Issue 22: DJ Dazee

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Dazee is one of the jungle nation’s rising stars with a DJ profile that is gaining international respect and a growing track record as a producer. Her career began in 1993 as the resident for Bristol’s number one jungle club, Ruffneck Ting, and her name now regularly graces many of the big rave flyers like Dreamscape, Helter Skelter, World Dance and One Nation.

Dazee is also making a name for herself on foreign shores and has just finished a month-long tour of North America with MC Jakes. Dazee has been producing tunes as part of Substance on Ruffneck Ting Records (and latterly under her own name) since ‘95. Her back catalogue includes anthems like “Damn Right”, “Prisoner”, “Fly”, “L.F. Ant”, “Homeboyz”, “Westside”, “Own Way” and the forthcoming “Saxamaphone”.

Tracklisting

1. Justice – Transit (Alaska & Paradox Mix) (Recordings of Substance)
Launching the second Knowledge CD into orbit, this Alaska & Paradox mix of
Justice’s “Transit” pulls no punches. Fuelled by frenetic drums and a gentle sub-bass woof, the track maintains a relentless pace. The lush synth washes snake through your mind, leaving refreshed and writhing for more.

2. Beat Junkies – Changes (Second Movement)
Horn stabs akimbo in this jazzy little number from Birmingham’s Beat Junkies. A simple break with a harshly compressed snare combined with an easy live bassline makes this one linger like hazy smoke in the back of the mind. You can see why these guys are always playing out and continually feature in the listings section.

3. Decoder – Stash (Hard Leaders)
Taken from the forthcoming album “Dissection”, this track is as hard and uncompromising as ever. Irresistibly funky, yet murderously mean, “Stash” is the soundtrack to the Devil’s own pool party. Precision programming and Decoder’s trademark multitude of breaks makes this a dancefloor animal. Spot on.

4. Italy – Alpha (Country Series)
Ricocheting snares combined with a rough jump-up b-line give “Alpha” its dark vibrancy. Jagged and oppressive, it just keeps slowly building and building, until it reaches the point of no return. No surprise that the genius behind Italy is none other than DJ SS.

5. Bill Riley – Closing In Remix 98 (Full Cycle)
An exclusive remix of Closing In, just released on Bristol’s Full Cycle – so exclusive we had to borrow Bill’s master DAT to cut a dubplate! Clarri Thomas’s sultry vocals make the track ooze with gangster vibes whilst the tightly programmed beats and gently modulating b-line give it a well-passed bed-time feel.

6. Perfect Combination – The Klick (Freeform)
Formed in 1997, Manchester’s Freeform Records are still relatively young but are already making a mark on the scene. Perfect Combination (AKA Jimbo Allsop) proves that he’s still up there, a key player in the underground movement. The gently rumbling bassline and hard digital rolling beats glue the track together whilst the sparse background effects add a more sinister ambience.

7. Facs & Red – Whole Car (Juice)
The dirty belting analogue bass on this track is infectious. The whole track is a chemical experience, crackling with an amphetamine current that spits and lurches like a beast. Harsh filter sweeps on the drums make “Whole Car” fire on all four cylinders sounding as raw as any tune to be heard. CAUTION: Handle this one with care.

8. DJ Reality – Music Maker (Trouble on Vinyl)
And you thought the last tune was baad! This has got one almighty phukked up b-line, believe me. Undulating and continually evolving, this one is a little dancefloor devil. The strangely flanged snares and high hats combined with the catchy vocal snippets show that this one is not just another bassline bastard: pure, unadulterated, primitive funk.

9. D8A – Ruff Beats (Tribe)
“Ruff Beats” is a major hardstep anthem from the summer coming out of Bristol’s underground. Chopped up Amens and a bassline that’s got one of the biggest pitch bends ever heard – this one’s full. Expect to hear lots more from DJ Cridge and the crew very soon.

10. M/CR Movement – Drivin’ Force (Perfect Combination)
Another one from the Freeform stable: the M/CR Movement is a mixture of pedigree Manchester musicians. Simple yet sinister, the open groove and analogue gurgles give “Drivin’ Force” its dark vibrancy. Spacey astro FX noises and a clean, resonancey bassline further add to the deep, intelligence of the track.

11. Fresh & Vegas – Inferno (Breakbeat Culture)
Sending out shock waves of strange, screwed up samples and tiny shards of
rhythmic percussion sounds, this one is an uncompromising trip into the unknown. The charged bassline and relentless filtered vocal sample guarantee its success in the clubs: yet another little gem from the Breakbeat Culture crew.

12 – More Rockers – Ride the Flow (More Rockers)
This is pure drum & bass, even if the sounds used (like the delayed reggae vocal) are more commonplace in dub or techno. The bassline provides the momentum, with driving, squelchy stabs, but the drums are ever-present as the tune rolls along. “Ride the Flow” clearly has its own original identity, creating a dark, spacey atmosphere, proving yet again that genres can be mixed to great effect.

13. DJ Ron – Rockers (London Some’ting)
Fresh from Ron’s newly released EP, “Rockers” is a remix from the first in the “Industrial Dubwise” series, which came out in 1997. It effectively mixes the rough with the smooth with its marching drum pattern and dubbed out ‘rockers’ sample. Uniquely produced, this one should appeal to all that appreciate quality in any form.

14. The Spectre – Breakers (Partisan)
Tom Withers again at his best in this homage to CB radio breakers. Characteristically sparse, catchy drum breaks and ghostly sci-fi tweakings, this is a good one for those long, dark winter nights. More raw breakbeat power from the lovable skate freak with the punk past.

15. Mastervibe – Chojin (Preponderance)
The third release for Preponderance, “Chojin” is a dark, funky r oller with its crisp breaks and warbling synth effects. A vibrant little number that draws on heavily on its raw bassline and coarse, spiky percussion sound to provide its momentum and draw your attention. Southwest madman Mastervibe is on form and still as popular as ever.

16. Hijacker & Alpha Proxima – Anti-Matter (Tech Itch)
Led by a mixture of two wicked bass sounds, “Anti-Matter” has already been successfully gracing the nation’s clubs on dubplate. The drums are manic, unashamedly interspersed with reversed snares and filtered Amen style rolls whilst the bizarre lead synth (sounding almost like a flute in places), reverberates through the soul leaving you feeling quite uneasy.

17. B.L.I.M – Filterzon (Emotif)
This is BLIM’s seventh release for Emotif ( never mind his countless releases on nu skool sister label Botchit & Scarper). His love for both Detroit and Sheffield techno has always been prominent in his work, and “Filterzon” is no exception. This track stomps and winds with militaristic hypnosis – full-on, deep, fat breaks combined with an absolute growler of a bassline makes this one another classic in its own right.

18. Dogs Deluxe – Snow Queen (Professor Stretch Remix) (Second Skin)
The Prof has given this Dogs Deluxe track a blissed-out reworking. “Snow Queen” is unbelievably smooth and sounds as pure as the day it was conceived: lush background washes coated in lashings of reverb combined with a catchy break and b-line.

19. Elementz of Noize – Neon (Ray Keith Remix) (Emotif)
Ray Keith’s mix of “Neon” is undeniably sinister. The twisted, eerie vocal can’t prepare you for what happens later on in the track: the unrelenting bassline – a menacing slice of dirty analogue – builds and builds to a mammoth crescendo that will ultimately scare the pants of anyone who isn’t expecting it. Another corker from the Emotif crew.

20. Different Levels feat. Stevie Hyper D – Flexin’ Today (Island)
It would be easy to overpraise “Flexin’ Today” because of maverick MC Stevie Hyper D’s untimely death. However, the distinctive reversed sounding bassline, crisp piano, melodic harmonies all combined with Stevie’s rapid-fire MCing make this is an instant classic. A truly fitting tribute to someone who contributed so much to the scene.

21. Dom & Roland – Chained on Two Sides (Moving Shadow)
And finally, Dom and his ever-present companion, Roland. “Chained On Two Sides” is an epic of all proportions and has the characteristics of a soundtrack to a bleak, disparate futuristic thriller. The strings and Shanie’s vocals add to the raw emotional qualities whilst the lead synth blips that feature so prominently later on bring out a more old skool flavour. Tightly produced and intricately programmed; the perfect end to this issue’s CD.

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