The lesson to be taken from the first Rekids retrospective is that you know - and love - a hell of a lot more Rekids records than you think you do. Over the past year, the UK-based label has quietly been churning out a stream of no-nonsense dancefloor anthems, the kind of unremittingly physical tracks which crowds everywhere respond to instinctively - indeed, the only way the CD of originals would make more sense is if crowd cheering noises were inserted periodically.
Rekids are unashamedly all about the bangers. Earwoom hooks, insane rave noises which make crowds go "oooh" and "aaah'" and simple, dumb repetition are the order of the day here; each track locks itself swiftly and with the barest minimum of fuss into an infectious groove, and cheerily remains there for eight or so further minutes, Geht's Noch-ing its way into your brain. It's an unsubtle strategy, and it works because the hooks are so great: Radio Slave's 'My Bleep', for example, is an extraordinary machine of a track, screaming high end giving way to a riff which sounds like household appliances malfunctioning. Various deranged noises ping-pong around Luke Solomon's 'Ghouls', the baton constantly being passed between low-pitched whistling, gibbering treble and metallic bouncing sounds.
It's also surprisingly varied. Sure, the Rekids signature sound - grinding, drawn-out sounds married to languid tempos, an effect which makes the tracks feel simultaneously menacing and decadent - is omnipresent; but the variety of ways in which it manifests itself is wide enough to ensure that it never becomes stale. There's the dry, clicky tech-house of Spencer Parker's 'Beautiful Noise'; Audiofly & Paul Harris's smooth, pristine 'Miscalate', which wouldn't feel all that out of place on Get Physical; Radio Slave's 'Secret Base', harking back to the electro-house which dominated 2004; and, possibly best of all, the deep funk and vocal samples which constitute Rekid's 'Next Stop Chicago'.
The CD of remixes is less consistently magnificent - the Rekids gang have always been better remixers than remixees, possibly because the immediacy of their originals means that any meddling inevitably lessens the track's impact. But Prins Thomas's Disko-Tek Miks of Toby Tobias's 'A Close Shave' is a triumph, elongating and stretching it out into something even more blissful, bringing its latent Italo tinge to the forefront. The Partial Arts take on 'Miscalate', too, is satisfyingly chunky and percussive.
Buy Various Artists - Rekids One at
Tracklist: Various Artists - Rekids One CD1
1. Rekid – Next Stop Chicago
2. Toby Tobias – A Close Shave
3. Radio Slave – My Bleep
4. Luke Solomon – Ghouls
5. Spencer Parker – Beautiful Noise
6. Audiofly & Paul Harris – Miscalate
7. Mr G – E.C.G.’ed
8. Radio Slave – Secret Base
9. Toby Tobias – Dave’s Sex Bits
10. Discemi – Von Wright Code
1. Toby Tobias – Dave’s Sex Bits (Quiet Village remix)
2. Toby Tobias – A Close Shave (Brontosaurus remix)
3. Mr G – E.C.G.’ed (Rekid remix)
4. Spencer Parker – Beautiful Noise (Tiger Timing remix)
5. Matt O’Brien – Serotone (Radio Slave’s Panorama Garage remix)
6. Audiofly & Paul Harris – Miscalate (Partial Arts remix)
7. Luke Solomon – Ghouls (Claude Von Stroke remix)
8. Rekid – Next Stop Chicago (Jesse Rose remix)
9. Toby Tobias – A Close Shave (Prins Thomas Disco-Tek Miks)
10. Radio Slave – My Bleep (Roman Flugel remix)
Other Rekids reviews