Thursday 31 January 2013


I've got some time to kill, and its come to my attention I've only posted Mr. Scruff's later work. So today I'm going to correct that a bit, with some slices from his debut album that was originally self titled, but was cleverly reworked for it's re-issue into Mrs. Cruff. Tracks and more after some of the Scruff man's charming art.

We have the fittingly titled Jazz Potato to set us up. It has the distinction of being one of the first Scruff tracks I heard along with Get A Move On. While having the Jazzier edge of his later work, there is a clear lean towards the beats and bassline side of things, something that will become more prominent in a bit.

This one's a bit more explicit with the beats and basslines angle, saying that there is still liberal use of jazzy samples and other bits and bobs to keep it fresh, hence the title. There's a wealth of material on his debut LP, the re-issue only has 2 tracks out of twelve with a run time less that 5 minutes, which can make it a bit difficult to listen through the whole thing in one sitting.

And finally we get to the meat of my point, there a few tracks like Limbic Funk in Scruff's later LPs, and the same applies to earlier tracks like Sea Mammal and Bass Baby. It does make the few that there are wuite nice to listen to tough, so enjoy. Fun Fact: according to the liner notes; Scruff's debut required little to no mastering when he sent it off, and is pretty much pressed as-is.

And finally, I thought I'd share a little gem I came across the other day, taken from a Japanese compilation of remixes of the Cowboy Bebop OST comes this. There were some interesting ones on there for sure, including one from AFX's long time chum Luke Vibert, but Scruff nails it once again. It probably helps that the OST was pretty Jazzy to begin with, Scruff certainly had fun with this one that's for sure.

Arms, Legs, Everywhere!
- Claude Van Foxbat

Monday 28 January 2013

In The Garage

Hey all, I'm here browsing my FB feed on the first day of my week off, when I notice that Philestine's been hard at work on his soundcloud, making two sets titled 'Housey' and 'Garagey' that I gave a listen. 'Housey' is mostly made up of stuff I've posted from Moo Fire, but Garagey is where its at. More on that after the art.

Art by Kid Acne, for French rappers TTC

Now, I haven't listened to UK Garage since I was a little Foxbat in the late 1990s, and I know there's future garage floating around but I haven't heard much of that either. But I do know that Philestine's take on it is pretty sweet indeed.

This one's named after an old school 60's TV show that re-ran on the BBC for a lot of my childhood. There's no trademark Stenchman sampling of the TV show in this one though, understandably since he's looking to put some distance between his Stenchman work and this newer stuff but there is still a little bit of the Stench there in the subtle change of the title to Kangamoo.

As he promised, there's a lot more chill stuff coming from his camp these days, and out of the entire set this is probably my favourite thanks in part to them glitchy sounds scattered throughout. It's a shame it's only a cut sample for now, I'm lookin' forward to hearing the full length when it drops!

Hidden Among Leaves,
-Claude Van Foxbat

Friday 25 January 2013

That We Can Play

Speaking of themes, another one happened to swing by my way today as I was on suffle as usual. It involves the now defunct Daniel Lopatin (AKA Oneohtrix Point Never) and Joel Ford side project Games. It's their foray into more chillwave-y stuff and its actually pretty good. Aside from the bad, bad album art, though after seeing the rest of the 12" sleeve I reckon its intentional.

Anyway, back to themes, kicking it off we have this lovely intro by Esc 不在 an artist I picked up on my vapourwave travels. It makes liberal use of that Windows 95 start-up sound crafted by ambient pioneer Brian Eno (ironically recorded on a mac) that I half remember from my school days in the IT lab. Hearing it remixed like this brought the waves of nostalgia like no other.

Which brought me back to the Games EP, Specifically the remix by Gatekeeper. It had pretty much the same effect thanks to that brilliantly placed PlayStation sample, it actually merges quite well into the song and doesn't feel forced at all. There's also a Boards Of Canada sample lurking in the background on this one, see if you can spot it.

And just for the hell of it, some more slices from the Games EP, including the brilliant original Strawberry Skies that pulls off the feel that Games is all about in spectacular fashion. Like the entire Electroclash scene before, it's got that retro-futuristic feel to it like it wouldn't sound out of place about 30 years ago or in 2010 when it was released. Only complaint is that it feels a bit short, but that is a small price to pay.

This one really brings out the Oneohtrix touch from a gear standpoint, real echoes from some tracks off Rifts here. It also fills in that retro-futuristic niche quite nicely despite being completely instrumental aside from a few cheeky vocal snips in there.

And finally, my favourite. The intro sounds a little bit out of place at first, sounding more than a little like The Prodigy's Everybody In The Place (155 And Rising), but it soon falls into place with some brilliant sampling courtesy of Secret Service's Flash in the Night. Given the Games chopped & screwed treatment it pretty much embodies chillwave's sound, full of half remembered 80's songs.

Black Disc,
- Claude Van Foxbat

Tuesday 22 January 2013

About You

So here I am drafting up new ideas for a post, when coincidence strikes again. More on that in a minute because I have some good news! My very first semester at Uni ends soon so that means I have more free time to channel into sending tunes your way, so that's very nice indeed.

I decided to throw in another track from Stenchman's annual free LP Moo Fire, this time with a remix under his new Philestine alias that I'm really digging the sound of. This track keeps it low key, but as Stenchy said on his FB page that's entirely the point, keeping his usual work under Stenchman and working on something different under another name is a smart move for sure.

And with that I just had to include this nice little mid-LP bit that's in there as well. Oddly enough under Stenchman even though I think it errs a bit more on the Philestine sound that his usual affair. Anyway, the tune does serve as a nice interlude sandwiched between two full on dubstep tunes it creates a nice gap that Stench has used to similar effect on his other free LPs.

I recently revisited Röyksopp's stellar Junior, and I'd completely forgotten about that Japanese Bonus Track I'd picked up at some point. It's a proper quality tune, it has that lovely sound that makes up the majority of Junior and it's a shame that they didn't just included it as a final track on every pressing. I suppose the bittersweet musings from Lykke Li on the track are a bit too much of a contrast to the largely upbeat tracklist, but I think that's what makes it work so well as a final track before the ambient stylings of the follow up Senior.

It was around now I noticed a theme occurring, after I picked this next one it was pretty much sealed. Another album I've recently dug out again, Felix Da Housecat's He Was King, and another track with a 'You' in it. A lot of the electropoppy stuff on He Was King is pretty great, especially as a compliment to the sounds of Junior.

Bringing this theme to a close we have Peaches, with a cut from her LP I Feel Cream. This tune in particular was produced by good old Simian Mobile Disco, their influence kind of shines through, but it's not overly pronounced. Of course Peaches herself makes the track, a far cry from the days of Fuck The Pain Away in terms of lyrical content and delivery.

And Me,
-Claude Van Foxbat

Saturday 19 January 2013

Altered State

I'm pretty burnt out at the moment. Having just finished a 3000 word essay on Rave Culture and how it responded to the media and the Public Order Act 1994 and still having multiple deadlines rapidly approaching and projects needing to be done left right and center it's not pleasant. But if there's anything I've learned in the past couple of years is you've just gotta get on with it, because as I so eloquently put it "No one likes a morbid bastard".

But you know what's always good? Music. And that's what we're here for right? Have another instrumental cut from that oh so obscure electrolash LP by Golden Boy Or. Going back to check on my first post from this album I found I'd put it up just about a year ago, by coincidence I'd taken this album out of my rotation because I'd grown sick from hearing it all the time. Now it's back with in all it's early 2000's glory and it's slightly too long title, enjoy.

Another tune from way back is one of Wisp's reworkings of AFX's Selected Ambient Works Vol. II. When I first downloaded these about 3 years ago I didn't think it would work at all, but Wisp surprised me alright. And even when I thought it'd ruin SAW V.II for me it didn't. Unfortunately I don't listen to much of his work outside of these reworks, but I can tell you one thing, he deserves a whole lot of credit for turning a purely ambient track into this.

Another reworking of AFX next, with David Firth's acoustic reworking of a tune from the unreleased (but floating around the 'net) tape Melodies From Mars featured on Locust Toybox's Remixes And Other Crap release. It translates rather well to the format change actually, and comes out sounding a little bit like a cut from Firth's other folk/acoustic project Grape Digging Sharon Fruits.

Bringing us full circle with another bit of early 2000's electroclash goodness with Ladytron. Same deal as with Golden Boy here, recently put this LP back in after getting sick of hearing it so many times. Unlike Golden Boy however, Ladytron have more than one album so that's easily solved. Here's one of my favourites from 604, I'm reluctant to lump the whole record into the electroclash label, but a lot of tracks have that monotone culture critique that is a big hallmark of the scene, especially on Playgirl. regardless, enjoy the tune!

Super Flat,
-Claude Van Foxbat

Thursday 10 January 2013

Cold Snap

Evening all, while the university has me blogging away on a Personal & Professional Practice module, I thought I'd hit you up with a few tunes before I forget again. It's taken a cold turn here in the UK. Shocker, I know, but we thought we'd escaped after a fairly mild winter. No such luck unfortunately, but unlike everyone else I actually like the cold, and it gives me a nice opportunity to share tunes before I realise how much work I have to do again.

Kicking it off with some fittingly cold tunes first, with another cut from thew black sheep of Massive Attack albums, 100th Window. I've recently got back into this LP, and I can see why I left it alone for a while, a lot of the tracks towards the end are 8+ minutes long and end up hogging a lot of space on my SD card. Still, they've made a return recently and they are just as nice as ever.

Keepin' it European with my long time favourites The Knife. They've recently announced both a new album and a whole tour to promote it, but in the meantime I'll keep their third LP Silent Shout in rotation like I always do. It's hands down one of my favourite records of all time, it properly nails the aesthetic its going for.

And finally ending our cold jaunt is James Blake, his shelf wobbling cover of Feist's Limit To Your Love is pretty sweet, especially when that Fever Ray-esque voice tweaking gets involved towards the end. If you need help testing your system's bass, go ahead and skip to about 55 seconds in.

Not to leave you all out in the cold I thought I'd round it out with a couple warmer tracks. Starting with LA local FlyLo of course, I'd forgotten I had his July Heat bootleg tape lying around so I came across it today and went ahead and dug it out. There's some sweet ones on here for sure, here's one I'm feeling right now thanks to that tidy bassline.

And finally a fast riser in my collection of beatcrafters, its Knxwledge again with another cut from the Old Klouds LP, which is chock full of lovely instrumentals that you should definitely check out if hip hop's your thing. This one's a gem that pops up near the end of the album.

- Claude Van Foxbat

Sunday 6 January 2013

A New Day

So I thought I'd get around to laying down the very first post of 2013 before I jet off to Uni again tomorrow, just like old times it's gonna be me throwing up what tunes I'm feeling at the minute. Let's dive right in.

My good pal Evan laid a new tape on us not too long ago, this time he stretches out a bit and mixes up the usual hip hop affair with some Drum & Bass experiments he's been teasing us with for a while. I'll be sure to tell him to not be worried too much, cos this tune is way up there with my favourites in Liquid and Jungle.

Deadbeat Demon - Worlds Apart

More from the Stench again with another slice from his free album this year Moo Fire. Like the Demon, Stenchman gets his Amen Break on in this one and gives us a nice Jungle/Garage mix up in the vein of Skream. That piano hook is right on the money when it comes to living up to that Old School title for sure.

Stenchman - Back To The Old School

Again with another installment from Moo Fire but hear me out. I can't stand most stuff billed as dubstep these days, luckily Stench and his dub bud Suspect (appearing here as Suspicious Stench, get it?) have mostly kept it in line. This track is a little out of character in comparison to their usual output but still has that sound that is uniquely theirs. That and it has a lot more structure to it that straight up wobbles throughout.

Speaking of back to the old school,I finally got my hands on one of my favourite remixes of all time the other day; The Hacker's Fadin' Away, brilliantly reworked by Dima AKA Vitalic, and this tune pretty much has all the hallmarks of Poney EP and OK Cowboy era Vitalic on it. This tune is 13 years old but you wouldn't believe it, it was fresh when I first heard it in '07 and it's still as quality as it was on my first listen. Deffo check it out if you've not heard this one before.

And finally we have a cut from renowned beat butcher Venetian Snares. VS has a staggering amount of albums under his belt, this one come from his latest from 2010 which shares the same title as the album itself. It's the usual VS affair with skittering breakbeats littered throughout, though I would say this is definitely more accessible than the strings 'n beats combo on Rossz Csillag Alatt Született.

2013 AD,
- Claude Van Foxbat