Given that they released their first 12” nearly 20 years ago, it’s somewhat surprising to find that Cellar Door is the Idjut Boys first “proper” album of original material. There have, of course, been other albums – a 2002 collaboration with Quakerman on Glasgow Underground, 2009’s Rune Lindbeak hook-up as Meanderthals (on which they were rumoured to have done most of the work) and a string of typically dubbed-out disco re-edit collections (Phantom Slasher, Noid etc) – but nothing that could be called a definitive Idjuts album.
“Patience pays – apply that now and you will succeed.”
So concludes the opening of a treasure hunting guidebook this writer peruses while waiting for esteemed DJs and production duo the Idjut Boys to arrive in the boozer. It could well be a maxim for the pair during their last 20 or so years in the musical game as, at last, the birth of their debut album Cellar Door is almost here.
Bask in a taste of what to expect from Cellar Door, the longer-than-the-longest-thing-possible overdue debut album from Idjut Boys, with this free download of “Going Down.”
Five years is a long time in the world of electronic music. As anyone who has ever attempted to run a record label will tell you, half a decade can seem like an eternity. Congratulations, then, to Paul Murphy, whose dedication has ensured that the Claremont 56 label has arrived at its fifth birthday not only in tact, but seemingly in rude health.
ZE Records cut an incredibly cool dash in the late 70′s. A label dedicated to the more esoteric side of pop, it harnessed New York’s sense of reckless abandon and combined new wave and disco talents in a perfect way. Before Talking Heads and A Certain Ratio, ZE put new wave talent together with Chic producer Bob Blank and a host of session gods to make something unique and very fun.
And now, hip as ever, ZE have extended the hand of cool to Europe’s edit kings for a timely fiddle with some deliciously off-kilter material. The calibre of the remixers on this compilation is a testament to the cultish status ZE has built up over the years. Forefather of the edit scene Greg Wilson takes on Was (Not Was)’s “Tell Me That I’m Dreaming” and keeps the original’s breezy vibe and extends it over 6 joyful minutes. Elsewhere, Norwegian genius Todd Terje has fun with Gichy Dan’s Beachwood No 9, bringing the kid-sung chorus to the fore and creating something akin to Stevie Wonder’s “Another Star” in the process.
Kid Creole (aka August Darnell) was a major figure within ZE, with fingers in many of the label’s funkier pies. His own band are represented here with mixes of the classic “Annie, I’m Not Your Daddy” by Soul Mekanik (who in a previous life used to be 90′s Madchester chart-botherers Candy Flip), and The Idjut Boys. Darnell also produced Aural Exciter’s “Spooks In Space”, a brilliantly gonzo bit of marimba-driven boogie that sounds even better after getting the Filthy and Foolish treatment. Pilooski’s workover of “I’m an Indian Too” is pretty radical (a remix rather than a straight up edit, unlike his ubiquitous reworking of Begging), but it’s no bad thing.
Whether you were lucky enough to grow up with ZE, or are completely fresh to their unique catalogue, this collection has tons to offer.
Review: Oliver Keens