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Spaceways

Hip-hop/jazz fusioners Spaceways record for the Bristol-based Cup of Tea label, whose releases by Grantby, Red, Monk & Canatella, and Purple Penguin combined with those of higher-profile Bristolean acts such as Massive Attack and Portishead in making the city a hotspot of sorts for smoky, dub- and jazz-inflected head music. Championing a groove-based, live-sounding integration of funky, sequenced beats and live percussion with lots of brass, guitars, standup bass, and other instrumental affects not normally associated with electronic dance music, Spaceways are, like Red Snapper and Propellerheads, among a new crop of artists re-exploring dance music's roots in live performance. A seven-piece complete with horn section, the group formed in 1989 at the height of the UK acid jazz craze, and their roots are more than evident in their first string of COT releases, "Japanese Flute" and the full-length debut, Trad (although the jazz is of a freer, less "refined" sort than the Talkin' Loud and Acid Jazz tracks that were the staples of that scene). Spaceways tour often and are a constant on the Bristol scene through Cup of Tea's various club events, which routinely feature mixed bills of DJs, visual artists, and live acts.
© Sean Cooper /TiVo
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