The architect of the pioneering Reactivate albums, James Horrocks selects ten tracks from the golden period of dance music


REACT MUSIC was the brainchild of James Horrocks, one of many UK’s unsung A&R heroes having been behind the long-lasting Rhythm King label that launched the careers of Mark Moore’s S’Categorical, Bomb The Bass, Child Ford, Renegade Soundwave, The Beatmasters and Cookie Crew. Its underground offshoot Outer Rhythm was the primary platform for Leftfield, Moby and showcased Warp and R&S Data with releases from Aphex Twin, CJ Bolland, Underground Resistance, Jam & Spoon, LFO, and Nightmares On Wax.

The Reactivate compilations had been vastly influential to me personally and I do know additionally for a lot of of my friends, proper at first of our life lengthy journeys in digital music, educating our ears with music that appeared to have arrived from one other planet. The art work was and nonetheless is iconic and I nonetheless personal a lot of the CDs which shall be handed right down to my children, we’d even play them if we will discover a CD participant that works.

The cover art for Reactivate is iconic


The duvet artwork for Reactivate is iconic

React Music have joined forces with graphic design and vogue enterprise crew David Wealthy and Khan Tihema, two dads from Brisbane, Australia, to create a model new e-commerce web site to launch their rave-inspired vogue label Synthd Designs.

The Night Bazaar is featured every Friday in Something For The Weekend. This is our feature published on December 22, 2023


The Evening Bazaar is featured each Friday in One thing For The Weekend. That is our function revealed on December 22, 2023

The clothes firm gives dance music lovers the prospect to buy Reactivate merchandise, together with model new counterculture-inspired designs. Their intention is to encourage a brand new technology of followers and recapture the nostalgia of the ‘90s and 00s membership scene for people who cherished and lived it.


The story of Reactivate is an extended one, and a part of digital music folklore, and so we’re honoured that one of many important males, James Horrocks, behind the legacy has taken the time to speak us by way of ten of the largest and most iconic tracks from the legendary sequence of albums.

James Horrocks


James Horrocks

Study extra in regards to the Reactivate and React Music legacy by clicking HERE. To hearken to James Horrocks’ Reactivate playlist and browse what he needed to say about a few of the most iconic tracks within the historical past of digital music, which he was instrumental in bringing to our ears, beneath.

Jaydee – Plastic Desires – R&S Data

“Untypically, at a time when dance music was both blasting, banging or shimmying, alongside got here an digital music monitor that defied conference. It was laborious, it was quick, it was instrumental, nevertheless it had soul. Was it techno? Was it home? Was it trance or progressive? It was all these issues and extra and with its intense bluesy organ sound, it grew to become digital music period’s reply to Booker T & The MG’s ‘Inexperienced Onions’ or Santana’s ‘Jingo’, each of which had been the membership bangers of their day.”

Elevator – Shinny – React

“DJs Blu Peter and Mrs Wooden had been the primary resident DJs from React’s weekly membership nights to have crossover success. Following the success of Blu Peter’s first launch ‘Flagship’ on Choci’s Chewns, Peter was invited to co-compile the Reactivate album sequence and was commissioned to make a monitor for Reactivate 9 in ‘94. Peter went into the studio with producer Kevin White on the studio of Meals Data’ (residence of Blur) and got here out with the banging progressive trance masterpiece ‘Shinny’ underneath the identify Elevator.”

S-J – Fever – React

“Initially launched in ’95 on Opium Data, React picked up ‘Fever’ in ’96 following a 12 months being heralded by Tony De Vit as an anthem at membership Commerce, earlier than offering his personal remix. Created by legendary laborious home and trance producer Child Doc and distinctive vocalist S-J, the intensely throbbing sounds and orgasmic vocals of the unique Child Doc combine actually despatched shivers down the backbone through the drop and sounds simply as dynamic in the present day.”

Fierce Ruling Diva – Rubb It In -React

“The React label’s second techno couple signing was the New York-Amsterdam collaboration of Jeff Abraxas and Jeroen Flamman s PKA Fierce Ruling Diva. They’d had a string of big underground anthems on their Decrease East Facet label and located a pure residence at React following an incredible reside present at React’s membership night time Storage at Heaven. The duo went on to collaborate with G.T.O. on Technohead’s pan-European No. 1 single ‘I wanna Be A Hippy’.”

‘Rubb It In’ was on Reactivate Quantity 2.

G.T.O. Hear To The Rhythm Circulation – React

“React’s first signing was G.T.O. aka Better Than One, Difficult Disco, John & Julie and Technohead. Techno couple Lee Newman (RIP) and Michael Wells had been already making tracks for different labels after they signed to React following a name from the label about their G.T.O. mission and their hit monitor ‘Pure’. React launched ‘The Bullfrog’ and ‘Hear To The Rhythm Circulation’ in 1991 and the tracks had been featured on Reactivate Volumes 2 & 3 respectively.”

N.R.G. – He By no means Misplaced His Hardcore – Chill

“In 1992, there was lastly a UK-produced techno/rave/laborious home anthem that was performed throughout Europe, U.S., Asia and Australia. The distinctive monitor produced by Neil Rumney waschampioned by Birmingham DJ Tony De Vit (RIP) and he made it the centrepiece of his set at London’s all-night raving establishment Commerce at Turnmills, on his rise to changing into the world’s largest DJ. The animated monitor with ‘It’s Not Over But’ chorus quickly grew to become the largest monitor on the homosexual clubbing circuit and continues to be pumped out on the laborious home scene.”

T99 – Anaesthasia – Who’s That Beat/XL Recordings

“‘Music maestro please!’ launches ‘Anasthasia’, adopted by a tsunami of chaotic keybord riffs that you might say ‘as soon as heard by no means forgotten’. Produced by Oliver Abbeloos (whose monitor ‘Quadrophonia’ contained the ‘Reactivate’ chorus)’ and Technotronic and a couple of Limitless’s Patrick De Meyer, the rave anthem was embellished with Snap-style rap and diva vocals, nevertheless it’s all in regards to the riffs and slamming old-fashioned beats. This was the opening monitor on the primary Reactivate album in 1991. The monitor was licensed to React forward of its UK take care of XL Recordings who launched the only on the identical week as Reactivate. Each the only and album charted High 20 within the UK.”

Marmion – Schoneberg (Marmion Remix) – Superstition

“‘Schoneberg’ is Berlin’s Soho and its LGBTQI+ hub Nollendorfplatz has loved a few of the metropolis’s finest nightlife because the Nineteen Twenties. Nonetheless, for the homosexual, trance and techno communities, the monitor ‘Schoneberg’ was about digital music’s love affair with Berlin and its techno road carnival The Love Parade, conceived by artist Dr Motte as a political demonstration for disarmament, the enjoyment of music and honest meals for all, previous to the autumn of the Berlin Wall in 1989.

The road parade replete with DJs and artists on floats, was one of many largest on this planet, and was held in lots of different cities and cities around the globe, till it’s unhappy demise in 2010 when it grew to become a sufferer of its personal success on account of an overcrowding catastrophe when ‘The Artwork Of Love Social gathering’ was held in Duisburg. The Marmion remix of ‘Schoneberg’ resonated loudly on the parade with the addition of Brazilian fashion ‘batteria’ drums, tribal beats and partying chants and was performed repeatedly. Produced by Mijk Van Dijk & Marcos Lopez, the 9-minute epic was launched in 1994 on the top of the Euro trance and important room techno increase. For a lot of it was the spotlight of Reactivate Vol. 9 and has gone on to develop into an iconic Ibiza Closing Social gathering monitor. The Love Parade efficiently returned to Berlin in 2022 as Rave The Planet.”

Beltram – Power Flash – R&S

“1990 had been a seminal 12 months for a change of sounds within the critical clubbers’ soundtrack. One 12 months after the second summer time of affection had light, digital music grew to become dirtier and grittier in sync with its grubby warehouse or discipline rave environment, a sound we now confer with as old-fashioned hardcore. Additional rhythmic components of 80s electro had been mixed with sped up hip hop breakbeats and reggae basslines over Detroit techno, Belgian new beat and laborious home sounds coming from the U.S. and these 12-inch imports discovered favour within the UK and Europe. One of many DJs starting to make his mark with the brand new sound was home and techno DJ Joey Beltram from Queens, New York. His tougher home monitor ‘Joey’s Riot’ had been one of many tracks of the summer time at React’s membership nights Storage at Heaven on Fridays and Troll at The Soundshaft on Saturdays. Then one weekend the golf equipment’ resident DJs Daz Saund and Trevor Rockcliffe dropped Beltram’s ‘Power Flash’. Taking inspiration from European trance techno DJ Frank De Wulf’s output with its hard-hitting, pulsing, hypnotic honking keyboard stabs, resounding bass, rattling beats and ‘acid, ecstacy’ lyrics, the uproarious response signalled a change of style for the youthful crowd. Beltram carried out

‘Power Flash’ (along with ‘hoover sound’ anthem ‘Mentasm’) on stage on the Reactivate launch celebration in Heaven. The monitor was launched on pioneering Belgian techno label R&S Data (previously Ferrari Data), Derrick Might’s Transmat label in Detroit and Rhythm King’s Outer Rhythm within the UK and was the blueprint for the sound of Reactivate that includes on ‘Reactivate Vol. 1, The Belgian Techno anthems’.”

Age Of Love – Age Of Love – Jam & Spoon Watch Out For Stella Combine – React

“Though the React label achieved monumental crossover success with its first single launch The Supply That includes Candi Staton’s ‘You Received The Love’, the label’s different enduring legacy has been ‘Age Of Love.’ Mooted as one of many first trance recordings, the unique 12-inch single was produced by Italian DJ Bruno Sanchioni (B.B.E.) and Roger Samyn (RIP) who launched it on his Belgian document store’s label, DiKi Data, in 1990. React then licensed ‘Age Of Love’ and set about remixing the monitor for re-release in 1992 (taking an additional 5 years to achieve the UK High 20).

Following Goa trance pioneer Marc Spoon deejaying at React’s membership night time, Storage at Heaven in London on Fridays, Jam & Spoon had been provided the only’s official remix. React’s Thomas ‘The Techno Engine’ Foley collected the completed grasp recording from Jam & Spoon on the Mayday rave in Cologne, Germany, the place he had gone to observe React’s techno act techno G.T.O. carry out reside. When techno large Talla 2XLC dropped the monitor within the stadium to rapturous applause, Thomas described the second as like nothing he’d ever seen or heard earlier than. He then continued raving with the DAT tape again in his pocket, earlier than travelling by practice to Amsterdam to proceed partying with React’s techno act, Fierce Ruling Diva, the place he was shocked to seek out it had survived the night time and was shocked to listen to how dynamic the monitor sounded when heard straight in entrance of the large audio system! Actually, the Age Of Love remix sounded so sensational and the choral breakdown so elegant, listening to it grew to become a seminal second in raving tradition. “Do you keep in mind the place you had been if you heard Age Of Love for the primary time?”


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