late 90s tech-step

routes

we can delay.ay.ay...
i'll always be grateful to my mate who burned me digital nation that is a blinding album i think i'll always want to listen to from time to time
 

FairiesWearBoots

Well-known member
This tune was the turning point for me,
I remember being at carnival - maybe 99 or 2000 and Clarkee or someone dropped it and the crowd went mad and I was thinking "uurgh, I dont like this at all
it went all down hill from there . . . .
 

Ulala

Awkward Woodward
This tune was the turning point for me,
I remember being at carnival - maybe 99 or 2000 and Clarkee or someone dropped it and the crowd went mad and I was thinking "uurgh, I dont like this at all
it went all down hill from there . . . .

Yes, agreed. Not so much this tune specifically but definitely this sound was the beginning of the end for me. A pox on Renegade Hardware and all their ilk. I spent the years 98-04 having to listen to every new d'n'b record as part of my job and I got really tired of each record trying to out-'dark' the last. This stuff isn't nihilistic or menacing, or cold or twisted, or whatever other tired adjectives get thrown at it, it's just boring. Too much sci-fi and strong weed equals dull music.

I do like this, though, the drums swing like the innocent Derek Bentley. Best thing Optical ever did, I reckon:


(NB: It turns out that I have lost my copy of this, leaving me with that Metalheadz tin box minus the only good record therein. Balls.)
 

tyranny

Well-known member
I do like this, though, the drums swing like the innocent Derek Bentley. Best thing Optical ever did, I reckon:


(NB: It turns out that I have lost my copy of this, leaving me with that Metalheadz tin box minus the only good record therein. Balls.)




No, you still have the only good record therein; Doc Scott -The Swarm.
 

craner

Beast of Burden
https://youtu.be/yueN6Ghe68I

This?

Or this:

https://youtu.be/uLnauf0aWzY

Baffles me, still, how this is a serious question. Yet the drum and bass boys consider 'Wormhole' to be the peak of all music. The other day, in an empty office working on something boring, I listened to the entirety of 'Wormhole', gave it a chance, like. Still totally baffled by the appeal. They put a lot of effort in to make the drums sound "chunky", sampled real drum kits and everything. But it still sounds shit, fellas! (OK, maybe not to lots of people, apparently. Baffling.)
 

firefinga

Well-known member
Baffles me, still, how this is a serious question. Yet the drum and bass boys consider 'Wormhole' to be the peak of all music. The other day, in an empty office working on something boring, I listened to the entirety of 'Wormhole', gave it a chance, like. Still totally baffled by the appeal. They put a lot of effort in to make the drums sound "chunky", sampled real drum kits and everything. But it still sounds shit, fellas! (OK, maybe not to lots of people, apparently. Baffling.)

For the production-fetishists, yeah.

As for another thing that pops up when debating DnB/"Neurofunk" it's been claimed that from 97/98 onwards, less and less girls were on the floors. OK, I am "from the continent", but I started going out at that time in my late teens, and there were plenty of the ladies at the parties. (a sidenote: the true stronghold of sausage-festy electronic music was IDM and Dubstep regarding audience. Well regarding producers and DJs, all electronic music is a full-on sausage fest anyways).

Also, I think the Dubplate-Nazis around that time (of whom Grooverider was the worst) were very damaging to the scene. I mean as a (potential)buyer and aspiring DJ, you taped the set of one of the big boys which was full of dubplates but could get the full release one year later only - sooner or later you told yourself, fuck that.
 
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Corpsey

call me big papa
I used to be into techstep when I was regularly going to DNB nights. A lot of that stuff is boring to me now but I will say there's obviously a difference between listening to something on your laptop and being in a dark club with the bass rattling your face. It's a bit alien to me now cos I haven't been out to a night like that in a lonnnng time. (Saying that, I listened to a bit of the wormhole link Craner put up and I was bopping my head along.)

I can see how if you were into jungle in the early - mid 90s techstep would seem like a regressive, joyless betrayal of promise.

I mean compared to a tune like this

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bJKEwWRQxTM

A tune off wormhole can sound totally pedestrian.

The thing I think is a shame is that jungle 'evolved' into techstep and DNB and that whole genre, based on using breakbeats and samples disappeared, or was sublimated into other genres (garage?). And DNB ended up something quite different, locked at 170bpm with no room to manoeuvre. Not that DNB fans mind - I actually think it's pretty great that the DNB genre just keeps going despite the indifference of the wider dance/electronic community, they don't give a fuck - in fact, I can say as someone who was into it for about four or five years that I didn't give a fuck, I thought everything else was 'too slow'. :crylarf:
 

firefinga

Well-known member
The thing I think is a shame is that jungle 'evolved' into techstep and DNB and that whole genre, based on using breakbeats and samples disappeared, or was sublimated into other genres (garage?). And DNB ended up something quite different, locked at 170bpm with no room to manoeuvre. Not that DNB fans mind - I actually think it's pretty great that the DNB genre just keeps going despite the indifference of the wider dance/electronic community, they don't give a fuck - in fact, I can say as someone who was into it for about four or five years that I didn't give a fuck, I thought everything else was 'too slow'. :crylarf:

By the mid/late 90s u also had an established "Dance Culture" following certain formulas, there was simply less place for experimentation left (both with the music and the venues/paties). Also, you can do just that much with manipulated breakbeats to make them "groove". You had those DrillNBass types and the breakcore people a little later chopping the breaks up down and straight, but to get them "funky" is a whole different thing. There were always people doing breaks-oriented DnB (Danny Breaks, Dev Paradox, Reinfoced, Partisan) also after 1997)98, but they were neglected by the big DJs, the media etc. And once the 2Step pattern had taken over it was indeed a whole different kind of music. Undeniably though, it WORKED on the dancefloor. And that was what mattered to the DJs/Promoters/punters.
 

droid

Beast of Burden
Reese deconstructed


Those last 2 are a snapshot of the cresting of radical futurism in UK dance music, dashed to the rocks moments later, then culverted and dammed in concrete gullies to serve the needs of industry.
 
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firefinga

Well-known member
...But then, the late 1990s were relatively boring and stale in general, at least in my recollection. There is this common idea that Jungle-turned-DnB around 97/98 was a bit crap and all that...Me thinks Techno had become formulaic and boring with the great hype of minimal techno even before DnB. All the Jeff Mills/Richie Hawtin/Herbert whorshipping. minimal Techno was the musical equivalent of fat-free cheese. The basic structure still there, but all that was fun about it gone.

Regarding late 1990s....Anybody remembering Big Beat ?
 

droid

Beast of Burden
Ive made the argument that the early 90's were an unusually brilliant time for all music, dancehall, hiphop, techno, jungle... but that said, the late 90s were brilliant for garage.

Looking at discog dates, I think I have to recalibrate the death knell of d+b back to the end of '96, early 97 at the latest. I remember buying those two cybernet and genetix 12"'s along with the two Tonic 12"s on SOUR that came out at the same time. I couldve sworn it was dec 97.
 
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