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One of only a handful of British techno acts ostensibly pursuing a legacy of British techno firmly rooted in its Detroit pre-history, B12 are also (perhaps resultingly) one of the few British techno acts also hailed by the Motor City's aesthetic elite. Notoriously shy of the music press, the London-based duo of Mike Golding and Steve Rutter have quietly made their contribution to post-rave techno by updating Detroit's signature optimistic/dystopian futurism for a digital age, constructing tracks of glinting, heavily syncopated electro-techno with a strong base in melody and mood. A relatively young project, the group have made an impact despite a comparatively conservative release schedule. They issued their first handful of untitled 12-inches -- attributed to a loosely structured catalog of pseudonyms like Redcell, Musicology, and CStasis -- on their own B12 label, and were immediately hailed alongside U.K. techno acts like LFO, the Black Dog, Sweet Exorcist, and Tricky Disco as heralding something of a new age of post-acid house techno-based electronic music. Included on the Warp label's somewhat disastrously titled Artificial Intelligence compilations (the pair signed with Warp in 1992), Golding and Rutter were also (somewhat unfairly) pegged as the sort of likewise artful noodlers the term "intelligent techno" has since come to signify. Their Warp debut in 1993 assembled the best of their early years, and the group followed the release with a three-year hiatus before releasing the like-sounding Time Tourist in 1996. Outside of their relationship with Warp, the group keep all other B12-related music-dealings in-house -- including distribution -- which means their records can be somewhat hard to find. Their two full-lengths for Warp were reissued in the U.S. by Wax Trax!/TVT. ~ Sean Cooper

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1989 in London, England

Years Active:

'90s, '00s


Influenced by this Artist