20. Praga Khan – Injected With A Poison

Like ‘The Magic Friend‘ earlier on, I found this a bit too intense on the first listen – acid squelching, whooping vocals courtesy of Jade 4U, and a scary man singing about poison. And piano breaks. And an underwater electric whisk. And one of those duck-calling kazoo things. Crikey! It was like the aural equivalent of the first time you ever mixed up cocktails using whatever you could find in your parents’ drinks cabinet*: spontaneous, tantalising, full of variety and enjoyably naughty, but quite harsh on the senses and inevitably made you feel a bit sick. Luckily I am now older and wiser and have the constitution of an ox when it comes to brain-melting Belgian techno, and DEAR SWEET JAYSUS this song is just brilliant.

Most rave tracks provide diminishing returns on repeated plays (see ‘On A Ragga Tip‘), but ‘Injected With A Poison’ still amazes me on every listen. The tempo is a whopping 149bpm**, a bit of a slap round the chops after woozy old Shut Up & Dance (I can hazard a guess which was more responsible for dudes ‘overheating’ in nightclubs). In an attempt to keep up, the constituent parts of the track each manage to build up to a crescendo in just four bars, before switching over to something completely different – like Praga Khan is trying to colour in the sections atlas-style so no two adjacent countries are the same.

To avoid the danger of spiralling off into the giddy whirlwind mess of ‘Everybody In The Place’, the track grounds itself every so often with a quick 4/4 ‘barp-barp-barp-barp’ to get its breath back. While there must be at least eight things going on at any one time, ‘…Poison’ manages to cement this kitchen-sink collection of noises and nonsense on to this titanium techno skeleton, allowing it to keep the momentum and power needed for Ultimate Bangingness.

I’m not surprised Mr Kahn has happily dined out on re-releases of this for the last 17 years – how on earth could he come up with something better? If I ever met him I would not only shake his hand but present him with a fvcking medal. This song makes me want to dig out Ableton and get cracking on some ferocious loops of my own.

The video is suitably eye-watering, with Amiga graphics and garish Global Hypercolours aplenty:


*Unless your parents are tee-total, of course. Then things end up a bit more like this because you’ve overdone it on the caffeine.

**If that’s not quite fast enough for you, try this.