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Ant-acid house

Words Phil Dudman Illustrations Jay Taylor

For every new dance music genre that makes it big, there are many that never quite catch on. Presenting the music scenes that never made it…

Failtronica jingle

A post-modern dance franchise, the jingle scene encompassed a new generation of producers who sampled their tracks straight from telly. This subversive use of commercial breaks and TV theme tunes thrashed together with dub, garage and frenetic d’n’b basslines seemed destined to hit the big time, with dancefloors across the country echoing to shouts of “wicked, wicked – this jingle is massive!”. However, a sponsorship deal with Cillit Bang sanitised its grimy image before it could really take off. DOWNLOAD: The latest Royksöpp album


Quickly stamped out by the authorities, this techno-based genre enjoyed a brief existence holding raves in unguarded supermarkets. Attracted by the cheap booze and self-service bar tills, the punters nevertheless tired of the constant Julie Walters acapellas, Morrisson dancers and feel-good pocket spanking. Moreover, the signposting to the white aisle was vague and misleading. DOWNLOAD: Booka Shade ‘Mandarine Girl’ (Barcode Beep mix)


[[1L]] july 2009


First seen in the cow fields of Glastonbury, this bizarre phenomenon briefly took the festival scene by storm, combining the more libertarian ethics of freerunning with drugtaking and cow dung. Commonly referred to as ‘the shit’, ‘poo-step’ or even ‘plop-scotch’, followers would seek to get from one side of a field to the other by leaping from cowpat to cowpat in time to the music. Until the mid-noughties, that is, when they realised the scene was bullshit. DOWNLOAD: Glastonburial ‘Arseangel’ (Plop Hoppers re-rub)


A specialist genre for teetotal clubbers with short attention spans, ‘Ritalin Not Booze’ required disc jockeys to play every track at three times its normal speed to avoid people leaving. Hyper by nature, r’n’b promoters held regular ‘Versus’ nights forcing existing genres through the triplespeed process until, tragically, an entire tribe of drum ’n’ bass MCs convulsed, had seizures and died. The Hospital DJs desperately tried a rewind, but they were too late. DOWNLOAD: Altern8 ‘Acceler8’ (Tee-total Beat mix)

Drum ‘n’ Grace A religious flirtation with dance music aimed at attracting more youth to the church, drum ’n’ grace nights set the precedent for Sunday clubbing in the early noughties. However, a backlash against DJ worship, hooded choir boys and Martin Luther King samples saw numbers begin to wane and young people exodus en mass. Nevertheless, reports suggest the movement could soon be back… by Pope demand. DOWNLOAD: Pendulum ‘Hold your Dog Collar’

Ant-Acid House

Despite being exposed as a publicity stunt for Rennie in 1992, ant-acid house nights sprang up all over the south east, ruthlessly cashing in on ravers’ innate capacity for trapped wind. A sudden shout of ‘aciiiiiiiiiiiid!’ would send scores of ‘Rapeze-response’ staff racing across the dancefloor with a bag full of chalky pills and a glass of water – a novelty still fondly recalled by many Rennie pilgrims to this day. DOWNLOAD: Inners On The Loose ‘Break Of Wind’




An exotic faction of the mid-1970s punk movement, ‘spunk’ was championed by a number of fashionable record labels renowned for their 7” singles. However, experiencing a short burst of good feeling, industry giants soon swallowed them up – and with tracks lasting less than a minute, the craze was short-lived and ended prematurely. DOWNLOAD: The Stiffs ‘Goodbye My Love’

Greenhouse & Gardenshed

Long-lost splinters of the house and garage split, ‘greenhouse’ clubs became popular with vain, pre-Shoreditch fashionistas and attempted to shed some natural light on the traditionally murky club scene, much to the displeasure of drug dealers and bouncers alike. Meanwhile ‘gardenshed’ – the domain of hardware enthusiasts who built soundsystems out of duct tape and old valve amps – was barely even music related, and both scenes failed to catch on, despite the backing of B&Q. DOWNLOAD: House Of Panes ‘Jump Around’, Basement Jaxx ‘Shed Alert’

Trawler Trash

With the AngloSpanish fishing disputes at their peak in the late 80s, both parties took to settling their arguments off the shores of Ibiza with a series of bizarre dance-offs. Prone to harbouring a grudge, captains would scrub the decks and semaphore to the floor, while their crews gesticulated to the beat with their latest catch of big and little fish. Despite tensions diluting after a EU intervention, hearty shouts of ‘Cod is a DJ!’ can still be heard on the White Isle most weekends. DOWNLOAD: 808 State ‘Pacific’


The blissed-out sound of summer in the Welsh dales, Valleyarica combined tasteful acoustic guitar picking, dreamy hypnotic percussion, vocals from the local miner’s choir and the occasional playful bleating of a flirty little sheep. The rise of house music and Foot And Mouth disease killed the scene. DOWNLOAD: Friendly Fires ‘Cardiff’ (Aeroplane remix), Chris Re-Baa ‘Josephine’



A reaction to the rise of post-club chillout albums – famed for stripping huge trance bangers down to their melodic remains by removing the pumping basslines – the slambient movement has since devoted itself to putting the beats back in again. Widely considered a front for the paramilitary wing of the Dutch trance aristocracy, angered by the increased price of pot and lack of energy at their gigs, one DJ recently claimed his patience had been “Tiësted to the limit” before screaming that he was off to “beat the shit out of something”. DOWNLOAD: Delirium feat Sarah McLachlan ‘Silence’ (Tiësto’s In Search Of Killing Michael Woods re-remix)


Cashing in on the popularity of MTVstyle music channels and couch-ravers too lazy to leave the house, the lardcore sound was defined by a series of microwave pings and ring-pull releases. Despite being frowned upon by more active dance community, lardcore productions were downloaded in record numbers, promising no-hassle, processed beats that went from zero to ravey in just 70 seconds. DOWNLOAD: Simian Microwave Disco ‘Rustler’

Trawler trash

july 2009 [[2R]]

Failtronica July 2009  

Lardcore, Ant-Acid House, Drum 'n' Grace, Crudstep and Slambient - this unearths some of the genres that never made it. Still my favourite f...

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