Kids In Tracksuits

These Kids are storming out the releases thick and fast. Since forming in 2002 in Nottingham, Andy and Matt started making beats together. What they produce is something like vintage NY over dubs and scratched up mixes in the fashion of those like Cold Cut.

This new eight track EP gets going with Bugged, a track which has a bit of a feel like one of those DJ tools, i.e. the beat is a bit static and all the instrumentation is provided by a distorted bass tome and sounds and vocal samples scratched in. For me this isn’t the best these guys have produced and doesn’t really have the feel of a finished track. As the track progresses it morphs into a drum and bass track and in this genre sounds a lot better.

Kids In Tracksuits - New Kids Rock The Block CD [Dealmaker]
01. Bugged
02. Head To The Woods
03. The Thing With Two Heads
04. We Make It Rock!!
05. Real Axe
06. Safe Place To Play
07. Dust
08. Uprock Theme

A scratched intro from a kid’s story record opens up Head To The Woods another track which undoubtedly displays Andy’s cutting skills, but now is laking a touch as this type of track sounds a bit dated. A great selection of samples go into making this soundscape, but as before it does feel like something is missing, or indeed, that the samples still sound individual and don’t totally combine for the final result.

The Thing With Two Heads utilises a nice flute sample which is chopped nicely and is rather different from the upbeat electro rocking I was expecting from the Kids In Tracksuits. This is a downbeat and melancholy instrumental which would suit as music to reflect to, but as with the previous tracks does sond a bit like an excerpt from an unfinished beat tape.
We Make It Rock!! Is the most complete of the tracks with a heavy bassline and bouncy feel of the Sucker MC’s beat that is obviously designed for a club. The track’s arrangement develops throughout the track and is sequenced with reference to intensity and building to a crescendo. This track doesn’t work for me though as after a while I found the slightly acid bass line and repetitive ‘If you wanna make it hot, then make it rough’ vocal sample annoying part way in.

Real Axe is an instrumental in the Big Beat tradition with a relaxing vibe, but some of the vocal samples are a bit abstract to be placed next to each other and I’m left wondering what the producers were trying to tell me. Safe Place To Play follows in largely the same vein as does the penultimate track Dust. I guess some of this doesn’t sound new is that many of the beat samples will be familiar even if they are chopped and sequenced differently to the original.

The whole CD rounds off with Uprock Theme. This is one of the better tracks and is from a Radio 1 live session, for which I guess they pulled out all the stops. To see them live must be a bit like the Chemical Brothers or The Prodigy or acts of that ilk, but by this time I was a bit non-plussed with the offering and whilst I could enjoy it, I had actually had enough.

I’m sure there are people who still go for this, as I myself find some fantastic snippets in here, but as a record to just put on and chill to it doesn’t really work, and if you were to play this out you would have to be very careful which bits you chose so as to not destroy the vibe on the dancefloor.

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