“Warning: 16 hottest dance hits. Rave attack imminent”
I half-expected to see Patrick Allen of Protect and Survive fame on the front of this Telstar selection. Rave Alert was one of many compilations released in the wake of the genre’s early 90s commercial boom. It takes its name from the second tune, Praga Khan’s frantic warehouse banger. All sirens and whistles. Total carnage and annihilation.
Back to your childhood: Smart Es riotous Sesame’s Treet and Urban Hype’s breakbeat classic, A Trip To Trumpton. The latter was produced by suitably named Jack Smooth. Rave Alert shares some common ground with The Best Of Dance ’92; Snap’s Rhythm Is A Dancer appears on the latter in its low key Purple Hazed 7″ edit but here it’s the longer and spacier Purple Hazed Mix. Next comes The Shamens’s dirty hard-edged classic L.S.I. (Freaked Out V1.02) with the handbuilt reconstruction courtesy of Eddie Richards. You can find that one on the UK 12″ single. A boss groove. Slotting in afterwards: SL2’s skatter mutant step On A Ragga Tip and Altern-8’s pummelling Hypnotic ST-8 (ST-8 Of Art Edit).
Rewind with KWS and the torch song torture of Please Don’t Go. Adamski’s star shines in a different light on the lumpy Back To Front while Messiah transform This Mortal Coil into a paranoid vortex of melt-with-you beats. Check out Naughty By Nature’s vintage moaning freestyle O.P.P. Deep Throat for the 1990s. Elsewhere there’s Rachel Wallace’s slamming Tell Me Why, on Suburban Base, before she sang backing vocals for the Stereo MCs. Meanwhile Jonny L’s Hurt You So is mysterious and dark, almost Burial-like. It’s eclipsed by Acen II’s spooky and blunted Trip II The Moon (The Darkside). You only live twice; skip 2 Unlimited’s messy Workaholic and bask in the blissed-out trip of Finitribe and Forevergreen. Justin Robertson at his peak. “People used to dream about the future”.
Altern-8 – Hypnotic ST-8 (ST-8 Of Art Edit)
Finitribe – Forevergreen (Forevermost Excellent Edit)
Lest we forget
Acen – Trip II The Moon (The Darkside)