That beautiful period in the mid- to late-'90s, when Ninja Tune could do no wrong, was halcyon indeed. The whole world of beat culture seemed wide open: thick, luscious and positively banging rhythm tracks didn't have to be just for dancing, they didn't have to be stupid and they didn't even have to be that rhythmic. They just had to be good and fresh and dangerous. In the same way that Mo' Wax laid down the law on British hip-hop ephemera, Ninja Tune staked out their own territory to the left of the dial, holding forth a progressive, fractured take on jazzy, sample-heavy funk that wasn't afraid to have a healthy sense of humor. These two double-disc sets are the first for-real retrospective compilations the label has produced (the remix set actually bests the first set, as it provides a much broader overview of the entire scene in and around the label). Though such a willingness to look backward might indicate declining fortunes, Ninja Tune is still quite a vital label, though maybe not as revolutionary as they once were. Fans of the label know what to expect, but for those unfamiliar, if you've ever wondered about what kept adventurous beat manipulators in business while Big Beat dominated the "electronica" headlines, look no further.
We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Orlando Weekly. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Orlando Weekly, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.
Email us at email@example.com.
Support Local Journalism.
Join the Orlando Weekly Press Club
Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.
Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.
Join the Orlando Weekly Press Club for as little as $5 a month.