Being a sad old man who spends his Sundays gardening and dreaming of roast potatoes, I tend to listen to Radio 4 on my drive to & from the station every day. However last night I was coming home a bit late so Radio 4 had switched from news & comment (Today & PM FTW!) to horrible plays. I therefore took the pretty radical step of jumping over to Zane Lowe on Radio 1 and within seconds I was very glad that I had.
The first tune I heard was a mash-up of Public Enemy’s iconic Bring The Noise (from the genre defining It Takes A Nation Of Millions…) with DJ Zinc’s 138 Trek (which I’d not heard before). I know that bootlegs or mash-ups are incredibly passée, but when they sound as fresh & vibrant as this, I couldn’t care if they’re as cool as John McCain’s wardrobe. Bring The Noise is truly one of the greatest hip-hop tracks of all time and is one that most people would be wary of messing with, especially as it’s already been reworked so well once before – admittedly by Public Enemy themselves, with a little help from their friends Anthrax (I don’t think any track excited my teenage self as much as this did, except perhaps for Rage Against The Machine’s Killing In The Name Of).
Wicked Devil, for that is the name of the genius responsible for the 138 Noise bootleg, obviously had no such fears. He manages to make the track sound utterly relevant and, if anything, gives the lyrics as much of a boost for the 21st Century as Anthrax did for the 1990s. If it wasn’t for the fact that these days I’m more at home on the sofa, watching The West Wing with a glass of red wine (like I am right now) 138 Trek would have me throwing myself round the nearest dance-floor like, well, like a vaguely coordinated 30-something.
I’ve no idea whether 138 Noise is available yet, though the fact that Zane Lowe is playing it suggests that it soon will be. But if I do track it down (or if any of you can help me in my quest), you can be certain that I’ll be Bringing The Noise, just like I did in 1991. With The West Wing on in the background of course.