- The Chemical Brothers: Ed Simons, Tom Rowlands.
- Additional personnel includes: Noel Gallagher, Beth Orton (vocals); Jonathan Donahue (clarinet); Ali Friend, Seggs (bass).
- Recorded at Orinoco Studios, South London, England.
- DIG YOUR OWN HOLE was nominated for 1998 Grammy Awards for Best Rock Album and Best Alternative Music Performance. "Block Rockin' Beats" won the 1998 Grammy Award for Best Rock Instrumental Performance.
- Chemical Brothers Ed Simons and Tom Rowlands waste no time on their nuclear-weapon of a second album proving they are masters of the techno groove. DIG YOUR OWN HOLE opens with a sampled shout-out by old-school gangsta Schoolly D, a syncopated bass line, and a drum loop that gives credence to the song's title, "Block Rockin' Beats." This smorgasbord of sounds--a hallucinatory interweaving of hip-hop, techno, trance and the Chemicals' trademark synthesized guitar loop--builds up and cold-rocks the first five minutes of the record like a tsunami crashing ashore. Unlike most productions in the electronic/dance-music universe, the music on DIG YOUR OWN HOLE also has the weight of great rock and roll. That makes DIG YOUR OWN HOLE the personification of modern pop music at its chaotic best, and a funky agent of change.
- DIG YOUR OWN HOLE is built on a repetition of beats, samples and skewered sounds, but that doesn't mean it's a repetitive album. Between bass-heavy house tunes like "It Doesn't Matter" and "Elektro Bank," the Chemicals show where their pop-oriented interests lie--in tradition. Whether butting heads with the Beatles ("Setting Sun," which features vocals by Oasis' Noel Gallagher), exploring English folk tonalities ("Where Do I Begin," featuring Beth Orton) or venturing on sprawling acid-rock voyages (the instrumental "Private Psychedelic Reel," with Mercury Rev's Jonathan Donahue), the Chemicals refashion familiar styles with a beat-heavy, electronic gleam. Far from digging a hole, the Chemicals are actually building a bridge, to "where it's at."
Rolling Stone (4/11/02, p.107) - Ranked #32 in Rolling Stone's "50 Coolest Records".
Rolling Stone (5/13/99, p.80) - Included in Rolling Stone's "Essential Recordings of the 90's."
Rolling Stone (4/3/97, pp.63-64) - 4 Stars (out of 5) - "...You can dance to it until your limbs turn to tapioca or just sit, listen and have your mind blown inside out....it burns the whole rock vs. techno argument into a fine white ash....Put it on, turn it up and let yourself be moved."
Spin - "'Block Rockin' Beats' sets off the sonic free-for-all, dropping bombs as bass lines detonate on impact. The title track's treated guitar riffs do demolition-derby figure-eights, sirens wail, disco whistles blow, and a drum break plows into what sounds like a sheet of aluminum being whacked by a monkey wrench."
Spin (9/99, p.123) - Ranked #10 in Spin Magazine's "90 Greatest Albums of the '90s."
Spin (1/98, p.86) - Ranked #10 on Spin's list of the "Top 20 Albums Of The Year."
Spin (5/97, p.109) - 8 (out of 10) - "...Their digitally dense breakbeat workouts offer a funk-at-your-own-risk proposition....All the Brothers want, God forbid, is to create a better place for just one night by cramming together all their favorite records. No more, no less..."
Entertainment Weekly (4/18/97, pp.64-65) - "...DIG YOUR OWN HOLE may epitomize sound as substance, a dubious distinction at worst. But those sounds (like recycled voice snippets) become alluring hooks in and of themselves, bringing the record as close to pop as techno has come so far..."
- Rating: A
Q (10/01, p.63) - Ranked #29 in Q's "Best 50 Albums of Q's Lifetime"
Q (12/99, p.92) - Included in Q Magazine's "90 Best Albums Of The 1990s."
Q (6/00, p.72) - Ranked #42 in Q's "100 Greatest British Albums"
Q (1/98, p.111) - Included in Q Magazine's "50 Best Albums of 1997."
Q (5/97, pp.116-117) - 4 Stars (out of 5) - "...it is DIG YOUR OWN HOLE'S joyful revival of seemingly unfashionable sounds from yesterdisco--a teeth-sucking hi-hat on `It Doesn't Matter,' a bass that's positively Level 42 on the title track, tons of outmoded hip hop punctuation of the `Yes yes, y'all' variety...--that makes it such a rare treat..."
Alternative Press (5/00, p.120) - Included in AP's "10 Essential Dance Albums That Rock" - "...Mixing block-rocking beats, acidic synth lines and high-profile guest stars, they convinced many people to call them the best 'rock' band around..."
Option (5-6/97, pp.96-97) - "...a techno masterpiece....A nearly continuous mix blending funk, disco and hard trance, the disc never goes flat or runs short on sonic ideas....This kicks atomic booty."
Melody Maker (12/20-27/97, pp.66-67) - Ranked #22 on Melody Maker's list of 1997's "Albums Of The Year."
Village Voice (2/24/98) - Ranked #12 in the Village Voice's 1997 Pazz & Jop Critics' Poll.
Village Voice (4/8/97, pp.65-69) - "...the duo's fondness for distortion, feedback, and rocklike noises makes air-guitar players feel right at home....While the Chemical Brothers successfully present themselves in a live context like a band, the duo mostly represents the next chapter in electronic music's increasing domination of global youth culture..."
Village Voice (4/15/97, p.62) - "Their secret isn't technowizardry, formal daring, or Lord help us eclecticism. As with so many pop wunderkinds, it's spirit--generous, jubilant, unfazed by industrial doom, in love with energy and sound. Noel Gallagher only wishes he had their heart..." - Rating: A-
NME (Magazine) (12/20-27/97, pp.78-79) - Ranked #12 in NME's 1997 Critics' Poll.