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75 Degrees Children's Story Redux

Label: Dining Room

Not since Sticky Fingaz came to town has the world seen a more churlish MC than Rick Bond of 75 Degrees, a group bold enough to redo the kitschy rap standard "Children's Story" on their infectious new single. Then again, egghead humor's part of their appeal: check the track "Jesus Piece." Read more » 

Various Artists Fixinthemixes Vol. 1 and Vol. 2

Label: white

Mysterious white labels featuring tracks that will create havoc on the dancefloor. Volume 1 comprises the long lost vocal version of the sadly missed Armando's acid monster, "Land of Confusion," a version of Saunderson's mix of Wee Papa Girls, and an Aphex mix of Gerald. Volume 2 brings tunes by Front 242, Ron Hardy favorites Liaison Dangereuse, LA electro legend Unknown DJ (remixed by Basic Channel) and Vanity 6. Bootleg bizness, but essential in any DJ's crate. Find, and soon. Read more » 

Mr. Dibbs The 30th Song

Label: Rhymesayers

Mr. Dibbs's The 30th Song was originally supposed to be released by 4 Ways to Rock in 2000, but that never materialized. And it's a damn shame. If this record fell into the hip-hop consciousness during turntablism's peak years, the "Dick-nosed Platypus" would be the one that crate-digging symphonists would have to measure up to. On this expanded reissue, Dibbs's earthy beats are deftly heightened by swamp-rat guitar riffs, smeared violas, strutting basslines and the odd children's record or two. Read more » 

Liaisons Dangereuses S/t

Label: Hit Thing

More Jules Verne than Toffler, Liaisons Dangereuses' designs on tomorrow must have appealed just as much to Derrick May and Carl Craig. Or maybe it was their subversive nature-implant a kernel of chaos into otherwise quantized funk. In 1981, there weren't too many others making machines swing as hard as they do on "Peut Etre Pas" or "Los Ninos Del Parque." Except for Kraftwerk, of course. With all the reference and reverence of them, it would be easy to pass up a project such as Liaisons Dangereuses. This long overdue history lesson should seed some exciting new futures. Read more » 

SCSI-9 Digital Russion

Label: Force Tracks

Moscow-natives Anton Kubikov and Maxim Miyutenko certainly have their sound on lockdown, and it shows in their ability to jump from pop-based house to dark and epic techno jams without flinching. Although the production duo went surprisingly unrepresented on Force Inc.'s recent Digital Disco and Clicks & Cuts 3 compilations, maybe it's because picking a single track to love over the rest is pretty tough. The majority of the album comes straight off the hard drive (that is, it's mostly brand new tracks), but a few favorite 12" singles made the cut, too. Read more » 

Mark XTC Rollin Beatz/Keys

Label: Beatz

Mark XTC, formerly of Da Intalex (with pal Marcus) returns for this Valve offshoot. "Rollin' Beatz" is an apt title for this A-side, in which a '95 bassline pairs up with a pitched-down Amen for some extremely minimal hardstep business. The flip's "Keys" pinches a wonky piano intro from Dillinja and hits it with some pounding one-two punches. More DJ tools than fleshed-out tunes, these tracks would be perfect with an a capella laid over them, but are pretty boring on their own. Read more » 

Gene Hunt The Next Level

Label: Moods and Grooves

Lucky us: Chicago's Gene Hunt serves us three sections of controlled, deep and extremely soulful house music for Mike Grant's well-respected Moods and Grooves. Lil Louis's bruv provides vocals on "I Live," a sweet body-and-soul ballad for mature house lovers. Despite the clich?d heavy breathing intro, the way that Gene manipulates the beats and chords on "Skeemin Boheman" is, well, simply amazing. It just goes to prove that this man is in a class of his own. Read more » 

Variable Unit Handbook for the Apocalypse

Label: Wide Hive

Live hip-hop? Stop rolling your eyes and open your ears. VU proves that organic can be a healthy alternative. "Handbook for the Apocalypse" finds Azeem speaking on signs of the times over a sweeping guitar/acoustic bass/keyboard arrangement. The b-side's "We Are at War" features SF turntablist hellion and DJ Quest cutting over a laid-back jazzy groove. Read more » 

Joakim Fantomes

Label: Versatile

Long live the French! Read more » 

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