Friday, 23 January 2009


Digging in the crates, well the cardboard box under the stairs this morning, looking for something to play in the car on a dark rainy morning I came across this.

Always loved a bit of Mantronix and this album in terms of energy and production detail is a blinder. Innovator, legend etc. are big shouts but Kurtis Mantronix is one of the few people to genuinely alter the path of electronic music.

Schooled in old school hip hop and electro from the school of Arthur Baker and Marley Marl, Mantronix pushed it as far as they could; combining peerless studio production techniques with the traditional electronic sounds of YMO, Kraftwerk and Neu and most tellingly the sonic sculptures of dub reggae. In fact Kurtis has a Jamaican /Canadian heritage, and it’s the simplicity and space in his sound that echoes the rhythmic mastery of dub that sets his work apart.

At the back end of the eighties Mantronix dropper rapper Mc Tee and embarked on a more club friendly direction, releasing proto swingbeat classic, “Got To Have Your Love” . It appears the trail soon went dead as he hung up his slipmats and drifted into obscurity before being rediscovered by London Soul Jazz collective in the 21st Century.

Here’s one of Kurtis el Khaleel aka Kurtis Mantronix’s finest moments:

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