Few artists have made a greater, more lasting impression on dance music than has the venerable Rennie Pilgrem. In the mid 90s, Rennie all but invented the sound that we know today as Nu Skool breaks (in fact he coined the term 'nu skool breaks''). He is the founder of one of the most respected labels in the business, Thursday Club Recordings, now in its 18th year. He is one half of the celebrated NuFunk project known as The Bush Doctors with Fingerlickin co-founder, Jem Panufnik. And he is the man behind the acclaimed "Street Legal" series, Rennie's homage to 1970s funk. Those are just a few highlights from a long list of accomplishments in a 21-year career that has made Rennie a luminary of the international scene.
For his appearance on the RIPEcast this week, Rennie gives us a sampling of the newest sound emerging from the London underground. Some call it "Nu Jungle", others refer to it as "Jungle Breaks" or "140". Rennie admits he's not sure what to call it exactly but says, "Think of old school rave, early Jungle, future sounds with the speed of Dub Step and you are close."
Enjoy this genre-bending trip with one of the great pioneers in dance music, Boys and Girls.
1. ʻSo Seriousʼ - Bojcot Selectah (Pressa Remix) TOP DRAWER DIGITAL
2. ʻFast Motion 10ʼ - Pressa TOP DRAWER DIGITAL
3. ʻProphecyʼ - Yoof UNKOWN
4. ʻHillbilly Hideoutʼ - Lucas TOP DARWER DIGITAL
5. ʻBadman Vibesʼ - Requiem ANOMALY
6. ʻHere We Goʼ - Rennie Pilgrem TCR
7. ʻEyesʼ Feat Coppa Matta (Cut La Roc Mix)
8. ʻHit Datʼ - Jurassik & Codec (Rennie Pilgrem Mix) SUPATRONIX
9. ʻFind Youʼ - Audiobotz Feat Ray Isaac (Cut La Roc Mix) HO_JU
10. ʻBefore Timeʼ - Vinyl Junky & Requiem ANOMALY
11. ʻRefresh The Beatsʼ - Pilgrim & Madcap ANOMALY
12. ʻFear Factorʼ - Requiem ANOMALY
13. ʻNeed To Beʼ - Matta (Afghan Headspin Mix) ROCSTAR
14. ʻOne Timeʼ - Rennie Pilgrem TCR
15. ʻRetro Vibesʼ - Pilgrim ANOMALY
16. 'Reflection' - Kranky & Lethal ANOMALY
17. ʻNocturnalʼ - Morcee TOP DRAWER DIGITAL
18. ʻEricaʼs Fixʼ - Rennie Pilgrem TCR
19. ʻJunglismʼ - Nolige & Decepter TOP DRAWER DIGITAL
20. ʻParallel Universeʼ - Kranky & Lethal ANOMALY
21. ʻCrusaderʼ - Emalkay
A little more background on Rennie Pilgrem.....
Son of a jazz trumpeter, Rennie started life playing tenor saxophone and sitting with his Father’s various bands around Southern England. Later after getting heavily into ‘black’ music he formed various funk bands playing sax and keyboards. Rennie's musical infatuation took a big twist when he heard the sounds coming out of Detroit in the late ‘80s. After making rudimentary House music on the wrong kind of drum machines with soon to be Rhythm Section members Ellis Dee, Richard Thake and Nick ‘Newton Scott, they had interest from (amongst others) the new British house label Guerrilla. Preferring to release their own material they formed Rhythm Section Recordings and became part of the wave of breakbeat house that went on to become known as Hardcore in the early ‘90’s.
Their third release ‘Comin’ On Strong’ was a anthem and would have charted top 40 if they’d known about ‘bar codes’ on records. With Ellis Dee the crowned king of rave Djs, Rhythm Section played at pretty much every main party between ’90-92’. On the same bill as The Prodigy, Moby, Altern 8, Shades Of Rhythm and Bizzare Inc. Their music was very big with pretty much every major DJ at the time, Fabio, Grooverider, Ray Keith, Carl Cox etc etc
As the drugs sped up, so did the music. When the bpms reached a ridiculous 150, Rhythm Section decided to call it a day and separately went back to making music at House tempo.
In 1993 Rennie founded Thursday Club Recordings (TCR) as a medium for putting out his own material. His first few releases were funky house with a smattering of breaks lurking in the background. Recording now as ‘Thursday Club’ he had a big tune with ‘Thursday Theme’ which was chased by Virgin. A chance PA in Florida was another turning point in 1994. Hearing a thriving breaks scene at its original tempo galvanized Rennie into going back to pure breaks.
'A Place Called Acid' (1995) was one of the biggest breakbeat tunes around. With his pedigree as a member of the legendary Rhythm Section in the rave days Rennie's remixing skills are much in demand. He also set up 'Friction' with Adam Freeland, Tayo and Ian Williams which pretty much kick-started the whole 'Nu Skool' scene. He also coined the term 'Nu Skool' along with his fellow Friction partners as a way of describing their music.
He's released records on Whole9yards, City Of Angels, Chrysalis/EMI, Mob and China Records to name but a few. He's collaborated with many top producers including legend Arthur Baker (on 'Like No Other', 'Hey Funky People' and ‘Face It’), BLIM (on that massive 'Eskimo' track and the equally huge ‘2Freaks’) and with Meat Katie (on 'Rubba' and 'Atmosphere'). Following on from the huge ‘Black Widow’, Rennie also decided it was time to go back into the studio with Uberzone and their follow-up ‘Cous Cous’ received support from the likes of everyone from the Plump DJ’s to Pete Tong and Sasha!
He continues to DJ all over the world and wow audiences with his dancefloor-friendly funk-infused breaks.
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For more information on Rennie visit:
RIPEcast artwork and podomatic page design by Jem Panufnik (www.jempanufnik.com)