| HOMELANDS 2003 |
Perhaps you haven't heard too much from the Chemical Brothers recently, so prepare for two hours of blockbusting power moves from the duo who've been manning the controls of dance music for over a decade. With 4 seminal albums to their name, countless EPs and live sets that threaten to shift the earth's tectonic plates rooms go very quiet when Tom Rowlands and Ed Simons enter; and then very loud as soon as the needle hits the record. Electronic battle weapons, acid overload, megaton techno and (we're hoping) a customary airing of their new studio designs: prepare to get your block rocked like never before.
Having just picked up Best Album of the Year at the US Dance Star Awards, Paul Oakenfold is still the World's No.1 DJ. Having just remixed the biggest stars currently in music (Madonna, Jennifer Lopez and Justin Timberlake) and as well as still Djing the world over Oakenfold has further penned a track for this year's most awaited movie: The Matrix: Reload. His current album, Bunkka is an eclectic revelation featuring such diverse guests as Jane's Addiction's Perry Farrell, Ice Cube, Tricky, Nelly Furtado and most surprisingly Hunter S. Thompson. Indeed, his signature can be seen in everything from the early rise of hip-hop and the re-invention of British dance culture to the Balearic explosion and the birth of 'Madchester'. Most recently, Oakenfold's talents have also been recognised by the American film industry where he scored the music for John Travolta's Swordfish and also contributed to director Tim Burton's Planet of the Apes. Still No.1? You betcha. And he's heading for the No.1 party this summer
If God really is a DJ, he probably looks and sounds a bit like Sasha. A figure who's as relevant and adored in 2003 as he was in the early-Nineties euphoria of Shelley's, he brings his telepathic understanding of dancefloor physics to Homelands. Sasha's long-waited album 'airdrawndagger', released last year, pointed the way forward for dance music, and suggested his talents burns as brightly now as it did in 1992. It's been observed that Sasha and John Digweed are two sides of the same highly-polished coin: both mesmerising performers, both devastating technicians and both respected recording artists. Diggers brings to Homelands the unique drama of Bedrock, arguably the country's leading prog house club.
Its almost two years since the success of the first Tyrant CD, Most of you will be more than aware of Craig Richards and Lee Burridge, their individual careers and the collective energy they generate whn they play records together. Up abit, down abit, left abit, right abit - free, full of movement and without Genre. This is the sound of Tyrant.
His ten-hour sets are just part of the reason Danny Howells is known as 'the clubber's DJ'. Residencies he's held at Bedrock, Twilo, Vinyl (now Arc) in New York, Renaissance and Home in London also account for the reason he's amongst the brightest hopes for British Djing.
The only thing oversized about Plump DJs - Lee Rous & Andy Gardner is the dimension of their baselines. Pre-eminent among those joining the dots between underground breaks and the demands of the big clubs, their steely eletrotek disco - 'Push' 'What's My Name', and an astonishing remix of War's 'Galaxy' - continually set the standard where others fall short.
Hernan Cattaneo really has come through as an international superstar DJ this year and is an integral part of what is probably the worlds finest dance floor right now, Club Land in Buenos Aires - South America.
James Zabeila could be the next James Lavelle, or the Next Sasha, or the next Chemical Brother: but who cares when his icy breaksmanship is busy trashing dancefloors today. Superstar DJ? Here we go
Chemical Brothers (DJ Set); Paul Oakenfold (new addition); Sasha; John Digweed; Danny Howells; Tyrant - Craig Richards and Lee Burridge; Plump DJ's; Justin Robertson; Hernan Cattaneo; James Holroyd; James Zabieia; David Phillips
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'Smalls Change (Meditations Upon Ageing)' arrives in April.
The two awards have made for a great 72nd birthday present for the country music icon.