More and more often, original hardcore is finding its way into the digital domain, but if you weren't around way back when, where do you start? We run through our top tracks to get you started...
Justice & Mercy - Soothe My Soul [Mjazz]
Originally released on the Whitehouse label, this certified classic has found its way to digital release via Justice's own Mjazz imprint. Caned to death in the early '90's by everyone from Ray Kieth, to Dougal to Grooverider, "Soothe My Soul" encapsulates all the characteristics of the era; breakbeats, descending bass lines and huge vocal and pads hands in the air moments. It's easy to see why this is a classic across the board. Available via Mjazz Bandcamp.
2 Bad Mice - Waremouse [Moving Shadow]
You can't talk about hardcore without mentioning Moving Shadow. Most of the catalogue is also available digitally as well, which is unusual for early hardcore labels, so a forerunner of sorts in that respect. "Waremouse" is strictly drums and bass, so a proto jungle tune if there ever was one. Available via iTunes.
A Guy Called Gerald - 28 Gun Badboy [Columbia/Juicebox]
Along with the likes of Ibiza Records, A Guy Called Gerald was an early pioneer of the jungle sound. Taking the subby basslines from reggae and mixing with ragga vocals and snappy breakbeats, "28 Gun Badboy" holds its own against any tune of the era. Crunchy, rough around the edges, distorted in places, this has all the DIY charm of the era. Available via iTunes.
One II One - I Want You (Manix Remix) [Reinforced]
I think it is fair to say that Manix is responsible for some of the cleanest productions to grace the scene from 1990 to 1993, and this remix of One II One's "I Want You" is a perfect example. Everything sits so well, from the mixdown, to the choice of samples and the structure of the track. There are many examples that boast the same qualities in the Reinforced back catalogue and many are now available digitally. Get involved. Available via Juno.
Krome & Time - This Sound Is For The Underground (E5 Remix) [Suburban Base]
Suburban Base have plenty of their catalogue in the digital domain so this was an easy choice really. When I think of "ravey" hardcore tunes, this is always at the front of my mind. Hammered on the old skool circuit to this day, "This Sound Is For The Underground (E5 Remix)" is a firing testament to the energy of the original 91/92 attack. Available via iTunes.