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from the website of LFO Demon:

The evolution of hard Ragga-releated music

Is distorted Jungle with Raggasamples already Raggacore? For example D-Jungle like stuff on Riot Beats? Or Gabber with Ragga like WEDLOCK´s “Ganjaman” (Ruffneck Records) from 1994). Propably part of the origins but not an genre by its own- in fact these examples were Gabber or Jungle with Ragga but not something completely new yet.

How did everything start? Hard to define it specifically but the first time Raggacore became well known was with VENETIAN SNARES – „snares man“ 7“ (History of the future) and KNIFEHANDCHOP – „bounty killer killer“ 7“ (irritant/dyhane) in 2001 and BLOODCLAAT GANGSTA YOUTH – “kill or be killed” 7″ (full watts). This was the first when it wasn´t Ragga Jungle any more but a step beyond- Breakcore combined with Raggavocals.

Since 2001 there are many records out combining Breakcore with Ragga. Like in Breakcore these records can´t be defined as one, specific style but as many ones. There is not one certain set of elements used to define a style but every artist inventing his or her individual style. So Raggacore is fusion or crossover of many styles getting combined in various ways. In many cases these are elements of Gabber, fast Amenbreakbeats, Ravesounds and Dancehallvocals or –elements.

Triangle of the sound: Dancehall, Ragga Jungle and Breakcore

So Reggae/ Ragga/ Dancehall is the common element sampled from. The reference to it is not clear at all: Most acts out of the Breakcore-scene didn´t have any relations to this scene. They simply sampled the music and didn´t care for the background of the music at all. So for them it didn´t matter first either sampling country&western, Heavy Metal or Dancehall- it was just a resource to get some musical material from.
But in the meantime when more and more Ragga stuff was sampled there seemed to be also more discussion about Dancehall music. This was raised by the discussion about Dancehall and Homophobia.
But people still see themselves as “Breakcore”, many of them having roots in Punkrock. So the approach is not to make “Raggacore” or even “Breakcore” but to create an own, individual sound and not caring for some asthetic ideals of a scene.

In contrast to this many people in Ragga Jungle refer to Dancehall and the scene and identified themselves with Dancehall music and the releated culture out of Jamaica. Ragga Jungle seems to be a scene quite similar and connected to Dancehall putting out mainly versions with amenbreaks of Dancehall tracks.

Compared with Ragga Jungle Raggacore is harder and wilder. There are many more experimental elements in the music than just Ragga+Breakbeats. Also there is more distortion in the music and it´s not based on the same breakbeat all the time.
So for many Breakcore fans both Dancehall and Ragga Jungle seemed to be too monotonous and repeating all the time. This changed in the last time with the newschool Ragga Jungle which is quite big in North America. Acts like Twinhooker, Debaser, General Malice, DJ K, Soundmurderer do much harder music than the old Ragga Jungle from the UK in the mid-1990s.

But there are also some differences to Breakcore in most of the Raggacore records: the experimental approach is constricted in favour to dance compability. The impact of Industrial sounds and pure noise can be kicking and sexy, but it also can be extremly boring after listing to too many poorly produced records. Beat is still more danceable than noise, so in contrast to Breakcore the principles of dancefloor usually top the experimental approach often. So Raggacore seems to be more easily consumable to many people than “normal” breakcore.

It´s not definable where Raggacore starts or end. Boundaries are fluid. There are also similar combinations like Raggacore with music related to Dancehall- especially Dub but also Ska and Reggae. So “Noisedub” would be Tracks of DJ SCUD (Full Watts#3), some tracks of THE BUG or SAOULATERRE “We are da Rasta.

Raggacore-no scene?!

In fact there is no “Raggacore”-Scene. This has various reasons: At the one hand the output of releases is simply too small. At the other hand, most artists can´t be subsumed as “Raggacore” only. So many artists sample Raggarecords in some tracks, but in many other tracks not. Take VENETIAN SNARES for example. He started the hype with the “snares man” 7″, but most of his tracks have nothing to do with “Raggacore”. Even a artist like BONG RA put out a record with non-Ragga music (“Praying Mantis e.p.”). Take all the other artists from DJ SCUD to ENDUSER- least of them fit to the term “Raggacore” only. Also if you would ask them “Are you Raggacore?” most of them would propably deny it. Most of the producers do what they want and not trying to produce Ragga based stuff only.
Same is valid for labels. Most of them also publish “normal” breakcore. Clash, Full Watts, Razor X and Shockout are the only ones specialized in Ragga-related releases only. All the others release different music, too.

Also there is no infrastructure for a scene: no networks, no fanzines for “Raggacore only” yet. For most of the communication and networking the infrastructre of the Breakcore scene is used.

So it doesn´t make any sense to talk of Raggacore as a “scene” or even a specific “genre”- it´s simply a collective term to describe hard, Ragga-related music.
So does it make sense to use the term “Raggacore” at all? I think: yes. Instead of describing it as “certain Breakcore records with Ragga-samples and/or Ragga-related sounds or rhythm structures” we simply call it Raggacore. Other people call it Speedhall, Yardcore or whatever…we call it Raggacore.

Producers & Labels

I don´t want to bore you with endless lists of records – so here is broad overview of of some of the people behind these releases. Please keep in mind that most of these people are also doing much interesting music than only Ragga-related Breakcore.

DJ SCUD from London had an massive influence on both the Raggacore and the Breakcore scene. He produced many records that are still played today on every party. The more Ragga-orientated are „Total destruction“ (maschinenbau recs) and „Mortal Clash ep“ (Ambush). He also runs Ambush records. „In Chains“ (Soot#3; rereleased on NETTLE- „Firecamp Stories 1“ (Agriculture17). Best Dub+Core with hard bassdrums and noise, offbeat-piano and dubby sounds. A “Best of” selection of his tracks was released on Rephlex records on 2×12″ “Ambush!” (Rephlex Cat 133). Also did some projects together with PANACEA (together as THE REDEEMER with some releases on Position Chrome).

DJ SCUD. Picture taken by BONG RA


Ambush´s sisterlabel Full Watts, run by the New Yorker I-SOUND, and specialized in Ragga+Noise has released 3x 7inches yet, where aka BLOODCLAAT GANGSTA YOUTH (DJ SCUD) – „kill or be killed” is a classic record. Ambush has also the Sublabel Amex where Remixes of “kill or be killed” have been released.

Homepage Ambush Records




BONG RA is one of the most famous producers subsumed under “Raggacore”. Comes from Holland and released several records yet from labels like Djax, Death$sucker, Russian Roulette, Hydrophonic, Clash. Runs his own 7″ Label Clash Records for Raggacore and hard Ragga Jungle.


Homepage Clash Records
Homepage BONG RA

A special case is THE BUG aka Kevin Martin who did formely play in projects like GODFLESH / TECHNO ANIMAL.Less breakbeat orientated but more distorted Dancehall-Industrial and released records with “official” (means not only stolen from some resources) acapellas from CUTTY RANKS and DADDY FREDDY – also performs live with MC´s.

He released yet the 2×12″ “Pressure” on Rephlex, also various 12″ and 7″ (7″ all released on the label Razor X). Also was remixed by APHEX TWIN on the AFX-„smojiphace ep“ (Men2), which is remix of THE BUG´s „run the place red“. THE BUG also did some remixes: for T.RAUMSCHMIERE on „Rabaukendisco“ (NovaMute). In fact his mixes aren´t electroclash any more, but strictly distorted dancehall.

Interview with THE BUG in UNCARVED BLOG

THE BUG. Picture from Planet Rock Booking.


Then we got KID606 who does mainly glitchy Idm but released many really nice Raggacore tracks on his last full lenght album “Kill sound before sound kills you“ (tigerbeat 100). Fat Gabberbasses, kicking breakbeats, Raggasounds and everything chopped with DSP-effects and Noisesounds.


The tigerbeat6 sublabel Shockout is specialized in Raggacore+ Ragga Jungle and releases as concept only legalized accapellas – on the first releases of MC Wayne Lonesome.

Homepage Shockout Records (tigerbeat6)


SOUNDMURDER & SK1 runs his own label called Rewind where he only releases own tracks. Hardcore Ragga Jungle, the most freaky programmed ever. He did some Ragga-Gabber tracks on OMEKO records from Japan (split12″ with ENDUSER). A “Best of” collection from his tracks on Rewind has been just released on Rephlex records.

Homepage of Rewind Records (with Discography of SOUNDMURDERER)


Also important is THE PANACEA aka RICH KID. He not only released on Germany´s hardest Drum´n Bass Label Position Chrome as THE PANACEA, but as RICH KID also on various breakcore and industrial related labels like Mirex, Ad Noiseam and also on Hardliner Records, Ambush. From Ragga-hardcore-noise-Drum´n Bass to distorted Dancehall (”Bad Man ep” 7inch on Mirex002). He did several projects together with DJ SCUD like THE REDEEMER.

Discography RICH KID
Homepage THE PANACEA
Homepage Mirex Records

Also a hot man in these days is SHITMAT from Brighton/UK, who releases mainly on Planet Mu records but also a 7″ on Parasite´s Label Death$ucker. His style is totally crazy- he mixes weird old records with Ragga Jungle, Rave, Noise, Gabber and Oldskool Breaks.

Listen to 2 tracks of the KILLABABYLONKUTZ 2×12″/ CD
original babylon
rudeboy babylon


Homepage Planet Mu Records
Homepage SHITMAT
Discography SHITMAT

PARASITE from Bristol/UK does also some great hardcore stuff. He release already on Peace Off records and on BONG RA´s label Clash some hard tracks with a very unique distortion between Ragga, Breakcore, distorted Ragga Jungle and Gabber. Also released on his label Death$ucker yet BONG RA and SHITMAT. Does also the “Toxic Dancehall” parties in Bristol.
Homepage Death$ucker Records

FFF from Rotterdam/NL is another hot act. He´s the king of harsh Amen breaks combined with Dancehall elements and fat synthesizerlines from old Rotterdam Records- the term “Thunderdome Junglist” (refering to the first gabber compilations ever on 2xCD when the sound was good in 1993). He uses also sometimes Happy Hardcore Pianos but arranged so well that they don´t become boring. Released on several Breakcore labels like Clash Records, K-Hole and Mindbender. He often plays together with ASSASSIN from Rotterdam, another fine DJ (and sometimes MC). They organized together with BONG RA the legendary Breakcore a Go-Go Parties in Waterfront/ Rotterdam.

Discography FFF


DJ ASSASSIN @ Clash of the titans II. Berlin 3.7.04
Picture taken by AMBOSS


Also Peace Off records from Rennes/ France should be mentioned. One of the main breakcore labels with nice layouted sleeves on all of their latest releases.

They have various Sublabels and Ragga-related stuff mainly was released on Damage, like REPEATER – „Terrestral Activity“ 12inch or KOVERT- “versioning” 12inch. The “versioning” 12inch is quite unique with no acapellas but a unique basis of hard breakcorish breaks, ravish sounds and vintage Reggae/ Dub sounds. Totally dry produced and …Murderstyle!

The label is run by Frank aka 50% of ROTATOR which did some Highspeed-Raggajungle-core-Bombs already e.g on Difraktion Recs.
Oh…and they also organized the famous “Anticartel” parties in Rennes with up to 2000 people.

Homepage Peace Off Records


In Hamburg/ Germany there is ISTARI LASTERFAHRER who runs the label Sozialistischer Plattenbau. Also he´s doing some regular breakcore, some of his later releases are getting more and more Reggae influenced. For example his split7inch „Dubcore Vol.1“ of ISTARI LASTERFAHRER / PARASITE with a Highspeed-Remix of ALEC EMPIRE´s „Bassterror“.


The nice thing about is style is that he´s sampling mainly old Roots-Reggae and not Dancehall combined with Jungle and Breakbeats and a good portion of Punkrock-Attitude. He released together with Sprengstoff Records the “do you think” 12inch.

Homepage Sozialistischer Plattenbau Records

ISTARI LASTERFAHRER@ Clash of the titans II.
Berlin 3.7.04 Picture taken by ZOMBIEFLESHEATER



LFO DEMON
(me, haha) runs the label Sprengstoff Recordings. His Raggacore releases are so far: 7inch „Rave for communism“ (with Speedcore-Ragga-Remix of german Chart-Dancehall project SEEED) and a split12inch with FFF “Clash of the titans” (in cooperation with Mindbender records).

Mindbender, the label of DJ ROKKON also put out the ZOMBIEFLESHEATER 7“ or „Shizuo goes Raggacore“, how some call it. Influenced by old DHR stuff and Dancehall ZOMBIEFLESHEATER from german region Westerwald/ West-Germany destroys music with his splatterbreaks in a wild cut up mash up style.

Also from the same region (and actually the same village) comes AMBOSS (the 2 put also out a split12inch on Restroom Records). He usually does dark, hardcore-drum´n bass core (influenced by old Postion Chrome stuff) but also released 2 Raggacore tracks on the SPEEDHALL 12″ of the Label Kool Pop from Berlin (one of Germany´s oldest and most influencial Breakcore label also the owner says he´s “not part of any scene). “Speedhall” was a term invented by Something J (the owner of Kool Pop) together with DJ Scud describing the style we use the term “Raggacore” for.

Homepage Kool Pop Records
watch a video of Something J live at IWTBF-Festival 6.12.04/ Berlin: SOMETHING J
watch a video of DJ Rokkon live at Utterly Wipeout 10.4.04/ Berlin: DJ ROKKON
Videos by KOI GEORGE taken from http://www.godless-screenbotz.de/


Worth to mention is GEROYCHE from Chemnitz with his
„GalongGalong Rmx“ on SuburbanTrash. Hardcore-Dancehall-Riddim-Style.

Homepage of GEROYCHE

There´s ENDUSER from Cincinnati/ Ohio from Sonic Terror records who released also on various other labels Breakcore and Ragga-releated Breakcore.

Biography/ Discography ENDUSER
Homepage of ENDUSER (with mp3 section for downloading)
Interview with ENDUSER in Exploding Plastic magazine


Also to mention is Mash it Records, the label of DJ C. Check out their website, you can listen to all releases over there and also download some DJ Mixes. One of the acts/ DJ´s of the label is AARON SPECTRE who is playing all over the world at the moment his mixes with laptop and records combined to one huge Ragga Jungle-Mash-up thing.


Homepage Mash It Records


A new label from Belgium is M.A.S.H. Records run by Nonprohet releasing hot stuff soon on the first 12inch “Raggagum and Bubblecum” with Igor, Society Suckers, Istari Lasterfahrer, Puzzelweazel and DuranDuranDuran.

Homepage MASH
(with mp3 section)

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3 Comments

  1. Alec Empire’s “Totenposse Rides Out” on Force Inc in early 1992 was the first “breakcore” track produced.

    it’s distorted Amens at about 180BPM defined that style and motivated Force Inc founder Achim Szepanski to create the label Riot Beats.

    DJ Tanith called himself Breakcore but was not producing any tracks in this field. He wasn’t spinning breakcore either. He played standard UK breakbeat rave at around 140 BPM.

    Amen,

    EYHO Team

  2. http://www.eyho-blog.com/2008/11/22/alec-empire-the-destroyer-bass-terror/

    check it out….the massive Bass Terror Re-Release at The Hellish Vortex

  3. >Herzlichen Dank für diesen Informativen Blog. Habe ihn gleich in meine Bookmarks eingetragen. Maschinenbau ist eine der ältesten Ingenieursdisziplinen, dabei bildet die klassische Physik die Grundlage der technischen Mechanik, Thermodynamik und Werkstoffwissenschaften und somit die Grundlage für weitere Aspekte (Konstruktion, Simulation, Materialmodellierungen). Mit alle diesen Disziplinen und weiteren Themengebieten des Maschinenbau finden sich aktuelle Anwenderreportagen und Applikationsbeispiele auf dem Industrieportal industriepraxis.de

    Weiter so……


2 Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. […] journaliste propose également 10 morceaux oldschool et 10 autres newschool incontournables. – Un article de Breakcoreworld à propos du phénomène raggacore. L’article dresse également la liste […]

  2. […] Para más información acerca del raggacore se puede consultar uno de los artículos escritos por LFO Demon como parte de sus textos sobre el breakcore: Theorys of Breakcore volume 3: Raggacore […]

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