Felix Buxton and Simon Ratcliffe met over an obscure Masters at Work record in Brixton, South London, in 1994. Choosing the name BASEMENT JAXX (Simon had a studio in a basement and the music jacked), they had humble ambitions at first: to put on great parties and produce records that emulated their heroes on the U.S. house scene.
Over the course of several EPs on their Atlantic Jaxx label, a more idiosyncratic, homegrown sound emerged in the edge-of-panic squeal of "Fly Life" and the bassbin psychosis of "Set Yo' Body Free." Their 1997 Atlantic Jaxx compilation was informed by soul, jazz, reggae, house, and samba, in addition to the more raucous British traditions of punk and rave.
Signing to Astralwerks in the U.S. (and XL in the UK), they released their debut album, Remedy, in 1999. After touring the world Basement Jaxx hosted an intense, intimate club in a Brixton pub and called it Rooty. That became the title of their second album in 2001. The Traktor-directed video for the album's "Where's Your Head At," which computer-grafted Felix and Simon's faces onto rioting monkeys, was the stuff of particularly entertaining nightmares, receiving an MTV Europe statuette for best music video to add to their Brit Award (Best Dance Act 2002).
Kish Kash, their third album, was born in the aftermath of another lengthy tour. Exhausted and homesick, Felix and Simon settled into their new Brixton studio and set about developing a fresh approach, less reliant on grooves and samples and more focused on songwriting, often starting with just a voice and guitar. The recording process took place between March 2002 and August 2003. In the meantime they released the low-profile experimental Junction EP and remixed Missy Elliott, DJ Sneak, and Justin Timberlake. Kish Kash features collaborations with Dizzee Rascal, Lisa Vennum-Kekaula, JC Chasez, Siouxie Sioux, and Meshell Ndegeocello, among others. This is the group's Hollywood Bowl debut.