DJ-Kicks

DJ-Kicks

by Stereo MC's
     
 

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Although the core members of the Stereo MC's -- Rob Birch and Nick "The Head" Hallam -- never released a follow-up to their breakthrough album, 1992's CONNECTED, their influence on the hip-hop scene has been profound. As the owners and operators of the Gee Street record label, the two have helped steer the career of P.M. Dawn and resuscitate

Overview

Although the core members of the Stereo MC's -- Rob Birch and Nick "The Head" Hallam -- never released a follow-up to their breakthrough album, 1992's CONNECTED, their influence on the hip-hop scene has been profound. As the owners and operators of the Gee Street record label, the two have helped steer the career of P.M. Dawn and resuscitate the Jungle Brothers, in addition to releasing a slew of interesting and critically lauded British rap artists. Yet the Stereo MC's themselves have been missed. Their trio of albums -- CONNECTED, plus their 1989 debut, 33-45-78, and 1990's SUPERNATURAL -- offer a distinctive blend of old-school beats, intelligent rapping, and the signature vocals of collaborator Cath Coffey. Although not their long-rumored fourth full-length, their DJ KICKS set is a satisfying mix of funk, soul, old school, and new-school beats and rhymes. From the big beat of Freddy Fresh to the trip-hop grooves of the Herbaliser to the West Coast rapping of Divine Styler to the Ultramagnetic MC's classic, the Stereo MC's wear their influences on their (record) sleeves, while proving that the James Brown breakbeat is a universal language that stretches across styles and generations. The Stereo MC's themselves contribute one new track, the instrumental "Rhino" (split in three parts), which doesn't illuminate their future direction but does fit in with the album's mesmerizing flow.

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - John Bush
Eight years on from their last LP, Stereo MC's returned not with a studio work but a mix album that shows their long career in a new light, as not just one-hit wonders but breakbeat renegades who've been searching for the perfect beat -- both as recording artists and as label heads -- for over 15 years. DJ-Kicks trips back and forth between beat-heavy cinematic music from the '70s, rap from the old-school to the new-skool, and trip-hop from producers who, just like Stereo MC's themselves, take the template of breakbeat music down new paths. Truth to tell, though, there'd been so many similar mix albums released in the previous few years that it wasn't difficult to believe the bottomless well of obscure, funky music was just about tapped. Fortunately, Rob H. and Nick come through with a lineup of widely varied artists and crucial tracks. Most of the instrumental highlights are obscurities like "Back to the Hip Hop" by the Troubleneck Brothers, "Do It Do It" by the Disco Four, "Moon Trek" by the Mike Theodore Orchestra, and a surprisingly chilling track by 101 Strings titled "Flameout." The rap tracks are solid too, including old-school heroes like Kool G. Rap & DJ Polo ("Road to the Riches") and Ultramagnetic MC's ("Poppa Large"), as well as more recent artists from the growing hip-hop underground like the 57th Dynasty ("Pharoah Intellect") and Divine Styler ("Tongue of Labyrinth"). Another highlight is the new, three-part track "Rhino" produced by Stereo MC's. Fitting in well with the album itself, "Rhino" is an old-school groove number with heavy drums and Hammond keys. It's easy to wonder if Stereo MC's even have any fans left from the days of Connected, but this mix album might gain them a few.

Product Details

Release Date:
04/04/2000
Label:
K7
UPC:
0730003708220
catalogNumber:
82

Related Subjects

Tracks

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Stereo MC's   Primary Artist,Track Performer
Kool G Rap & DJ Polo   Track Performer
Ultramagnetic MC's   Track Performer
Divine Styler   Track Performer
Disco Four   Track Performer
Mike Theodore Orchestra   Track Performer
Red Snapper   Track Performer
Sofa Surfers   Track Performer
Funky Lowlives   Track Performer
Troubleneck Brothers   Track Performer

Technical Credits

David Ayers   Composer
T. Taylor   Composer
Ali Friend   Composer
R. Taylor   Composer
Richard Thair   Composer
D.L. Miller   Composer
Herbaliser   Composer
Andy Spence   Composer
Sherman   Composer
Gary Danks   Composer
J.K. Whitehouse   Composer
T. Jones   Composer

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