Decided to make a list of old skool jungle tunes from back in the day. Everyone’s rockin’ dubstep and drumstep, but some of these tunes helped set it off twenty years ago, laying the foundation that dubstep would eventually come out of..
I only chose ten, but obviously there are tons of great tunes to be heard that I didn’t mention. But, if you’re into jungle, you’ll probably know most of these tracks…if you’re new to jungle, then these tracks provide a great introduction to the sound of hardcore vintage eletronica.
And, with that, let the old skool jungle arguments about top-ten placement start….NOW.
10.) Deep Blue – The Helicopter Tune
By today’s standards, it might not be the most insane thing on the planet, but it’s a fun track, with classic and unrelenting jungle sound.
9.) Bizzy B – Every Day Junglist
The champion, Bizzy B! Some straight-up good junglism, with lots of fun samples that one came to expect from the super-quick rave genre…
8.) Cool Hand Flex – Must Feel
This is definitely a fun tune. Super heavy bass, and a tripped-out little reggae sample to put you in that irie jungle vibe. I remember first hearing this one about ten years ago. I kept replaying it, turning it up louder and louder, each time. I just love the contrast between the treble-ish beats and the super-low bass. As far as I’m concerned, all you really need for good jungle is a subbass and a snare. Oh, and a fast tempo. (…and, I suppose, an irie demeanor?)
7.) Dj Zing – Super Sharp Shooter
With a fun sampled-synth and a cutty vocal, this one’s great for drivin’ around and blasting the bass and annoying the neighbors. And in the end, isn’t that half the fun of listening to bass music? :)
6.) Mental Power – Deep Soul
I enjoy the soulful old-skool-house piano and vocal intro on this one. Bustin’ chopped amen loops with sweet ‘n soulful vocal melodies: what’s not to like?
5.) Remarc – Drum n Bass Wise
This tune’s got a great example of the super-stretcched vocal right before the break – a sound effect that came to help characterize the sound of 90s jungle sound. Plus, the eery tones give it that dark and unhappy feel, which further separated it from the rest of rave culture and acid house, at the time. I mean, to say that all of acid house was happy would be an overstatement, but when jungle started gaining momentum, it really defined itself as the aggressive and darker side of rave music. Remarc’s tune, above, is a good example of that.
4.) Omni Trio – Renegade Snares
An older one. There were a lot of bomb Omni Trio tracks.
3.) Congo Natty Junglist
Aside from being an incredible tune, the video brings depth to the experience, and you get the feeling of being right next to Congo Natty, making jungle records. Very fun.
2.) DJ Rap – Intelligent Woman
This one’s just a masterful work of jungle, in my opinion. It’s got everything – a diversity of breaks, fun dancehall vocals and samples and sirens, a very effective bass, and even that time stretch effect on the vocals. The breaks are pretty tripped out, for the time period it came out in. All in all, a great track.
1.) Uk Apache & Shy FX – Original Nuttah
I’ve yet to hear a better jungle track than this one. This is one of the few jungle tracks I’ve heard with an actual lyrical verse that makes the song feel like a conventional song, and not just a track. I know, yes, there are other tracks with vocals… but, typically, they’re just vocal samples that go on for a few seconds or so. This one has more than that, as does the track I put in for # 2, and that was one of the reasons they scored so high on my list. Songs like this made jungle seem like a whole genre, and not just a rhythm style. Plus, the beats are hard as hell – just merciless, really! So fast – and yet – so masterfully controlled.
This on gets the #1 spot for all these reasons, and also, because it’s just the funnest old jungle track I’ve ever heard. Whenever I listen to it, I can’t just hear it once. I’ll typically play it over and over and over again.
So there you go, top ten old skool jungle tunes! Hope you enjoyed it! If ya did, please leave a comment, as I would very much appreciate it! Or, if you’re an old junglist and absolutely hated this list, feel free to tell me what I messed up on, in your opinion :)