. Almost entirely excluding 2step, except for a few edge cases. Approximate descending order, toppermost at the start....

Gant -- "Sound Bwoy Burial (187 Lockdown Dancehall Mix)"/All Night Long"
New Horizon, “Find the Path”
Lady Penelope & Abstrac, "Deeper (Part 2)
Giselle Jackson, "Love Commandments (Loop Da Loop vocal mix)
KMA, "Cape Fear"
New Horizons --"Slamdown" off Scrap Iron Dubs No. 1 EP

N ' n'G featuring Creed - "Liferide

Soul II Soul – "Pleasure Dome (Booker T Dub)"

Double 99 "RIPGroove"
Scott Garcia feat MC Styles, "It's a London Thing"
A Baffled Republic, "Bad Boys Move in Silence"
Smokin Beats feat Lynn Eden, “Dreams”
KMA, "Kaotic Madness"
New Horizons - --"It's My House (Bashment Mix)"
Ramsey and Fen – “Desire”
The Corrupted Crew / MC Neat - "G.A.R.A.G.E."

Napa-Tac "Dibby Dibby Sound"

Angel Farringdon + Lil Smokey, "Clean Riddem" 

Same People, “Dangerous”
KMA,  “Blue Kards” (Recon Mission EP)
Skycap , “Endorphin”
Dreem Teem, “The Theme”
The Heartists’ “Belo Horizonti (Ramsey and Fen Remix)
Double 99 , "Jump"
Ratpack, "The Clipper"
Corrupted Crew - "G.A.R.A.G.E. (DJ Narrows remix)
Ramsey & Fen, "Underground Explosion" (on The Off-Key Experience EP)
Fabulous Baker Boys -- "Oh Boy"
Da Stylus, "Crazy"
Ramsey & Fen,  "Love Bug"
187 Lockdown, "Gunman"
Soundscape, "Dubplate Culture"
Strictly Dubz IV, "Small Step (London Dubz)"
Underground Distortion, "Everything Is Large"


+ honorary Brits

Sneaker Pimps, "Spin Spin Sugar (Armand's Dark Garage Mix)

Nu Yorican Soul "Runaway (Mongoloids in Space)

Roy Davis Jr featuring Peven Everelist, "Gabriel"