Release Date: 22nd November 2019
The latest transmission from Sneaker Social Club welcomes Low End Activist into the fold for a record that draws heavily on soundsystem culture and in particular its social function in the Afro-Caribbean communities it stemmed from.
The source material for this record of fractured bass pressure is a VHS recording of Muzikon Sound System, captured in 1988 on the Blackbird Leys estate in Oxford, UK. The vibe pours out of the scenes captured – it was a famously hot summer, and Earthy Irie’s crew set their rig up at the Blackbird Leys summer fair, gifting the community with a wall of sound blasting out ruff n’ tuff 80s dancehall while the local deejays toasted over the top. Elsewhere Street Level would have had their system set up playing UK Soul, Hip-Hop, Proto Rave and Acid House, while further down the field (known locally as ‘the wreck’) the annual five-a-side football tournament took place.
The fair was a symbol of the unity of the estate – a multi-ethnic working class community bound together both by the looming presence of the car factory (where a massive portion of the residents worked) but also the long simmering social divide in Oxford. Since the founding of Oxford University, the country’s elite have needed people to do their dirty work, predictably exploiting and marginalising them in the process. As the city and its colleges expanded, so these communities were ushered out of town. The tensions between the classes reached a flash point repeatedly throughout the centuries, and it was no different during the 1991 riots on
the Blackbird Leys estate. As with similar riots elsewhere in Britain – Brixton, St Pauls, Toxteth, and elsewhere – heavy handed, not to mention misguided, police tactics loom large in the story, where the elite and the authorities fail to understand the community, how and why it functions the way it does.
Drawing on this snapshot of Oxford life, far from the international facade of the city’s privilege and power, with a deep-rooted, personal perspective, Low End Activist channels the raw energy and expression of Muzikon’s sound and frames it in the dread bass pressure that such soundsystems directly led to. It’s not dark music, but rather an intense one, defiant and proud like the Blackbird Leys community and so many of the social situations that gave rise to rave culture in the late 80s and early 90s.
The people from the estate would take their skill, knowledge and access to ‘the factory’ and use it to joyride high-end sports cars – a celebration of personal liberty in the face of social barriers enforced by the very people who would buy such things. Now Low End Activist applies his own craft to an amazing artefact from decades past, not so much joyriding with it as respectfully doffing his cap to the community in a show of solidarity, letting the jubilant sound play out once more
a1. Low End Activist - Street Level
a2. Low End Activist - Signal To Noise (Ratio)
a3. Low End Activist - Signal To Noise
b1. Low End Activist - Low End Activism
b2. Low End Activist - Neighbourhood Nationalism
b3. Low End Activist - Muzikon 90
Release Date: 18th October 2019
Dream Cycle returns for the third instalment in his series of EPs on Sneaker Social Club. 4 tracks cover a range of moods from the tough, club ready 2 step on “Told You” to the slo-mo ambient throb of “Untitled Dream”.DJ Support
Dusky, Deadboy, Breaka, Changsie, Barely Legal, LMajor, Foul Play, Jackie House, Jossy Mitsu, Kate Miller, Etch, Kornel Kovacs, Coco Bryce, Delfonic, Octo Octa, Avalon Emerson, Silvia Kastel, FaltyDL, Ciel, Gigsta, 2 Bad Mice, Etch, Kornel Kovacs, Coco Bryce, Michael Serafini, Chris Farrell (Idle Hands), Interplanetary Criminal, Turbojazz, Molly, Alec Falconer, Vera, Raresh, Edmondson, DJ Fart In The Club, Re:ni, Rey Colino (Kalahari Oyster Cult), Banoffee Pies + more
a1. Dream Cycle - Told You
a2. Dream Cycle - Long Time
b1. Dream Cycle - Sensa
b2. Dream Cycle - Untitled Dream
Release Date - 23rd August 2019
Through a misty, nostalgic lens of long days and nights lost in front of sound systems, Soundbwoy Killah delivers his much anticipated debut album to Sneaker Social Club. True to previous drops on this and other labels, this is rave romanticism with a bite, as much viewing the good old days with a wry smile as longing for their return. Just listen to the opening strains of “Escape Velocity,” as the MC manages a sticky situation and tries to keep cool while sending the crowd on their way “in an orderly fashion.”
As much as hardcore, jungle, acid, techno and house inform Halcyon Daze, the sonic signifiers of that ‘golden era’ of rave culture are bedded in a poignant, reflective shroud. From lingering pads to distant, reverb drenched vocal snatches, a hint of melancholy hovers over these scattered but vivid memory triggers. Reese bass has never reverberated so deep, sirens never sounded so lost at sea.
The real art in Soundbwoy Killah’s craft lies in the juxtaposition between these languid, introspective elements and bright, sharply rendered arcs of sound that bring the music right into the foreground. This isn’t a pure exercise in nostalgia – stripped of their aggressive armour plating, a lot of these familiar elements take on a new expressive identity. Whether it’s the strafing arps in “Tom Loves To Rave,” or softly nudging the rolling breaks of “Under The Influence” into a downtempo, chill-out room headspace, Halcyon Daze proves how much mileage there still is in these battle-scarred sonic tools.
It’s not all one-dimensionally downcast either – “Heartbeats” is a rude n’ ruff celebration of amen choppage, while “Wanna Hold U” channels the ghost of UK garage with one eye cast back to its US house roots. “All Night Long” finishes the record on a charging high, all tightly clipped tech step beats and bright synths that cast their gaze ahead with optimism. The themes of lost love and fuzzy memories echo throughout Halcyon Daze, but rather than wallowing in the past, this open-ended finishing move springs forward with purpose. One gets the feeling there’s plenty more to come from Soundbwoy Killah.
a1. Soundbwoy Killah - Escape Velocity
a2. Soundbwoy Killah - Pang
a3. Soundbwoy Killah - Tom Loves To Rave
b1. Soundbwoy Killah - Wanna Hold U
b2. Soundbwoy Killah - Under The Influence
c1. Soundbwoy Killah - Heartbeats
c2. Soundbwoy Killah - Loiner Dub
c3. Soundbwoy Killah - Halcyon Daze
d1. Soundbwoy Killah - Yours (Break Mix)
d2. Soundbwoy Killah - All Night Long
Repress Shipping - 14th June 2019
Heavy, effective 1990s UK Hardcore/ UKG revival cuts from Soundbwoy Killah on his debut Sneaker Social Club 12"
a1. Soundbwoy Killah - Yours
a2. Soundbwoy Killah - Come My Selector
b1. Soundbwoy Killah - Abra Cadabra
b2. Soundbwoy Killah - Turn Off The Lights
Release Date - 15th March 2019
Shout out to my Barry’s ‘Da Mix’, Leon, Vonnett, James, Tilde, Jamie K, Edem, MR2, Fugee, 88.2 Crew, Leon at Music House, Loxy, Mike P, Logos, Parris, Mickey Pearce, Scratcha, all the silent listeners and all the bedroom ravers.
Run out groove etching “I’m oldskool like Stratford Rex, I’m oldskool like Temple”
a1. Basic Rhythm - New Style
a2. Basic Rhythm - Too Nuff
b1. Basic Rhythm - London Warehouse
b2. Basic Rhythm - Ready Again
Released 30th November 2018
Pure raw unfiltered Hardcore, just like it was back in the day. Stepping up here on contemporary UK rave imprint, Sneaker Social Club - Jerome Hill re-animates his Hornsey Hardcore alias for a third time. The object of the Hornsey Hardcore project is to make early 90's style Hardcore tracks but without using any extra production frills or modern twists. It's legit!
DJs - The Black Madonna, Special Request, Minimal Violence, Serge, Octo Octa, Kate Miller, Gigsta, Jackie House (Honey Soundsystem), Happa, Coco Bryce, DJ Guy, Dixon Avenue Basement Jams, Alan Fitzpatrick, Object Blue, Extrawelt, Len Faki, Stenny, Mark Archer, Deft, Julia Govor, 96 Back, Ciel, Johanna Knutsson, Neville Watson, Perc, De Sluwe Vos, Nick Craddock, JD Twitch (Optimo), Billy Nasty, Solid Blake, ASOK.
a1. Hornsey Hardcore - Don't Get Strange
a2. Hornsey Hardcore - Locked Groove 1
a3. Hornsey Hardcore - Locked Groove 2
a4. Hornsey Hardcore - Locked Groove 3
a5. Hornsey Hardcore - Locked Groove 4
b1. Hornsey Hardcore - The Wiz
b2. Hornsey Hardcore - Locked Groove 5
b3. Hornsey Hardcore - Locked Groove 6
b4. Hornsey Hardcore - Locked Groove 7
b5. Hornsey Hardcore - Locked Groove 8
Release Date - 19th October 2018
Etch's 'Ups & Downs' album is a collection of dubs which date as far back as 2014 and up to the present day. The album's tracks are united by being examples of the artists' efforts to escape the shackles of reality by using music as a vehicle.
The theme of space recurs across the material - both the 'outer-space' of the universe and galaxies that surround our planet and the 'inner-space' of exploring the infinite recesses and depths of our mind's imagination.
However these creations were made during a period experiencing a (not-uncommon) lifestyle of mad peaks, joy and optimism, and yet also, times of struggle, adversity and depression. That is of course a familiar human tale - but expressed here through Etch's own singular musical vision. Etch's music is informed by psychedelic experiences, sci-fi, occult and horror themed films and the evolution of gaming - (these being tools often used to escape the prescribed tedium of society's rules and roles).
This is then combined with a deep love of sampling vinyl and rearranging breakbeats in an unforced homage to his family roots in UK hardcore breakbeat, jungle and d'n'b. Furthermore, these hybrids are often filtered through a keen understanding of current musical developments which are then explored and deployed where it feels appropriate. Add to this a smattering of teenage Goth influences that rear their heads within the dark sound of certain tunes and you've got a serious distillation of culture being explored within these beats.
e1. Etch - Lost Orbit
e2. Etch - Out There
e3. Etch - The Siren
t1. Etch - Groove Control
t2. Etch - Snell's Law
t3. Etch - Hope For The Worst
c1. Etch - Black Rainbow
c2. Etch - Swirls & Spirals
c3. Etch - Ince Climbers In Flat Land
h1. Etch - Shine On (Zero Gravity Mix)
h2. Etch - Fluid
h3. Etch - Outsider ft. Farrah
Released 1st June 2018
More than ten years since he first emerged on Skull Disco, Appleblim presents his debut album. The label he co-founded with Shackleton was the first the world heard of his productions, but Laurie Osborne’s innate relationship with electronic music culture reaches back much further than those groundbreaking early days of dubstep. Early days spent soaking up hardcore, jungle, techno and plenty more besides were fundamental foundations from which to spring into the then-unknown realms of sub-low half-step club music. At that time FWD>> and DMZ were the church for this ritualistic sound, and Appleblim was a regular fixture at both.
As dubstep matured, magnified, mutated and meandered, so Appleblim moved beyond Skull Disco to explore different avenues of expression in the new many- layered club music landscape. His own Apple Pips imprint was a natural vessel on which to explore the emergent fusions of hardcore-derived sounds and the US-born house, techno and electro, while labels such as Aus Music equally provided a home for his work (often alongside Komonazmuk). Meanwhile long-standing collaborations with Alec Storey (Al Tourettes / Second Storey) finally manifested in the hyper-modern mind-twist of ALSO, captured as an album on legendary rave label R&S.
More recently it’s been possible to hear Appleblim delve into electro-acoustic and ambient production alongside bassweight sounds on Tempa, one of the original bastions of dubstep culture. As the existing boundaries between genres, cultures, eras and scenes continue to dissolve, on his debut album Appleblim offers up a fresh approach that brings some of the foundational sound ethics of rave culture into a modern framework.
Hardcore breaks are still a regular sound source in contemporary club tracks, but on Life In A Laser it’s instantly apparent that Appleblim has moved beyond choosing popular drum samples to truly tap into the elusive feeling engendered by the music of the era. It’s a tricky feat to manage, but in the pie-eyed chords of “Ignite”, the subby 808 tom basslines on “NCI” or the Mr. Fingers synth flex on “Manta Key” the sonic finish sports the same understated grit and grime that made those early records so timeless. There’s still space for modernism, not least on snaking 2-step killer “I Think We'll Let The Gas Sort This One Out”, but it’s offset by a layer of dust, not to mention an inherent moodiness that can’t be faked.
This fine balance of rave romanticism and future-minded approaches binds together in a cohesive conceptual statement. First and foremost it’s Appleblim’s personal reflection on the music that has moved him on countless dancefloors since his first flirtations with soundsystem culture. At the same time the canny influx of modern ideas into the soundworld of the 90s genuinely results in a new proposition, making for a perfect fit on the modern-day ‘ardcore fetishists label of choice, Sneaker Social Club. Many may claim to draw on old-skool influences in their modern trax, but take one listen to “Flows From Within” and you’ll feel the same time-slipping surge of future-shock as the ravers at Lost, Dreamscape, The Dungeons, Clink Street, Blue Note and all those other iconic spots.
a1. Life In A Laser
a3.I Think We'll Let The Gas Sort This One Out
b2. Manta Key
c1. Flows From Within
c2. Chrome Mist
d1. Astral Light
Released 18th May 2018
"Dream Cycle returns with his second instalment on Sneaker Social Club. Offering up 3 distinct moods across the EP - “Influence" is a stripped back, technoid stepper, "Afters (3am mix)" explores the dubbier side of UKG while "DCYX 5" takes things into more uplifting territory - a skippy piano roller arriving just in time for Summer."
DJ Support: Andy Hart, James Zabiela, Benji B, Tensnake, Octo Octa, Sascha Dive, Dimensions Soundsystem, Contours
a1. Dream Cycle - Influence
b1. Dream Cycle - Afters (3am Mix)
b2. Dream Cycle - DYCX 5
Released 25th August 2017
Awesome new Etch release from Sneaker Social Club. Immense list of DJ support: FaltyDL, Josey Rebelle, Mosca, Zinc, Foul Play, Stenny, West Norwood Cassette Library, Warlock, Mr.Beatnick, Adam Marshall, Xxxy, TEED, Konx-om-Pax, Photonz, Jerome Hill, Mark Archer, N-Type, Happa, Doc Scott, Ryan Elliott, Jakwob, Shenoda, Hrdvsion, Tim Parker, Franklin De Costa.
a2. What Lies Beyond
b1. Green Park
b2. Prismatic (Etch Revision)
Release Date: 14th July 2017
DJ Support: Ben UFO, The Black Madonna, Maya Jane Coles, Stenny, Luke Handsfree, Gene Farris, Jackie House (Honey Soundsystem), Denham Audio, Dan Curtin, J.Phlip, The Revenge, Justin Robertson, Doc Scott, Pressa, Kamera, Edmondson, Jon More (Coldcut), Moxie, rRoxymore, Konx om Pax, Truss, 2 Bad Mice, Soulphiction, Bruce, Marco Zenker, Benjamin Damage, Norman Nodge, Dixon Avenue Basement Jams, Michael Serafini, Mark Archer, Zinc, Serge (Clone), Rob Smith/ RSD, DJ Guy, Dismantle, Xxxy, Etch, Joe, Kornel Kovacs, Mark Broom, John Heckle, Red Rack'em + many more
a1. West Norwood Cassette Library - (Everytime You Touch Me) I Get Hype
a2. West Norwood Cassette Library - Theme to Street Knowledge
b1. The Brothers Grimm - Exodus [The Lion Awakes] (WNCL VIP)
b2. West Norwood Cassette Library - Feeling Too Big to Dance
Released 23rd June 2017
Seekersinternational sends dub into another dimension, a place where the laws of physics appear irrelevant. Formerly solid structures are made improbable and surreal; songs become dizzying, recursive mazes. But for all this weirdness, the Canadian producer has generally hung onto dub's loved-up feel. This cassette is different.
Appearing on Japan's Diskotopia, the RaggaPreservationSociety EP traces dub's sonics as they developed into ragga jungle. The manic style is sunk deep in the dance music consciousness. Hearing it get a cubist makeover is a bit like having familiar memories smashed up and reassembled as crazy paving: in other words, disorientating. Crowds of sampled ragga chatter vie for attention, repitched chords and cartoonish basslines hint at two (or more) different keys, and breakbeats and delay trails meet in gruesome pileups. Structures are fragmented and, thanks to the release's mixtape sequencing, it can be hard to tell what is "track" and what is "transition." Most are probably a bit of both.
The chaos is glorious, but the EP is made extra special by the moments when unexpected order emerges. Somehow, several of these tracks are, well, catchy. The best come in a run on the A-side: "SoundDedication"'s sliced piano chords and delirious chipmunk coos, into "DanceGwaan(EazeUp!)," whose skittish breakbeat is cut with tender synth chords, and then "NoCompetition"'s quiet storm sweetness, aided by twinkling Rhodes and a female vocal. On the flipside, "ChannelTwo(MurderousDub)" is just as good. A sliced vocal and bassline form an improbably singable hook, before tumbling into a big old sentimental piano breakdown. Or perhaps the word "breakdown" is redundant on this marvellously broken release.
Side A Sample
Side B Sample
02. AmenBreadren (feat. Sipreano)
05. NoCompetition (feat. K!dlat)
06. Bubblers(Inter-rude) (feat. Sipreano)
07. TellURudeBwoy (feat. wzrdryAV)
10. GunRingoX1&2 (feat. Sipreano)
Released 14th April 2017
Vinyl only special release from the Sneaker Social Club crew featuring superb remixes from Luke Vibert and The Maghreban along with the original mix.
a1. Exodus (The Lion Awakes) [Luke Vibert Remix]
b1. Exodus (The Lion Awakes) [The Maghreban Remix]
b2. Exodus (The Lion Awakes) [Original Mix]
REPRESS! Shipping around 9th December.
Club life would never be the same again now that he had left the building. He was gone and so too would this place be very soon. The world mourned the last dancer, out the door he had walked never to return to a floor in which he had spent many a night lost under the glowing lights and disco balls. His movement had been legendary, the talk of the town. Now all that was left was an eerie shadow and an empty space where he had used to stand. This night was for him, they would move in honour. The night had only just begun. Let's ride.
UK pioneers, rave fanatics and living legends 2 Bad Mice return with a bang. Social Sneaker Club release the first EP from the three since 2004 in what marks a landmark occasion for UK rave culture.
a1. Limit of Paradise
a2. Snake Charmer
b1. Gone Too Soon
b2. Zero Fifteen
1. Neil Landstrumm - The Great Nonsense
2. Neil Landstrumm - Dragging Under
3. Neil Landstrumm - Nonplussed
4. Neil Landstrumm - Has Anybody Seen Raz?
5. Neil Landstrumm - Electrified At Dawn
6. Neil Landstrumm - Kevin From Heaven
7. Neil Landstrumm - Mr Weird Loves Candyfloss
8. Neil Landstrumm - Two Stroke
9. Neil Landstrumm - £300 Just To Open The Door Yeh?
10. Neil Landstrumm - Where Do We Begin
11. Neil Landstrumm - Septic Thumb
12. Neil Landstrumm - Keep Up
13. Neil Landstrumm - Shanghai Sliders
14. Neil Landstrumm - Want Me To Do
15. Neil Landstrumm - Last Little Bit
16. Neil Landstrumm - Bring The Dark Lord