Nostalgia. Look back to go forward. Every thing that was old is new again. Relive that feeling. Music moves in cycles. Spring is almost here. Renewal. Ect ect ect.
Now that we got all of the cliché sayings out of the way to describe this weeks “throwback” mix, lets get to the point: The General Marcus Visionary, widely recognized the world over as the ambassador for Jungle Music out of Toronto, is very rarely credited for being the cornerstone in this city for another major UK music movement: Garage. We have spoken in depth in the past about Marcus’s involvement in the storied Flirt Collective and their responsibility in exposing and educating Toronto with the emerging sounds of UKG and 2 Step in the late 90’s via their club nights, mix tapes and radio shows. So today we will just skip all of that and get right to the music.
Marcus obtained a digitized copy of one of his early tapes recorded sometime between 1997 and 1998 (Marcus can’t remember exactly, too many late nights) and we are sharing it with you in all of it’s low fi, vinyl crackling, tape transferred glory. We even kept the 20 second gap of silence in the very middle of the mix to remind you that you had to flip the tape over back in the day.
The best part about mixes from the past is that they present the music in the context of when it came out, rather than an “old school” set that cherry picks the best tracks from a broader period and puts them together without consideration for the timeline of when the tracks became available originally. This is a mix of Marcus playing a set of all the records he had gotten fresh in the few weeks leading up to the recording of this mix, rather than a retrospective of hot tracks from the “golden era of Garage”. A perfect snapshot of the period, when the bump and swing of four to the floor Garage was just starting to see the broken elements of skipping 2 Step beginning to creep into the music, all anchored of course by the ever present sound system bass line. Well known (fresh at the time) classics from the likes of Dem 2 and Bump & Flex appear alongside forgotten white labels that even Marcus can’t remember.
Catch Marcus for a small and intimate BUMP special event in celebration of his birthday this Friday March 20th at Bassline Music Bar alongside fellow BUMP residents Tasc, Lush and hosted as always by Plain English for more of the same both old and brand new.