dirty martini

old music for new people

ibiza: a post about chilling December 23, 2007


at the turn of the 80s, there was a largely forgotten exercise in building a more caring and sharing society. new age arrived with ethereal, mystic promise, based on spirituality rather than actions. this wasn’t a rehash of 60s free love by modern day hippies. 

for many this was a stark contrast to to the overriding ethos of the 80s – you can believe in what you can see in front of you. those who disagreed with that mercenary philosophy had sought refuge away from the capitalism and excess and discovered likeminded souls by seeking out the new and the strange. 

this didn’t just mean jetting off to ibiza, or turning up to shoom and warehouse raves as a means of differentiating from mainstream society. this wasn’t a friday and saturday night revolution. some pranksters – revealed to be the klf  -got up in the early hours each day to carve crop circles into fields, leading bemused and excitable farmers to proclaim that the aliens were coming. those who have no recollection can’t imagine how alien ‘1990’ sounded at the time, when it had seemed like the 80s would never end. i remember seeing decimated fields on the news and inwardly laughing at how the adult nation were taken in by this joke. it was harmless fun, a subtle yet memorable message that things needed to change before we descended into weirdness.

the new decade was an opportunity to sweep everyone else up in this movement. i once heard a tv commentator on one of those nostalgia shows, i love 1989, probably, make the insightful statement that the 90s actually started in the summer of 1989 when soul ii soul hit number one. there was no such landmark a decade later, the new millenium was just an excuse for inflated club entry fees. capitalism had returned in 1995.

if peace and love had lasted, i’d have called that summer of 1989 the true turn of the millenium. as it went, it was the start of five years of freedom, soundtracked by emerging house, techno and drum and bass sounds. don’t be fooled into thinking that cream, ministry of sound and renaissance played any part in this – as much fun as they were, i now realise they eventually killed the scene and brought us back to where we are today. there’s nothing new age about paying £30 to get into a club in ibiza – we already live in the UK, things are supposed to be cheaper abroad that’s half the point of going on holiday.

the new age movement grabbed me – well, i liked crystals. at one point in 1990, absolutely everyone wore white jeans, trainers and a lilac tshirt, the new age uniform. we failed to grasp the fact that our levis, reebok classics and topshop tshirt were in direct contradiction to the movement we thought we were representing. like most fads, new ageism became something you could pick up and appropriate without a speck of understanding as to its roots and philosophy, as long as you liked the music.

still, those older and wiser are lucky enough to have experienced the scene for what it should have been before the superclubs took over. they sat outside the cafe del mar before the sunset ritual became a patented experience. they danced in clubs where dj’s played music and were rewarded with genuine appreciation – not a £3000 booking fee. i visited ibiza in 1994, when the tide was turning. it was underground, but the marketability of the island was slowly being realised. when i returned two years later, it was fun but inauthentic.

all the choice we have now started in 1990, but then it was genuine choice, rather than marketing making the decision for you. it was like a trial – many of the the things we did then you can get arrested for now.  bubbling resentment hadn’t boiled over into terrorism – new age ethics reasoned that 80s consumerism and power was naive and should be allowed to correct itself, not be punished.

1990 was an exciting and emotional time. it wasn’t just the music and the philosophy. there was the world cup. anyone who can sit through nessun dorma without at least the urge to cry is, well, under 25. 

most chillout tracks for me sound like they were recorded in the early 90s. those produced later tried to emulate the sounds and mood and many did so successfully, which is why they’re in the mix. to manage any expectation, i am not a dj. this is a long, inexpertly mixed set that is a blatant attempt to squeeze as many tracks as possible onto my mp3 player, but it sorts me out when i’m drunk or hungover, stressed, can’t sleep or feel like floating away in the sun (rain).

back then we knew we were on the verge of something exciting, and we were, it just didn’t last that long or turn out the way we thought it might. i miss those days, i doubt 14 year olds now feel the way i did then.

check out my posts on the 1994 and 1996 ibiza club scenes.

90s chillout mixdownload here

leftfield – melt

sisterlove – the hypnotist

ibizarre – lazy living

nightmares on wax – les nuits

sofa surfers – sofa rockers

st etienne – only love can break your heart – andrew weatherall mix

the grid – floatation – subsonic grid mix

innocence – natural thing

bentley rhythm ace – bentley’s gonna sort you out

sheer taft- cascades – hypnotone mix

the orb – little fluffy clouds

sun electric – sundance

the beloved – the sun rising – gentle night

aphex twin – xtal

sub sub – past

orbital – belfast

klf – what time is love – original mix

fsol – papua new guinea

altern8 – self hypnosis

moby – slight return

lemon interupt – dirty

sabres of paradise – smokebelch ii – beatless mix

bbe – seven days and one week – sindaar mix

energy 52 – cafe del mar – michael woods mix

moby – go – jam and spoon mix

groove armada – at the river

fc kahuna – hayling

808 state – pacific 202

bbg – snappiness


11 Responses to “ibiza: a post about chilling”

  1. Jonny Says:

    Hi there,

    I know this is an old post but reading it today my eyes clouded over with nostalgia for that elusive feeling which drew me to both Ibiza, ambient and dance music – as a very young man at the time, I felt on the ‘crest of a wave’ (excuse the cliche), part of a youth movement that was really going to change things. I think it’s wrong to think we didn’t – just look at how integrated our society is now in compared to the scary 80’s, how much rights have improved for gay people, the marginalisation of evil organisations like BNP/National Front, etc.

    Yes, Ibiza has become a more ‘corporate’ experience but it still brings joy to millions of people every year and we can’t expect things to stay the same – just savour those blissful memories.

    Your chill-out mix helped me do that – whether recollecting lost moments in Thailand, Goa, Ibiza or further afield, today you helped me float away.

    Big love,

  2. dirtymartini Says:

    you make some good points. things have improved for some of the people who suffered up until the 90s and i suppose i forgot that.

    i’m glad you enjoyed the mix, thanks for commenting. and yes, ibiza is still worth a visit!

  3. […] check out my ibiza 1994 post and also an ode to the balearic vibe of the early 00s. […]

  4. michael davis Says:

    What are the reproduction rights on this beautiful photo? (sunset, Ibiza: A Post about chilling) Thanks

  5. Matias Says:

    hey! the link on top is bad 😦 , really i want this album , and i cant find it in EMule , Ares , etc . could you upload it to an other server?? like rapidshare plz???

    Saludos From Chile!!!!!!!

  6. Deano Says:

    Cool – I was there for two weeks early summer 1995.

    Doin the ‘tour’ one evening, our crowed stopped dead and gathered round this new 4×4 jeep sat outside one of the clubs. We just stared ! no one spoke.
    The tyres were up to our waists and a good two feet across.
    Never had we ever seen a Lamborghini jeep offroader before, never mind a brand new one.
    That did it for me.
    Best music was the private mix tapes that did the rounds in the hotels. Not club mainstream but back room chilled. Played one over an over in my van for two years dreaming of a life in Ibiza.

  7. wayman Says:

    Just a big thanks for the share lovely old tracks , thought u may like a look at this it,s and old site for flyers for the old raves , if u can remember it the flyers there enjoy it it brought a smile to my face peace and love to u


  8. Relicswish Says:

    Thanks for sorting the link back :).

    You got the guys email add who asked about the rights for the flick? – I know it was ages ago but hey.

  9. […] ibiza: a post about chilling a look back at what the 90s could have been ..crystals, sunsets and new age music […]

  10. chris ferrier Says:

    Hey, downloaded this mix a while back, unfortunately had to restore my computer. forgot to save this great collection of songs. after innumerable keyword searches on google managed to find it again 😉 problem is the links dead, just my luck. any chance u can sort it out again, would be greatly appreciated, cheers.


  11. KevFrey Says:

    So cool that you have compiled these oldskool tracks. The links are dead, though – Can you re-upload elsewhere? I know I’m not alone in this request. I could probably dig through my stacks and find damn near 90% of these songs, but that would take (a very fun…) several days. Hmmm… on second thought…. nah, the links would be good since mix lists are like windows into someone else’s world for a time.


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