1996-97 was the era when Drum & Bass was at it’s most popular in the broadest sense. From hardcore Hip-Hoppers to chart topping acts, everyone needed a D&B remix on their 12″ or album. Cafés, bars and restaurants were using it as muzac and every second advert on TV seemed to have a D&B backing track. It also happens to be the era when D&B as a music was at it’s most melodic and intricate, which is why I love the jazzy/intelligent D&B from around this time more than just about any other era.
This was a time when commercial success wasn’t such a dirty word (Sony and others were snapping up artists for their labels) and accessibility to the music didn’t seem like such a bad thing. Artists like Wax Doctor, LTJ Bukem, EZ Rollers, Omni Trio, Aquasky and many others all put delicate floating melodies over tough chopped up Amens and beats to produce a sound that you could play on a dance floor, but also play to your Mum and still have her stay in the room. The best thing about this era is that it still sounds as fresh today as when it first came out. It never seems to age or become disposable like some of the genres that came after it.
So in this mix I’ve tried to put together what was great about the 1996-97 Jazzy D&B genre. Some tracks you will have heard and, hopefully, there are a few obscure surprises in there that you haven’t. Best listened to with a good drink in your hand and your feet up on the couch, I suggest you kick back and enjoy what is not only great D&B, but great music too.
Nuyorcian Soul – I Am the Black Gold of the Sun (4 Hero Remix)
JMJ & Flytronix – In Too Deep
Flytronix – The Rhodes Tune
EZ Rollers – Dropping Science (EZ Remix)
Dr. S. Gachet – Remember the Rollers (The Meaningful Mix)
Omni Trio – Tripping on Broken Beats (Carlito Mix)
Statik Sound System – Revolutionary Pilot (Rob Smith Mix)
EZ Rollers – Sub Tropic
EZ Rollers – Believe
Photek – The Hidden Camera (Static Remix)
Aquasky – Opaque
Olive – You’re Not Alone (Roni Size Remix)
Alex Banks – Control
DJ Krush – Only the Strong Survive (Dillinja Remix)
LTJ Bukem – The James Bond Theme
Intense – Careless Minds
St. Germain – Alabama Blues (Wax Doctor Remix)
Ken Ishii – Stretch (Shogun Remix)
Wax Doctor – Finer Things
Adam F – Aromatherapy