Sunday, 3 October 2010

Interview - DJ Nature

Regular readers will know that Golf Channel Records are pretty big round at Beyond the Stars towers. Last year a couple of releases by DJ Nature really caught my ear. They had a real fresh house vibe and sounded really unlike pretty much anything else I was hearing at that time.

What I didn't know is that New York based DJ Nature has been producing quality music in the Big Apple since 1991.

Beyond the Stars caught up with the main man to discuss the DJ Nature project, Tony Humphries, slum rats, Japanese sound systems, minimal house and much, much more.

Here’s what was said.

Your recent releases on Golf Channel and Jazzy Sport have really brought the Nature project to people’s attention, but it’s not a recent thing, is it? Can you tell us a bit about project and how it came about?

When I first moved to the US my intention was to release stuff on my own label as that was impossible to do at that time in the UK. I knew I could put out a limited amount of stuff whilst doing other things and not go broke. I started putting out stuff on a label I created called Ruff Disco Records, I took them to Charley at Vinylmania and he loved the stuff which meant a lot to me because the man's a legend. Also got a lot of love from a guy I used to buy stock from called Frank Mendez, who owned Nu-Groove. He introduced me to Felix Ortiz who was running one of the hottest new labels at the time, E-Legal Records, and he put out an album of stuff. All in all, I was very surprised by the interest in my product because it was extremely rough on the production side.

How would you describe the Nature production sound? If I had to try to describe it to someone who had never heard one of your records, I might say it is one part Prescription, one part Nu-Groove, one part Moodymann, and one part something else I can’t quite put my finger on!

Back when I started it, I just wanted to put out really rough sounding material that stood out from the other stuff vibe wise. That was it basically just a rugged texture to nice up the dance. Kind of what Wu Tang did later in the hip hop industry to a much bigger effect. It wasn't like I woke up one morning and said that's what I wanted to do ,it was more like a natural inclination. I don’t really get involved with who it sounds like and comparisons, because I pretty much pre-date anyone that's around right now doing what they have just picked up. I am honoured to be mentioned along with the likes of Nu-Groove because of obvious reason's , but I'm pretty much in the dark about what's happening on the modern front . My influences are no one doing stuff in this field right now, but artists that gripped me when I was young.

Was Nature a conscious change of direction or do you see it as a natural evolution?

Actually I wouldn't say it was an evolution in the progression sense, because it was a lot nastier than what I had done previously. But it was just another vibe I was always into that I needed to get off my chest. Was it a conscious change of direction ? Well I had had tracks sitting around since my second trip to Japan around ‘86 or ‘87 that were incredibly rough draft, but had the foundation of what you hear today.

The current Nature sound, will still retaining a certain rawness, is a lot more polished, is that experience or just where you want to take it?

More the latter really! Different equipment changes your sound also. Back when I started I had pretty basic stuff, which is pretty obvious by the production quality. But some tracks worked sounding that rough and some didn't so they were put to the side. I like it raw because it gives the dancefloor balance in a general sense. All the equipment I used back in the first phase of what I did I don't use today, but I am thinking about dusting some of it off and incorporating it into my new set up.

Talking changes in direction, you’re from Bristol originally but now live in New York. How long ago did you move there and why?

I moved here in 1989 after growing up in Bristol and spending the last 7 years in London. I had recently gotten married, and my wife and I planned to set up a small exporting company in NY. At the same point in time the fact that what I wanted to do musically around then didn't fit into what was happening in the UK, so it just made sense on two fronts. Typically, as soon as I left the UK it became the hotbed of what I was doing, ha ha ha!

New York was a very different place to what it is now , I remember staying in the depths of Queens and visiting Alphabet City in 1992 and being scared shitless – was it a shock to the system moving a city of such extremes?

Mate, I lived in Alphabet city back then it was rough as hell. nothing but crack heads and dealers and rats like I never seen in my life. I remember going to see Levan down the next block at "Choice" and there were so many rats all over the street - and they didn't even move when they saw you, that shit was scary. Other than that the only thing I had to get used to was the cold. Absolutely disgusting how cold NYC gets! But back then it was just incredibly exciting I really felt at home in many ways. People just thought differently down there back then.

I’m a bit of a fan of the Sound Factory (pre-clichéd sound) and Zanzibar era Tony Humphries, were you hanging out in clubs like that back then and what were they like?

I used to go to Zanzibar with Frank from Nu-Groove ,that was a sketchy place outside that club, but once inside it was killer. Humphries as always been my favourite DJ in this genre and to hear him playing my joints on his radio show was incredible, actually soon after he played my stuff I pretty much stopped the Natureboy/Ruff Disco stuff. Sound Factory I used to go to also sometimes, as well as Red Zone, Better Days and Shelter. I stopped going to clubs on the regular around '95 or so.

Who was playing at Better Days back then, Bruce Forest? And you mentioned Levan at Choice too. These guys are pretty much legends, was is it exciting to catch them in their home town? And how did they match up to the DJs you left behind in the UK?

To be honest I really don't remember who was playing at Better Days, the first time I went there it was the wrong night. I went with the missus and I thought to myself , "Damn! There is absolutely no women in this club” and it was a hip hop night. We hung around for a bit then noticed these hard core looking hip hop guys kissing… each other! Culture shock to the fullest! We went back on the ‘right’ night and it was cool, just good music house and some classic disco joints. Choice I enjoyed because I could walk there in about 4 minutes from my flat. It was obviously a great chance to see the legend that is Larry Levan do his thing, and like myself he wasn't the most gifted technically, but the selection was fantastic! I still have a lot of love for the DJs I first encountered after leaving school, they had a massive impact on me so they will always be the best for me personally and they were playing a lot of the same stuff. But what you have to love about Levan is that he played some left field stuff that just made every party incredibly enjoyable.

How do you think New York influenced your sound?

I don't know, I have always liked a particular vibe in my music but as opposed to the UK back then NY enabled you to go into it, in a productivity sense, without fear. You can just submerge yourself into it more profoundly, and the music was just around all day every day. I'm not knocking the UK at all, because it's grown to be the creative music capital of the world without question.

More generally, what are your influences? You have a bit of a hip hop/sound system background, do you draw on that in your production?

If I do it's not intentional, it's just a natural progression as a vibe. Without question what I grew up with for 20 odd years in Bristol is a massive part of my musical DNA today, more so than any New York influence in terms of sound, excluding stuff like Chic or Patrick Adams. I draw on influences from all genres because that's what I listen to, everything.

What about when you DJ? Hip hop and house are now seen as quite different DJing styles, although maybe not so much in the past, do you feel there they are distinct?

Funny you say that, because my sons listen to rap more than I do and the new stuff sucks ass to be honest! But a lot of them guys are rapping on house beats at the moment which I find surprising, as I think the down tempo house stuff would make a more sensible link between the two. I haven't played hip hop for a while, but I bought stuff that I felt was good like Tip and Dilla stuff. I like the Neptunes production and Dre but I pinch those songs of the kids!

Are you on something like Serato yet or are you still rocking vinyl?

Overseas I was rocking vinyl up until a couple of years ago. I was doing some gigs in the UK and the air line lost my records. From that day I said never again and I bought Traktor Scratch Pro. I still play vinyl if planes are not in the travel arrangements, but my records won't see a plane again if I have anything to do with it.

As someone who really mastered vinyl DJing, do you think the advent of digital DJ technology, and how it easy it can make DJing detracts from the 'art', or does it open up a world of new creative possibilities?

It kind of does both really. I understand why a lot of people are kind of anti digital because lets face it, it makes it so much easier to beat match. But to me I don't really worry about that, because you can give me and another DJ the same records but only a few DJs really have soul, they can't work a track the same way . The artistry is not only making two tracks rock on beat, there are other dynamics which gives a DJ his identity. That's why DJs like Humphries and Kenny Carpenter will never be touched by anyone who comes up in my opinion, they are just different.

On the subject of DJing, you originally made your mark as a DJ and now your work as a producer is really coming to the fore. Do you see yourself primarily as one or the other, and if so, why?

Both! I never see myself stopping DJing, I was raised from a youth watching sound men in their 70's running shebeens and I want to be like that.

There was a big break between the original Nature Boy releases and the your more recent work – what have you been up to?

This and that! I kind of mentioned earlier that when Humphries played my stuff on Kiss and I was hearing it on the WBLS live dance parties, I pretty much stopped making stuff. I think the last things I did was something Carl Craig wanted me to do for him Naomi Daniel ‘Feel the Fire’ and a dodgy re edit here and there, under another name. I did some mix CDs for my homey's store in London called Hideout in Soho (Food vol 1 &2), some mixes for Soph in Tokyo (‘Real Players’ and ‘Surface Tension‘) and Steppers Records also in Tokyo (‘Live 2 Peachtree's 1979‘). I also put a mix out myself called ‘Live at the Cat Club 1979’.

Jazzy Sport is a bit of an obscure label (well, to me with my London blinkers on anyway), how did you get involved with them? Do you have a bit of a following in Japan?

I know Taro through a mutual friend at another label that I was involved with in the 80's. I don't think I have a following in Japan or anywhere else to be honest, as I don't think I was consistent enough releasing stuff to gain one with Natureboy/DJ Nature.

What’s it like playing over there?

I like playing in Japan for the most part because people have more open minds in general musically, you don't have to run obvious tunes to get people dancing. I will say this though pound for pound, no city on earth has more banging sound systems in their clubs than Osaka. That place is ridiculous , I think it's primarily because they are really into reggae down there and that they are really a bit rougher on the attitude side than the Tokyo lot.

Do you DJ much in New York these days?

Once in a while ,did some parties with Phil from Golf Channel early in the 00's and with some other people also here and there. At the moment though I am really concentrating on production and building as big a catalogue of stuff possible, because once I get into a flow I don't to break it for gigs unless it makes complete sense. At some point I want to try and get a regular spot and build a base for people who want to listen to this, but for me it has to be right technically.

What’s the scene like there now? We’ve read a bit about the Brooklyn scene, do you get along to some of those parties?

I am the epitome of a hermit and I rarely venture out of Harlem on the casual! The only gig I went to recently was in Brooklyn and that was only because it was a DJ/producer that I rate highly from Germany. It's really quite strange, because it's not the same vibe as say Body And Soul when it was at Shelter or Zanzibar back in the 90's, those people have been replaced by something different today.

Do you still like a bit of a dance?!

I did that night, but don't make a habit of it. Only at home to give the kids a laugh!

You mentioned you did some gigs with Phil South, is that how you hooked up with Golf Channel?

Yes. When he was starting his label he asked to hear some stiff when I started doing stuff again.

Why the double 12" releases? Do you simply have a lot of material you want to get out there?

That was down to the label really and sound quality.

Golf Channel put a lot of effort into the quality of the sound and their product, like cutting straight to lacquer when mastering - is that attention to detail important to you when you're putting music out there?

No doubt! I wasn't to hip to that process, but it soon became something that I noticed a bit later.

Are you keeping busy in the studio? What should Nature fans look out for in the near future release wise?

Well the "fwd evr" stuff came out last, I just sent some material to jazzy sport called "Suntoucher remixes". That will be out on double 12"s also, I have a mix CD that I will try to get out also and a CD album with Jazzy Sport after that.

You mentioned edits earlier and your mixes often contain a edit or two of your own. The market is full of edits at the moment, some good, some bad, do you plan to get involved put any out or do you just see them as a DJ tool?

I see them primarily as a DJ tool, I think it's the one thing that gives DJs an edge like white label promos did back in the day! I really like doing them ,but I'm not great at it like some of the guys, but a few of the things I've done got some nice responses. I don't see myself releasing any of the ones I have done so far, but down the road there are a few things that I am working on that are quite good that may work.

You were (fairly) recently over in the UK playing at Plastic People, how did you find that?

Fantastic. The sound was like old days in Bristol and the people were really good , that was with Andy Newcombe and Discobox crew, impeccable jam. I hear the local constabulary have this unjustified quest to try and close that club at the moment. I think it's important for anyone reading this who are into listening to good music on a fantastic system need to really support that club, because when it's gone you will wish you did. Clubs like that are impossible to find in London I hear, so don’t take it for granted.

Checking out a few of your mixes online, you drop stuff like Lawrence, Bookashade and Villalobos, do you keep up with the European house scene?

I at least try to, that shit is forward. Some of that stuff is incredibly motivating, but there is so much of it. Love Lawrence, Portable, Koze, early Cadenza stuff some much music out there right now it's outrageous. I'm not as deep in it as I would like to be just can't afford that, but I try to keep up with those doing interesting stuff. My set is always changing nowadays and becoming more polished selection wise. I really got into that minimal thing for a moment and kind of ignored a lot of other good stuff I had. What I found hard was being able to DJ after having long spells out of it, because back in the UK I was just playing tunes all the time at the Camp where we kept our equipment, so my set and technique was a lot smoother back then. Now I’m trying to get back at least to that level.

Do you think it is important to keep looking forward then and wallow in the past? You could easily rest on your laurels given past glories, but you seem to be constantly striving to do something different?

You know what, it's incredibly hard escaping your past. You can give people distinct instructions not to do certain shit and they say yeah okay, and do something completely different. It's incredibly frustrating and a pretty good reason to scrap DJ Nature and do something else, so I don't know how much longer I'll continue under that. I have never really tried to be different, I just play what I like and completely ignore everyone else . That's not to say I don't hear stuff people play and think, “I like that song but I can't play because he has”, I don't think like that. I think I’m just lucky to have a good outlook on music and what I think is good to play out. I think I'll always be doing something creative in one way or another i just like making stuff too much to quit contrary to what has been written about ‘retirement’ and all that crap.

Are you coming back play over here soon?

Not sure.

Well, thanks for taking the time to talk, it's been an absolute pleasure.

The pleasure's all mine mate. Peace!

More DJ Nature stuff:

You can follow DJ Nature on his >>Soundcloud<<

Wednesday, 29 September 2010

Legendary Children - New Kids On The Block

Legendary Children first came to my attention through the fantastic blog of the same name. The enthusiastic writing about all things house was an obvious draw for someone like me. But after a little bit of digging, it transpires that unlike many other house music blogs, Legendary Children isn’t the work of a fat, balding middle age bloke obsessing about Nu-Groove catalogue numbers on the internet, but spritely young DJs Prince Pac, Elles McFierce'em and Best Edward.

As well as writing the aforementioned blog, which embraces the golden age of House music, predominantly Balearic, Chicago, Acid House and Detroit Techno, the Children also throw London based parties in the same theme. Not content with playing music heavily rooted in simpler times alone, the Legendary Children party ethos is also reflective of an era where an inclusive crowd policy and love of the music takes precedent.

I caught up with Best Edward and asked him a few questions about Legendary Children.

So why are whippersnappers like yourselves into this authentic house sound rather than minimal-dub-tech-step or whatever the walls of Phonica are covered in these days?

“I used to play techno and house for Pac's ‘Last One In's A Rotten Egg’ night and we'd both started to despair at the throwaway culture of trying to keep up with always having the biggest, newest records that the juno/beatport culture creates and the sense of musical apathy that seems so prevalent amongst today's club goers”.

So you didn’t just wake up one day with an irresistible urge to seek out L.B. Bad records, did you?

“We had kind of all arrived at the point we're at now in very similar ways and it kind of made sense to form and kind of collective. For example, my older brothers were big into House during the late 80, so that sound has always kind of been on my radar”.

How it going then, are the kids into it?

“It's working out really well because over the last 8 months or so we've formed alliances with Andy Blake's ‘World Unknown’ night and ‘The Beat’! and started to generate a scene, and it's invigorated all of us as DJs to feel like you are part of something that people genuinely care about and enjoy”.

So there you have it, genuinely enthusiastic but neither clichéd nor throwbacky in their delivery of an old school aesthetic, Legendary Children demonstrate you really can know your stuff and have a good time doing it.

And if you fancy a slice of the action, check out the three 30mins mixes in their killer 'Hot Mix' series the gang have kindly shared with Beyond the Stars, which you can stream or download before.

You migth also like to check their lovingly wriiten and hugely informative website:

Or even better, get yo’ ass, down to their next party with London’s answer to Adonis, the truly amazing Neville Watson at the Horse and Groom this Friday 1st October.



Legendary Children Hot Mix Vol. 3 by Prince Pac

Monday, 20 September 2010

Mix - Tony Humphries, KISS NYC, Jan 1992

This is the story behind my my favourite ever mix tape. In 1991 one of my best friends moved to New York. It was a bit of bummer as New York is quite far away. But it did have its upsides, like holidays to New York, shopping in New York, clubbing in New York… and mix tapes from New York.

One of those mix tapes made an indelible mark on my musical psyche . I’m not quite sure why, because it wasn’t one of those carefully planned set-piece mixes all  your mates go on about, it was simply a recording of a reguar Saturday night show, the Mastermix Dance Party, show on New York’s KISS, but there was something about how this mix was put together. By a certain Tony Humphries.

I imagine that as Mr Humphries was doing these every week, with new records, they must have been off the cuff. And some of the mixing would suggest that is right, because it’s not always in key, sometimes the vocal overlap, some mixes are forced and stuff like that, but, and it’s a BIG but, it works because he makes it works it!

He kicks off with the sublime Mr Fingers ‘Closer’, before wheeling through a few English tracks like the Joey Negro mix of Brand New Heavies ‘Dream Come True’ and Slam ‘Eterna’, then it just builds and builds and by the time he’s working two copies of Adeva’s ‘Independent Woman’ mixed up with Musto and Bones, he’s just firing! But the best is yet to come, with the mix he drops of Gypseymen ‘Hear The Music’ and C-Bounce ‘Keep The Faith’. The mix is not perfect, in fact technically it’s a bit rough, but working both records in and out, pretty much sums up that Humphries x-factor. There is something about his style which injects pure energy into the music. It is organic, instinctive, raw even, rather than clinical precision of some DJs, especially in today’s world of laptops and CDJs. And that is why I love it.

Mix wise, I don’t think anything I have heard ever has had this impact. I was 22 when I first heard it and used to English DJs boring on with prog house and Italian screamers. I’m not sure exactly what the difference is but there is a difference.

I rinsed this tape to death. Walking to work with my Sony Walkman, after clubs, in the car, in fact, it’s amazing it’s survived at all. It did though and I’ve stuck it up on Soundcloud for your listening pleasure.

Tony Humphries - KISS FM NYC - Mastermix Dance Party - 12 Jan 1992 by Humphries Kiss NYC Tape


Mr Fingers – Closer
Brand New Heavies – Dream Come True (Joey Negro mix)
Endangered Species - Endangered Species
Red Light – Who needs Enemies?
Slam – Eterna
Sounds of Blackness – Testify (CJ Macintosh dub)
Anambi - Our Love Climbs Higher
Love Root II - Funky Emotions
Chic – Chic Mystique
Sax – House Is A Feeling
Adeva – Independent Woman (Tony Humphries mix)
Adeva – Independent Woman (Tony Humphries dub)
Musto & Bones – The Music Is Right (R&B Dub)
Gypseymen – Hear The Music
C-Bounce – Keep The Faith
Latour – Cold
Black Traxx - Pump It
Monica Deluxe – Love On My Mind
Desiya – Coming On Strong
What It Is - Do You Believe
4th Measure Men – Just A Dream
James Howard – Wake Up
Lifeforce – Feel Your Body
Syndicate 305 - I Promise
Hardrive - Sindae

Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Better To Have Loved and Lost...

There was recently a discussion over on DJ History (.com) about record shops that people used to frequent in their formative record purchasing years. This, I thought, is right up my street – banging on about records AND old stuff.

I actually associate records shops with actual records. Even though I’ve owned thousands of records that I have no recollection of buying (in fact, I own a fair few that I have no recollection of owning – bet they’re crackers though), certain records stick in my mind. I can remember the conversation with the shop assistant, the excitement of hearing and the journey home with my shiny, new, shrink wrapped wonders.

This is a very personal account of some of the record shops (and records) that I knew and loved in my teens and early twenties. Most are just rapidly fading memories, others are still around but barely resemble the establishments I used to know.

Record and Tape Exchange (Camden Town) - I grew up in North London, so this was local. First got dragged down there Dad on a Sunday (he bought a Bad Company LP), I bought my first 12” there and have spent/wasted many hours digging through piles of crap in the basement, normally whilst being subjected to some form of avant garde rock or white noise by the staff. Sold things like the Weatherall mix of Skunk Funk and the first Sabres of Paradise (the one with the flick knife on) down there when everyone loved Weatherall the second time round, plus loads of junk too. Also bought my first £10 record in there (Project XYZ), picked a first pressing of ‘Nude Photo/The Dance’ for £2, and last time I was there (a while ago) I got copies of Blunted Dummies ‘House For All’ and Eddie Grant ‘My Turn To Love You’ for 10p each. A happy hunting ground but you’ve got to be in the right frame of mind because there is soooo much rubbish to sift through to find anything decent.

Harum Records (Muswell Hill/Crouch End/Archway) - A small North London chain. It was one of those shops where the assistant would play a record for the customer and it all smelt kind of anti-static. Bought my first record ever when I was 10 in the Muswell Hill branch (Kings of the Wild Frontier) and my first house record (Big Fun). Always good for 99p new major label releases but also stocked independent stuff. Bought things like ‘Your Love’ and ‘Who Is The Badman’ in there for pennies. I used to drive for a builders and I managed to snap the key of in the van’s ignition after visiting the Crouch End branch when I should have been somewhere else. That went down well with my boss. They’re all long gone now but Archway was the first go - which, fact fans, is where Nick Hornby used to work and the shop on which his book Hi-Fidelity is based.

Pure Groove (Archway) - My local decent record shop. Hard to imagine that the it used to be pure house in there. Ziad was cool but Roots (of KCC) was cooler and knew exactly what I liked, cos it seemed to be pretty much the same as what he liked. Happy memories of sitting on the number 263 back up the Archway Road with sealed copies of things like Gypseymen ’Hear the Music’ and Ralph Falcon ’Every Now and Then’, examining the labels in detail and all excited about opening them. Stopped going in there when it went all hard house and I moved to NW London. When I came back North, it turned all indie rock but it had a good £1 sale box, in which got a whole bunch of copies of that Incogdo bootlegs and sold them on Discogs for a fiver each. Was absolutely gutted when it moved to Farringdon.

Trax (Soho) - As covered else where in the blog, this is my all time favourite record shop. It used to have charts on the whiteboards up on the walls, including all the tracks off a ’Short Film About Chilling’ when that was hot information. I was going out pretty much twice a week, every week at the start of the 90s and this where you’d find that latest Italian screamer you’d heard out at those parties. None of this listening post nonsense, every Saturday there was a massive five person deep scrum round the counter while Craig and Oscar played the latest arrivals and people fought over copies. Fortunately, as I was in there every week, they used to sort me out. I remember not wanting to go on holiday in case I missed something new, I was obsessed - I got paid cash on Thursday, was in there on Saturday and more than once I left with quite literally not enough money to eat the next week. Sadly, I think most of those ‘must have’ records that left me hungry, ended up at Record and Tape, where I probably got 5p each for them. Fashion is a fickle thing.

Zoom (Camden) - Firstly above the shoe shop with Rob and Zaki, then in the basement place, with Billy Nasty and Roots (again, yay!). Great shop, bought Jam and Spoon ‘Stella’ in there, along with things like Acorn Arts, Liberty City ‘Get Some Loving’ and, err, Felix ‘Don‘t You Want Me‘. It’s also where I first heard ‘Drum Attack’ and became a Wonka fan, whiling away many a minute discussing what an ace label it was and how cool a Wonka t-shirt would be with Billy. Think I bought all my Wonkas in Zoom, when I think of one, I think of the other.

Groove (Soho) - Legendary and a bit of a Mecca in Hip Hop circles, this was just a little bit before my time and I never felt that comfortable in there. I did, however, buy my first two imports in there - Jungle Crew ‘Elektric Dance’ (which I managed to wear out and ad to replace) and Rhythim Is Rhythim ‘Beyond the Dance’ (which still gets regular spins) so thank you for that Groove.

Discount Records (Shepherds Bush) - Worked opposite for most of 1989 and basically bought half of Centre Force’s play list in there - ‘French Kiss’, ‘Strings of Life’, ‘Quadrastate’, ’£10 to Get In’, ’Meltdown‘, ‘Afro-Dizzi-Act’, etc. They also ID’ed Dee Dee Bridewater ‘Lonely Disco Dancer’ off tape for me, although it caused a bit of a storm when it was played and half the shop (ok, two people) rushed to grab a copy, only to be disappointed. Can’t remember when it closed, might have been 1989, might have been a couple of years later, but they had a great sale in which I picked up a load of Cameo stuff on Casablanca and Chocolate City (I was a Cameo fan, you see). I can only imagine what I could have picked up if I had known my onions back then.

Record and Tape (Goldhawk Road) - The best 50p basement ever because they really didn’t have a clue. The builders I worked for had a big job in Chiswick so I went pretty much every day for months. They always had new stuff (and I really mean new, like not out in the shops yet) down there. Guerrilla promo central! Also got things like La Banderita ‘Mediterranea’ and Fidelfatti ‘Groovin’ when they were out on import, so someone with a short attention span must have been dropping records in there. Best of all, I got an unplayed promo copy of ‘Promised Land’ down there, when you just couldn’t find a copy anywhere (post-advent of the internet record shoppers will struggle with this concept) and sold it in Vinyl Exchange in Manchester for £25. Also got the Boys Town Gang (on 12” and LP) in there after seeing Mark Moore chart it Mixmag. Still love that LP, woo-woo-woo!

Vinyl Exchange (Manchester) - One of my best friends (who, as it happens, is now my wife) went to Uni up there and we used to fund trips to see her (and all her new female mates) by selling records we found easily in London up there. The aforementioned ‘Promised Land’, The Adventures ‘Broken Land‘, Scarlett Fantastic ‘No Memories‘, and 3 copies of Geneside II ‘Naramine’ for £20 each. Then found a copy of Dee Dee Bridgewater ‘Lonley Disco Dancer’ in the sale bins on the floor for a quid. It’s a funny old world.

Body Music (Seven Sisters) - Ostensibly a reggae shop but good for a bargain bin find or two. It’s where the 3 copies of Geneside II ‘Naramine’ came from.

Quaff (Soho) - My second fav record shop ever. The staff were great, with Breeze (rip) being one of the nicest, most charming, not mention pretty damned handsome, blokes you could ever meet. Used to see him out and about all the time (I was a regular at Deluxe and the Diorama), he always friendly and just cool. Guest listed us at MoS and stuff like that. And to put that into context, I was the archetypal spotty 21 year old ‘kid’ the older faces on the scene used to look down there nose at. Also, much as I like to rib him, Dom Moir was also ace and good for a chat. I remember getting him to order an import for me because I couldn’t find it anywhere else and no one even knew it. When I went to pick it up, he’d had a listen and told me it was a nothing record. Sagat ‘Fuk Dat’ on Maxi. Think it went top 10 in the end… They also had a great sale in which they had all those Salsoul Mastercut 12s for a quid or something. Manna from heaven for a budding disco enthusiast on a limited budget.

Black Market (Soho) - Not much to say but I preferred it when they had the foam sound proofing on the walls, no listening post and the echo FX thing on the mixer. That is the way record shops should be, the staff engaged, playing music and punters keeping their grubby little paws off the vinyl. I bought so many records in there, it’s untrue. I think fav though is Ocatve One ‘I Believe’, Still gets rinsed. Ashley Beedle was good in there, as was Rob Mello and more recently, Ben Chapman. Bit too pricey these days, to be honest. Can’t see it lasting in it’s current format but let’s hope they do.

Red (Soho) - Rubbish. Full of teds and that counter 8 foot in the air was a joke. I did, however, get R-Tyme ‘Use Me’ in there, which is one of the best records ever made.

Caroline Radio Records (Highgate) - A short lived venture in the early 90s but they had a load of disco bits like ‘Body Music’,  ‘What I’ve Got (is what you need)’, ‘Magnificent Dance’ and ‘Mr Right’ which was a god send at the time.

Bluebird (Soho) - Also shit and I thought Lewis was a patronising dick (sorry to any mates of Lewis). Did a party one Christmas Day, maybe 1991, and dropped flyers in. It started a discussion about the merits of such a venture during which I said it was that or watching ‘The Great Escape’, to which replied with a sneer, he’d watch the film. He slunk away when Danny Rampling, who was in there at the time, piled in my side though. Oh and the party was mobbed… but a word to the wise, you can’t get a taxi at 2am on Boxing Day morning, so I had to walk from Grays Inn Road to Highgate.

Hitman (Soho) - Coolest slip mats ever but seemed to always shit stock by the time I started going there around 1990 and thus, always empty. Shut down not long after.

The Record Stall on Rupert St (Soho) - I was there almost every lunch when I worked in Soho in 1990 and it was amazing for promos for pennies (well, £1.50). The bloke who ran it was one of us, you’d see him out and about, so he was cool and good for a lunchtime chat about clubs and stuff, which was pretty much all I could think about at the time. Bought half my Creation records there, Hypnotone ‘Dreambeam’, Sheer Taft ‘Cascades’ and stuff like that. He used to get older stuff sometimes too. I remember him gloated about getting a copy of ‘Someday’ with the acappella on (the git wouldn’t sell it) and I also got John Carpenter’s ‘Escape from New York’ on ZYX there, which was a bit of an odd one but a tune I had taped on the VHS when I was 15. The prices of all the records were also written inside the sleeves, so I still seem them now and I get a little warm feeling inside. Think all the stock was knock off though.

Sister Ray (Soho) - The original little one, again while I was working round the corner it was great for cheap big label releases like ’Where Love Lives’ (before I hated it) and the place for indie dance in central London. The Farm, Primal Scream, My Bloody Valentine, and, err, the Soup Dragons, all came from there. Turned into a decent techno shop in the end too, then moved up the raod and expanded on the site of Select-a-Disc.

Fat Cat (Covent Garden) - Another shop I never felt entirely comfortable in but did get some great records in there, including ‘Acid Effiel’, which I recommended to Ralph Lawson who I bumped into on the way out that day.

Wyld Pytch (Soho) - Used to sell house actually and had a great bargain bin. Got the ‘Classic EP’ on Serious Grooves, and Jus Friends ‘As One’ in that bin.

Choci’s Choons (Soho) - Started life out the back of a novelty shop in Carnaby St, which was very strange. Only thing I remember getting in there was a Cling Club white label I hadn’t been able find anywhere else (label done by hand with glue and glitter!), but used it more when he was under BOY. Like Roots, he really knew what I was into and it made shopping there very easy. I went in once and he was said “I’ve got two new records you’ll love”, dug them out an passed them over. They were ‘That Nervous Track’, the MK mixes of ‘I Can’t Get No Sleep’ and he was right, I loved them. Didn’t try to sell me anything else, just those two. Wasn’t sure about the last version of the shop, too banging. Lovely bloke though.

Flying (Kensington) - Never was a great fan, mainly because it was such a hike from North London, although I visited in both it’s basement (Barbara Dixon ‘I Got Over You’) and ground floor (Hardrive ‘Deep Inside’) incarnations. Preferred the Soho version, in which Andy Baker introduced me to Morgan Geist (not literally, I mean he played me a record).

TAG Records (Piccadilly/China Town) - Initially in the weirdest location for house music record shop - the fledgling Trocadero Centre in Piccadilly, where I remember paying over the odds for records (maybe the rents in the fledgling Trocadero Centre had something to do with that), before moving to Rupert Court in China Town. I can remember asking for a copy of S.A.I.N. 2 and being told they didn’t have one. Explaining I wanted it for a gig that night and them popping downstairs to return with a promo double (slack but then ace). True to my word I played it out twice that night and it went down a treat. They didn’t seem to do as much business in US house though, so their bargains were always worth a root – the first release on Shelter, Kerri Chandler's mix of KCC ‘Heaven’ being a stand out find. Still one of favourite Kerri Chandler mixes.

Uptown (Soho) - I think this is still there. I haven’t used it for years, as it became the domain of UK Garridgers and then funky-housers. I think. I don’t really know to be fair but that is the impression I got. It wasn’t always that way, when it opened it always seemed to be on point with the latest Victor Simonelli stuff, Zak Toms, 95 North, Bassline Records and all that other crisp, US vocal house that, err, went on to form the basis for UK Garage and funky house. Oh, I see what happened there now.

And that, my friends, is it. I might well explore some of these shops in more detail in the future, if I can track down the right people with the inside track.

Thursday, 5 August 2010

Mix - Boys Own Book Launch (re-up!)

Due to a hug, dare I say unprecidented campaign (well, two emails) for me to make this mix available to download again, I, err... have. Five hours of fairly decent music, avaiable in it's full form for a couple more weeks and then gone forever.

Fill your boots.
Boys Own Book Launch Party - Me, Terry Farley, Pete Heller, Rocky, Stripey & Plug by Miles Simpson

Tuesday, 20 April 2010

Greatest British Acid House Record Ever

No need to carry out any polls, count any votes or list any top tens for this, because there can only be one.

Sung by one 80s pop legend and produced by a group of different 80s pop legends,who were thrown togther at Shoom, this record still evokes memories of dancing in sweaty Dickensian basements, ponchos, strawberry flavoured smoke, strobe lights, thinking we could change the world, hot Sundays on Clapham Common, bringing down the walls, Chipie t-shirts and dungarees, dancing with the devil, lucozade, making friends with people you would have never spoken to, calling people ‘matey’, the sun rising, the second summer of love and not being able to believe it could ever end... even if you were never actually there.

Ask any DJ in the world and pretty much anyone who attended a party in the late ‘80s, and to a man (or woman) they will tell you that ex-Frankie Goes to Hollywood member, Paul Rutherford’s, A.B.C produced, acid house masterpiece has never and will never be surpassed.

Are U Happy? Get Real.

Warehouse Top Tunes – Are HOUSE!

From the DJ Mag ‘History of House’ supplement in 1993, this top 100 from Chicago’s legendary Warehouse still looks pretty solid, despite the numerous listing, re-listing, dissection and reinvention of the history of those formative days of house music. Some of the more obscure selections also tally with play lists I’ve seen recounted by Warehouse goers since, like Persia for instance, so I think it’s a bit more accurate than Norman Cook’s Garage effort.

But like the New York club’s list, this proved invaluable to me back in the early 90s – in fact, I remember being chuffed to find ‘Put Your Body In It’, ‘Do You Want to Get Funky with Me’ and ‘In the Bush’ in Cash Convertor in Edmonton shortly after the list was published, and thinking I was THE disco don...

Monday, 19 April 2010

Paradise Garage Top 93 (DJ Mag 1993)

Published in DJ Mag way back when, in the spring of 1993. This was time both before the internet and books chronicling the history of the New York disco scene, so whilst there have been many lists and charts of Paradise Garage tune published since, to a spotty bedroom DJ finding his was gold dust - and a gateway into a world of music I had only ever heard in samples previously.

Complied by the Fatboy himself, Norman Cook, with hindsight, much of it seems obvious but it all looked bewilderingly difficult to find array of exotic sounds back then. I’m not sure about No1 though, I think Mr Slim might have been pulling our legs...

Mix - An Old Mixtape from 1994

This is one side of a tape I did over 16 years ago, which I found when I recently moved house. The A side was influenced by trips to New York and the sound coming out of that city in 1993/94.

The B side owed more nights to Philip Salon's 'Mudd Club' which by then had moved to Bagleys and was full of council estate kids from the surrounding area. They never advertised the DJ and you got a flyer in the post if you were on the mailing list. Great production as well, almost like film sets.

The mix is a bit dodgy in places, I was still learning the ropes but I still thought I was Junior Vasquez - although I didn’t even have proper turntables, so this was done on puny belt driven hi-hi decks and some crappy 2 channel mixer, no EQ, not even gains… which led to some, erm, amusing mixing. Still, it’s a moment in time, so I thought I’d share.

You can listen to Side A by clicking play below:
Miles Mixx - 1994 tape, side A (Wild Pitch Stylee) by Miles Simpson

And if you're interested in Side B, you can find and stream it on my Mixcloud page here.

Friday, 1 January 2010

The Best Record of the Noughties?

It only seems like yesterday, but 10 years ago we were gearing up for the turn of millennium. Our excitement about what felt like an historic event was tempered slightly by fears of millennium bugs, planes falling out of the sky, nuclear powers plants melting down and a possible computer triggered holocaust. As it transpired, our fears were completely unfounded and all we actually got was crap weather and to witness promoters wringing the last vestige of life out of the golden goose of 90s club culture.

And now here we are, 10 years on, at the end of another decade, surveying all that the noughties brought us - DC10, the last decent days of the terrace of Space, Cocoon, the infamous Blue Marlin beach party, the last decent days anywhere in Ibiza, Faith on the internet, mnml, shminimal, nu-disco, nu-teds, nu-clones, electro clash, electro punk, DFA, Germany, house tranquilizers, Eastern European DJs, silly sunglasses, re-birth of Balearic… for beardy blokes from Oldham who have never been to Ibiza, the death of Jockey Slut, the death of Muzik, the birth of Strobelight Honey, raves in toilets, raves in sheds, raves in woods, The Lodge (RIP), East Village, new mates, Acid House’s 20th birthday (bloody hell), reunion parties, middle age, clubland closures - The End, The Key, Bagleys, the original T-Bar and Turnmills, all RIP, the rise of Shoreditch, Horse Meat Disco, Norwegian DJs, CDJs, laptop DJs, roidy Polish builders noncing up your missus, beards, lumberjack shirts, Mum and Dad punch, moody garys, Combat 88, Secret Sundaze, Innervisions, Get Physical, bloody re-edits, DJs packing it all in, Rampling’s (non) retirement party, the return of Boys Own, blogs, Berlin, Croatian festivals, skinny jeans, plimsolls, Cable Club, internet warriors, grime, dubstep, funky house, electro house, minimal house, fidget house, afro house, deep house (again), HOUSE, HOUSE and MORE F**KING HOUSE.

It was a good decade for music, but was it vintage? Last year on we carried out a poll of the greatest house records of all time and only a single record post 2000 made the cut. Was the music not that good in the last 10 years or were people looking back to their youth through rose tinted spectacles? Surely there were some truly great records released in the noughties? We felt a retrospective of the decade was required, so we dusted off the Faith polling booth for yet another round of voting. And here are the results - THE GREATEST RECORD OF THE NOUGHTIES.

15 - Larry Heard presents Mr White ‘The Sun Can't Compare’ Released in 2006 on Heard’s own Alleviated label, it combined a strong vocal performance with acid house. Played by minimal and house DJs alike, it was a real underground crossover tune.

I really can’t understand why anyone wouldn't like this track; I absolutely love it. When this came out we were sharing an office with quite a few others on Curtain Road, and the music played could be a real source of contention. This track, however, was on heavy rotation and no-one ever moaned about it. This is a great example of a vocal adding something to the music rather than it distracting you and reducing it. [Yvonne Duffield, Sedition]

14 - Dubtribe Sound System ‘Do It Now’ Originally released in 2000 on US label Imperial Dub, with its laidback groove, ‘Do It Now’ was already reaching anthem status when Defected licensed it in late 2001 and propelled it to greater things. Still receiving regular airings from Stuart Patterson.

One of those records that reminds me of a whole bunch of things from the turn of the century – going to New York loads for Body & Soul and Bang The Party; the early Faith parties and regular Sundays at the Notting Hill Arts club for Sundaysonic and Lazy Dog. [Along with] Star Suite, Jaguar and Equitoreal were both 1999 (I think), for myself and quite probably a few others, it was parties and records like this that reminded us why we loved House in the first place. [Tim Murray]

13 - Ame ‘Rej’ Released in 2005 Innervisions/Sonar Kollekiv, with a slight whiff of ‘Beau Mot Plage’ about it, ‘Rej’ cemented Ame’s burgeoning reputation as one of the hottest production teams of the decade.

Massive tune, ushered in a whole new wave of music/producers/followers I reckon. Over played? maybe, but that was its impact, reaching out across many strands of house and techno music, definitely a record that was a hit with many, many people [Nick Harris, NRK]

Massively popular with everyone I know, regardless of how their taste might usually differ. It was the track I heard everywhere on one of my favourite trips to Ibiza, which I spent with some of my favourite people. Whenever I hear it now it evokes such good memories that I think I’ll always love it. Apart from the memories, I really like the slow build and sense of anticipation in the track. [Yvonne Duffield, Sedition]

12 - Stefan Goldmann ‘Sleepy Hollow’ This was the first record released on Innervisons after they split with Sonar Kollekiv in 2006 and some may argue the most perfectly formed example of the Innervsions sound.

A stone cold anthem of one of the best summers in recent memory. Played everywhere and never failed to make everyone lose it [Will Webster, Secret Order]

Knew it was a classic the moment I heard it, then an old mate who I played it to described it as 'a stroke of genius' he's wasn't wrong. Like all the best ideas it's simple and has a lightness of touch but is executed to devastating effect. For me it captures perfectly what's been so exciting about (good) noughties house, it's modern and forward thinking but sounds as warm and as druggy as the best of 80's Chicago acid house. As my young colleague at work said during his house music conversion, this is sick b! [Luke-1989]

11 - M.A.N.D.Y Vs Booka Shade ‘Body Language’ Germany’s Get Physical was undoubtedly one of the most successful house imprints of the noughties and whilst their output was relatively varied in style, this is the record most associate with the label.

A record that captures a time like no others. The days of Faith trips to DC10 and early(ish) secretsundaze. A lot of the music around at the time was (although amazing) forgettable but this is a standout. Catchy but deeply underground (on first release anyway) it's just a pity that they (or Get Physical) never hit this high again. [Jimmy P, Faith/Strobelight Honey]

I-fucking-biza! Proper electronic funk that you just heard everywhere and never tired of. Walking from Figueretas to Ibiza Town in the afternoon, trying to shift a hangover and you'd hear it coming out the bloody launderette and still think "Yes". Even just last year I sat through a presentation from some wanky branding agency and they'd used this as a soundtrack. Switched off to all the ROI blah blah blah crap and thought that is a tune even you muppets cannot spoil. [Ross, Dubai]

10 - Iz and Diz ‘Mouth’ (Pepe Bradock Mix) Originally released in 2002 on Derrick Carter and Luke Solomon’s now sadly defunct Classic label, Pepe Bradock masterfully reworked Chicago due Iz and Diz’s effort into a quirky deep house masterpiece.

The choir-in-a-can vocals, the glottal stop bassline and that beautiful fuzzed-up electric organ - it's too unconventional to epitomise good house music. And thank fuck for that. I can't think of another house record I've listened to more times over the last decade, but it still makes me feel every bit as sad, happy and stupid as it did the first time I heard it. [Charlie Bennett, To The Bone]

The Martini record. Guaranteed to make me dance any time any place, happy memories of me and a mate dancing to it on a totally empty dancefloor at Kindergarten in Manchester. There’s something about the melody that’s’ uplifting and also, weirdly, slightly depressing at the same time. And that groove is just a killer. Twenty thumbs up. [Alex 'thegreenbee' Withers]

9 – Josh One ‘Contemplation’ (King Britt mix) Legend has it King Britt remixed this in a couple of hours on a flight to a gig somewhere, released in 2001 on obscure US label Electromatrix before being licensed all over the world.

This, to me, is about rooting through my (at the time) new missus's vinyl and discovering that she had some ace tunes and a head for tracks that I sadly lacked. I can still recall the post Cross carry on when found this and it reminds me what a great summer 2003 was for re-discovering London partying. [filthy punk]

Just a great simple house track that reminds me of Sundaysonic in Notting hill, and tons of other parties. [Joseph Apted, diskomatik]

From the first time I heard it to the last, never fails to get me [Sean Clare, De La Techa]

8 - Hercules & Love Affair ‘Blind’ (Frankie Knuckles mixes) New York’s DFA ripped up the rule bit a in the 00s, so it was a bit of a surprise when they got bona fide old school house legend Frankie Knuckles in to remix this in 2007, but boy, did he show ‘em how it’s done.

Out of the DFA records Losing My Edge probably made more of a difference & Someone Great is my favourite LCD song whilst House of Jealous Lovers sound tracked a certain area of London like nothing else but this is just such a beautiful record. No1. [Ben Pistor, Disco Bloodbath]

[The dub is] for me the best thing the great man has done in the last 15 years. Absolutely perfect record that makes you feel like you've had a couple of doves even if you're standing on Peckham Rye station on a Monday morning. In the rain. [Will Macc]

7 - Detroit Experiment ‘Think Twice’ Originally an LP track on the The Detroit Experiment, album, released on Carl Craig’s Planet-E in 2003, the Unabombers then released it on an Electric Souls album sampler and then finally Juno picked up in 2009 and commissioned host of decent remixes.

It properly crosses the divide between the 'heads' at PP and a regular Saturday night house crowd. It's a classic cover version because Carl Craig doesn't unnecessarily change the song too much - it sounds very natural, like he produced the original Donald Byrd version. [Dan Harrington, Modernista Records]

One of those deep, jazzy tunes that just grabs you with the opening chords. I had heard it regularly before figuring out what it is. Still in the box and gets an airing quite regularly. [Matt Ralph, Monkey Tennis]

Absolutely massive tune round our way and everywhere else, deep and brooding and then joyous all with out the help of any words. The bass is unmistakable, everyone seems to know what to do when it’s coming in. Getting goosey from remembering the many times I’ve heard it. The Mark E dub from this year was also boss. [Matthew, some middle class Manc suburb]

6 - Dennis Ferrer ‘Son of Raw’ Raw is indeed the word for this stripped down house track, released on New York’s Ibadan Records in 2005 before getting a second lease of life via a Loco Dice remix on Objekitivty in 2007.

Crazy, uplifting pointy fingered dance music - that keyboard freak out always gets me and then there's "You don't know... You don't know"(at least I think that's what he says). Faith connection - First heard it out at Faith at Turnmills, Quentin played it in the back room and it knocked my socks off. Absolutely timeless. [Lawrence Brooks, Monkey Tennis]

Best pure house track of the decade no question. [Frank Tope, Wild Geese]

5 - Ferrer and Sydenham Inc. ‘Sandcastles’ It’s that Ferrer and Ibadan combination again, this time in conjunction with label boss, Jerome Sydenham. Originally released as limited Ibadan 10” in 2003 before getting a re-rub from Pete Heller in 2004, then being picked up by Defected in 2005, and getting the obligatory hoard of remixes.

The classic example of house 2k style. Sandcastles fuses perfectly the best element of classic deep house with the sound of soulful Detroit techno. This is the noughties answer to a "Strings Of Life" if I may, a timeless instrumental that sinks in your skin and stays there forever. Massive in cooler clubs like DC10 in its first Ibadan (Jerome Sydenham's label) guise, it was then signed by UK super label Defected and infiltrated every club the world over. It also launched the career of arguably one of the best US producers of the decade, Dennis Ferrer. [Yuri ‘thestunt’ Lia]

Somewhere between hands in the air and head down just going for it.
HOUSE as fuck. [Adam R]

4 - Octave One ‘Blackwater’ Ostensibly a Detroit techno record when released as ‘Untold’ on 430 West in 2000, with vocals provided by Kevin Saunderson’s wife Ann, this synth driven beast went on to cross over from the techno scene in the way only ‘Jaguar’ had since the heady days of the late 80s.

Miami 2001, I absolutely hammered it at Tenaglia and hated it. Next night dragged myself to the Crow Bar for the Magic Sessions and despite me being massively fragile and pretty straight Louie Vega took me away. Last record of the night was the Full String version of Blackwater. First time I'd heard it and I thought I'd died on gone to heaven. [Will Macc]

Either you've got the vocal house stormer that works both for the serious types that will bear it content that the wives are being catered for, to the bumble rookies questioning the stress on the daily grind of their 9-5 when 'hey, jus open your heart, open your mind and let your love flow like the sunshine' - ain't no big thang. [Ted Striker]

I remember the first time I heard it. I was at Opium Garden in Miami and Danny Howells played the instrumental and the vocal mix back to back off some acetate. He played it a twice in the same night. Remember that’s how we knew a tune was gonna be big?! I then heard Octave One perform it live at the first Detroit Music Festival I went to and it gave me goose bumps,. still does to this day. [Ramon Crespo, Miami]

3 - Quentin Harris ‘Let’s Be Young’ The first release on Shelter spin-off label Un-Restricted Access in 200, the distinctive brass work in this track is lifted from the default settings of Apple's GarageBand software package - but goddamit, they are used here to devastating effect! This record propelled the up and coming Quentin Harris into the house music spot light and was one of those tunes that literally stopped you in your tracks when you first heard it. Picked by Bristol label NRK in the UK and remixed well by Ashley Beedle and Julian Jabre.

Like 'In The Trees' and 'Deep Burnt' before it this is one of those records that uses strings to perfection. It's not often you get a non-vocal house record that can unite the masses (S'Norm played it at carnival that year and everyone went bonkers) but this one ticks all the boxes. Is one of those records I'll forever associate with Faith as well - standout memory being when someone (Stu? Terry?) played it at the Ministry when we'd all had a skinful of 'that' punch. [Kerry Power, Feel up]

THE record that got me back into house after a few years away noodling. Relentless from beginning to end. [Grant Berry, Enjoy]

Beautiful, emotive, intense, inspirational and thoroughly wonderful house record. Works on heads and converts the non-believers. [Frazer]

The simpler the better for my ears. The connection between Detroit and New York lives with Quentin. Simply Divine. [Roual Galloway, Timbre Pitch Records]

2 - Kerri Chandler ‘Bar-a-Thyme’ First seeing light of day on US imprint Nite Grooves in 2005 and apparently taking its name from bar used as an afters venue at a house music festival in Toulon, this track was all about THAT cowbell! The ever perceptive NRK licensed it the UK and as ever, they turned in a couple of decent remixes too.

For some reason this and ‘Back to the Raw’ remind me of getting back into buying Kerri regular again. Don’t recall picking much up by him for the previous couple of years or so. Don’t require much chat on the actual track here, its massive and it still makes me pull a funny face in the breakdown. H.O.U.S.E has never been more apt. [Nick Yuill, Devil Disco Club]

Gave house the kick up the backside it needed, a perfectly executed track from Chandler, solid rhythm, almost ravey, and oh those cowbells.....Tom Middleton did a great job remixing too I thought [Nick Harris, NRK]

Just a great jacker from Mr Chandler that was a stone cold Faith classic in 05 - got overplayed to buggery, but if you dig it out now and listen it's a classic piece of house. [Chris Howell-Jones]

Mega cow bell irresistible groover - loved hearing it out at faith , but also remember the rush of owning a copy and playing it over and over got it and played out at a party and everyone loved it even on first listen , and then my mate Danny mixing it in and put with old face Voodoo Ray - room all experienced a moment [Chris S]

The 1st 'Proper' House record I'd bought in ages, simple, catchy, hammered by everybody all over, brilliant. [Sean ‘lazyboy’ Kay]

1 - King of Tomorrow ‘Finally’ The one and only noughties record to make it into the Faith All Time Top Ten House Records, it’s only fitting that it comes in top here. First released on French label Distance in 2000, with great Louie Vega mixes including the absolutely sublime ‘String Reprise’, then going on to be signed by Defected in 2001 and being given a second lease of life by the hand of Danny Tenaglia. An anthem in the truest sense.

A classic house record in the true sense of the word , could easily have been made during the golden period of House , lyrically it touches the spot for those of us who have lost people dear to us while still making your soul and spirit soar . Cosmo played this at a early Faith party off Acetate (remember those ) and the whole room had a shared 'moment' , beautiful record. [Terry Farley, Boys Own]

I wasn’t to bothered about the Krivit edit cos I loved the original so much. Then after I finished playing in the end room at the Cross one night I wandered into the middle room to catch the last hour of Angel Moraes and he played this (after dropping a vocal from American Pie , where the father has a father/son chat to his offspring about masturbation ) ...and I 'finally' got it. The extended intro with subtle re-arrangement of the bass-line, leading you into the vocal just works so much. Absolute house music. [Ian Do-It-Fluid]

Just a great song with loads of clubbing memories. I first heard at Body and Soul with Julie McKnight doing an acapella PA. Ariel turned all the lights off leaving just the glow of that light sabre, lights on as the tune finally kicks in, collective spine tingle. [Andy McLean]

Hearing that on the old Vinyl system was something else. Tenaglia working it for what seemed like 30 minutes – glorious. [Roual Galloway, Timbre Pitch Records]

Sandy Rivera drops perhaps the ultimate take me to heaven tunes.
Reminds me of playing it at Bora Bora during the summer of 2001...
Bliss [Dave Cooper, Six Million Steps]

The last great house vocal [Chris Woodward, Buzzin’ Fly]

Honourable Mentions:

Blaze – How Deep is Your Love (T.Regisford mix) // Cesaria Evora – Angola //
Jill Scott – Not Like Crazy (Quentin Harris mix) // LCD Soundsystem – Losing My Edge // Metro Area – Miura // Mondo Grosso – Star Suite (Blaze mix) // Still Going – Still Going Theme // Delia Gonzalez & Gavin Russom – Revelee // Matthew Jonson – Decompression // Roy Ayers – Tarzan (Ame mix) // Silicone Soul – Chico-La-La (H-Foundation mix) // Beyonce – Crazy in Love // Julian Jabre – War // Justin Matin – Sad Piano (Charles Webster mix) // Leela James – My Joy // Loco Dice – Menina Brazilera // Luciano & Quenum – Orange Mistake // Mark E – Scared // Osulade – Pride // Shaun Escoffrey – Days Like These (Spinna mix) // Soul Central - Strings of Life // Todd Terje – Eurodans // Afro Medusa – Pasilda // Argy – Love Dose // Aril Brikha – Winter // Bill Withers – Who is He… (Henrik Schwarz mix) // Block 16 – Electrokution // Bobby Peru – Jack 2 the Future // Cajmere – I Need U // Carl Craig – Sandstorms // Chicken Lips – He Not In // Cobblestone Jazz – Dump Truck // DJ Gregory - Elle // DJ Oji& Una – We Lift Our Hands in the Sanctuary // DJ Rolando – Jaguar (mixes) // Henrik Schwarz – Marvin // House of 909 – Blandford Superfly // James Holden – Break in the Clouds // Laurent Garnier – Man with the Red Face // Luomo – Tessio // Marie Bone – Voui Voui Me // Matthew Jonson – Marionette // Metro Area – The Art of Hot // Morgan Geist – 24k // Mountain People – 003 // Omar S – Psychotic Photosynthesis // Onerio – Shhh! // Oracy – Family Day // Outkast – Hey Ya // Pepe Bradock – Life // Peven Everett – Can’t Do Without // Photek – Mine to Give // Raphael Saadiq – Skyy Can You Feel Me // Recloose – Cardiology (Isolee mix) // Roach Motel – This Beat is Mine // Scott Grooves – The Journey // Sebastian Teller – La Ritournelle // Stereotyp – Keepin’ Me (Fauna Flash mix) // The Streets – Weak Become Heroes // Theo Parrish – Falling Up (Carl Craig mix) // Todd Terje – Italian Stallion // Tracy Thorn – It’s All True // Underground Culture Tourist – Jackin’ the Jazz // Alan Braxe & Fred Flake – Running (Intro) // Alice Smith – Endeavour // Alton Miller Clouds Are Gone (Henrik Schwarz mix) // Ame – Shiro // Beanfield – Tides (Carl Craig mix) // Cajmere – Midnight // Carl Craig – Darkness // Chez Damier & the Cru – Warfare // Delano Smith – Metropolis // Der Zyklus – Formenrerwandler // DJ Buck – Release the Tension // DJ Gregory – Attend // DJ Sid le Roc n DJ Kose – Nulsed // Faze Action – In the Trees (Carl Craig mix) // Ferrer and Sydenham – Timbuktu // Gomma – It Rough // Henrik Schwarz – I Exist because of You // Lindstrom – Another Station // Lindstrom – I Feel Space // Lindstrom & Christabelle // Loco Dice – Tight Laces // Lordy – Watchtower // Love Birds – Gentle // Magnus International – Kosemtisk // Martin Buttrich – Programmer // Mateo & Matos – The Real Thing // Matt o’Brien – Sertone // Max Sedgley – Happy // Mile Claro & Frank Garcia – Dead Souls // Mr Scruff – Chicken in a Box // Mr V – Da Bump // Omar S – Grandson of Detroit Techno // Ricardo Villalobos – Waiworinao // Seal – Violet (Shelter mix) // Slam – Azure // Slam – Lifetimes // Sly Mongoose – Snakes and Ladders (Rub’n’Tug mix) // The Street – Has it Come to This // Thomas Anderson – Washing Up // Trentmoller – Polar Shift // TRG – Broken Heart // Twisted Pair – Horny Hustle // Underground Resistance – Transition // Victor Duplaix – Looking for Love // Akabu – Phuturebound (Ame mix) // Ane Brun – Headphone Silence (Dixon mix) // Angie Stone – Wish I Didn’t Miss You (Pound Boys mix) // At Jazz – Put It On // Blaze – I Think of You // Booka Shade – Mandarine Girl // BRS – Loving Me // Chelonis R Jones – Deer in the Headlights // Daft Punk – Too Long // Fenrec – Yes, Sir I Can Hardcore // Florence & the Machine – Rabbit Heart (Leo Zero mix) // Gabriel Ananda – Dopplewhipper // Green Velvet - La La Land // Harry Romero – I Go Back // Joakim – Basically // Joi Cardwell – What it Feels Like // Kids on the Streets – Keep on Turning // Kings of Tomorrow – Another day // LCD Soundsystem – All My Friends // LCD Soundsystem – Yeah // Marcos Valle – Besteiras // Matthew Jonson – Typerope // Michel Cleis – La Mezcla // Mixed Up Little Annie and then Legally Jammin’ – Bleach // Mr G – G’s String // Phonique – Red Dress // Piranha Head – Poem 4 a Lost One // Plasmik – Eight to Nine // Primal Scream – Uptown (Weatherall mix) // Ricardo Villalobos – Dexter // Roland Appell – Dark Soldier // Shakedown – At Night // Shik Styko – Minion // Sir Piers – She’s Gone Away // Sunshine Anderson – Heard It All Before (Ben Watt mix) // Timeline – Time Sensitive // Tracy Thorn – Raise the Roof // Underworld – 2 Months Off