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Ninety
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32 of 33 people found the following review helpful
on 17 May 2001
Perhaps one of the most important techno albums of all-time.
Despite having disappeared into relative obscurity within recent years, today's UK club scene would be very different without 808 State's influence. We're now a couple of generations removed from the "Madchester" explosion and the fledgling Ibiza pilgrimages of the late 1980s and early 1990s, but 808 State's influence remains.
As their peers continued to churn out repetitive, uninspiring Latino house music, 808 State refined their innovative blend of acid house, Detroit techno, ambient, jazz, hip-hop, disco and rock. Despite a couple of low-key (but nevertheless groundbreaking) albums on Creed Records and a devoted following in their native Manchester, it wasn't until the awesome, gorgeously melodic and uplifting "Pacific State" hit the shores of Ibiza that people began to sit up and take notice. Not least 80s uber-producer Trevorn Horn, who immediately signed them to his cult ZTT Records label.
"Ninety" succeeded on two levels. Not only did it have the power to crowd out the dancefloors, but it was also something you could chill out to on your stereo at home. Whilst this duality is common (if not essential) in this day and age, it was a very rare thing back in 1989.
Part of 808 State's success lay in the diversity of experience of each of the group's members. Graham Massey was an experienced jazz musician and electronic experimentalist, Martin Price ran his own record shop, whilst Andrew Barker and Darren Partington were two fresh-faced young DJs who gigged endlessly around Manchester. Despite having left the band a few years previously, Gerald Simpson's appreciation of funk and soul also left its mark upon 808 State.
To this day, "Ninety" remains a refreshing, exciting slice of progressive dance. After all, it was considerably ahead of its time upon its initial release in 1989. From the sparkling album opener "Magical Dream" (a casual pro-'E' anthem), through the dirty jazz-funk of "Ancodia", the iconic "Pacific" and blissed-out ambience of "Sunrise", "Ninety" pretty much maps out the evolution of British dance music right through to the mid-1990s.
Anyone out there interested in exploring the formative years of British progressive dance should pick this album up as a matter of course. Then check out S'Express's "Original Soundtrack", Bomb the Bass's "Uncharted Territory", LFO's "Frequencies", Orbital's "Green Album", Orb's "Adventures Beyond the Ultraworld" and Future Sound of London's "Accelerator". To listen to them is to experience history in the making.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 3 September 2011
If you didn't like music, you wouldn't be here. If you have any digits left to tap, you'll have worn them out by the end of this album! By far and away the only 808 album to have. No dischordant and un-harmoniuos drivel, (see their other albums for this!), this album is gold! I have cycled many hundreds of miles and danced in some silly places to some of these tunes, yet as a music-lover per se, I still get great pleasure, and a little nostalgic about this album. Buy it now before your ears heal over! Is that effusive enough?
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on 28 December 2014
Classic Album great additional tracks. If you love the mighty 808 State then this would make a great Christmas treat for someone.
P.S where is cubic? ? lol
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6 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on 29 November 1999
808 State's album "90" was originally release in 1989. I idn't happen to buy the album until 1996 but the first track that I recognized was PACIFIC 202. Originally released on QUADRASTATE this track is well known the world over for introducing Ambient-House to the UK chart scene. As far as the rest of the album goes it is one of the best techno albums of all time by my opinion. Sparse Ambient landscapes in tracks like MAGICAL DREAM and SUNRISE and classic funky moments in ANCODIA and hardcore-Orch stabs in the hi quality techno track COBRA BORA, one of the best techno tracks to come out of the 80's. DONKEY DOCTOR continues the strange sample theology and samples PACIFIC 202's chords. "Welcome to jacko's Center" it announces. You feel like you are entering a commercial break. The album finishes with the industrial-esque FAT SHADOW (POINTY HEAD MIX). Overall, 808 State seem to have made the blue print to dance music that will continue to inspire well into the next century, if not forever, this album being an example.
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 3 June 2011
HAD THE ORIGINAL ALBUM BACK IN THE DAY AND LOST TRACK OF IT DURING A HAZE OF PARTIES IN THE EARLY NINETIES. FOUND IT AGAIN, AND WITH EXTRA TRACKS, SO WITH HAZY DAYS BEHIND ME NOW I SHOULD BE ABLE TO HANG ON TO IT THIS TIME.
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4 of 18 people found the following review helpful
on 1 June 2002
These three lads would go onto to produce some of the most memorable electronic and dance music of the early 90's, but for now they seemed just to be working their way upto it. Contains an early version of 'Pacific' which is a must for all fans though.
Other highlights include the speedy 'Cobra Bora' and the female vocal led 'Anaconda'.
But it does lack consistency and there is no flow to the album. It just sounds as if it has been thrown together.
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