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Top 100 Artists of the Decade: #85 Basement Jaxx

 

The Top 100 Artists of the Decade list will be posted over the course of 100 days. On September 23rd, we will post one artist and continue every day until December 31st, when we will unveil our #1 artist of the decade!

Please read our introduction to learn about our nominating and ordering process.

#85 Basement Jaxx

A lot of people felt that the Basement Jaxx went down hill after their first 1999 full length release, Remedy. But, in many ways, it was the decline of the whole dance armada that people were feeling, as the scene atomized and became increasingly superfluous. "Dance" music, and more specifically House in all its formats, emerged from the 1990s pretty stale. While the UK was turning to host new, stripped down stylings, the Basement Jaxx continually push the other direction, making albums that were increasingly melodic and eclectic - a direction that has become more significant than ever.

The Basement Jaxx (Simon Ratcliffe and Felix Buxton) released several of the more respected progressive house anthems of the mid to late '90s. This material was usually not the straight-on House of the times, always more exciting and varied. It was with Rooty that they would begin branching into layers of soul, funk, R&B and numerous other modes. This dance sensible eclecticism reached new heights with their last release, Crazy Itch Radio. Musical references on this album are their most diverse to date, ranging from hard house to Nuevo Kurt Weill ("Hey U"). There's even a banjo infused dance track. Clearly, the Jaxx continue to redefine the scene in fundamental ways.

Over the years, Ratcliffe and Buxton have been one of the most in-demand production teams, collaborating with an industry 'who's who' that includes Dizze Rascal, Method Man, Lily Allen, Robyn, Me'shell Ndegeocello, Totlyn Jackson, JC Chasez, Siouxsie Sioux, Phoebe, Cyndi Lauper, Yoko Ono, and many others.

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