When rave pioneers The Prodigy were last in Australia for Future Music Festival this February, the trio told inthemix about their early days as a group of mates going to raves in Essex, and the memorable time they were playing a warehouse party and a gatecrashing kid fell through the roof and landed on their mixer.
Now, thanks to Decoded Magazine, you can see exactly what those anarchic early ‘90s days were like. They’ve uncovered a five minute clip from BBC2’s Dance Energy show, exploring the Essex scene that was ruling UK hardcore at the time, from Romford’s hit-making Suburban Base Records to pioneering breakbeat hardcore acts like Smart E’s, SL2, Danny Breaks and, of course, “Essex’s most successful act” The Prodigy.
In the clip, the BBC talks to Christopher Howell of Smart E’s and Suburban Base owner Dan Donnelly about the dominating Essex hardcore scene, before cutting to some gig footage of The Prodigy tearing up Out Of Space live, with Liam Howlett jumping between keys and synths as Maxim handles the microphone, former dancer Leeroy Thornhill skanks around the stage, and dancer and MC Keith Flint gurns like a champion.
“When people see us,” Flint says, “they just see four people that, ten minutes ago before they got on stage, were in the crowd dancing around and having a laugh.” It’s a philosophy that’s seen them power through 25 years and six albums with the same intensity they had in the beginning; hit play below for a dose of incredible haircuts, baggy t-shirts, seminal tunes and hardcore rave vibes.