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Liam Prodigy - Back To Mine

Liam Howlett, Back to Mine

Review by Jack Foley

IndieLondon Rating: 4 out of 5

THE Prodigy’s Liam Howlett jumps on the Back To Mine bandwagon with a diverse collection of records that have inspired him as a music-maker.

The album kicks off in high-octane fashion with the previously unreleased Prodigy track Wake The Fuck Up before careering into the hedonistic head-rush that is Queens of the Stone’s Age’s anthemic Feelgood Hit of the Summer, with its chant-along chorus of ‘nicotine, valium, ecstasy and alcohol’.

Both tracks capably sum up the aggressive, no-holds bar style of Howlett’s music, which has been responsible for such distinctive dance hits as Slap My Bitch Up, Poison and Firestarter.

Yet there are some decent surprises in store, making this one of the best Back To Mine compilations to hit the record shops in some time.

Hip-hop is represented in Public Enemy’s raw, hypnotic Welcome To The Terrordome, which fuses no-nonsense rap with some kicking beats; while there’s an element of old school rock and roll in The Third Bardo’s I’m Five Years Ahead of My Time, which includes some really striking guitar solos (rooted in Seventies style).

Perhaps most surprising, however, is the inclusion of tracks like Dolly Parton’s anthemic country classic Jolene, which adds a touch of Tarantino-inspired cool to proceedings, as well as The Specials’ A Message To You Rudy, with its laidback, Sunday afternoon style (which seems a million miles away from Prodigy’s club bangers).

Further classics come in the form of Public Image Limited’s Rise, which shows how Lydon was able to move on in his solo career. It’s one of those timeless records that inspires you to sing along whenever you hear it – ‘I could be wrong, I could be right’.

And the reggae trip that is Max Romeo’s Caribbean soaked I Chase The Devil, sampled to memorable effect on Prodigy’s own Out of Space. Meat Beat Manifesto’s clubtastic beat-fest Radio Babylon also displays where some of Prodigy’s memorable shuffles came from.

The album is even brought to a high-class finale in the form of ELO’s timeless Living Thing, which brings an end to the party in grand style.

All in all, this is a vibrant collection of well-known classics that span the genres. Or, as Liam himself puts it: “It’s like a photo album to me – 20 years of musical inspiration, memories and good times. Something to keep.”

Fans of dance music, Liam’s music, The Prodigy’s music and eclectic party collections will agree. It’s a worthy addition to any compilation collection.

Track listing:

1. The Prodigy – Wake The Fuck Up
2. Queens Of The Stone Age – Feel Good Hit Of The Summer
3. Public Enemy – Welcome To The Terrordome
4. The Third Bardo – I?m 5 Years Ahead Of My Time
5. Vatican DC – Smiling Dogs
6. Dolly Parton – Jolene
7. P.I.L – Rise
8. Max Romeo – I Chase The Devil
9. Meat Beat Manifesto – Radio Babylon
10. Wood Allen – Airport ‘89
11. Method Man – Release Yourself (Prodigy Mix)
12. Noreaga – Nothing
13. The specials – A Message To You Rudy
14. The Stranglers – Peaches
15. The Jam – In The City
16. ELO – Living Thing