Thursday, 26 March 2009

Intro Mix Glitch

Hey, I'm Lee Smart, I'm 19, a second year Journalism student at UCA in Farnham, Surrey and I grew up in Dartford, Kent. I've only been DJing for about the last 6 months, so I'm clearly no where near on par with Ben. I DJ at my student union and I'm currently working on my first mixtape to send around to a few clubs so I'm hoping for a big summer, which should be up on this blog within the next few weeks! I've once written a blog before (I'm Not A Critic), but due to my ever changing taste in music I lost interest in that venture and I was also briefly a writer at the eclectic review site SonicDice.

I think over the past 19 years my tastes have taken on a huge roller-coaster journey that I would consider, one for the better. I grew up listening to the majority of 60-90s mainstream music, but it wasn't until 1997 that I fell in love Breakbeat and in particular Big-Beat scene. I'm an avid follower of The Crystal Method and The Chemical Brothers, as well as everything that came with the Big-Beat scene, from its 'superstar DJs' in Fatboy Slim, to its underground bands and duos in Fluke and The Propellerheads.
Nu Skool Breaks is a genre I will always have a very soft spot for. As far as I'm concerned, no one comes close to producing such a squelching, toxin-induced mind fuck up banger like Far Too Loud. In my opinion they are simply God; along with artists like Plump DJs, Elite Force, PMT, NAPT, The Rogue Element, Evil Nine and Krafty Kuts.

I've always been quite a big house-head, with Sasha, Carl Cox, John Digweed and most recently Deadmau5 and Swen Weber being my all time favourites.
Electro takes up a huge part of my tastes, of course there's the Justice and Simian Mobile Disco's that are close to me, but it's the more experimental outfits like The Subs and Boys Noize that really pack the punch with me.
In the past year though it's been the 'Fidget' scene that's really caught my ear; wonk, b-more, ghetto-bass, whatever you wish to call it; it's something about way the music takes the best out of everything. Breaks, UK Garage, Electro, Rave, it's like a huge sweltering pot of bass and beats locked inside the juiciest chocolate chip cookies, and I munch and munch all day long!

My mix, like Ben's is split up into 5 genres, highlighting songs that I feel deserve that special praise and will always hold the top spot in my life.

Grab it Here

Let me know if the link has died and you do really want the mix: (I'll get it over to you asap!)

First up is Big-Beat, one of the only genre's out there that for me is truly unique to it's own scene and place in time.

1. The Chemical Brothers - Leave Alone
Now I could have chosen any of the billions of great songs these two dudes have churned out, but after six studio albums and fourteen years of gigging, I don't think either Tom or Ed could have foreseen how perfectly this track opens their discography. For me, I don't think there is another artist on the planet that could have made this song.

2. The Crystal Method - Busy Child
To me, this song is, well quite possibly one of my favourite tunes of all time, which at 00:21 contains possibly the greatest synth loop every conceived by man. People often say, what the fuck has Sweden done for the world... I'd say, well they gave us the Nord synthesizer.

3. The Prodigy - Breathe
As far as I'm concerned, The Prodigy sit head and heels above everyone in a completely separate league of their own. Speaking as a young-ling I can't imagine what is must of been like to have witnessed one of their very first live shows. The pure originality of their work stands a lone and will influence bands and DJs alike for years to come. Breathe has always been my favourite track of their's. It manages to fine balance everything about the 90s big-beat and late 80s rave scenes that has helped shape the new breed of rave music being released today.

4. Fatboy Slim - Right Here, Right Now
I never had the privilege of witnessing one of his sets during the late nighties or the honour of being part of the crowd at his mammoth Beach Boutique II, but I do know that this song will stand the test of time as an epic masterpiece.

5. The Propellerheads Feat. Shirley Bassy - History Repeating
I don't really have much to say about this song, just that it's one of the funkiest tunes you'll ever hear, and Shirley speaks the undeniable truth.

Next up House and five tracks that I fell sums up everything about almost all the sub-genres of House that is important: the feeling.

1. John Acquaviva - First Stroke (Swen Weber Remix)
There is nothing I like more in House music than a slamming kick drum and a ridiculous bassline! In my view there should be a new law passed that makes it illegal for people to play this tune below 100dB!

2. Cubetronix - Wrap My World
Sometimes I can't resist a little bit of hypnotic house. I first heard this track last year, and its constantly in my sets, purely for the fact that people will be going "what the fuck is this", but still dancing along and smiling. House after all is all about the feeling.

3. Fatboy Slim & Funkagenda - What The Fuck
I have absolutely nothing whatsoever to say on this issue, other than... ABSOLUTE TUNE!

4. Chris Lake - Only One
Just a purely amazing tune. What Chris Lake , Steve Duda and deadmau5 have done to House music in the past three years will only be fully appreciated at the end of the next decade. They've truly shaped an iconic House sound.

5. deadmau5 - Not Exactly
Listening to this song always leaves me pushing the play button again, its the second build in the middle of the track that is simply stunning. I can only imagine what the atmosphere will be like when he drops this at the Space opening party in May, just hope I'm there to witness it.

Thirdly we move onto a more Electro feel, that basically does boil down to being House, but then as we all know, putting Tiga in the same set as say Fedde Le Grand, isn't exactly the cleverest thing you can do.

1. deadmau5 vs. Jelo - The Reward Is Cheese
What started off as a project release between the two producers quickly turned into one of the biggest underground tracks of 2008, which was included in Simian Mobile Disco's Fabriclive album and used in sets by virtually every sane DJ in the scene.
This tune optimises where Tech-House and Funk can collide to create an absolute banger!

2. Riton - Hammer of Thor
One of the most unique DJs out there in my opinion. Very few DJs these days have their very own sound, style and identity going for them these days. Riton has all three in abundance, and with his album release last summer saw his shoot to superstar stutus. He's playing Fabric's main room on April 3rd, supporting the legendary Chemical Brothers, don't miss that one!

3. Simian Mobile Disco - I Believe
Hustler and It's The Beat have always been the hits, but its this track from their 2007 album 'Attack Sustain Decay Release' that I love the most. Just the simplest of things, like closing your eyes to this track, takes on you a journey more powerful than many 'trance' tunes put out these days.


5. Boys Noize - The Battery
I find nothing more arousing in electro than a beat like this. The quality of this track cannot be underestimated and the subtleness of the second build and drop is just pure genius.

Now onto Techno, and to be honest, my knowledge of the history of Techno and where the current scene is at is somewhat limited, so I won't go into detail about each track, but here are a few of my current favourites

1. Spektre - Hover

2. Dataworx - Control

3. L├╝tzenkirchen - Monster In My House

4. DJ Rolando - Knights of the Jaguar
This is one track that I do know something about... a timeless, epic, classsssic!

5. Dusty Kid - The Cat

Fidget/Wonk/Nu House/B-more/Ghetto-Bass (Whatever you want to bloody call it)

1. AC Slater - Party Like Us/Udachi Remix
I had to include the original and the remix of this tune, they are both crunkin' good shit.

2. The Streets - Lets Push Things Forward (Hostage Remix)
I'm a big fan of Hostage's work. Lately he's knocked out some real bangers including 'Bring The Music', 'Shake It' and 'Murder Rocket', but this remix from last year is the pick of the bunch for me.

3. Jack Beats - Get Down
This tune features on Herve's new 2CD compilation mixtape, Ghetto Bass and in my opinion is one of the best new examples out there at the moment of a dub-fidget cross over.

4. Lee Mortimer Feat. MC Flipside - That Thing
Mortimer is definitely one of my favourites this year.

5. Fake Blood - Blood Splashing (Fake Blood Theme)
I've always been more of a fan of this than Mars. I think many people in the 'fidget' scene underestimated a year ago how good and original Theo's sound really was. I can't stop listening to that first build... jealous much!

Finishing off a mix that for me was hugely fun to make is a return to some broken beats, and in particular Nu Skool & Electro Breaks.
I have to say that Breakbeat is a genre that over the past three years has grown on me immensely. Ever since Crystal Method released their Community Service II mixtape, I've been hooked on producers like Elite Force, Hyper and Dylan Rhymes. It's the pure energy of the songs that when combined with the Fabric sound system, make it the ultimate music in my view.

1. Plump DJs - Beat Myself Up (Plump DJs Night Remix)
The newest release from one of the daddy's of breaks. My favourite song from their most recent album, given a tinge of acid-funkin', bangin' tune!

2. Far Too Loud - Play It Loud (Original Mix)
For anyone who hasn't heard of FTL, please slap your self now, in fact you might need to slap yourself when you hear the vocals come in on this track. It is absolutely unreal how good this track is, I can't recommend these guys to you enough!

3. PMT - Gyromancer (Elite Force Remix)
One of the first Nu Skool Breaks tunes that really got me going, amazing bassline!

4. Hyper - Come With Me

5. Dylan Rhymes - Breathe (Midfield General Re-Edit)

Tracks of thought...

Dylan Rhymes - Naked & Ashamed/The Crystal Method - Keep Hope Alive
A return to Big-Beat for the close and two tracks that over the years I've grown to love possibly more than any other tunes in existence. Pure memories of being young and innocent and playing Fifa 98/99 to the absolute death! INDOOR FOOTBALL FTW!

Apologies for some of the shocking mixing at some points... university work really is getting on top of me, and this was thrown together with no preperation! EEEEEK!

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