Genre : Electro-Pop
Leftfield were a duo of electronica artists and record producers Paul Daley (formerly of The Rivals, A Man Called Adam and the Brand New Heavies) and Neil Barnes, formed in 1989 in London, England. The name Leftfield was originally used simply by Neil Barnes for its first single, "Not Forgotten," but after this, Paul Daley was involved first in remixing songs and then in the creation of following music. The pair were pioneers in the fields of intelligent dance music and progressive house, being among the first to fuse house music with dub and reggae. It furthermore was among the first electronic musicians to incorporate live guest vocalists, along with The Chemical Brothers and Underworld. Ultimately the duo have been influential on the electronic genre as a whole, with The Crystal Method's Scott Kirkland referring to them in 2005 as "The best Electronic band, period!"
Leftfield is well-known to the mainstream UK audience for their track "Phat Planet", which soundtracked the "Surfers" TV advertisement for Guinness, ranked number one in Channel 4's Top 100 Adverts list in 2000. "Phat Planet" was the track used in the animated television series Beast Machines and the simulation racing games F1 2000 by EA Sports and Racedriver GRID by Codemasters. In addition their song "Release the Pressure" was used on adverts for the O2 mobile phone network at its launch and "A Final Hit" was featured on the Trainspotting soundtrack; the b-side "Afro Ride" was also featured on the soundtracks to both wipE'out" and wipE'out" 2097 although it was only actually in the first game as a listenable track "in game". They also released a series of singles and two acclaimed albums before breaking up in 2002 to focus on solo projects.
Their first major hit was "Open Up", a collaboration with John Lydon; soon followed by their debut album, Leftism in 1995, blending dub, breakbeat, and techno especially called "UK-dub". It was shortlisted for the 1995 Mercury Music Prize but lost out to Portishead's Dummy. In a 1998 Q magazine poll, readers voted it the eightieth greatest album of all time, while in 2000 Q placed it at number 34 in its list of the 100 Greatest British Albums Ever. The album was re-released in 2000 with a bonus disk of remixes.
Rhythm and Stealth
Their second and final album, Rhythm and Stealth (1999) maintained a similar style but with a harder, bleaker techno edge, and featured such artists as Roots Manuva, Afrika Bambaataa, and MC Cheshire Cat from Birmingham. The album was shortlisted for the Mercury Music Prize in 2000 but lost out to Badly Drawn Boy's The Hour of Bewilderbeast. It reached #1 in the UK Albums Chart. The album featured the song "Phat Planet" which featured on Guinness' 1999 advert, Surfer and "6/8 War" featured on the Volkswagen Lupo Advert 'Demon Baby'. The track 'Double Flash' featured in the Playstation software game Music 2000.
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