"Ohh this tune.. literally made me jump off the sofa when I heard it first and knocked the laptop everywhere.. Perfect for a friday night." http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00x7h26
- Annie Mac / BBC Radio 1
"Loving this release! Played "Criticize" on this weeks radio show: http://www.beatsinspace.net/playlists/548
- Tim Sweeney / Beats In Space
"Maxxi Soundsystem duo Sam Watts and Neal Lewis have been pottering around Brighton and London for the best part of 10 years, impressing all with their sparkling DJ sets and an impressive armoury of bespoke re-edits. Now, nearly a decade after first joining forces, they’ve finally made their vinyl debut.
If you’re going to take a decade to get round to making a record, you better make it a good one. Fortunately for Watts and Lewis, this two-tracker for Kojak Giant Sounds is pretty damn nifty. As debuts go, it’s a beauty. Regular Kojak Giant Sounds buyers will know what to expect: dancefloor-friendly productions that blur the boundaries between re-edit, remix and original production. The label tends not to release bog standard re-edits, and these edits/remixes/reworks – call them what you will – are anything but ordinary.
The real killer here is “Criticize”, a version of Alexander O’Neal’s 1987 cut of the same name that turns the smooth original inside out. Gone are the majority of O’Neal’s slick vocals and the past-their-prime Jam & Lewis synth grooves. Instead, we get a chugging, dubbed-out electrofunk groove that morphs into thrilling old skool house jam half way through. The sheer excitement and impact of that drop can’t be underestimated; it’s a bona fide killer. It turns what could have been a fairly standard cut into a genuine banger.
Flipside “His Hat Was His Home” doesn’t quite have the same impact, but it’s still pretty hot. Here, Bill Wolfer’s Roger Trouton style remake of “Papa Was A Rolling Stone” gets a Maxxi makeover. The duo put more emphasis on the sequenced bassline, add some dub effects and tighten up the beats in a version that’s judged to perfection."
- Matt Anniss / Juno Plus
""Kojak Giant Sounds kick the year off in style as well with another hot slice of wax from Maxxi Soundsystem. Alexander O'Neal's "Criticize" & a crazy vocoder-heavy version of "Papa Was A Rolling Stone" get updated for Y2K11 - do not miss!"
- Phonica Records
"Love the buildup on Criticize, plenty of dips and enough feel good in there for me. I'll be playing this one!"
- Jacques Renault / DFA
"Absolute BOMB, huge tip on this remix/edit of former SOS Band member Alexander O Neal’s classic- droppin very soon on the might of Kojak Giant Sounds! It rips the cheese out of the original and tuns it into a nasty house jam, if this remix was done back then it would have been a house classic. Amazing flourishes added on top with dubby synths and old school perc keep it fitting the 87′ vibe. Maxxi Soundsystem have been around for 10 years rocking dancefloors around their home town of Brighton; re-editing at least half the tracks they play and are only now releasing their own material! watch out!"
"Criticize" is a killer...don't have words to say how much I love it.
- Nicholas / No More Hits
"Lead track Criticize is an absolute corker. The more astute of you may have realised that its a edit of the monster Alexander O’Neal club jam of the same name, but dragged kicking and screaming up in to a 21st century disco, complete with a throbbing 80s power bassline, housey keys and punctuated by those trademark soulful vocals. We’re so into this it hurts."
- Contort Yourself
"Brighton's Maxxi Soundystem ensemble drop their debut 12" on Kojak, Finland's finest. We were sent this a few weeks ago and it didn't quite fit in the bunch of moody midtempo sets we were doing for a few blogs etc, so I almost forgot about this release. It's quite a departure from the usual fare we cover on these pages, as we're dealing with peaktime disco fodder here, drawing heavily on cheeky 90s tunes (think wailing diva, electronic tom drums and euro synths). As bad as that might sound, Maxxi Soundsystems' deep and heavy rub of Alexander O'Neal's Critize works a real treat. While the original track is a genuine slice of late 80s cheeze (check out the original video here, it's awesome in a very twisted way) the rerub is a cool piece of modern boogie. The flip is cool too, but it's all about this track for me. Excellent record by one the coolest and most forward thinking labels around."
- Sleazy Beats Recordings
"Love both tracks. "His Hat Was His Home" has been a favourite in my sets of late."
- Damon Martin / Disco Bloodbath
"Yeah - I rocked this at Bar25 over the summer, it went down well!"
- The Runners / Dirt Crew Recordings & Welt Recordings
"Loving the Alexander O'neil cover version.... defo done it justice. Great stuff, will support also really feelin the Papa Was A Rolling Stone joint too - great release!" Keep em coming and keep me posted. RSPKT"
- Tristan da Cunha / 2020 Recordings
"A serious refix... Just works so well!"
- Nathan 'Detroit' Thursting / Southern Fried Records)
"DOPE SHIT!!!!! Criticize is the tune for me. 100% playing that tune in my show and on every dancefloor."
- Shaddy / Soul Industries
"Keep on churning out good releases & I'll keep on playing them!"
- Leftside Wobble
"His Hat.." takes Papa Was A Rolling Stone and aims it straight at the dancefloor. Lovely track, will def play."
- Pablo Contraband