Category Archives: Features

Tuesday Time Machine: Good Looking Sounds

Dusk on the Thames, Wandsworth Park, London
Dusk on the Thames, Wandsworth Park, London

This week’s Tuesday Time Machine looks back to some of the sweeter sounds of drum n’ bass from LTJ Bukem’s Good Looking camp:

Blu Mar Ten – Futureproof

Seba & Lo Tek – So Long

“So Long” is one of the deepest tracks you will ever hear. I agree 100% that this is the sort of tune to listen to in the dark by yourself. Stunning. I can confidently say that I will listen to this tune for the rest of my life. The way the amen slowly fades in and joins the other two breaks is incredible, and the atmosphere created in this track is unrivalled. Along with tracks such as photek – “rings around saturn”, and goldie – “sea of tears”, “so long” is an example of how powerful drum & bass can be. – jasonjohnson

If more people were aware that this kind of drum ‘n bass existed, it’d have a far greater following. One of, if not the most beautiful pieces of electronic music to have ever been created, ‘So Long’ just blew me away the first time I heard it and even now, sixteen years later, it still gets heavy rotation. Nothing else really comes close to this track in terms of depth, emotion, structure, in fact in every aspect. The kind of record that would make similar producers want to hang up their headphones and give it up. Completely essential drum ‘n bass. – philfunkyness

Possibly the best drum and bass record ever. Anyone who knows how drum & bass developed in the 90’s when Bukem was at the top of his game and labels like Good Looking/Looking Good were bringing out tunes that actually formed a genre will know how pivotal this tune is. If you like this type of d&b and you dont own anything else on this label then at least own this. A perfect tune. My ‘desert island disc’ of drum & bass. – tomjameswray

Aquarius & Tayla – Soul Searching

What a killer release from Danny Bukem’s Good Looking imprint… As many of you may or may not know, Aquarius is Rupert Parks’ other alias to his more common psuedonum Photek. And Tayla is man that has been there from the very beginning (check his Bang the Drums track out) and so needs no introduction. No wonder then that both these tracks still send rushes up my spine…

First up is Bringing Me Down… A track that starts off with a nice little break beat edit (that just paves the way for what’s to come) and has a whale/dolphin sample overlaid to it (something heard also on Aquarius’ Drift To The Center). This then drops into one of the most lush D&B synth lines that has the title vocal Bringing Me Down repeated. Then it drops… And this is where the breaks that only Photek and Talya can program really get flowing. Typical Aquarius and Tayla attention to detail, attention that really makes this track gleam with feeling, as it jitters into break downs and build ups. What an anthem… Still remember hearing this being played all over the city from summer 1994 onwards, while vainly searching for it down at Black Market, in Soho OR Total Music, in Bethnal Green.

On the flip is Soul Searching, another Classic that rocked me out there at Speed and Tempo, and just shows what can be done with the Amen break. Lovely intro with a lush drone, overlaid with a little catchy melody and a woman’s deep breath. Then pure Amen heaven… What killer edits! Done in a fashion that only Talya and Photek know how to do: pure grooved out, dicey chops that keep it interesting and rolling out to the end…

All in all, these two tracks complete a timeless release that beautifully sums up Good Looking’s vibe at the time… Lush, heady with spinning break beats, and totally danceable. If there was just one release on Danny Bukem’s label that you had to listen to, it would be this…

What more can I say other than Bukem Dan-O… – karlrichard

On a slightly different tip, my Cold World mix is finally on Soundcloud … enjoy!

Tuesday Time Machine: Leftover Dubstep

record collection

One of the projects I am working on at the moment is the tenth edition of my Drop The Hammer series of crate-digging mixes. For the tenth edition I am utilizing a concept I got from the /r/realdubstep subreddit a while back – a mix composed entirely of dubstep remixes (one of their other ideas, of dubstep white labels, is something that I am saving for the future). In the end, I’ve picked twenty tracks for this mix, but in the process I ended up discarding a whole bunch of great tunes, because they didn’t quite fit the flow of the mix and there was no logical place to include them. This happens with every mix I do.

So, for today’s edition of the Tuesday Time Machine, here are three choice ‘leftovers’:

The Body Snatchers – I Like What I See (Joker Remix) (Passenger)

First up is this awesome remix from Bristol’s purple maestro, Joker. The original might be a fairly straight-forward fidget house tune, but this remix is all brightly-colored synth squiggles, cavernous drums and pulsating bass. Probably one of his lesser-known productions, but still a fine piece of work.

Pinch – Get Up ft Yolanda (RSD Remix) (Tectonic)

Secondly we have RSD taking on ‘Get Up’, which originally featured on Pinch’s (excellent) album Underwater Dancehall. RSD, for those of you who are unaware, is the dubstep alias of Bristol music legend Rob Smith, best known as one half of Smith & Mighty. Rob Smith is one of the longest-serving members of the Bristol scene, having been involved in production since the 80’s, and having released everything from dub to hip-hop to jungle and beyond. I’m personally a big fan of his dubstep output as RSD – always rhythmically complex, danceable, fun music. This tune is a particularly joyous example of his sound.

Juju – Half Ounce (Tes La Rok Remix) (NarcoHz)

Finally, there’s this tough remix from Finnish dubstepper Tes La Rok of the Colombian San Franciscan dj/producer Juju. Actually, think about that for a second – this is a Finnish guy remixing a Colombian guy doing a style of music that had only emerged from London a few years earlier. Dubstep was definitely the first stop on the nuum where the internet allowed people around the world to get involved right from the start. By comparison, it took years for drum n’ bass to go truly, unambiguously global.

This is a fine example of the minimal, dark side of dubstep – this remix doesn’t really do all that much, but what it does, it does well.

Help the Philippines, Party, and Win Awesome Vinyl Goodies … at the Same Time!

Philippines Relief Fundraiser with Tim Exile (Live), Ital Tek, Giles Smith at Crate Brewery

Assuming you haven’t been living under a rock, you will know that a few weeks ago the Philippines was devastated by Super Typhoon Haiyan, which caused massive destruction across the archipelago nation as well as thousands upon thousands of deaths.

You don’t need to come to Sonicrampage to know what a terrible tragedy this is, and how important it is to help, even if all you can do from thousands of miles of away is make a donation to one of the organizations that is on the ground assisting the Filipino people.

Which is why I would like to alert you to a fundraising party/raffle that my good friend Man Hon Luk (a.k.a. The Vinyl Pimp) is organizing. All ticket holders to the party are automatically entered into the raffle, and even if you aren’t attending the party, you can still buy raffle tickets. I’ve made a donation via buying a bunch of tickets, and I hope you will too!

The party is at the Crate Brewery in Hackney next Saturday, the 7th of December, and all raffle ticket holders will have the chance to win prizes donated by a variety of local businesses and record labels.

To buy tickets, click here to visit Resident Advisor.

What you really want is to know what tunes are up for grabs, right? So here’s a little rundown on some of the goodies that record labels like Deep Medi Musik, Hemlock Recordings, Swamp 81, Ninja Tune/Big Dada, Civil Music and Planet Mu are giving away (I will update this list as more stuff is added):

Warp Records
Bleep.com
Ninja Tune/Big Dada
Civil Music
Deep Medi Musik
Swamp 81
Planet Mu
Hemlock Recordings

Continue reading Help the Philippines, Party, and Win Awesome Vinyl Goodies … at the Same Time!

Pearsall presents Squat Rocking 5 + Bangingtunes.com Forum Memories

Squat Party

Pearsall presents Squat Rocking 5

right-click on the title and save as to download

Mixed in London in March 2012, using 100% vinyl on two Technics 1210’s and a Pioneer DJM600 mixer
(63:08, 144 MB, 320 KBPS MP3)

Click to read my Bangingtunes.com Forum Memories essay

Large cover
Cue file
Zip pack (split into separate tracks)

Style: Classic UK Acid/Hard Trance

Continue reading Pearsall presents Squat Rocking 5 + Bangingtunes.com Forum Memories

Tuesday Time Machine: The Two G’s ‘Energy’ (Vintage Goldie and A Guy Called Gerald Collaboration from 1995!)

Evening! Here’s a new feature I’ll be doing from now on (hopefully) … the Tuesday Time Machine!

Every Tuesday I will reach into my record shelves and pull out one vintage tune from yester-year to share with you, and briefly rabbit on about.

Juice Box RecordsTo kick things off, here’s ‘Energy’ by The Two G’s, a 1995 collaboration from two of the absolute pioneers of drum n’ bass music, Goldie and A Guy Called Gerald. Originally released on Gerald’s Juice Box label, this tune was also later released in an extended form on Gerald’s trailblazing album Black Secret Technology, which was one of the first serious drum n’ bass artist albums – I can’t quite remember if it was literally the first, or whether that honor goes to 4 Hero’s Parallel Universe or not, but in any case it was well ahead of its time!

Lesser-known than Goldie’s own Timeless, I’ve always had a soft spot for Black Secret Technology, since it was one of the first drum n’ bass cd’s I ever bought – as well as for the obvious reason that it is absolutely brilliant! The album has sadly become a bit of an obscurity over the years, so if you’re a new school drum n’ bass fan who wants to learn more about the roots of the sound, I seriously cannot recommend highly enough picking it up if you chance across it. Wonderful album.

Every album has it’s standouts, though, and ‘Energy’, for me, was and is the highlight of Black Secret Technology. To my knowledge this tune (and its flipside ‘The Reno’) represent the only tunes that Goldie and Gerald made together, which is a shame, because this track is an absolutely gorgeous hybrid of their two distinct styles, with intricate drum programming and solid bass thumps offset by swirling pads and a lovely little vocal snippet.

This is music equally at home on the dancefloor and in your headphones.

Mix concepts for 2013

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About one year ago, in my Morally Diminished 3 post, I said:

Every mix I do starts with an idea. Not a big idea, not a complicated idea, but a simple idea, one that can generally can be boiled down to a sentence or less … At any given moment I have a whole bunch of these little mix ideas floating around my head – some of them are quite fleshed out in terms of what kind of tracks I want to feature, while others are much vaguer, just a basic concept and a fuzzy feeling that, hey, it would be nice to put that mix together at some point.

Nothing has changed …

I still have lots of ideas for mixes! So, I thought it would be fun to share some of the concepts with you and get your feedback, as it would be really good to hear what people want to hear. Having borrowed some CDJ’s from my good buddy Jamie, I can also do some different mixes than before, it being a lot cheaper to pick up 15-20 tracks digitally than on vinyl!

At this point I should point out that I already have two fresh mixes in the bag and ready to be posted to Sonicrampage. Rampage Turbo 15 is already available to stream, but I’ve not had a chance to split it into separate tracks yet, due to my desktop pc being on its deathbed; I’ve got a new one on the way, so that mix should be available to grab sometime next week. Also coming later this month is Slaves to the Silver Box, an old skool acid mix that I have done for DI.fm’s Old School Mix Marathon V (check out the mixes from volume four) – I’m quite excited for that project, because besides the mix being another 303 journey along the lines of The Waveform Cult and Beyond The Valley Of The Acid Vixens, featuring tracks from the likes of Hardfloor, DJ Misjah, Nostrum, Josh Wink, and more, but it’s also having a cover made up by an old high school friend who has very handily turned into an awesome artist, plus I have a pretty cool idea for the accompanying essay – I just need to make that a reality!

So, without further ado, genre by genre, here are some of the mix ideas I had in mind for 2013:

Continue reading Mix concepts for 2013