If there was ever a band to literally explode onto the scene, Basement Jaxx was it in 1999. Their debut album Remedy, was not only adored by the critics and fans, but also by the very same DJ's that inspired them to make music in the first place. They scored three #1 Billboard Club singles, sold out their first U.S. tour, and left the music critics drooling (Spin called Remedy one of the 90 Greatest Albums of the 90's and Rolling Stone listed them as ''Hot Band'' in their Hot issue) not bad for a couple of boys from South London.
Basement Jaxx first started as an ideal, as an attempt to get back to the roots of house, to the original jack-your-body all night long abandon of the Chicago loft parties. Even before they released their first EP in 1994, Felix and Simon had thrown the first illegal Basement Jaxx parties in a dodgy Mexican restaurant in pre-gentrified Brixton, London. The dubious attentions both of the police and the local crack dealers soon put a stop to that, but by then the pair were ensconced in Simon's (then literally) bedroom studio, cooking up a mix of New York house with London club attitude.
Since then Felix and Simon became well known for creating club classics like the top 20 ragga-house hit "Flylife" and the Ibiza anthem ''Samba Magic,'' as well as kick-starting the career of British garage diva Corinna Joseph. But these achievements tell only part of a story that has been fully documented by a welter of independent releases, remixes, white labels and dubplates that runs roughshod over persnickety genre definitions, subjecting hardcore ragga, heady salsa and everything in between to the vigorous Basement Jaxx treatment.
Now, with their fifth album Scars, the duo is returning to the kind of form that blew dance music apart in the late '90s/early '00s, with tracks such as "Red Alert," "Romeo" and "Where's Your Head At." Basement Jaxx are back with dance music with serious edge - the kind that has been lacking in a techno dance scene that became, for various reasons, dark and minimalist in the three years they were away. For their part, the band was a bit disillusioned with even their last effort, 2006's Crazy Itch Radio, and their decision to tour with Robbie Williams at the end of the same year. "It felt like we'd strayed too far into pop territory," says Simon.