On The Corner`s second Double Drop finds the DiAboLicaL LibERTies and Edrix Puzzle serving up. The former, the pairing of Alex “Patchwork” Stevenson and Rob “Doug Caramouche Earl Zinger General Rubbish” Gallagher, the latter a mysterious trio – possibly Planet Battagon-releated – last seen contributing the tight, taut, blaxploitation-bumped jazz-funk of Johnny Buck Buck to the label`s dynamite Door To The Cosmos compilation / sampler. The two tagged teams share production values. Neither is afraid to bash, bully, distort, and / or push into the red. Both also offer up inner space explorations. One, trapped like a tiger in a cage, bouncing off paranoid pandemic walls. The other equating elevated consciousness with a journey to the stars.
What the DL`s deliver is this meta cultural melting pot. What on the surface might seem like “some poems set to some beats” actually condenses (at least) two centuries of London history. Capturing, recording, reflecting, the capital`s diverse, ever-evolving nature, pulling in influences from every colour, and then smudging the edges with a deft dub dynamic. Mr. Gallagher, of course, your erudite tour guide, assuming a persona part urban shaman, part artful dodger. Cracking off cryptic 2021 code, clipped occult argot, like a (very) high hip priest, to heavily processed percussion, and amplified by empty warehouse echo. Reciting caveated mindful mantras – Everything Is Possible Until It`s Not – over busted breaks, and breakneck bongos. Grooves that borrow from West and North Africa, and the Middle East – like a sometimes skanking travelogue, lighting out for all points, even south of the river. Pacify My Night Bus is a brilliant blast of sub-bass and melodica dread. A big brother, selfie / surveillance, soliloquy on everyday darkness, shit we’ve come to accept as included in the ride. To my ears it sits side-by-side with Sherwood / Pinch / LSK`s equally fantastic Fake Days. Mostly Indoors` witty, modern, existentialist, absurdist, wordplay puts lockdown lunacy / mania under the microscope. Cabin fever cranked to the max on routine and meaningless minutiae.
Edrix Puzzle`s three tracks trace a transcendental trajectory to and from an imagined extra-terrestrial tropics. The Rise To Eris prepares for lift-off by launching a bad, bad, live, super syncopated battery. Colliding with crazy congas, countered by complex chiming, metallic, rhythms, and accompanied by cool, cool contrabass. The players urging each other on with impassioned shouts and cries. Those bass strings, when bowed, helping to throw up an improvised wall of noise, as together, they rocket toward, invade, explore, a dark, funky, unknown. The sax firing fast flurries of short pinched notes, honking in and around the hook, while the machines respond by dropping bionic blocks of grimy bottom end and unleashing spiraling modular sirens. The piece peaking with drum rolls, and electric wah-wah effects, hard bop, scale-shredding, skronk, and topped by a reality-bending rap. The voyagers` visions taking time to stop off at Lapetus, Saturn`s third largest moon, before finally coming full circle with the percussive ritual of Eris Fall.
Double Drop Vol. 2 will be released by On The Corner, next month, on September 17. You can pre-order the digital and very limited vinyl over at Bandcamp.