Kenny Dixon Jr – Midnights / Moodymann – I Like To Know

Part of the fun of being a house and techno trainspotter enthusiast is tracking down multiple versions of the same track which appear on a number of different releases. Once you bring represses and bootlegs into the equation you’ll often discover previously unheard versions of a favourite track, sometimes uncredited, with a new title or erroneous label info. Ron Trent and Chez Damier were particularly adept at this kind of sonic recycling, with tracks like The Choice cropping up on KMS, KMS UK and Prescription in various mixes, and different versions of previously US-released tracks appearing on European albums, but the undisputed master must be Kenny Dixon Jr, who scattered different versions of tracks from his early discography across a number of labels.

A case in point is Midnights, which was initially released on the B-side of the Soul Sounds EP in 1996 before an overhauled version titled I Like To Know appeared on an EP for Music Is… the following year… and both later surfaced, incorrectly labelled, on a repress of Small Black Church on KDJ #5 in 1999. Nerdy details aside, both tracks rank among the most playable, DJ-friendly stuff in his catalogue, with straight-up house drums, a wandering chord riff and killer vocal samples. Midnights is more of a tracky DJ tool, and a record that I always keep in the box, while I Like To Know loops a deeper segment of the main riff and brings crowd noise and live percussion to the table, with a great intro that makes it a perfect set-starter when you need to switch things up. I’ve played the shit out of both over the years and they still cut the mustard.

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