It's difficult to quantify just how influential The Chemical Brothers have been. Ed Simons and Tom Rowlands' skilful and adroit blurring of the boundaries between electro and hip-hop, psychedelia and house has made them one of dance music's true household names all around the world, whether interred behind the decks or preparing the latest dancefloor bomb in the studio. But their most amazing ability is staying one step ahead of the pack, which they proved in no uncertain terms in 2008. Whether returning to their spiritual home Turnmills (London's legendary venue that closed at the beginning of the year) for one final DJ throw down in the space that once hosted their Heavenly Social parties and first made their name, or obliterating We Love at Space, Ibiza, with a jaw-dropping set over the summer, the sulphuric siblings remain at the top of the tree. In the live arena, The Chemical Brothers pulled off another coup, playing the immense confines of the Olympia Grand Hall in London, a giant venue that prior to their performance, on 30th August 2008, hadn't been played by a major act for 10 years. They also headlined the Electric Picnic and Roskilde festivals. Production-wise, they kept up the pressure too. With their 'best of' 'Brotherhood' doing the rounds, they also unleashed new track 'Midnight Madness', an undulating, big room epic with disco and techno elements that slid into the set-lists of DJs all across the spectrum with the greatest of ease. It was the 10th in their series of 'Electronic Battle Weapons' - tough club tools built for DJs, which served as the flipside to their more musical, widely available cuts - all neatly collected on the second disc of 'Brotherhood'. Meanwhile, 'Keep My Composure' united the Brothers with B-More dons Spank Rock for a sick electro rap monster. It's a rare trick to achieve mega-stardom and keep your cool credentials but The Chemicals are a rare breed indeed. Whatever they do next is bound to be explosive.