Handsome Boys is the new(-ish) collaborative partnership between Goon Club Allstars regular Moleskin and long-time friend and collaborator Boardgame James, which takes heavy inspiration from grime and R&G, but with added nods to soul, classic funk and New Jack Swing. What started life as a radio project between the pair, running from 2015 to 2018, has since taken on a life of its own.
Now a fully-fledged production outfit, HB have just released their debut project And The Award Goes To. The new EP (which had Bok Bok handling mixdown duties) dropped on Valentine's Day via Boardgame James' own 1000Doors label and to celebrate we invited the irreverent duo to put together a mix of some of the sounds that inspired them as both DJs and producers. Jam-packed with nostalgic cuts and modern reworkings of forgotten gems, this exclusive Handsome Boys mix joins the dots between their radio show and their newly-liberated productions.
Soulful, club-ready and with just a dash of irreverence, this is a snapshot of the most emotive moments in the last 20 years of underground UK club sounds.
Tell us a bit about your selections in this mix.
Strictly Handsome Anthems. Handsome is as handsome does.
What was the one track you absolutely had to include?
"The Beautiful Loop No. 1", aka the "We Don't Like Their Music No Matter How Many Times You Play It" war dub.
Any tracks that narrowly missed the cut?
The "Our Way" dub that Sammy, Frank and Dean cut us in '88, currently tied up in a lost luggage situation our management's about to get fired over.
What's the first single or album you ever bought?
Tchaikovsky's "Nutcracker Suite".
What's the last physical record you bought?
Yamaneko's Spirals Heaven Wide. His most accomplished record yet, complemented by the artwork, also designed by him.
What do you want to see happen musically over the next 12 months?
1000Doors roll out in real time. Between Moleskin taking us interstellar and Boardgame James hitching London's below to the daily commute, expect a realm of opportunity in grainy, hi-resolution.
What trend or scene absolutely needs to die right now?
Style over substance. Do like Handsome and bring both.
1. Johnny Skeng - Talking Style
2. Handsome Boys - The Beautiful Loop No. 1
3. Low Deep - Tell Me
4. Joker - Solid State
5. DJ Target - Runaway
6. Scott & Leon - You Used To Hold Me
7. Terror Danjah - So Real
8. BBMak - Still On Your Side (Artful Dodger Remix)
9. DJ NA - Rave Slaps Xtarri
10. DJ Plead - X5
11. DJ Luck & MC Neat - Ain't No Stopping Us (Original Mix)
12. Floops – Untitled
13. Handsome Boys - And The Award Goes To
14. Kwam - Hot Boy (prod. by Moleskin)
15. Handsome Boys - Handsome Anthem
16. PLTO - Sol Campbell
17. Ruffneck Revival - My Knight
18. Ruff Sqwad - Your Love Feels
19. Big Shot - Glitch
20. Dave Quam - The Perfect Find
21. Handsome Boys – The Beautiful Loop No. 2
22. Akala - Roll Wid Us (D'Explicit Remix Instrumental)
23. The Isley Brothers - Choosey Lover (Live at The Handsome Boys Afterparty)