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EVEN from their home town of Nuremberg in Germany, they could sense our nation's despair with the lumbering Frankenstein's monster that is big beat...

THE STRIKE BOYS KNOW THE SCORE. EVEN from their home town of Nuremberg in Germany, they could sense our nation’s despair with the lumbering Frankenstein’s monster that is big beat.

It’s just not funny any more, the pair concurred at some point last year, and promptly set about making a record that would save us from the inevitable onslaught of lagered, join-the-dots breakbeatery. Or at least until the new Fatboy Slim album turns up.

‘Selected Funks’ proves to be yet another essential foreign release in a genre already dominated by our European friends. Freshly signed to the increasingly one-dimensional Britbeat stable, Wall Of Sound, the studio-based duo of Martin Kaiser and Tommy Yamaha construct a significant portion of their supple grooves from that most tedious of decades – the ’80s.

Yup, it’s rose-tinted, retro-futurist time once more as we eagerly re-learn that body-popping to electro and, possibly, ‘Funky Town’ (‘Take It’) was a great idea, and that one-finger Casio solos fused with obscenely filthy basslines were the way forward (‘New School Of Strike’). Hats off, too, to the speed-skank of ‘The Rhyme’ which, in a feat of near-Herculean proportions, manages to put MC Tunes’ oafish ‘The Only Rhyme That Bites’ to good use.

So there is a life after big beat, even though it belonged to somebody else previously. ‘Selected’ hearing has never seemed so necessary.