July 10, 2007

Wild Rumpus - Musical Blaze-Up


The premise of Wild Rumpus’ new single must’ve been born from Basement Jaxx’s candy-coated dreams. It’s hard to say what type of fairy would deliver these visions of reggae-disco while a slide guitar dances in our heads. I can only imagine that the Rumpus duo of legends, DJ Cosmo and Gary Lucas, must have a winged costume or two in their closets. But enough about the premise, here’s how the single starts: with just a marching drum fill. And that might be as fine a start as any to throw out those catch-alls like “anything goes” or “glorious mess” for such an eclectic stew.

From Lucas’ taut riffs, to the toasters’ telling it to ‘em, to the reggae hiccup, each part is finely crafted together. Without a whiff of cashed-in novelty, Musical Blaze-up isn’t just willing to take catchphrases like “sound system hoedown” of “bluegrass reggae” to the bank. And neither are any of the remixes. Rub-n-Tug’s Bitches mix shoots the song into the stratosphere and sees what happens to it in zero gravity, Rob Mello returns this Jaxx offshoot to its jacking roots, and Cosmo herself makes sure that dub itself doesn’t get snubbed in this summertime stroll.

Bitches Brew / BITCH-012
[Nate DeYoung]

February 16, 2007

Charts: February 16 2007

Todd Hutlock
Todd Sines - In_Come [Frankie Rec]
Safety Scissors - Where Is Germany and How Do I Get There? (Ellen Allien Germany Remix) [Bpitch Control]
Roxy Music - The Main Thing (Rub-N-Tugs Proton Saga) [Virgin]
Dominik Eulberg & Gabriel Ananda - Harzer Roller [Traum Schallplatten]
Pr Grindvik - Casio [Spectral Sound]
Heartthrob - Baby Kate (Robotman Remix) [M_nus]
Ripperton - Tainted Words [Connaisseur]
Audio Werner - Flat Funk [Circus Company]
Tracey Thorn - Its All True (Martin Buttrich Dub) [Virgin]
Marcellus Pittman - A Mix [Unirhythm]

Michael F. Gill
Goat Dance Goat Dance (Version) [Bear Entertainment]
Blackjoy Untitled (Kerri Chandlers Bigga Mix) [Freerange]
Tony Allen One Tree (Terrence Parkers Spirit of Unity Instrumental Mix) [Honest Jons]
PM Dawn A Watcher Point of View [Dont Cha Think] (Todd Terrys Hard House Mix) [Gee Street]
Escort - All That She Is [Escort]
Jo Squillo Eletrix Avventurieri [Polydor]
The Voyagers - Distant Planet [Discomagic]
Venus Gang Space Woman [P.B.I. Records]
Two Tons O’ Fun Got The Feeling [Fantasy Honey]
Tribe Koke [Probe]

February 2, 2007

Roxy Music - Remixes 02


For all the steam generated by the initial betting pool for the Roxy Music remix project, it’s finally starting to sizzle a bit. After the lumpen first round, the arts n’ crafts neo-disco crowd get their hands on “The Main Thing” and “Same Old Scene” (two of the better cuts from Avalon and Flesh + Blood, respectively). Rub-N-Tug do a really nice turn on “The Main Thing,” seizing on the post-disco lounginess of the original and contorting it, working up a snazzy proto-house groove starring some delicately funky keyboard. The Glimmers walk home with the statue though, squeezing all the sensuality inherent in “Same Old Scene” until it works up a nice lather. The contrast with Ferry’s louche boredom / arousal in response to said scene ought to be enough to stimulate some discrete rubbing by discerning hipsters.

Virgin / VST 1920
[Mallory ODonnell]

December 22, 2006

2006 Year In Review: Individual Writer Lists

As a companion piece to our 2006 year in review, here are the individual lists/charts from each of our contributors. Happy reading…


December 22, 2006

2006: The Year In Review

Welcome to the Beatz By The Pound year-end roundup for 2006, a veritable smorgasbord of lists, thoughts, and reflections about the current state of dance music. And while all of our writers handed in very diverse ballots, we were able to come to a consensus on a couple of key releases, producers, and labels. Let the madness begin


November 17, 2006

Joakim + DJ Morpheus / Minimal Compact - Give Us Something!!!

Wow, this is terrible. I know my standards for electroclash and rock remixes and all the Franco-filter-metal perversions of late are a tad too high, but this may be the most vapid of the bunch yet: needly guitars but not a hook, some rock drum flavor but nothing close to a driving beat, Minimal Compact’s Samy Birnbach saying “give us
something” but obviously unwilling to return the favor. But hey, the synths are analog! Come on now. New York’s Rub ‘n’ Tug do better on the b-side, a remix of MC’s “Nil Nil.” I never heard the original, but this one sounds like a lost Siouxsie extended mix; not quite as dark, but with creepier vox, really deep drums, and percussive bass sounds as per usual for R-n-T remixes. The guitar stabs are so frail they’ll make you cry, and here, its a good thing.

Tigersushi / TSR 018
[Nick Sylvester]

November 10, 2006

Beatzcast #10



01: [a]pendics.shuffle - Feel Me
02: Minimal Compact - Nil Nil (Rub n Tug Remix)
03: Sessomatto feat. Carolyn Harding - Movin On (Joey Negro Club Mix)
04: Kiki - Trust Me (Super Dub)
05: Shonky - Solar
06: SLG - Caffeine
07: Sasse feat. Malte - Up To You
08: Sally Shapiro - I Know

August 25, 2006

Xaver Naudascher - Motor City / Lost


Motor City being Detroit, the flat, rattling synth riddim that forms the a-side’s base should surprise nobody. It could have come off the first Plastikman album or a less neurotic Basic Channel twelve, so God bless Naudascher for his honesty and humility. That said, X.N. goes beyond homage. First are the monstrous 70s cockrock tom solos, not unlike beardo Rub-N-Tug’s infatuation with big drum sounds in small places. And while he could have settled there, Naudascher puts the grooves in service of a twerpy, strangled, albeit utterly hypnotic synth melodywhat I imagine “Axel F” must have sounded like in 1984complete with before-the-storm swells, sirens, and other embellishments normally reserved for trance. B-side “Lost” has robot voices and countoffs and wide hi-hat sounds and acid ticks and rocker squelches like any Detroit terror techno tracktotally fine, but a tough sell after the wide-reaching topside.

Supersoul Recordings / SSREC001
[Nick Sylvester]

August 11, 2006

Rub N Tug - Better With a Spoonful of Leather

Rub N Tugs previous mixes were recorded live, complete with shitty mixing, fuzzed out sound, and skull-fucking EQthe good stuffbut this one takes a different approach, possibly because a third disc with corny mixer FX would be one too many. Instead we get a pristine and minimally mixed set of electronic disco 45s slowed to 33, including Gino Soccio, Soft Cell, and err, King Crimson. The tracks are less chopped and screwed than edited and cosmic-fied: its bad pills, not heavy syrup. At its best, beats string loosely together like solar systems, with reverb draped around them like rings; drawled out sax lines might as well be monophonic synths and guitars sound like beached whales. At its worst you might be begging to push the pitch control back to zero. Overall, this is one for those gross, sweaty nights post-clubbing where the only way to get through it is to make ones-self feel worse. Im sure weve all had some of those.

aNYthing / ANY006-CD
[Patrick McNally]

July 28, 2006

Map of Africa - Gonna Ride / Freaky Ways Instrumental

When does a record with a drum solo (and I dont mean an intro of 4/4 kicks for eight bars) get reviewed in Beatz? When its by Thomas Bullock (Rub n Tug) and DJ Harvey. Gonna Ride is cowbell-clonking cheap brew rocknrollif you think youre above listening to Career of Evil by Blue yster Cult, then stay away. The vocal-heavy Freaky Ways Instrumental, leans out with some nu-balearic handclap, synth bass, and flanged, summery guitar, before keeling over into the aforementioned Iron Butterfly-style drum soloing. Oddly, by recreating the sounds of early disco, when it was a way of playing records rather than records themselves, Map of Africa have also recreated the pot bellied hard rock sounds favored by the disco-burners of Kaminsky Park.

Whatever We Want / WEWW007
[Patrick McNally]

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