Exclusive Download: Chris Orr's 'Hac Mix' for Halloween Debaser
Jamie from Debaser wanted to do a '90s blow out Halloween party, and he asked me if I would play a '90s style dance set, preferably with a bunch of tunes that were played at the Hacienda in Manchester in the late-'80s and early-'90s. So, I did a 20-minute quick mix with three turntables. I love this era of music, and all of these tracks bring me back to a great time for music and clubs. I didn't put the Happy Mondays or Stones Roses or any of the Madchester stuff on it, as I wanted to focus on some of the records that probably turned these rock musicians on to dance music. Most of the time it was music made by black and Latino musicians and singers from America, but it spoke volumes to a bunch of pasty white people on the isles (and in the shires, perhaps). I am one of them, but I tan a little bit after a few days in the sun. Enjoy the tunes.
Orr's Hac Mix
Orange Lemon "Dreams of Santa Anna"
DJ's Rule "Get Into The Music (Serious Mix)"
This is a killer garage tune from Canada. I loved a lot of the Canadian house on labels like Strobe, Big Shot, and the label this was on, Hi-Bias. Hi-Bias' early records sound like a mix of N.Y., Chicago, and Detroit, and they were eaten up in the U.K. and Ireland.
De Lite feat. Osca Child "Wild Times (Mayday Mix)"
One of Derrick May's best remixes without a doubt. De-Lite was an English pop group with one 'E' instead of three (they were taking it easy with the 'E's, unlike everyone else back then), and May's mix is an exercise in galactic, Detroit robo-funk (you'll find that in the section next to Bulgarian Nose Flute 2 Step Gabber).
Landlord "I Like It (Blow Out Dub)"
This is a big Canadian tune from '89. I could never find it back home in Ireland, but found it in here for a dollar in a thrift store. Music sounds better for a dollar, or with you, or on glue, some say.
Aftershock "Slave To The Vibe"
I remember when this came out in '93, there was so much hype on it, and it was bootlegged from the promo before it dropped. It's a groovy garage cut with a R&B vocal. Some people would say something about church in relation to this track, but I never heard it in a church, though I did hear it in a gang of sweaty clubs.
This is probably my favorite Derrick May track after "Nude Photo." uplifting, melodic techno with funky, driving beats.
Urban Soul "Alright"
This is a Roland Clark track from '91, with remixes from Tony Humphries. This was a massive tune when it dropped, and everyone was really weasely for the original pressing on Polar Records out of New York. It has the New Jersey garage feel that has Tony Humphries stamped all over it.
Corporation of One "The Real Life"
Freddie Bastone is a New Yorker who became a big time remixer in the '90s. He produced this track from '89. Freestyle meets house and Queen, Simple Minds, and Scarface samples. It's sublime (not the band, they didn't make freestyle inflected house). I had this on a dodgy little compilation in '89, and it took me years to find it for a dollar here in S.F. Score.
Young MC "Know How (Instrumental)"
"Bust A Move" was the big chart hit in the U.S., while in the isles this was the hit. And this instrumental rocked many an underground dancefloor, too.
Shawn Christopher "Don't Lose The Magic (Magic Todd Dub)"
This is another Todd Terry work of genius; a remix from '92 where he shows how much his sound had advanced since the "Orange Lemon" tune, which is from '87. The "Magic Todd Dub" is a sparse, spacey, and funky garage dub that just rocks--abstract and smooth, but with a rough edge. Everyone, thank Todd Terry.
Looney Tunes Vol. 1 "Just As Long As I Got You"
I bought this out in a department store in Derry, Northern Ireland, when it came out in '89. I think it was 50 pence (75 cents). It was produced by New York producers Frankie Bones and Lenny D and came out on the infamous Nu Groove label. Big tune with Salsoul and Led Zep samples!
Denise Lopez "Don't You Wanna Be Mine (The Clivillés And Cole House Dub)"
I'm not sure if this record was huge here, but it was huge back home and I buy it every time I see it. Clivilles and Cole of course became C & C Music factory, and remixers par excellence -- thank them for "Notice Me" by Sandee too, among other tunes. Hacienda tracks weren't all moody indie tracks or moody techno and acid. People went to the club to have a good time after being clobbered by Thatcher for a decade. Chin stroking to dark tracks all night wasn't considered a good time, funnily enough, and this track is evidence of that.
Gina Stewart "Dance All Night (Menace Mix J)"
This is a cheeky little N.Y. style house dub that still does the business.
Pandella "This Way, That Way (Komix Dub)"
This is another Canadian production, courtesy of the late Andrew Komis (a.k.a. Komix). It's a warped acid track that's uplifting and driving. It has some nice Inner City touches and a rumbling bassline. Komix rocked and he left some excellent tunes behind when he passed away in 2008. The vocal version of this track is quite pleasant also.
Rickster "Night Moves"
It was a toss of a coin between this and Night Writers' "Let The Music (Use You)." This won and it's a killer Chicago house jam with a chunky bassline and a strong vocal about partying. The producers were going to write a moody acid track about something moody, but they decided not to. Result!
The Project feat. Linda Rice "Out of Control (House Control Mix)"
This is a Chicago cut that sounds like an Italo house monster. I missed out the piano bit and went straight to the "Out Of Control" bit because I like the "Out of Control" bit. This was a big tune at Sir Henry's in Cork, an excellent Irish club with excellent DJs who played excellent music and had excellent guests, among them Justin Robertson who ran a club night in Manchester called Most Excellent. The piano bit on this tune is very good too.
Sha-Lor "I'm in Love"
Though this not strictly a Hacienda-style mix--well it kinda is--you can't have a mix from that era without this gem. It's a New York garage cut from '87 with a subtle freestyle feel, chunky bassline, sublime vocal and swiftnific production from Ben Cenac, who was also the producer behind Newcleus, of "Jam On It" fame. It's nice, and I likes it.
Marina Van Rooy "Sly One"
I've always loved, loved, loved this record. Looked for the version that contains this mix for eons, and could never find it until I stumbled across it in Record Rack in the Castro for one of your U.S. dollars. It's super deep, but with a raw edge, and has a tough, funky groove. Marina's vocal reminds you of conversations with girls sitting on speakers, near speakers, behind speakers and in speakers. It's very nice, and I like it... a lot.
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