Mancunian institution, Rainy City Music, who are currently celebrating their 25th anniversary, have a big 12 on their books. I`d like to say “brand new”, but it was actually released late last year – although to, as far as I know, no fanfare. Ban Ban Ton Ton recently made friends with Naveed Akhtar, a veteran of the Manchester underground dance music scene and super tight with the label, which I guess got us into the loop, and then on Friday London’s Love Vinyl announced that they had 10 (!?) copies for sale. Proper first come, first served business, with the added bonus that this was an exclusive, that no other store, anywhere on the planet, had the record in stock. Google it and you’ll find this to be true, but don’t be disheartened as the imprint’s Bandcamp are currently still taking orders.
The single sees the Rainy City`s co-founder Irfan Hussain join forces with London-based Simbad and the mighty Jamaican dub poet, Mutabaruka, for one new track, and I guess a sort of remix. Catch, Loot, Steal finds the righteous orator protesting at the plundering of Africa`s natural resources, calling out all kinds of corruption and greed over a fierce 4 / 4 thump. With an angry throb that gets more acidic every minute, it`s the first new house music, at least that I’ve heard, with a modern, militant, message, since Virgo Four`s Change, in 2019. On the flip there`s a downtempo dub version. A melodica-led skank, rocked by reverb and rimshot rattles, shaken by soundclash mixing desk effects, and further serenaded by rueful reeds. The E.P. also takes Mutabaruka`s classic, Dis Poem – famously reworked in 1990 by Bobby Konders, and most recently by Roots Unit – and reframes it within the aforementioned acidic throb. The lyrics of life now set to shuffling percussion, in a mix that’s almost beatless, but certainly not ambient. Symphonic synths and sirens topping off a trippy, heavy, lost in the AM dance-floor, altered state sound.
Catch, Loot, Steal, by Mutabaruka, I Rainy, & Simbad, is available now on Rainy City Music.