ELITE FORCE : 1996 - PRESENT
Whilst Elite Force DJ sets are known for blending elements of Breaks, Techno, Electro and House Music, productions under this name most often fall under the Breaks or 'Tech-Funk' banner.
The most dancefloor-focused of Simon’s many aliases, Elite Force initial releases were largely Breaks. Over time the music veered between Breaks, Electro and Techno with his DJ sets regularly featuring a blend of all three (and sometimes even adding House). Regardless of genre, he has always concentrated on the vibe and groove of the music as opposed to where the kickdrums fall in any given bar. This non-genre specificity he often refers to as 'Tech-Funk'. Cutting his teeth in London with Fused & Bruised residencies at clubs like the Dogstar (Brixton), Turnmills and The End, by 2000 he was traveling internationally with his first proper overseas shows taking place in Southern Spain and Hungary. By the mid-2000s he was traveling most weekends and was a regular visitor to the USA, Australia, China and Eastern Europe.
The earliest Elite Force releases appeared on the Fused & Bruised label, which was launched by Simon Shackleton and Simon Lewin in 1996 with a single from Shackleton’s older alias, Phrack R. The first Elite Force release came in 1997 with the 'Mainframe Wrekka EP', which was the best-selling release on the label to date.
When the label folded in 2001, Elite Force output moved to Mark Pember's Whole Nine Yards imprint. Whole Nine Yards went under around the release date of the first Elite Force album 'No Turning Back'. Elite Force subsequently moved over to Kingsize Records, who themselves went under (along with their distributors) around the time the second Elite Force album, 'Modern: Primitive' was released. The album was re-released through Adrift Records a few months later, but on the week of re-release they, too, went under along with their distribution company. In 2006, due to all the unlucky timing with previous record labels, Simon founded his own label called U&A Recordings which has remained the main outlet for Elite Force tracks to the present day.
In 2010 the first 'Revamped' album was released, coining the term referring to a glorified mash-up using elements from multiple tracks to create something brand new. The project was a huge success and led to total dominance of the Beatport chart for well over a month. That year, Simon won several Breakspoll Awards, including Best Producer and Best Label, as well as a Beatport Award for the best-selling track of the year.
After a series of Revamped albums, culminating in 2013's RVMPD3, he began to shift his focus towards other projects and began creating music under the Simon Shackleton name. Elite Force remains in action with occasional DJ shows and new releases.