i other people can do the work!‘

Scotland the *

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rave ?

From small pressings ofwhite labels to bona fide chart contenders, the Scottish dance scene has succeeded in establishing the much talked

about infrastructure of a viable record industry. Craig McLean . profiles the individual prime movers responsible for this success story, while Calvin Bush casts a critical eye over the essential releases.

THE MAGAZINE Clubscene magazine offers a tailor-made outlet for the hive ofdance activity that is otherwise denied media coverage. The leap to making and promoting their own records was a small one.

‘I don’t want to be a record company,‘ counters Clubscene’s Bill Grainger. ‘I’d rather be a production label, then licence stuff on, so that

2“ I

The ‘stuff’ so far has been 'ITF’s ‘Real Love‘ and Suburban Delay‘s ‘Energy Rush‘, both ofwhich appeared via Clubscene’s deal with Jive, and Area 51’s ‘Let It Move You’, licensed to ZYX. Coming soon, and in keeping with Grainger‘s declared preference for the commercial over the po-facedly credible, is the label’s ‘Christmas record‘: ‘Scotland The Rave’, featuring, you guessed it, bits of ‘Scotland The Brave’.

THE SHOP With a new store just opened in Edinburgh (and one recently established in Dundee), plus three



next in line. Also lurking round the bend are The Flys, two ex-Simple Minds types, who will provide the first release on United Rhythm‘s sister label. Novakann.

‘It’s better ifyou‘re on top of the technology,‘ Wishart reckons, ‘using it as a creative component or a tool, rather than letting it get on top of you and your imagination.‘

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new records scheduled for November. Glasgow‘s 23rd Precinct can hardly be accused of hanging about. Since their first release in August last year their label, has taken off. Gypsy were recently featured on The Chart Show and reached No. 88 in the national pop charts. But it was the 13,000-selling ‘Schtoom‘ white label from Havanna that set the label on the right track.

‘It‘s getting a lot more streamlined now.‘ says shop and label boss Billy Kiltie. ‘We expected Havanna to do a couple of thousand, but it just took off. And the phone‘s never stopped ringing.‘

United Rhythm‘s Paul Wishart knows the technological score. As an itinerant salesman of studio equipment he‘s in a prime position to hear any new keyboard-krazy cuts coming through. So far this has meant releases from TTF and Chill

FM, with the latter‘s third single. the ‘Rejoice EP‘.





“Slam artists Rejuvenation

‘I think we led the way, showed people that it could be done,‘ says Soma's Dave Clarke. Drawing on their hands-on experiences as the Slam DJs and club-runners, and financially cushioned by the existence of their own studio. Soma made innovation and diversification their watchword. And that word has spread. Dove became One Dove and got a deal with Boy‘s Own. Rejuvenation‘s ‘Work In Progress EP’ has been licensed in Italy on Flying Records and is picking up plays in New York. The upcoming ‘Kettle On The Pan’ from Piece ‘N‘ Jammin‘, the label‘s fifth release, will continue Soma‘s cult of classiness.

‘Dance music and clubs are very underground. Major record companies have got indie-style offshoots, like FFRR at London, but they don‘t have the credibility ofthe true indie . . .‘


John MacLennan used to manage The Ruby Suit and Slice; now he manages Utah Saints and Zero B, but ‘I’ve always wanted to have my own label,‘ he admits. So now he‘s set up two - Hubba Hubba, and the soon-come Vital Records - for those ‘harder than indie guitar‘ sounds. Falkirk-based but with ambitions centred on the horizon or thereabouts, MacLennan has recently been seeking business in the States. Meanwhile, Hubba Hubba‘s grooves, including the debut record from DJs Gibson and Gillespie. have picked up good notices in Europe.

‘We‘re trying to shrug offthe provincial tag. . . Four ofour acts are English. we‘re talking to two Italians, and we’ll probably licence in stuff from other countries. . . We’re just a good dance label. it doesn‘t matter where we‘re from.‘

Progress EP’ continues the label‘s reputation for remaining one step ahead and two steps sideways. . United Rhythm Recordings first : release remains their best, capturing Scotland’s numberonetechnoheads TTF in such blistering form that Clubscene promptly signed the band to ; launch theirown label. Chill FM are the i label’s big hopes now with their ‘Elevation’ and ‘Reioice’ singles proving that the band can match any of their English counterparts for bpm, catchiness and cheesiness. Having long been the hardened

_ Choice cuts

Forget buying SIam/Reiuvlnatlon’s ‘Eterna/Ibo’ (hailed as progenitor of the now ubiquitous ‘progressive’ scene), it’s long been unavailable, as has Dove’s magnificent and dreamy ‘Fallen’ which landed the band a symbiotic relationship with DJ Andy Weatherall and a big moolah contract

with the prestigious Boys Own label. Search hard enough, though, and you should locate Soma 3, G-7’s ‘Seduced', a bongo-charged tribal thumper, while Soma 4, Reiuvination‘s funk-dub work-out ‘The Work In

i iourneymen ofthe Scottish rave scene, it was no surprise that TTF’s debut for

Clubscene Records, the

: plano-screamer ‘Real Love‘, was

picked up by Jive and crashed into the Scottish Top 40. Further Clubscene

releases have tended to fall into line i with the magazine‘s populist appeal

though both Suburban Delay’s ‘Energy Rush' and Area 51 ‘s ‘Let It Move You’ have both shown sufficient warp and weft of a familiar pattern to justify purchase.

23rd Precinct and their underground offshoot, Limbo, are the current toast of ‘hooi choon’ town, as the national success of Gypsy’s hypnotic ‘l Trance You’ looks set to be bettered by a Top 75 chart entry for Deep Piece‘s ‘Bup Bup Birri Birri’, a truly intoxicating slab of deep underground house courtesy of Glasgow DJ Michael Kilkie. Surprisingly enough, the label’s first release was actually from Glasgow hip hop act 2 Tone Committee, and was followed by D-Tex’s rave-u-like ‘Equator' and ‘Natural High’ EPs. Since

Havanna’s ground-breaking ‘Schtoom’ however, the creative pace has been set and they’re churning them out quicker than a speeding milkmaid. Nevertheless, every one has been a valuable addition to your collection Havanna‘s follow-up ‘Shift/High And

Dry’, Sublime’s ‘Fight The Feeling’, the t . aforementioned Gypsy and Deep Piece

records all plough the ‘progressive’ furrow in style. Falkirk’s Fuse Records gave us a

couple of rather anonymous releases

from Drum And Bass Style and DJ Mink

And Blue Eyes before resurfacing with a

vengeance as the Hubba Hubba label. Both The Pressure’s ‘Spirit’ and Dub Commission’s ‘Lost In House’ fuse the spirit of steely Detroit techno with hard house British dub-style to great effect. (Calvin Bush)

sponsored by BACARDI RUM

The List 6— 19 November 1992 G3

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