Channel 4 On The Road, Italian Dance, Ashley Beedle, and more.
Sheffield On The Map Again
With connections to kitsch revivalists All Seeing I and subversive beat combo Add N to (X), I Monster are no strangers to chart success. The group's current single, "Daydream in Blue," released this week in the U.K. on the Instant Karma label, gives a nod to '60s beatnik and a wink to contemporary loungecore, and is currently receiving wide support.
I Monster are Dean Honer (also a core member of All Seeing I) and Jared Gosling, who met four years ago in Sheffield -- a city noted for its strong contributions to the British electronic music scene and also the home town of Pulp, Moloko, and Nightmares on Wax.
A year after making a low-key debut (only 1,000 test pressings were issued) with I Monster's first album in 1999, Honer was experiencing huge success with All Seeing I's album "Pickled Eggs and Sherbert," and the I Monster project was shelved. When All Seeing I prematurely disbanded that same year, attention was focused on I Monster.
"Daydream," which originally received a limited release on Cercle Records (a label owned by Honer and Add N to (X)'s Barry 7) now features mixes by Fat Truckers and Medicine, as well as a new I Monster mix.
Channel 4 Hits The Road
U.K. TV station Channel 4 will stage a four-stop summer tour of open-air dance music and movie events around the upcoming England vs. Australia football matches, featuring Fatboy Slim, Paul Oakenfold, Talvin Singh, and Groove Armada.
The tour will launch July 6 with Fatboy Slim and Groove Armada, who will play a huge free event on Brighton Beach that is expected to draw 20,000 clubbers. This will be followed by an event in Bristol on July 20 and Bradford on August 3, where Mercury Prize Winner Talvin Singh will headline. The tour will culminate at London's Clapham Common with DJ Paul Oakenfold.
Italians Keep Up The Pressure
Another top class cut from Italy -- in the form of "Flawless" by the Ones -- is currently doing the rounds on D.W.B.O.Y.S. (Dance Will Be On Your Side), the dance subsidiary of the Naples/London based Bustin' Loose label.
The D.W.B.O.Y.S. production team, which includes Planet Funk producer Alex Neri, is responsible for the mouth watering Phunk Investigation (main) mix of the track. Label manager Max Passante says, "We own the license for the Italian territory and we are currently working on the club promotion strategy in U.K., Italy, and Spain." Expect this one take Ibiza by storm.
Strut Issue Ashley Beedle Re-edits
U.K. independent Strut Records is continuing its series of 12-inch exclusive re-edits of classic underground dance tracks by selected international producers. Brit producer Ashley Beedle, who also records as Black Science Orchestra and as part of X-Press 2, will release his interpretations of Isaac Hayes' "I Can't Turn Around" / Brainstorm "Journey To The Light," which will be released June 25 in the U.K. If "I Can't Turn Around" sounds familiar, refer to your Chicago house annals, as the original 1976 release was also covered by Farley "Jackmaster" Funk and J.M. Silk.
Ministry Chill Out Some More
Ministry of Sound continues the ongoing vogue for compilations with the release of the second installation in its Chillout Series next week (June 11). The new album, which features I Monster's "Daydream In Blue," Kinobe's hugely popular "Slip Into Something More Comfortable," and Zero 7's sublime "Give It Away," will not disappoint.
The Original "Chillout Session" album, released in February this year, has sold more than half a million copies and remains in the U.K. charts four months after its release.
MTV Goes Euro With 'Videoclash'
Following the local success of MTV U.K. series "Videoclash," MTV Networks is rolling out the interactive show across Europe. It recently premiered on MTV European, MTV Nordic, and MTV NL. MTVf will follow suit on July 2.
"Videoclash" is a live show which allows viewers to vote for the videos they want played via text messages or the MTV Web site. The European MTV channels will maintain the same format as the U.K. show, but will focus on local artists in addition to international favorites.
The show has consistently been one of the top-rated programs on MTV U.K. since its launch in February. At its peak it received 35,998 mobile phone text messages in one day, and as many as 3,200 Web site visits per day.