Mr. Scruff

Keep It Solid Steel, Vol. 1

  • AllMusic Rating
    8
  • User Ratings (0)
  • Your Rating

AllMusic Review by

If the title was a directive to Mr. Scruff's Andrew Carthy to make sure that his volume in the Solid Steel series stayed true to the spirit of previous volumes, Keep It Solid Steel has to be called a disappointment. Still, it compares well even to series highlights like DJ Food's Now, Listen! nevertheless. Carthy, a long-time DJ with a knack for resurrecting great sounds, spins an energetic mix of deadly obscure tracks lifted from reggae, dance, soul, and old-school hip-hop; although he may not mash up every track in sight -- a Solid Steel specialty -- he does flaunt his status as a messiah of neglected hooks. Hip-hop is clearly his favorite genre, and many of the non-rap tracks end up serving only as bridges between nuggets from the old school that are either famous (Ultramagnetic MC's, Just Ice, Showbiz & AG) or not so famous (UTD, an early project of Mos Def's; the British combo Demon Boyz; and the LA-based MadKap). In the liner notes, Carthy tells the story behind each track, and also includes a scan of each cover -- or, for many of these, each label, since few of his favorites even rated a picture sleeve upon original release. Keep It Solid Steel may not imitate a typical release from the Solid Steel series circa 2004, but it's an impressive display of ferreting out a ream of old vinyl and mixing it together superbly. In that, the record compares remarkably well to the forefather of the (released) Solid Steel sets: Coldcut's Journeys by DJ: 70 Minutes of Madness mix from 1996.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1
0:21
2
4:17
3
feat: Big Youth
2:44
4
2:13
5
feat: Just-Ice
1:19
6 0:41
7
feat: Arsonists
1:33
8
feat: Erykah Badu
2:12
9
feat: UTD
0:42
10
2:33
11
0:50
12
feat: Sara Winton
3:34
13
feat: Demon Boyz
2:02
14
feat: Dred Scott
3:49
15
feat: Deadbeats
1:21
16
feat: MadKap
3:51
17
2:50
18
feat: The Peddlers
1:56
19
feat: Luis Bacalov
2:22
20 1:37
21
1:09
22 1:13
23
feat: Show & A.G.
1:07
24 1:04
25
feat: Microdisiacs
0:39
26
0:57
27
feat: Tipper
2:41
28
feat: Prefuse 73
2:55
29
2:41
30
feat: Soul II Soul
4:25
31 6:46
blue highlight denotes track pick