Kevin Saunderson

Mixmag Live!, Vol. 5

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In every musical history, there are times that everyone remembers. A back-in-the-day that even those who weren't there claim that they were. For some, the hardcore UK rave days of the early nineties was one of those times. At least, the publishers of Mixmag clearly think so, commissioning DJs Slipmatt and Lime to put together a promotional mix that attempts to recapture a vibe 4 years past its expiration date. And they do it extremely well. Pulling out ten classics from the back their record shelves, the two DJs make a sampleadelic mix of hyper-fast breakbeats, screaming diva vocals and bowl shaking bass, all designed to ignite the MDMA fueled brains of party-goers. By contemporary standards, this mix is incredibly cheesy. One wants to shake their head at the absurdity of the smiley rave vibe that once seemed like the future of youth culture. At the same time, this music does occupy an interesting place in the music's genealogy, marking the point just before the scene sharply divided into drum'n'bass and happy hardcore. The former taking the sped up breaks into much darker domains while the latter pushed the cartoonish aesthetic to the point of true embarrassment. But even without the stern faced academic acknowledgment of hardcore's purpose in the grand history of electronica, this mix is still a great deal of fun. Although, its probably safe to assume that former Goldie collaborator and Moving Shadow label head Rob Playford would cringe if he knew you were grooving to the laughably stereotypical rave keyboard stabs on "Bombscare", one of his early productions under the 2 Bad Mice moniker.

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