This week's Picks feature comes from Sheffield-based producer R. Lyle, following his recent release on Black Beacon Sound!
He's chosen ten breakbeat-infused tracks that are FIRE!
Altered Natives - Callaloo
I’ve always felt that Altered Natives seemed to bring this live drummer aspect to the darker and raw dancefloor suite, making most other UK styles seem safe and prudish in comparison. ‘Callaloo’ is a favourite – it’s worth waiting for the divebombing bass.
Squarepusher - Scaracid, Pt. 1
So much of Jenkinson’s work has pushed the limits of electronic percussion. Although he’s known for his dizzying programming skills, his early work had this raw and crunchy quality that leaned heavily on his jazz background. I can’t help but exercise my bass-face during the track’s many mesmerising 240+ bpm solos.
Björk - Army of Me
To me, this track signalled a movement away from Björk's folk/pop roots. It manages to find this sweet spot, balancing heavy and industrialMassive Attack beats, whilst letting her delicate vocals melt over the top. Definitely qualifies as a timeless classic.
2 Bad Mice - Limit of Paradise
Most artists that take a two-decade hiatus rarely tend to fare well on their return. However, these two breakbeat legends don’t disappoint. In 'Limits Of Paradise', the pumping drum mechanics and cold female voice awake from a cascade of leg-chopping breaks and tear off a curtain of rave-indebted chords and sirens. The drop at 1:30 never fails to get a reaction.
Coldcut - Atomic Moog 2000 (Post Nuclear After Life Lounge Mix)
This track was my first introduction to Coldcut. It really demonstrated how mixing styles the likes of hip-hop, soul, funk and spoken word can bring depth. 'Atomic Moog 2000' is an anthemic statement that blends natural rhythm and visuals. Highly recommended to all Coldcut fans, this is a must have.
Flying Lotus - Zodiac Shit
This track holds a lot of nostalgic value to me; it’s one of the first albums that I was given as a teenager and it opened my eyes to leftfield percussion. The way it was constructed produced some mind-bending sonic worlds full of rich intricacies, I love it. Particularly love the drop at 0:40 - always used to get a crowd at house parties.
Special Request - Stairfoot Lane Bunker (Minor Science Remix)
The original is top Woolford magic, but Finlayson’s reinterpretation elevates it to new heights, bringing rich swathes of orchestrated ambience rudely interrupted by an assemblage of thunderous breaks and sproinging sub bass. I love the hyper-specific drum edits and tongue-in-cheek touches reminiscent of Luke Vibert’s Amen Andrews stuff.
Xploding Plastix - Behind The Eightball
Similar to artists like Jaga Jazzist and The Cinematic Orchestra, Xploding Plastix brought this strong debut full of top-tier nu/acid jazz. Their sound feels organic, with gritty bass lines and all the acidy jazz you could want. I’m annoyed I didn’t discover them earlier.
The Gaslamp Killer - Shred You to Bits
If you love drums, this is a must-listen track. GLK pulls out this aggressive, live-drummed acid-funk assault. A barrage of musical riches on display, collaborating with the super talented Shigeto to produce an amazing listening experience.
Amon Tobin - Chomp Stomp
Tobin’s music seamlessly manages to combine old obscure samples with breakneck beats, resulting on a rich wall of sound. He finds a way to make obscure jazz and blues music sound fresh with cut-throat rhythms using nothing but a keyboard and a sampler.