Born from the white heat of the rave explosion, XL Recordings has risen to become one of the true powerhouses of independent music.
Capable of launching everyone from The Prodigy to Basement Jaxx, M.I.A. to Vampire Weekend, the label even has its own globally recognised star in the form of Adele.
Deciding to look back, the team at XL Recordings have pieced together a new box set. Available from August 25th, 'Pay Close Attention' is spread across two discs and tells the full story of the label.
Alongside this, the imprint has launched a special website which contains specially designed timelines and other exclusive features.
XL boss Richard Russell:
"XL Recordings is a collaborative endeavour, and many people have contributed to its evolution. In the song 'Out Of Space', Liam Howlett of The Prodigy provided a blueprint when he sampled Kool Keith of Ultramagnetic MC's rapping these words: "Pay Close Attention". And whilst XL has never had any outside ownership, Gil Scott-Heron advised me not to even consider XL an "independent", because everything is connected.
Part 1 of this compilation are the roots of XL; underground music, made for DJs. These roots are still growing. Part 2 features some of the singular talents who have taken the label further than we ever envisioned. There is no unifying genre; hopefully the thread of originality is evident though.
The rave music XL first became known for was known as "hardcore"; that spirit continues. To show our appreciation for your support, thank you DJs. And thank you also to the retailers, writers, and, of course, ravers. "
Richard Russell, London, 2014
'Pay Close Attention' will be released on August 25th. Tracklisting:
1. SL2 – DJs Take Control
2. The Prodigy – Out Of Space
3. Awesome 3 – Don't Go (Kicks Like A Mule Mix)
4. Liquid – Sweet Harmony
5. Jonny L – Piper
6. Roy Davis Jr. featuring Peven Everett – Gabriel (Live Garage Version)
7. Dem 2 – Destiny
8. Nu-Birth – Anytime
9. Basement Jaxx – Jump N'Shout
10. Dizzee Rascal – I Luv U
11. Wiley – Igloo
12. Various Production – Hater
13. Giggs – Talkin The Hardest
14. SBTRKT – Wildfire (featuring Little Dragon)
15. Jamie xx – All Under One Roof Raving
1. The Prodigy – Firestarter
2. Peaches – Fuck The Pain Away
3. The White Stripes – Seven Nation Army
4. Devendra Banhart – I Feel Just Like A Child
5. Ratatat – Seventeen Years
6. M.I.A. – Paper Planes
7. Thom Yorke – The Eraser
8. Gil Scott-Heron – New York Is Killing Me
9. Radiohead – Weird Fishes / Arpeggi
10. Tyler, The Creator – Yonkers
11. The Horrors – Sea Within A Sea
12. Jai Paul – BTSTU (demo)
13. Bobby Womack – Please Forgive My Heart
14. The xx – Angels
15. Sampha – Too Much
16. Vampire Weekend – Step
17. King Krule – Easy Easy
18. Adele – Rolling In The Deep