Record Label: R&S Records
Lone AKA Matt Cutler presents his sixth album 'Levitate' - which marks a point of departure from the inviting warmth of 'Reality Testing's blend of hip hop and house - the listener is taken on a rapid joy ride through breakbeats that at times will leave them gasping. Following the blockbuster success of previous album 'Reality Testing' (and its all conquering single 'Airglow Fires'), Cutler was left at somewhat of a musical impasse - a six month dry period with no new inspiration that was showing no signs of abating. The 'epiphany' moment came, during an enforced short break from touring in New York.
Bed ridden and feverish for days Cutler started to hallucinate; "It was pretty terrifying - I'd try to go to sleep and lid be hearing these mad rave tunes form in my head. When I recovered I was left with all these ideas for fast, feverish tunes. Following that we went to LA and hung out with friends, driving round all day in the baking sun playing these jungle and hardcore edits - all the best bits from rare jungle tunes, spliced together... There was something that really seemed to fit hearing these ridiculously energetic tracks whilst speeding around LA under perfect blue skies, that was amazingly similar to the music I'd been dreaming up whilst in New York. I couldn't wait to get home and start putting this together - I had a new theme."
The resulting 9 track LP, a breakneck psychedelic journey through hardcore, jungle, ambient, clocks in at a fat-free 34 minutes. "After making a record as mellow as 'Reality Testing' it was important to me to not repeat myself - I wanted it to be an intense blast" Evident in the "punch in the face" heaviness of 'Alpha Wheel' and `Back Tail Was Heavy"Levitate' is in many ways a spikier and more confrontational record than it's predecessor, and all the better for it - however there are moments of familiarity, like the blissed out club bounce of 'Vapour Trail' (sharing DNA with perennial fan fave 'Pineapple Crush') and pause for breath in the hypnotic beauty of 'Morning Birds' and 'Breeze Out'. 'Levitate' finds an inspired Cutler at his most energetic peak delivering a stunning record which feels both vital and contemporary.
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Joseph Abajian (DJ Jab) founded Fat Beats in 1994 with nothing more than a shoestring budget and an earnest obsession with the music, the culture, and the brotherhood of New York’s burgeoning rap scene. What began as a simple vinyl shop in Manhattan’s Lower East Side quickly became an integral hub for artists, both aspiring and established, to convene and collaborate on new projects. Joseph’s timing couldn’t have been more impeccable. When the 90’s cultural zeitgeist – and, in turn, the music industry establishment – chose hip-hop as its new arbiter of cool.
International tourists and touring artists alike flocked to Fat Beats for rare vinyl, kindred spirits, and exclusive in-store performances from Jay Z, Eminem, Gang Starr, Outkast, Slum Village, Mos Def, and more. One thing was clear: the Fat Beats phenomenon could no longer be contained in a single basement shop.
In the late nineties, Abajian proceeded to open new stores in Amsterdam, Tokyo, Los Angeles, and Atlanta. He further expanded the company’s profile to include global distribution and record label branches. Distribution has since proven to be the company’s strongest and most enduring enterprise. Today Fat Beats Distribution stands poised as one of the country’s pre-eminent distributors of vinyl & specialty item records: a proud survivor in an industry now famous for its mortality rate. Despite market fluctuations, technology innovations, and stylistic revolutions, Fat Beats has remained steadfast in its commitment to the timeless vinyl format and to the loyal community who keeps it spinning.
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