Tag Archives: hardcore

Reach for Me by Funky Green Dogs from Outer Space (Murk Records)

THREE or four years after hearing Brandon’s seminal acid house tape, music was coming at me from all directions.

The shock waves from the initial slo-mo house detonation continued to roll around the world – bouncing between Chicago, Detroit and New York, reverberating across the Atlantic to London and Milan before booming back to New York and then back again to Ghent and Antwerp and Frankfurt via Sheffield and Manchester and beyond.

And all of these shockwaves seemed to collide in Leeds in 1992.

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Filed under hip replacement, house music

Five x Ministry of Shite dancefloor classics

A LOAD of us went down to the Ministry at some point in the mid 90s and, despite hearing some great music, we were not particularly impressed by the distinct lack of atmosphere compared to clubs such as Kaos, Basics and Hard Times in Leeds. There just wasn’t the same kind of energy and enthusiasm.

A few weeks later, me and Earnshaw DJed at a party at a mate’s house and someone did some jokey flyers saying we were residents at the Ministry of Shite. We ended up keeping the name when we started putting on parties ourselves.

It was all a bit rough and ready, but we had a run of great parties over three or four years at an old mansion house at the Weetwood end of Headingley in Leeds, with perhaps two or three hundred people coming through the door during the night, generally ending around 6am with no bother from the cops.

We played a lot of new US garage and vocal house but we also threw in old acid, techno, hardcore and hip house at key moments to ensure everything remained suitably blurry and twisted out of shape.

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Filed under expletive undeleted, hyperbole

Some Justice by Urban Shakedown (Urban Shakedown Recordings)

WHEN Michael Eavis decided that the Glastonbury should take a year off in 1991, he spent a lot of his  time trying to work out a way of keeping freeloaders and other non-paying fellow-travellers out of the festival. The idea he came up with was to surround the entire site with a very big fence.

The following year Tom Jones, Blur, Television, the Fall, Curve, Primal Scream, the Levellers, PJ Harvey, Carter USM, James, the Breeders, Billy Bragg, Van Morrison, Kitchens of Distinction and  Spritualized were on the bill – and numbers of fence-hoppers were right down.

Among the thousands of lucky festival-goers were my then-girlfriend and me, inveterate freeloaders both. We’d managed to blag into the festival by writing a lengthy preview for the magazine we both worked for at the time.

I don’t recall seeing any of the bands above – not even the mighty Fall – but we did manage to catch the Shamen, which I think was just about the first time a dance act had played on one of the bigger stages at Glastonbury. Unfortunately, “good lights” is about the most either of us can remember about this groundbreaking performance. But they were always pretty good live, weren’t they, the Shamen?

“I think you and I only stayed two nights and didn’t sleep at all. We were up all night and too hot to sleep in the tent in the day. I do remember it wasn’t a lot of fun really,” says that same ex-girlfriend now. “Too hot, too skint, too tired, too paranoid, too scared of the toilets, going off crowds so only really being able to cope at night… Maybe you enjoyed it more.”

I probably did. I didn’t even notice how bad a time she was having, which probably says a lot.

I’ve just got a loose jumble of disembodied memories from the weekend. One of the most vivid is of an ambulance inching its way through a very packed crowd after one of the big acts had finished on the Pyramid stage one night. Some drug-nut planted himself square in front of it, crying and bellowing and wailing his heart out, not letting them by until they promised to take him away too. We’ve all been there, I’m sure.

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Filed under hardcore / rave, hip replacement

Bad Girl by Bad Girl (Ibiza Records)

A WHILE before we started doing the Microdot parties in Leeds, me and Jez did a few nights at the 1in12 in Bradford called VLF, which stood for Very Low Frequencies or Vegetable Liberation Front, depending on who we were talking to at the time.

On the flyers, we added the subtitle “dub techno touchdown”, which reflected the mix of dub reggae, techno and acid we played.

I don’t think anyone came down to it, ever – apart from our guest DJs Mark and Farrah from Kaos, who not unreasonably demanded their money despite playing to a completely empty venue (except for me and Jez, most likely tripping our heads off and doing stupid dances regardless).

We wanted to create a very specific vibe. I was always very impressed by Renegade Soundwave’s The Phantom, a muscular, serpentine amalgam of dub, techno, hip hop and, with its cheeky White Riot sample, punk rock too, come to think of it.

I liked the way The Phantom combined the heaviness of dub with the trippy energy of acid house, but still had the funk. I wanted to hear more of this kind of stuff, but apart from honourable exceptions like Meat Beat Manifesto and Leeds’s own Ital Rockers’ and their classic Mental Dub, nobody else seemed to be making it – and certainly nobody was playing it in Leeds at the time.

Hardcore seemed to be exactly what I was looking for. It ticked all my boxes. Unlike many other people who were into it, I was coming at it as a reggae fan who was also into house rather than anything to do with hip hop. Though I had a soft spot for odd tunes by people such as EPMD, Digital Underground, Queen Latifah, Public Enemy and KRS-1, I didn’t really know how to dance to any of it – and after years of listening to punk rock maybe I was just a bit weary of blokes shouting stuff at me too.

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Trip II The Moon by Acen (Production House)

TUHIN, recruitment consultant, major-league caner, and my then girlfriend’s ecstasy pal, drove us to the gig, as he often did, with his three year old contact lenses burning their way through his eyeballs – so that’s probably why we got there fashionably late. I may even have been on the radio immediately beforehand, who knows?

The details are all a bit sketchy. Please feel free to add your own recollections if you were there – and your memory is less shot to pieces than mine.

library.jpgOutside the venue, an old library building on the corner of Hyde Park that the boss had somehow managed to hire, there were hundreds of kids, mostly teenagers from Leeds and its suburbs, who had been attracted by all the on-air hype for the party in the preceding weeks. I’m guessing this would be around 1991 or 1992, when everyone in the world seemed to be tuning in, turning on and dropping out – and most of them seemed to be tuning into Dream FM.

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Filed under hardcore / rave, hip replacement