Musical Highs and Lows of 2003


-The Summer of Insanity, Brixton ©™®

-The UK scene pulling even closer together, geography meaning less, and so many great local nights pushing forward from their successes in 2002

-Some of the up and coming local live sets we’ve been treated to, especially Orphan, the Werk boys, Plant 43 and Nick Wilson

-All that beautiful wax

-ATP (every moment from start to finish)

-Movement (so many amazing live sets)

-Carlos Souffront, Derek Plaslaiko, Ectomorph and Traxx @ the Movement Cannonball party

-Atkins, KDJ, Ron Trent and more @ The Works Movement afterparty

-Surgeon repeatedly

-Hood repeatedly

-Theo Parrish repeatedly

-The birth of Homerton ©™®

-The return of LFO

-Dan Bell @ OC (and the aftermath it inspired)

-Cynic’s Titonton, FBA and Tom Churchill in-a-row party @ Rhythm Factory


-Larry Heard, Brett Dancer & Mr. Fingers w/Robert Owens @ Barrumba

-FK @ Deep Space NYC

-Blaze Live w/Danny Krivit, NYC

-Carl Craig spinning with his child in a stroller in the Vinyl Junkies bassment – just me and the staff in attendance (albeit for only 15 minutes) + his set @ Plastic People

-The lineups at Fabric over the last few months, and a few really excellent nights there, especially the sets from LFO, Fabrice Lig, Akufen and Technasia

-Gene Farris or Maurice Fulton @ the Notting Hill Arts Club

-Joakim @ 93 Feet East

-Stewart Walker @ Clever Music

-Werk’s Gescom, Ghostly and Surgeon parties

-The London invasion of Weymouth

-Larks in the Park (although perhaps not that electronic)

-Return of the [313] party

-So many birthday parties


-Cosmic Twins ahem

-Rob Hood getting shut down after 20 minutes @ a Movement afterparty, and me getting shut down

-Thomas Fehlmann @ 93 Feet East

-Yokota @ 93 Feet East

While I’m sure there were some other lows I’m not remembering at the moment, they were certainly few and far between, and almost all of them were overcome by the crowd. The three above stand out in my mind because they were not.

December Top 10 and 2003 Top 50

December Top 10

1. I:Cube : 3 – Versatile

2. Meg : MGRMX – Joint Records

3. Kelley Polar Quartet : Recital EP – Environ

4. Titonton : Explicit EP – Neroli

5. Lucky & Easy : Pimp Soul Blister EP – Ann Aimee

6. Starfighterz : 4 Flavours Of A Two-Sided Story

7. Fabrice Lig : Meet U In Brooklyn – Playhouse

8. Niko Marks : Chune / Truly Something – Planet E

9. Various Artists : Iridite Productions Present Electron Music – Iridite

10. Joshua : Nu Cycles – Tweekin

2003 Top 50

2003 has been an absolutely stunning year for new music (and reissues/re-edits/remixes for that matter). Obviously, a top 50 is overkill, but if I didn’t do it this way, it would’ve been an albums versus singles thing, and both have seen tons of activity. Ultimately, you can never give good artists/releases too much recognition, and I would’ve felt like some of these folks had been slighted by their omission. Also, the sheer quantity of good material means that many of these have not seen as much platter time as they deserve, but I’ve never felt as on top of such a broad range of music before, and I think this chart represents some of that diversity.

This is a sampling of the 300 or so records that came my way this year (and I know there are a few like the Andres stuff, the Dan Curtin on Downlow, the new Amp Fiddler, some Rob Hood and some brand new releases that I’ve missed, to name but a few). Notably, it’s been easy enough to shop these days, that I have yet to sell a single record in 2003 and would only think about getting rid of a handful. Death of the music industry my ass! 🙂 If anyone wants more info on any of these records, please feel free to ask questions. I’m more than happy to help.

1 . Outkast : The Love Below LP – Arista

2 . DJ Gregory : Elle – Faya Combo

3 . Stateless : Leave Me Now (Brooks Remix) – Freerange

4 . Amp Fiddler : Love And War – Genuine

5 . RSL : Wesley Music – Player

6 . Dimlite : A/DD EP – Sonar Kollectiv

7 . Moodymann : Silence In The Secret Garden LP – Peacefrog

8 . Spacek : Vintage Hi-Tech LP – !K7

9 . Meg : MGRMX – Joint Records

10 . Dudley Perkins (produced by Madlib) : A Lil Light LP – Stones Throw

11 . Pitch Black City featuring Roberta Sweed : Runaway – Mahogani Music

12 . DJ Cam feat Cameo : Love Junkee (Dilla Remix) – Inflamable

13 . Pal Joey : #17 – Loop D’ Loop

14 . Infinity Plus One : Rhythmatic Unison – Drenched

15 . Russ Gabriel : Into the Unknown LP – Out of the Loop

16 . Reunion : Strange Attention – Seiji Mixes – Dialog Recordings

17 . Freedom Soundz Feat. Vanessa Freeman : Feelings EP – Nepenta Promo

18 . Truby Trio : Universal Love (Âme Remix) – Compost

19 . Horror Inc. : Horrorama – Revolver

20 . Rima : This World LP – Jazzanova Compost Records

21 . N’Dambi : Call Me (Limited Re-Edit) – Yam Who

22 . 32 Project : The Root Of World – Ibadan

23 . Nikolai Dichev : Grasses (Ltd. 5) – Trapez

24 . I:Cube : 3 LP – Versatile

25 . Clyde Feat. Capitol A : Serve It Up! (Brooks remix) – Mantis

26 . Yotoko : All Creation Remix EP – Delsin Records

27 . John Arnold with Amp Fiddler : Get Yourself Together / I Can Be – Ubiquity

28 . Tread : Tread 3 LP – Third Ear

29 . Ennio Morricone : Remixes Volume 1 3×12″ – Compost

30 . Jay Dee : The Official Instrumental Series – Unreleased Vol 1 LP – Bling 47

31 . Joshua : Hustlin’ – Select Recordings

32 . Glad Today : Thoughts of You – M-Break Recordings

33 . Cesario Evora : Angola – Lusafrica

34 . Gotan Project : Santa Maria (Del Buen Ayre) – Ya Basta!

35 . V/A : Detroit Beatdown Remixes – Third Ear

36 . Kelley Polar Quartet : Recital EP – Environ

37 . Pepe Bradock & Michelle Weeks : Distorted Echoes – KIF

38 . Headman : It Rough (Chicken Lips Trax Dub) – Gomma

39 . New World Aquarium : Heavy Metal EP – Peacefrog

40 . Rick Wade : Big Foot EP – Music Is

41 . Lucky & Easy : Pimp Soul Blister EP – Ann Aimee

42 . John Tejada : The Toiling of Idle Hands LP – Immigrant

43 . Titonton : Explicit EP – Neroli

44 . The Detroit Experiment : The Detroit Experiment LP – Planet E

45 . Various Artists : Iridite Productions Present Electron Music – Iridite

46 . Rick Wade : I Can’t Take It – Funky Chocolate

47 . Isolee : It s About – Freundinnen

48 . Russ Gabriel : Spirit Of Corea – Soul On Wax

49 . Fabrice Lig : Meet U In Brooklyn – Playhouse

50 . Kemit Sources : An Ka Sein – Isma’a

Bleep 43 @ Public Life with Ryan Blackman and Mike Grant

Here’s my tracklist:



Natalie Gardner – Going Down Slow (Flowriders Remix) – 4Lux

Spacek – Time – !K7

Dimlite:a/dd – Byrdshot and Bye – Sonar Kollektiv

Gangtarr – Just to Get a Rep (Madlib Remix) – No Label Records

Four Tet – As Serious as Your Life (Remix 1) – Domino Record Co

Diverse – Jus Biz – Chocolate Industries

Blockhead – Carnivores Unite – Ninja Tune

Outkast – Love in War – Arista

Jazzanova – Another Fine Day (Doctor Rockit’s Vocal Itch) – Rope a Dope Records

De La Soul – Aint Hip to be Labeled – Tommy Boy

Meg – Kouro (Theo Parrish Remix) – Joint Records

Scott Ferguson – “Q” (DX Mix) – Ferrispark Records

Rick Wilhite – Ruby Nights (Gilb-r Solo Flight Remix) – Third Ear

Bucketheads – Whew – Henry Street Music

Scott Ferguson – “Q” (Main Mix) – Ferrispark Records

Joshua – Century 82 – Tweekin Records

Kenny Hawkes & Louise Carver – Play the Game (Joshua’s Vocal Mix) – Music for Freaks

Stereo People vs. Music People – Baggershack – Select Recordings

Fabrice Lig – Meet U In Brooklyn – Playhouse

Liaisons Dangereuses – Peut Etre Pas – EMI

Kelley Polar Quartet – The Rhythm Touch – Environ

Niko Marks – Chune – Planet E

I:Cube – Oblivion – Versatile

James Duncan – Dub With Me – Traxxx Records

Lucky & Easy – Pimp Soul Blister (A) – Ann Aimee

Tha Poke – Uncommon Sense – Iridite Records

Starfighterz – Flavour 4 – Delsin Records

Yotoko – All Creation Remix – Delsin Records

Titonton – All Fours – Neroli

Horror Inc. – Siamese Twins – Revolver

Hakan Lidbo – White Trash – Moody Recordings

Infinity Plus One – Rhthmatic Unison – Drenched Recordings

Diego & Vocoderman – Refraction – Kanzleramt

Unknown Artist – Ltd 05 (B2) – Trapez

Kaito – Breaking the Star – Kompakt

Shawn Rudiman – That’s What I’m Talkin About – 11th Hour Technology

Dexter of the Avalanches last night

The place was really full – especially for a Tuesday (who the hell goes out on a Tuesday???), and almost entirely Antipodean from what I could tell. Not a bad thing, but you could tell a lot of people there were not your typical patrons of the underground, if you catch my drift. The music was so all over the map at the beginning that it was hard to feel comfortable, but around midnight Dexter settled into some proper DMC style business, then hit a great groove and took off from there. Never has pop music sounded so strange!

On this night, we heard Public Enemy, Pharcyde, The Beatles, Jimi Hendrix twice, tons of Neptunes-y stuff, Beyonce, theme from Flash Gordon (mutated into somethignn devastating), lots of Avalanches (including some stuff that must be forthcoming, and seriously mind-blowing at that) and some of the tracks they sampled in making the last album, Underworld, loads of Dr. Dre-produced stuff, some P-Funk, The Cure, something vaguely metal-ish and one of the weirdest segments I’ve ever heard, which twisted something I’m not remembering into The Outkast into Fischerspooner into Cyndi Lauper into Tim Mass into The Clash. Steve – fill in the blanks! Seriously strange vibe in there, and by no means the tightest feeling of community I’ve ever felt @ PP, but a really interesting and rewarding night regardless. Very glad I went.

New Haul

Amp Fiddler : Waltz of the Ghetto Fly [really really limited advanced promo that I am very lucky to have caught (with some help). Went out of stock in an hour or two, by the looks of it. Could be the album of the year, err, next year]

Blockhead : Insomniac Olympics – 12″ [Nutty new Ninja Tune picture disc. Very cinematic]

De La Soul : Da Age Of De Daisy – Best Of Da Remixes – 2xLP [Lots of remixes – prolly a boot. Haven’t got their first album, so this is sort of a replacement for some of that, and it’s got that Spinna remix of Stakes is High, which is pretty tasty]

Four Tet : As Serious As Your Life (Remix 1) [A cheapo 7″, but some really twisted instrumental hip hop]

Future Beat Alliance : Lumiere – 12″ [More straight-forward than his earlier stuff, but a pretty nice fit into that Versatile world of Parisian/Detroit techno, but erm, from England]

Horror Inc : Horrorama EP [Wicked Akufen track if ya don’t know it yet (Thanks to mah boyee Crudmonster 4 the tip)]

I:Cube : 3 – 2xLP [Finally getting my mits on it!]

Jazzanova : Another New Day/Love And You & I [Stereolab, Dr. Rockit and Madlib remixes -i.e. my name all over it]

Joshua : Nu Cycles [Joshua doin’ his boompty house thang some mo’]

Kelley Polar Quartet : Recital EP – 12″ [Wicked! An absolute must for Metro Area or string-laden disco fans. This one adds vocals too! Probably better than the first one IMHO]

Kenny Hawkes & Louise Carver : Play The Game (Chicago & San Francisco Remixes) – 12″ [Bouncy-ass Joshua remix with typically dope bassline]

Lucky & Easy : Pimp Soul Blister EP [New one on Ann Aimee. Surprisingly mid-tempo with much more prominent beats than I would’ve expected]

Natalie Gardiner : Trouble In Mind / Going Down Slow / Move Me – 12″ [This is the remixes 12″. Gorgeous techy soul sorta like Spacek, but with female vocals. This 4lux label looks to be one to watch – run by Gerd, formerly 1/2 of Sensurreal, if memory serves]

Neon Phusion : The Future Ain’t The Same As It Used 2 B [Slightly older Oren Walters thing – finally found it in stock. Possibly my favorite pseudonym of his]

Niko Marks : Chune / Truly Something – 12″ [Chune is the chune]

Rough Trade Shops : Electronic 01 (album sampler) [Includes Rod Freeman & The Blue Men, Throbbing Gristle, Arovane, Stereolab]

Stereo People Vs. Music People : Won’t Leave You / Baggershack [More Joshua with help from south of the equator, but the b-side sounds more like a return to the ultra-lush, melodic Circulation material like Patternis/Memory/Ex-Tempo. Picked it up for that]

Starfighterz : 4 Flavours Of A Two-Sided Story [More amazing proper techno from Delsin]

Theo Parrish : That Day / How I Feel – 12″ [Repress = yay!]

Titonton : Explicit EP [The beat on the dub on this one sounds great. Not sure how it develops yet though]

Yotoko : Wet Ink – 2xLP [Domu can do no wrong]

Yotoko : All Creation Remix EP [Ditto – will also fill a gap since this track isn’t on the album above]

And that oughta hook me up for a while. 🙂