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808 State

From Academic Kids

808 State are an English electronic music outfit formed in 1988 in Manchester, taking their name from the Roland TR-808 drum machine. Widely regarded as being one of the pioneers of British acid house they were formed by Graham Massey, Martin Price and Gerald Simpson (later to record as A Guy Called Gerald) and released their debut Newbuild in 1988. Autechre and Aphex Twin have often cited Newbuild as being enormously influential, and the group achieved some degree of chart success in the UK in the early 1990s with releases "Pacific State", "Cubik" and "In yer face".

Contents

History

Template:Mergefrom The group 808 State formed in 1988 in Manchester, England. They were considered pioneers of the acid house sound, a staple and foundation of rave music. Martin Price, who owned a popular and legendary record store called Eastern Bloc and who founded the independent label Creed, joined up with producer and local musician Graham Massey. They teamed up with Gerald Simpson, who collaborated the effort. At this time, 808 State recorded the debut EP Newbuild, in 1988.

Simpson left the group to form his own solo project. At this point, the remaining personnel enlisted Andrew Barker and Darren Partington (known as the Spinmasters) to record an EP called Quadrastate in 1989. A very popular hit on the club floors came forth from this effort, entitled "Pacific". Their next album, 808:90, was well-received by the ever-growing rave culture at that time. There were other singles released, some of which ended up on the 1991 album Ex:El, which featured vocals from Bernard Sumner (New Order) and ex-Sugarcubes vocalist Björk.

In 1992, Price left the group to do solo producing, eventually forming his own label called Sun Text. The remaining members carried on in 1993, releasing an album called Gorgeous, and after that, did some remix work for David Bowie, Soundgarden, and other performers, before returning with the album entitled Don Solaris in 1996. They released a greatest-hits compilation named 808:88-98 in 1998. The band is still active, touring and performing DJ sets, and releasing albums and singles to the dance and rave scene.

Pseudonyms and side projects

808 State and its various members have recorded under a variety of pseudonyms. An early EP, containing the tracks Massage-a-Rama and Sex Mechanic, was released under the name Lounge Jays. These tracks have since been re-released by Rephlex Records on the Prebuild LP. Another early EP, Wax on the Melt, was released under the name Hit Squad Mcr. This is the only EP to which all five members of the group (Graham Massey, Martin Price, Gerald Simpson, Andrew Barker and Darren Partington) contributed simultaneously.

Graham Massey recorded a solo EP under the name Massonix. He was also a member of Biting Tongues, an experimental jazz rock group signed to Factory Records. Martin Price left 808 State in 1991 and released a couple of EPs under the name Switzerland. Andrew Barker has produced a small number of tracks as Atlas while Darren Partington has recorded under the name Jeep. Together they're perhaps more familiar to Sunrise FM listeners as The Spinmasters.

Trivia

  • In the USA, Hawaii is the 808 state, due to 808 being the telephone area code.
  • In the Royal Air Force mailing system for British Forces Post Office addresses RAF Aldergrove in Ireland is BFPO 808, sometimes called the 808 state.
  • In the track Pacific (all versions) the bird call heard is that of the North American Loon.

Discography

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