ON-U Sound`s Science Fiction dancehall opens its doors, ably assisted by Pinch`s Tectonic. Ushering you into a space where a psychedelic Africa vies with machine code, and Dub has been refitted for a Berghain rave. Creating mutants of spring-loaded Techno. Borrowing futuristic Latin rhythms from labels like Blip, and the arrhythmia of the mad / mental Motorik of recent collaborators, Nisennenmondai. Where a history of sound system culture, from busted Kingston loops, to Jungle, through Dubstep, and Grime, is stripped to the bare essential Bass. Bowel moving. Body shaking.
Melancholy piano refrains are torn apart by gravity`s pull. Twisted into fizz. Strings carry Jaws-like menace. Sampled dialogue contemplates infinity. Ryuichi Sakamoto`s Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence gets subjected to the 21st Century digital equivalent of Sado Island`s Kodo drums / Photek`s two swords in slow motion. Lee “Scratch” Perry taps into his direct-line to God. There are wah-wah echoes of ON-U`s own past – Creation Rebel / New Age Stepper`s Chemical Specialist – Skip McDonald`s treated Metal guitar – and that trademark Sherwood separation of sound. Man Versus Sofa feels huge, gigantic, in its simplicity, yet summons the claustrophobia of dancing in a crowded black box. The whole set possessing the same late night / early morning, before the dawn, urban, weed-infused paranoia, the same inner city dread, as Burial. The buzz of Big Brother surveillance. Soundtracks to skin-job chase sequences and navigating the Nostromo`s pitch corridors. Building in fury, until the closer, Gun Law, feels appropriately dangerous. A full-on aural firefight. Blade and bullet-proof.