Wednesday, 2 August 2017

Mantronix Return!

Well, Kurtis Mantronik is back anyway (MC Tee has other interests these days) and is rocking the boards like he hasn't been doing in years.
To be honest, I hesitated in pressing Play because my memories of the man had sadly faded in disappointment since his last big 'return' to music.
What's that? You don't remember? Well, allow me to retort.

Cast your mind back to 2013 when Street Sounds released their long-(emphasis on 'long') awaited compilation album, Crucial Electro 4 - the last one in this legendary series was Crucial Electro 3, some 26 years previously in 1987. A nicely-packaged bookend to the series, yes, but alas there was the bonus mix.
The CD release of Crucial 4 contained two discs; one unmixed album and one mixed album. So far, so fresh? Well, kind of.
The unmixed selection were great slices of classic Electro cuts such as Looking For The Perfect Beat, The DMX Will Rock, What People Do For Money and Disco Four's Get Busy. The mixed version however came complete with updated versions of some tracks which seemed an odd decision.
The actual mix was a sound to behold. I'm imagining at the time that Mantronik's mind was elsewhere when putting this together, like wondering what he was having for dinner that evening or worrying about Jesse Pinkman and Walter White's final nail-biting conclusion.
Wherever it was it certainly wasn't on the matter at hand as can be evidenced on the frankly terrible mess that he ended up proffering to Morgan Khan.

Digital DJ-ing is part of hip hop culture and whatever your personal feelings on the subject it is definitely here and is definitely staying. The things that can be done digitally can be quite astounding when done correctly. Sadly there is no such display here. You simply have to hear it to believe it. If I had to sum it all up in one word then shoddy would be that word.
It's like listening to a load of ideas that were going to be tried out in draft form before discarding as they obviously didn't work. Maybe Mantronik simply handed in the wrong version and Morgan was too humble to question it?

Anyhoo. where were we? Yes, that's right, Kurtis is back and I can happily say that he can rightfully don his crown as King Of The Beats once again as not one but two brand new beats have been dropped on our laps in one day.
Both are extremely hard-hitting slabs of dope production employing familiar chopped funk breaks and vocal samples that just scream out to be played on a heavy sound system.
The tempo is pretty slow on both and the arrangements could easily have given way to a double-time drum n bass tune after the drop and I was actually waiting for the style to switch on both.
But it didn't and I'm grateful that Kurtis kept it hip hop. Fresh is definitely the word

'Ballsack Swinger' is one of the greatest titles of a song ever. Fact.

R.A.W. like Kane!


Anonymous said...

LARGE up ya japs-eye Beni Ill.....The KOTB gonna roc THE PLACE !

Steve said...

Totally with you on the CE4 mix, really disappointing - these are way better. Wouldn't mind some vocals mind you!

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