Saturday, March 01, 2008
the groove is still in the heart
To this day Deee-lite's 1990 smash hit, "Groove is in the Heart" will always get the party started on the dance floor, yet most folks seem to think of the group that brought us this party classic as a one-hit wonder or a nostalgic "guilty pleasure." This couldn't be farther from the truth! World Clique, their debut LP, (an underrated masterpiece in my opinion) is an flawless blend of the late 80's/early 90's electronic dance music scene, DJing / samples, "real" instruments and unpretentiously fun & soulful vocals. Not a particularily innovative pop formula, you say? Perhaps, but it was a pretty new idea at the time and very few people have successfully pulled it off since then. Aside from say, Portishead and a few others, most attempts at this deceptively-simple hybrid-genre end up sounding like that horrible "smooth jazz" shit they play at the dentist with a generic breakbeat and some innocuous female vocals thrown on top of it. Meanwhile Deee-Lite's got Maceo Parker, Fred Wesley, Q-Tip and Bootsy Collins making sure everything's hella funky. Dig it, fool!
Unfortunately, their sound differed a bit too much from generic house music to be fully embraced by hardcore ravers (still an accepted term back then) but also was perhaps too "techno" for the ever fickle more-mainstream audience. I think they may have also got in some legal trouble over some of the samples they used. Perhaps as a result, the two albums that followed were a little half-assed in comparison (and isn't it all too often that way!) but still sport some fun tracks. I highly recommend World Clique as well as their remix album, Sampladelic Relics & Dancefloor Oddities. If those aren't too far out for you, pick up the other two as well. And you needn't feel one bit "guilty" enjoying 'em.
Now on to the music. From my (absurdly) extensive library of hella out-of-print Deee-Lite 12" singles I've put together this fairly assessable mix tape of alternate versions and b-sides for your enjoyment. And believe it or not, I'm a heterosexual man.
2. What Is Love (Mr Aurel's Twisted Tribal Beats Dubapella)
3. Riding on through
4. Power Of Love (Sampla-Delic Remix)
5. How Do You Say...love (A Deee-Licious Pal Joey Dub)
6. Runaway (greyhound extended mix)
7. Power Of Love (Zanzibar Guitar Dub)
8. Pussycat Meow (The Meow Mix)
9. Groove Is In The Heart (jelly jam beats / meeting of the minds mix)
10. pal joey's shake your body to the beat mix
11. Build The Bridge (Jungle Groove Mix)
12. picnic in the summertime (guru mix)
13. elevator music / beatapella
14. Power Of Love (Pal Joey's Dub Mix)
15. rubber lover (stretched out extended mix)
16.Pussycat Meow (Murk Bonus Dub)
DJs: now is the time to dig through those old crates and pull out some of these near-forgotten gems! if you're too hip and/or embarrassed you could always "IDM" 'em up with some glitchy distortion or a buncha' envelope filters or whatever it is you kids do these days...