Not really 2016 material but rather unearthed quality old-school techno, house, breakbeat and jungle from 90s UK finally getting a deserved official release in 2016. I can almost hear a few charming wrinkles of cassette tape noise that adds to the experience. Ah, the memories :-)
Favorite track: PDM X Break (1997).
Following acclaimed releases by Jeremiah R and HVL, Organic Analogue is proud to present an extensive new release from a true underground hero of UK electronic music, DJ Guy.
Guy played a vital role in helping initiate the rave scene in and around Cardiff in the early 90s, earning a reputation for meticulous mixing and a desire to blend some of the most ambitious sounds emerging in the nascent days of house, techno, acid and jungle. As well as his storied history in DJing, Guy was equally busy throughout the 90s and beyond exploring music production, both through work at local studio Grassroots and with his own private experiments on rudimentary hardware set ups, sequenced by tracker software on an Atari and recorded in one take. These recordings largely sat unnoticed until Guy decided to upload vast swathes of tracks to his Bandcamp page, leading to a discovery by Bake of the Glaswegian label All Caps that resulted in the 20 (1996) 12” in 2014. Since then Guy has released more of his archive material on NORD, Cejero and Crisis Urbana, gaining recognition for productions that stand proud alongside the most pioneering electronics of the 90s.
For this latest excursion into Guy’s music, the team at Organic Analogue were keen to represent the full spectrum of his sounds, both stylistically and chronologically. Considering the amount of material to choose from, we felt that a dual-format release was the best way of showcasing as many different sides to Guy’s work as possible. The spate of recent releases has focused solely on work Guy recorded in the 90s, and so we felt it necessary to devote the vinyl part of the release to some of his newer productions. Recorded between 2000 and 2015, the tracks on Structures prove that the same spellbinding atmosphere, swooning melodic content and crafty arrangement flex is as present in Guy’s contemporary work as it is in his earliest tape rips. Elements of Drexciyan electro and UK ambient techno can be felt throughout, but they’re delivered with an equal dose of ingenuity that is all Guy’s own.
Given the vast amount of older material that remains unheard, we couldn’t resist dipping into the archives and presenting another less represented side to Guy’s sound. Although his releases to date have mostly showcased his techno side, he equally turned his hand to some crucial experimental jungle. Rhythms 94/99 harks back to the era of Black Secret Technology, Plug and Depth Charge, all phased, diced-up amens and dreamy pads that form a link to Guy’s techno work while making for another staggering example of how on point his productions were back in the foundational days of these subcultures. The tape contains ten tracks recorded by Guy between 1994 and 1999 as well as an additional remix by White Peak that draws upon all the tracks for source material.
As ever the artwork and packaging remains a vital facet in the presentation of the music on Organic Analogue. For this composite release, inspiration was taken from the Casio CZ-1 synth, a humble but iconic piece of kit which features on nearly all of Guy’s productions. The vinyl represents the keyboard itself, while the cassette emulates the ROM cart combined to make a whole piece in tribute to an unsung stalwart of 90s music production. In addition, we wanted to document and explore the fascinating story behind Guy’s music in more detail, and so put together an A5 book that features an interview and track notes alongside old flyers and studio photos from the earliest days of Guy’s life in music. We hope that in some way this serves to document the tireless work of an immensely talented artist who has never created for anything but the most honest of intentions. Even if his incredible productions should have been more widely enjoyed back in the day, atleast they’re getting the recognition they deserve now.
released April 25, 2016
EP Mastering : Matt Colton @ Alchemy Mastering
Tape Mastering : Beat Chef
words by Oli Warwick