Dance music history: Injected with some Belgians (and Germans)

In an earlier piece, I mainly focused on the influences on the UK dance scene. Of course, the UK isn’t the centre of the world and Europe also has a huge dance scene.

Of course, you can’t write about European dance music without mentioning Kraftwerk. But, everyone knows about Kraftwerk.

Then came punk and industrial, spawning European bands, of whom Germany’s Einstürzende Neubauten and Slovenia’s Laibach are the longest lasting and best known.

Continue reading “Dance music history: Injected with some Belgians (and Germans)”

The underground history of UK dance music

I’ve watching another history of dance music in the UK and the same frustrations are rising up. Every single one tells the same story – interesting stuff was happening in the US – in particular DJ Frankie Knuckles in the Warehouse Club in Chicago in 1979 where House Music was born, and then it appeared in the UK – nearly a decade later.

In 1987, four DJs (Paul Oakenfold, Danny Rampling, Johnny Walker and Nicky Holloway) went to Ibiza and brought their holiday home – in particular with Rampling’s legendary Shoom club.

Continue reading “The underground history of UK dance music”

Solidarity for Christmas

The now annual fight between the X-Factor winner and people with taste for the Christmas No.1 spot in the UK charts was something of a damp squib last year. Following the first failed mobilisation in 2008 (the battle of the Hallelujahs) and the glorious RATM victory in 2009, the uncoordinated multiple attempts last year failed badly.

Continue reading “Solidarity for Christmas”

Remembering black metal

I’ve recently rediscovered black metal. No, not the silly facepainted Nordic screaming nonsense, but the late 80s/early 90s scene featuring bands with black people in them playing rock and metal music heavily influenced by funk and soul. The three main bands were actually a big part of the scene as the underground started to come into the mainstream – just as grunge was bursting through and a weird and wonderful mix of music was suddenly available to me in Dublin.

Continue reading “Remembering black metal”