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Culinary Dr. Kitchen Group

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Weston Cook
Weston Cook

X-Press 2 - Rock 2 House (Plastikman's Acid House Remix) __HOT__

With just two studio albums under their belt, it seems remarkably premature that London electronic trio X-Press 2 should release a greatest hits. But while they might have only broken through to the mainstream in 2002 with the huge airplay of their hit "Lazy," they've been a regular fixture on the U.K. dance scene since the early '90s, bewitching clubgoers with their unprecedented 12-deck sets and anthemic blend of acid-house, nu-disco, and progressive techno. Three of their lesser-known early club hits appear on this 11-track collection, Raise Your Hands (named after the mantra featured in their original signature tune "London X-Press"), alongside four songs from their debut, Muzikium, three from their 2005 follow-up Makeshift Feelgood, and a brand new track, "Fire," a warped bass-heavy collaboration with hip-hop pioneer Afrika Bambaataa. Of course, the blissfully chilled-out trance of "Lazy," their number two single featuring the brilliantly deadpan vocals of Talking Heads' David Byrne remains their signature track, but anyone hoping for a series of equally laid-back ambient dance tunes will be surprised by the dark and industrial nature displayed elsewhere. "AC/DC" lives up to its title, with its stinging aboriginal rock guitar hooks and addictive samba rhythms which evoke the Prodigy at a Latin street carnival; "Smoke Machine" is a frenetic slice of techno packed with robotic vocals, wailing sirens, and turbo-charged beats, while the epic ten-minute "Rock 2 House" is a hypnotic fusion of Josh Wink-esque squelchy synths, eerie gothic chanting, and pulsating funky house. As energetic as these instrumental-based floor fillers are, X-Press 2's sound is much more palatable when they team up with various guest vocalists and embrace their more melodic side. Psychedelia revivalists the Music's frontman Rob Harvey tones down his usual Robert Plant-ish howlings for a surprisingly restrained vocal on the moody electronica of "Kill 100," which also samples the iconic bassline from Donna Summer's "I Feel Love." "Give It" is a brilliantly uplifting attempt at euphoric gospel-house featuring the unmistakable gravelly voice of Lambchop's Kurt Wagner, while the Polyphonic Spree's Tim DeLaughter pops up on their '80s synth pop-inspired cover version of Everything Is Everything's '70s folk-pop classic "Witchi Tai To." Completists may be disappointed that two of their four U.K. Top 40 singles are omitted ("Say What," "The Sound"), as is "I Want You Back," their underground hit featuring Yello's Dieter Meier, but a bonus disc featuring nine remixes by the likes of Fatboy Slim and Carl Craig, and several of their own reworkings of tracks by Kelis and Missy Elliott might go some way to appease them. They may be known as one-hit wonders but the aptly titled Raise Your Hands' consistently strong dancefloor sensibilities shows that X-Press 2 deserve to be held in the same respect as the much more celebrated Basement Jaxx and Groove Armada.

X-Press 2 - Rock 2 House (Plastikman's Acid House Remix)



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