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VARIOUS ARTISTS
Soma 10th Anniversary Anthology
Soma Records
 

Tracklisting

 

CD 1
1. Daft Punk - Da Funk
2. Funk D’Void - Diabla (Heavenly Mix) Edit
3. Scott Grooves featuring Parliament/Funkadelic - Mothership
4. Slam featuring Tyrone 'Visionary' Palmer - Lifetimes
5. Percy X - Track 2
6. Chaser - Tall Stories (Ian Pooley's Lars from Mars Mix)
7. Silicone Soul - Chic-o-Laa (H-Foundation Mix)
8. Envoy - Dark Manoeuvres
9. Slam - Positive Education (Original)
10. Funk D’Void - Bad Coffee
11. Slam - Stepback
12. Skintrade - Andomraxxes

CD 2
1. Scott Grooves featuring Roy Ayers - Expansions
2. Silicone Soul - Right On (Instrumental)
3. Rejuvination - IBO
4. Desert Storm - Scoraig 93
5. Maas - Juan is the Teacher
6. Counterplan - 90 Degrees (DJQ Mix)
7. Russ Gabriel presents Audio Spectrum -
Alligator Voodoo
8. Human Arts - Big Sur Highway
9. 20:20 Vision - Future Remembrance (20:20 Livestyle Mix)
10. Rejuvination - Requiem
11. Slam - Eterna

Slam Mix CD
1. Envoy - Prologue 02
2. Scott Grooves - Pieces Of A Dream
3. Russ Gabriel presents Audio Spectrum - Sex With a Stranger
4. Maas - Euro Star
5. Chaser - F-Train
6. Slam - Lifetimes (H-Foundation Dub)
7. Silicone Soul - Chic- O- Laa (H-Foundation Remix)
8. Aaron Carl - Crucified (Maas ‘Michigan Bass’ Mix)
9. Common Factor - Rise (Tech Mix)
10. Tony Thomas - Beginnings
11. Hipp-e & Tony Present Soul Interactive - Riddem Control
12. Percy X - U Know What It Is
13. Funk D’Void - Diabla (Samuel L Sessions Mix)
14. Pressure Funk - Nemeses Cycle
15. Rejuvination - Don’t Forget Who You Are
16. Funk D’Void - V-Ger



Photos
 

  Soma 10 album cover
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  Soma Group Shot
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  Soma Records logo
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Web Links

http://www.somarecords.com





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Congratulations Soma. Ten years young and stronger than ever, 2001 was a massive year for the label. The huge album successes of Funk D’Void’s Dos and Slam’s seminal Alien Radio have taken the label into the stratosphere. But let’s not forget their achievements to date. Soma 10 brings together some of the finest names and tunes that have helped to shape British dance music, strike that, Global dance music over the last decade.

“It’s about what you believe in and for us we have a vision that overrides everything else”. states Slam’s Orde Meikle about the music he makes with Stuart McMillan and what guides the musical direction of their Soma imprint. This collection is a document of the last decade and Soma’s massive contribution to the UK music scene. It takes a double CD to fit it all on, and Slam complete the package (limited to the first 1,000 copies) with a mix of a few of their favourite floorfillers.

Dance music was a different kettle of wriggling, boggle-eyed worms when Slam and Soma left the launch pad in 1991. The Balearic movement which introduced acid house and tripped out tranquility from Ibiza to Britain had started spawning such movements as gurn-you-like glo-stick hardcore rave and commercially, bands like Soul II Soul had slowed it down to a funky drummer. This could only mean one thing: a devout clutch of fevered devotees of the proper house and pure techno emanating from America into the import bins.

Up in Glasgow, long-time clubbing partners-in-crime Orde and Stuart started a club and a band and called them Slam. Initially promoting various nights under the Slam name since 1988 - including the first all-nighter in Scotland, they founded the legendary ‘Atlantis’ night in the Sub Club with Harri and ‘SLAM’ at the Arches where to this day they still do huge ‘Pressure’ nights monthly. The club is held in a converted and cavernous stone vault by the railway line in the town centre. Along with the Sub Club, it became an epicentre for city clubbers who favour pure club classics, past, present and future. And being one of the most enthusiastic - make that wildest - crowds in the country ensured a good and noisy time was had by all.

With the club going apeshit every week it was only a short step for Slam but a huge step for electronic dance music when the boys, along with muckers Glenn Gibbons and Jim Muotone aka Rejuvination, entered the studio and turned out a beautiful slab of deep technoid euphoria called ‘Eterna’. Bathed in lush strings, skittering beats holding the groove and sundry, melon-friendly toppings ensured an immediate monster. Slam in true punk spirit and DIY attitude with manager / promoter Dave Clarke, Glenn and Jim shunned the disillusioning crawl through London A&R departments and started their own label. They called it Soma and ‘Eterna’ was their maiden voyage. Just one record was enough to catapult the group onto first class in the remix train. Early Soma releases were by mates like angelic chanteuse Dot Allison with the late, lamented One Dove, whose gorgeous ‘Fallen’ came as Soma 2 and was later re-issued on Boys’ Own mixed by club regular decksman Andrew Weatherall. There was the brilliant Rejuvination and Back To Basics resident Ralph Lawson making his UK recording debut as Otaku. To this day all releases are A&R’d by Stuart, Orde and Glenn. Their inimitable eye for quality control continued to snarf up top tackle from names like Felix Da Housecat, Space DJz, Surgeon and Common Factor while building a steady roster of regulars who all shared that same vision - [deep breath] some of which include Percy X, Funk D’Void, Gene Farris, Silicone Soul, Ewan Pearson, Envoy, Master H and Chaser. They also discovered a pair of kids from Paris who called themselves Daft Punk. They’ve never fired out a duff tune and as a result are one of the most respected and long-running independent labels in the world.

The first CD boots off in fine technoid acid style with Daft Punk’s second outing, ‘Da Funk’. When dropped in ‘95 it stood out a mile as jaw-droppingly original, with that slowish, twisted stomp and funk rock feel blessed with the spirit of the boogie monster. The duo recorded 3 singles on Soma before signing with Virgin - and the rest is history.

Funk D’Void is one man, DJ Lars Sandberg, who’s represented here by last year’s lush, swooping ‘Heavenly’ mix of ‘Diabla’ and more acidic ‘Bad Coffee’. In 2001 ‘Diabla’ topped just about every press and DJ end of year chart including Pete Tong, Carl Cox and Justin Robertson. Lars has released several other tunes on Soma, and joins the label’s growing roster of album artists with his blend of old skool flavours, jazz and deep strings. Great live too, as he proved at Soma’s 100th release celebration bash at London’s The End last year.  Funk D’Void is also an established remixer who also did an amazing version of the next track up ‘Mothership Reconnection’ by Scott Grooves. It’s Daft Punk though who again take the honour with their sizzling remix of the Scott’s interpretation of the Parliament / Funkadelic classic with George Clinton on vocals.

And now to Slam, whose spectacular ‘Lifetimes’ from last year pops up next. It marks a real progression as the boys introduce song structure and a heartfelt full vocal from Tyrone Palmer, whose lovely classic Chicago house vocal caresses the bottomless bass-diver groove. A few tracks later Slam loom again with the tour-de-force ‘Positive Education’. In ‘93 this caused mass devastation when it first appeared and still does today! Just one of those all-time great tunes that represents everything that’s great about Slam. ‘Positive Education’ was later re-released in 1995 with mixes from Derrick Carter, Luke Slater and Richie Hawtin, then last year with a new version from the boys, which came out on Virgin with new mixes from Josh Wink and Carl Cox. It’ll never lie down.

The new version also appears on their latest opus, the critically acclaimed ‘Alien Radio’. Also included is the thoroughly menacing ‘Stepback’ taken from the Snapshots EP, this is the fans favourite which brought the house down on their recent live tour with Envoy guesting as vocalist!

Percy X, represented by ‘98’s bubbling ‘Track 2’. Over time he has always complemented his relentless funky techno sound with sick, dubby electro and so hitchups with Two Lone Swordsmen and On-U Sound’s Dave Harrow were natural moves. Chaser, half Funk D’Void, half Nigel Hayes are another of the album artists with their own brand of warm techno jazz. Here they are represented by Ian Pooley’s remix of ‘Tall Stories’. Then Silicone Soul with ‘Chic-O-Laa’, from their debut long player ‘A Soul Thing’ which also turns out to be a vehicle for the groin-grabbing antics of latest signings H-Foundation. Last year the San Diego duo Halo and Hipp-e made their UK Djing debut, playing to a whooping mob at the 10th birthday bash. They’ve also recently released their bongo-frenzied ‘Passage Of Time’ single. One to watch.

Envoy is another label stalwart, venturing into albums of deep, pure techno. ‘Dark Manoeuvres’ hails from ‘96 and is just brilliant. Bringing CD one to an end are Aberdeen boys Skintrade who wade in with ’Andomraxxes’ Earth’s core growling stomper.

CD 2 has a house set feeling. Kicking off with Scott Grooves’ collaboration with the veteran Roy Ayers for a pumping take on Lonnie Listen Smith’s classic ‘Expansions’. Silicone Soul’s ‘Right On’ has refused to lie down since its release in 2000 and reached the heady heights of number fifteen in the national chart when re-released including soulful new vocal last year. A classic moment in house!

One of the brightest gems in the Soma cannon has always been the aforementioned Rejuvination. Here they’re represented by their first Soma release from ‘91, ‘IBO’ and ‘93’s sumptuous ‘Requiem’. Scottish free party renegades Desert Storm are up next with the spellbinding ‘Scoraig 93’. These are the guys who took their sound system to Bosnia in the early nineties.

Label stalwart Ewan Pearson aka Maas pops up with ‘96’s ‘Juan Is The Teacher’. Obviously Soma’s ever abundant Detroit fixation looms large with Mr Pearson with a lush and funky outcome. Next up is UK techno / Nu Jazz mainstay Russ Gabriel with the incredible funk of ‘Alligator Voodoo’, followed by Ballistic Brothers in crime and two thirds of XPress 2 Ashley Beedle and Diesel as Human Arts with ‘Big Sur Highway’.

As the years went on Basics resident Ralph Lawson continued to spin regularly at the SLAM club and started his own 20:20 Vision imprint. Represented here by ‘Future Remembrance’, a sublime badger’s bonersome slice of the label’s trademark deep house. The CD ends with the tune that started it all, Slam’s ‘Eterna’, still breathtaking and even more emotional after all these years.

So there it is: the tip of a mighty iceberg and just a slice of one of the strongest back catalogues in dance music. The Soma family (and label) continues to grow, there’s a thriving office in the heart of Glasgow where the Soma studio is housed.

Keep up the good work Soma!

Release date: April 29, 2002
 

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For more information please contact Peter Wohelski at Green Galactic, 718-923-9020 or peter@greengalactic.com.

 


 




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