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Basement Jaxx
The Singles
XL Recordings

4 out of 5

Basement Jaxx : The Singles
by: Jack Gibson

There is something reassuring about a greatest hits album. Along with the obvious inclusion of the artist’s best known material, the listener is spared experimental and filler tracks, usually used on previous albums to make the numbers up. Greatest hits albums rarely disappoint, as they have been purchased by those already familiar with their content. With the exception of new releases, the albums usually feature tracks which have enjoyed weeks of chart success, allowing the artist and production company to know that they are on to a winner. BASEMENT JAXX: THE SINGLES is no different.

The duo behind the JAXX, Felix Buxton and Simon Ratcliffe, have come a long way since the days of throwing illegal parties at a Mexican restaurant in Brixton during the mid-90’s. Since then the pair have released three albums, received two Mercury Prize nominations and have won a Brit and Grammy award for their efforts. Within the past decade they have established themselves as a dance music act with true persistence.

Following on from the success of REMEDY, KISH KASH and ROOTY, THE SINGLES is a composition of their most diverse releases to date. Featuring dance classics such as ‘Where’s your ! head at? ’ and ‘Romeo’ to the newly released ‘Oh my gosh’, the duo have compiled an album not only for JAXX fans, but for all fans of the genre.

Displaying a strength and depth beyond that of most dance acts, the pair have fused a number of styles from the genre, making their music fresh and uplifting. Tracks which many listeners have failed to credit the duo for, such as ‘Bingo Bango’ and ‘Do your thing’ are better known in association with TV adverts, yet highlight their unique and broad distributions amongst both TV and radio. As with the individual singles, the album maintains a fast tempo-party feel. Weighing in at just under an hour, THE SINGLES rarely pauses for breath or allows its high standards to drop.

Whether it was the duo’s intention to increase their fan base or take the next logical step in their so far successful careers, by releasing a retrospective compilation of their work, they have clearly succeeded.