Two months in and four big chuggers turn up at once…….
Volumes 2 and 3 of Riddims Of Culture – Emotional Rescue`s picks from The New Morning`s back catalogue – are due any minute now. E.P.s of mid to late 90s, Baldelli / Loda, cosmic / afro-influenced DJ tools. Percussive and sample-heavy, they usually contain only one hook – a borrowed chant, a tribal twist. Staccato organ riff, military fife, and sonar blip. Thrown together with a hip hop energy. Generally designed to be mixed in and out of but something like Roots & Culture, for example – built on a Joao Donato loop – is complex enough to stand alone. While later productions, such as Kango Bina, are far more sophisticated, less obviously sample-dependent, slices of ethno-techno that resemble the recent Sandoz reissue, or the St. Echo mix of African Head Charge`s Stebeni`s Theme. The mix of organics and electronics very likely ON-U Sound-inspired.
Baris K dubs out Kit Sebastian’s Durma, on Mr. Bongo. An epic of militant marching minimalism, room-shaking boom. Where dream-like vocals and detail – ringing and rattling – zoom in and out of earshot. Bubbling, boiling, psychedelic and a little menacing. As it falls into delay, just for a moment, it turns into Liaisons Dangereuses` Peut Être … Pas. The package also features reworks by Natureboy Flako (Anatolian psyche meets Stereolab`s kosmische modular tropicalia) and Halal Cool J (head-nodding loops cut into increasing abstraction, as if someone were needle-dropping on their groove).
Ess O Ess & Saul Richards produce Totem for Kinfolk. The OG no doubt takes its title from the Native American-tinged synth riff. Piano chords resonate as if they’re being played at the bottom of a well. See-sawing electronics and drums crashing in an industrial skank. Wielding not a tomahawk by a mighty axe solo. Buffalo hunting with the wild at heart. Anyone remember Mekon`s Phattys Lunchbox? Saul’s Swamp Crawl Mix has the bass reverberating around xylophone chimes. The guitar switching between rockabilly rumble and heavy metal crunch. Grinding, sleazy and dark, to Def Jam, levee breaking, drums. Otologic strip the tune back to just the machines and the black hole vacuum sucking that their heartbeat creates. Slinging in Sleng Teng digital dancehall bottom-end belches, and keys that flutter like Pablo`s pipe of peace. Spinning Sci-Fi fireworks illuminating its dread. The Hardway Brothers have it inhale a cloud of pufferfish powder and datura dust, and go walking on gilded splinters to a slurred Johnny Jenkins break. Upping the voodoo to Stones-esque We Love You pianos. Invoking both Screamadelica and Undisputed Truth`s psychedelic soul. As high as The Orb fixing The Scream to Young Holt Trio`s Wah Wah Man. A phased Ball Of Confusion riff raising your consciousness before the synths hit lift off. Unstoppable and quite possibly Sean Johnston`s best work to date.
The Venetians Antipodean 80s “unclassic” Son Sur Son, gets remixed by Brother Johnston`s A Love From Outer Space partner, Andrew Weatherall, for a reissue 12 on White White. Attaching the original`s In The Air Tonight drum fills to a big reverb-ed kick and kosmische arpeggios. The beat banging above, while something bends slightly sinister below. Gurgling like a John Carpenter score. A further dub (A.W. Edition Duo) loses the vocals in favour of tremolo twang and laser gun fire. Also watch out for a Weatherall E.P. on Moton Records off-shoot, Pamela, coming late March – featuring one bad post-punk bass-lines and at least one perfect piece of novo new beat. More on that to follow….