Pearsall presents King of the Rollerz (A DJ Zinc Tribute)

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Pearsall presents King Of The Rollerz (A DJ Zinc Tribute)

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Mixed in London in September 2012, using 100% vinyl on two Technics 1210’s and a Pioneer DJM600 mixer
(77:32, 178 MB, 320 KBPS MP3)

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Cue file
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Style: Drum n’ Bass sounds from the king of the rollers: DJ Zinc!

Direct link to the mix: http://sonicrampage.org/mixes/kotr/Pearsall-KingOfTheRollerz(DJZincTribute).mp3

Tracklisting:

01. DJ Zinc – Super Sharp Shooter (Parousia)
02. DJ Zinc – So Damn Fresh (Ganja)
03. Dope Skillz – 6 Million Ways (Remix) (Frontline)
04. DJ Zinc – Pranksters (True Playaz)
05. DJ Zinc – What Is It? (Ganja)
06. Tribe Of Issachar – Junglist feat. Peter Bouncer (DJ Zinc Remix) (Congo Natty)
07. The Fugees – Ready Or Not (DJ Zinc Remix) (White)
08. Dope Skillz – Tighten Up (True Playaz)
09. DJ Zinc – Time Is Running Out (True Playaz)
10. Freestyles – Come Back (True Playaz)
11. DJ Zinc – Dense (Parousia)
12. DJ Zinc – Oasis (Frontline)
13. DJ Zinc – Driven (True Playaz)
14. DJ Zinc – Bring the Danger feat. MC GQ (True Playaz)
15. Jammin’ – Go DJ (Zinc DNB Mix) (Bingo Beats)
16. Dope Skillz – Pink Panther (True Playaz)
17. Kanye West – Jesus Walks (DJ Zinc Remix) (White)
18. DJ Zinc – Process (True Playaz)
19. DJ Zinc – Disturbed (True Playaz)
20. DJ Zinc – Just Roll (True Playaz)
21. DJ Zinc – Tigerz Talkin (Bingo Beats)
22. DJ Zinc – Free For All (Global Thang)
23. DJ Zinc – On Fire Tonight (Remix) (Ganja)
24. DJ Zinc – Reach Out (Remix) (True Playaz)
25. Beenie Man – Dude (DJ Zinc Remix) (White)
26. DJ Zinc – E3 (Bingo Beats)
27. MTS – Hard Disk (DJ Zinc Remix) (Juice)
28. Mobb Deep – Shook Ones (DJ Zinc DNB Remix) (White)

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Cover: View from a Bushwick rooftop of the Manhattan skyline by my cousin Benjamin Maddox …. follow him on Instagram: @bensofbrooklyn; all other pics on this post are by him

Chicago skylinecliff

Firstly, I would like to thank all of you who have contributed so generously to Sonicrampage … your donations have just paid for me to upgrade my Soundcloud account from Solo to Pro. Massive massive thanks to all of you … hope you are enjoying the little treats I sent through via email a few days back!

Moving on to business, I am extremely proud to present to you this mix, which is my 90 minute long tribute to the man who is unquestionably my number one favorite drum n’ bass producer of all time … the D, the J, the Z the I the N the C … DJ Zinc!

Although he has now moved on to making and playing ‘crack house’, his own take on house music, DJ Zinc’s position in the firmament of dnb dj’s/producers has long been secure. In my own case, I have always been a massive fan of his, because well, (1) his tunes are awesome, and (2) unlike many (most?) other dnb producers, he is amazingly flexible, capable of doing killer tunes across the spectrum, from the hip-hop influenced jump-up that he originally made his name with through Bukem-esque deepness to rugged tearouts and precisely engineered rollers. All of which I have craftily featured on this mix!

Given the incredible depth of his back catalogue, it would be a fool’s errand to try to create a definitive tribute to DJ Zinc, which is why this mix is merely my tribute. I’ve tried, as ever, to walk the line between shameless anthem-bashing and being pointlessly obscure, therefore this mix doesn’t have some of Zinc’s biggest tunes, like Casino Royale, Ska, and Freenote. Even so, it does have some really obvious tunes … there’s no way I could do a DJ Zinc tribute and not include the almighty Super Sharp Shooter!

cautiongood thing you're here

Since Zinc’s dnb output was so varied, I also wanted to make sure the mix reflected that, with the happy upside of that being that hopefully over the course of the 90 minutes it would remain an interesting listen. One of the things that I have noticed when listening to single artist tribute mixes (well, not mine of course!) is that sometimes things can get a little boring if the artist in question has a pretty singular vision.

You know what I mean: first 15 minutes “wow, this is awesome!”, then 15 minutes later, “this is still pretty cool …”, and then finally 15 minutes after that, “ok, am I stuck in a loop or what?”.

Therefore, I have deliberately tried to program the mix so that it covers all the bases, kicking off with some of that classic mid-90’s jump-up that DJ Zinc was one of the finest practitioners of, before flipping through to a section of razor-sharp rollers when Tighten Up drops in, with further progress through the mix hitting oceanic melodies and smashing Amen drums equally, as well as a healthy doseage of Zinc’s excellent bootleg refixes of rap/ragga tunes from the likes of Kanye West, The Fugees, Beenie Man, and, to finish things off, his mind-bogglingly awesome remix of Mobb Deep’s anthemic Shook Ones.

Even though this mix covers a range of styles, there is a common theme running through it, which is Zinc’s incredible precision as a producer – no matter what angle he is taking, all of these tunes have beautifully crisp drums and weighty bass. You would think that having good drums and bass would be pretty much mandatory for a drum n’ bass producer, but sadly that has not always been the case! Just listen to the two mellower tunes on this mix – ‘Oasis’ and ‘Process’ – even though they have lovely deep melodies, rhythmically they lack nothing, unlike some of the soporific ‘intelligent’ drum n’ bass made in the late 90’s that gave the deeper stuff such a bad name.

dirtcity view

As has been the case more often than not recently, this mix was hacked together in one take, using both records from my own collection, as well as some tunes I borrowed from my good friend Luk Man Hon’s shop stock. As a father, I don’t really have so many opportunities to practice mixes in advance, so when I get the chance to do a mix, I need to really make it count! On this particular occasion, I had spent time during the work week listening to my big stack o’ tunes, deciding what would work well where, and on the weekend, I did a few practices to see if particular combos worked, before cheerfully sending my wife and daughter off to see friends and getting down to some serious mixing, with a full complement of cuts and spinbacks lacing the mix throughout.

Overall, I am very very pleased with the result – it’s a hell of a listen, in my honest opinion, but, frankly, with tunes this good, you kind of have to go out of your way to fuck things up.

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