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Ratpack – Live at Fantazia 1993

Download Side A – 31:29, 72.0 MB

Download Side B – 30:54, 70.7 MB

320kbps, 44.1kHz mono, normalized


Oi oooooooi!!

Ratpack is the DJ Everson (or Evenson?) Allen ‘longside MC Lipmaster Mark – mainstays of the English rave scene since pretty well the beginning.  The duo had been performing for years (not sure how many) even at the time of this 1993 recording.  They’ve served as frontmen for the UK rave scene and especially for what would be known as oldskool breakbeat hardcore, staying true to this style throughout their careers, and helping bring awareness and popularity to this and other electronic music genres.

These guys are really special to me.  I’ve got a lot of their tapes (all bootlegs as the real McCoy is tough to come by all the way overseas) and am surprised and delighted to be able to say that I actually look forward to this DJ/MC combo.  It’s so rare to find this sort of duo that plays off eachother so well.  I understand these Fantazia events accommodated well over 10,000 screaming ravers so it’s to be expected the mixing is a little on the sloppy side, but the horns and whistles and cheers, and especially the lyrical work of Lipmaster Mark, prove sufficient even on this poorish-quality recording to bring the listener in to this world of noise and excess.  Mark is a joyous, enthusiastic MC who addresses his DJ and his crowd alike, and his gravelly pipes shine through as he sings along or improvises in tandem with what would become oldskool anthems.

This tape is a collector’s piece, plain and simple.  I’ve done my best to restore the audio quality, but check out the preview sample above to see whether it passes muster.

I was handed this tape, as well as several others, by DJ Virus from Toronto, Canada.  He and I traded a lot of music back in the day and I’m pretty sure we left off not having returned everything to its rightful owner, but them’s the breaks if you’ll forgive a pun.

Adam and I hung out many times and I accompanied him to several parties over the years, meeting him by chance at others, and providing him a fortuitous ride home when he had no contingency plan from time to time.  He started out an above-average happy hardcore DJ who has evolved into an outstanding one, playing gigs for perhaps 13 years now or more.  He was a quiet and reserved guy who would sport the fattest pants you’ve ever seen, but seem a little self-conscious about wearing them.  The man’s track selections have always been tight, bringing a flavour of oldskool into the latest hardcore trends (I really dig the resurgence of breakbeats), and he’s worked very hard for all the gigs and respect and clout he’s so rightfully earned.

So this tape rip goes out to you, Virus.  This is probably one of the tapes you loaned me and I never gave back, so better late than never, right?

Categories: 60 Minute Tape, Everything, Hardcore, Hardcore - Old Skool Anthems, Hardcore - Old Skool Breakbeat, 1993 |


  1. magnafide October 5, 2010 @ 12:30 pm

    all right! this is what i’m talking about.. thanks for posting this!! more ratpack, pls! 🙂

  2. magnafide October 5, 2010 @ 1:34 pm

    btw, can anybody ID the track that plays at 10:20 on Side A??

  3. Brian October 5, 2010 @ 7:24 pm

    Thanks for commenting and I’m glad you’re enjoying the mix, Magnafide. I wish wish wish I knew what track that is so that I could buy it! I love those rave chords!

  4. hardcorjunglist August 5, 2011 @ 5:38 am

    They are the other way round, lipmaster mark is the dj, evenson Allen the mc.
    Mark used to do these mad scratching sounds wiv his mouth as he played- hence lip master- tho I aint heard him do it 4 donkeys years now!

  5. Brian August 5, 2011 @ 10:23 am

    Nice one, Hardcorjunglist. Thanks for the correction. Happy to hear you’re enjoying the mix.

  6. Tiesto Tiesto August 6, 2011 @ 11:12 pm

    Great post! Great site btw!! Thanks!!

  7. Anonymous December 14, 2011 @ 2:35 am

    1979/1983 where fucking depressing

  8. magnafide April 12, 2012 @ 7:13 pm

    yo i figured out the tune at 10:20 on Side A!

    D-Force – ‘Ruff!!!’ (Slammin’ Vinyl)

    (i don’t give up on figuring out my track ids, haha) 🙂

  9. Brian April 23, 2012 @ 9:36 am

    Nice one Magna. I love the A and B tracks on that single. Good sleuthing, Holmes.

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