Thursday 14 April 2022

Throwback Thursday

Let me take you all back in time, back to when a younger Foxbat was your stereotypical blog surfer with a headful of House. It's not that long ago in the grand scheme of things, but it's all documented on this site for all to see, going back and reading my (incredibly self conscious and very obviously the product of a teenager) writing is always interesting - to see what's changed and what hasn't. I tend to focus on what hasn't when I've previously brought this up - I'm still a fiend for all things IDM for one - but there are also more interesting changes in opinion as well; somewhere on here you can find a solitary post where I moan about not gelling with Portishead - fast forward a decade or so and I adore 'em
So Me - Triple Trouble (Crowd) (2009)

This time though, if the art didn't reveal all already, we're paying another trip to the archives of Ed Banger - a formative label for me as a teen and one of the major reasons I ended up writing here in the first place. I won't dive too deep into that this time though as I already did earlier this year, naturally there is going to be a lot of crossover though! First of all what being what spurred this post on in the first place - my last complaint about a lot of Ed Banger stuff not being on Bandcamp is now null and void, as a little while ago a whole heap of the catalogue appeared on there, including a whole bunch of DJ Mehdi stuff - including that remix of Signatune by Thomas Bangalter.

Instead of retreading ground I thought I'd put another favourite up (that I'd actually forgotten about a bit) - Mehdi put out a compilation of remixes called Red Black & Blue back when, and I think we might have even done some kind of preview/review of it at the time too. A real highlight for me was his reworking of Chromeo's Waiting 4 U, one that I am surprised didn't end up appearing anywhere else other than this comp. Chromeo and Mehdi were an almost perfect match anyway as demonstrated by their collaboration on I Am Somebody and this mix only cements that further. Unlike that though, this mix of Waiting 4 U feels much more raw by comparison, the Bass that slams in after the li'l break at 0:45 sounds super distorted, like its clipping slightly, giving the whole thing this lovely bedroom bootleg feeling.

This whole post, like my last Ed Banger one could be 100% Mehdi in all honesty, but I am going to have a little bit more variety this time around. Just after one final Mehdi offering! B-Side to the Pocket Piano EP, Tunisia Bambaata always felt a little underrated to me in the grand scheme of things, it's very much in that 'Nu French Touch' style that was in vogue at the time after all. Doubly so after myself having explored the world of Future Funk, this would fit right in that scene no trouble, though it's maybe a little slower than my favourites from that genre. Anyway, my real favourite part of Tunisia Bambaata is the 'bonus track' included at the end - after the final fade we get a little 1-minute instrumental interlude that lets Mehdi show off his hip hop leanings. As a teen obsessed with Adult Swim bumps, I was all about little instrumentals like that, but I'd be lying if I didn't still have a lot of love for that style of lo-fi.

SebastiAn's remix compilation is also there, though the track list is a bit of a minefield and a lot of them aren't tagged properly with either the artist or the fact it's a SebastiAn remix. At any rate, at the time there were some real juggernauts of remixing - MSTRKRFT was always a favourite of mine, but SebastiAn got a lot of the limelight thanks to his bold choices in what to remix. Rather than just remixing whatever was new at the time, SebastiAn did a lot of paying tribute to his influences with bootleg mixes of Rage Against The Machine and others - it didn't take long for some of them to go legit however, a trend that continues to this day with Metallica commissioning him and other artists to remix the Black Album. I've chosen his remix of Klaxon's Golden Skans because it is not only one of my favourites ever, but also highlights another thing I loved about this time - there was a great crossover between folks from the Indie scene getting into Electronic music and vice-versa, I made a lot of friends that way!

There is still a distinct lack of Ed Rec. available on their bandcamp however, there are some real gems on there (especially Volume 3, but I am biased!). In light of that though we're going way back in the chronology of Ed Banger for this one here, with a catalogue number of ED010: Mr. Flash's Champions / Disco Dynamite. It's funny going back to these early releases, you can hear the direction that the 'Ed Banger' aesthetic is going to take but it isn't quite fully formed yet, there's a certain charm to it, though it's not quite aged as gracefully as the later entires of the label. Still, those early releases are still important, and an interesting listen if nothing else. Personally, I enjoy a little bit of Disco Dynamite once in a while - there are days where it hits the spot.

And that'll be all for today, I hope you have enjoyed this little time capsule we've had today - as I'm becoming all too aware of it might be the first time hearing tracks like this for some of you depending on your age! Maybe over the summer I'll do another historical dive back into the early days of Dubstep and become some kind of digital archaeologist. Anyway, I'll be back soon with another entry for you all but until then, as always - stay safe and enjoy the music.


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