Saturday, March 31, 2012

re all those grime movies:

Man like Carl says they are all "basically crap, yet! i sense a kind of germinal potential in them and think in some way they are truer and more openminded representations of Britain than most well made mainstream fare"

Man Like Tristam points me towards Top Boy, Channel 4's gritty urban drama series

mini-doc on New Jersey Club crew Brick Bandits

FADER TV: Brick Bandits by thefader

[via Benny B at Dissensus]

Friday, March 30, 2012

(via tendezroman)

from a couple years ago - produced by Redlight aka drum 'n' bass producer Clipz

if you told me that was a dark'n' lush jungle tune from 1995 over which she'd just thrown a new vocal, i'd totally believe you

it isn't, is it?

"out in the jungle/fighting like a lion" -- so goes the lyric on this, which doesn't sound like vintage jungle

more modern sounding and making me wonder why Bratt didn't do a Katy B

hang on a minute, hang on a minute...

"Mz. Bratt's father was MC Scallywag from the early 1990s acid house sound system, Spiral Tribe."


see i used this next track, which is Scallywag over a Grant Nelson production, big tune summer 1992, as evidence in my FACT Liverpool lecture re. the thread of MC-ology running from hardcore to jungle to UKG to grime

the contiNUUM there, that's genealogical not just genreological

a family tree of MC to MC
Angus Finlayson at FACT presenting a pretty convincing case for seeing Diplo as a globe-trotting privateer in quest of booty-shake booty, whose modus is the re-presentation of "the
innovations of lesser-known global scenes – Brazilian funk carioca, New Orleans bounce... Dutch bubbling house
" in such a way that manifest deb(i)ts are transmuted into credit for the re-presenter...

which makes him the perfect icon for connectivity, the telemetric data-flows that underpin the world financial system, the entertainmentscape and our personal communications... the same system that enables lightning-fast transfers of capital allows for an unprecedented mobility of cultural capital from local scenes to "ambassadors"

as Diplo says at the start of the Blackberry commercial, he travels the world "collecting influences"

but you don't really need to physically go anywhere to be this kind of hunter-gatherer

computer/smartphone + Interweb places the homebound, sedentary individual at the crossroads of all this post-geographical traffic

Arthur Kroker foresaw all this years ago, argued that sampling and digital music technology anticipated what would happen to culture/economics in the era of globalisation:

"...the harvesting of energy from the local and the bounded for the global and unbounded.... Ours is a time of non-history that is super-charged by the spectacular flame-out of the detritus of the bounded energy of local histories... archived body parts are disguised in the binary functionality of data and pooled into larger circulatory flows... Nietzche's body and conscience vivisectionists, vampiring organic flesh, and draining its fluids into cold streams of telemetry... "

(all quotes from Data Trash, Kroker's book with Michael A.Weinstein)


Thursday, March 29, 2012

until the bass drop, this track off the forthcoming album by Bassnectar (#2 brosteppa after skrillex) sounds like vintage hardcore in the maximalist vein of Hyper-On Experience and circa-"Window in the Sky" Acen

that break is one used by Urban Shakedown on "Some Justice", and countless others, right?

strange days we're living through

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

shit, never knew about this until Aaron pointed me in its direction

never realised that Chill Records was from Luton either

hey what's this then? a prototype for Metalheads's "Terminator". well, not quite...

i actually reviewed something by Return of the Living Acid in a Melody Maker singles page, but it wasn't this

an odd transitional record - acid into breaks via bleeps

this might be the one i reviewed

shit, this one is really good

dammit i thought i owned all the bleepnbass i needed, but not the case, not the case

never even heard of this lot

again, uneasily moving into breakbeat house zone -- "breaks 'n' bleeps" is what i think called this sound-flavour on the other blog, a long while back .... not a genre, just a phase - a season's sound

back to original clique, i think i do have all the Chill 12 inches they did

again, another one never heard of, or even seen, which is odd, considering how much time i've spent trawling through boxes of poorly-treated rave 12s

Sonic Food?

ah well there's the "people of chemisty, people of rhythm" sample as heard on Kaotic Chemistry a bit later - and a bit better used

talking of food...

NRG later famous for his Korgis-sampling "I Need Your Lovin'" and others, here with an early take on the nuum's fetish for classical cheese


gabba meets bubblin'

via Bas Van Hoof

Sunday, March 25, 2012

We were playing chess and as he mused on his next Dad-destroying move, Kieran (12-and-a-half) sang a little made-up song. And then in the midst of this ditty, clear as bell, there appeared the word "dubstep".

"Did you just say 'dubstep', Kieran?"

He nodded.

"How do you know about dubstep?"

He looked at me with that look of mild derision that is the default expression of proto-teenagers across the world.

"Everybody knows about dubstep, Dad."

When I pressed him on the matter, like exactly where he picked up the term (he wasn't sure: probably Youtube)and what exactly it was, it turned out he didn't quite have a clear idea.

But still: K is not hugely interested in music, not yet, so the fact that he knows about it indicated to me that it's really, finally, made it. It took ten years, but dubstep's crossed over.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

is this hipster hardcore?

featuring Julianna Barwick in the Lisa Gerrard/"Papua New Guinea" role

yeah this pushes all the right buttons but it takes a little bit more than that to
have this effect on me
follow the sample trail

from 2.12 in...

to 0.14 in...

to 1.14 in...

to 2.10 in...

the remix de-gentrifies the original

it's not a re-rub, it's a re-ruff


you gotta love this youtube comment on Rashad & Spinn's rmx:

"another fine example of footwork: removes all musicality in favour of badly stuttered 808 samples. well done. it's like someone forgot their rrritalin"


good stuff though, Addison Groove, in its cinematic / neo-Metalheadz-y way

and his own vip rmx is slick'n'ruff, and -- talking of MHeadz - reminds me a tiny bit of "Drumz VIP" by doc scott

from the forthcoming album, which sounds like it's veered off a bit from F-work... moombhaton-wards?

in re. the previous post on monolake/ableton: the impact of digitisation on culture and on musical practice, in particular the deleterious effects of a surfeit of choice versus "restriction as the mother of invention" is one of the leitmotifs of my piece on the work of David Toop in the new issue of the Wiree. It's an adapted version of the Off the Page talk "Toopological Space: The Flow-Motion Studies of David Toop" but the Wire gave it a much better title: "Tales of Toopographic Oceans".

Over at The Wire website, I've done a Portal linking to online writings that informed or connect to the Toop piece, mostly by others but a couple by me. One of the latter, from 2000, "Pure Fusion", looks at the impurism versus purism, multiculture versus monoculture issue.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

interesting post at mnml sggs where both MS dudes take turns to write their impressions of the new Monolake album Ghosts, more or less concurring in the harsh verdicts

chris: "it feels like the ghost of Monolake - you can see the shape, you recognise who it is, but there is no life. It just exists in an awkward netherworld somewhere between good and bad. But for me the defining characteristic of the album is ultimately how deeply boring it is."

PC: "Not dead, just lifeless..... I'm realising as I listen to this that music 'must' strike out in some direction (eg toward the heart), or remain in the inertness of its own directionless inertia."

the most interesting part of the double-review is the connection made between the fact that Robert Henke invented Ableton and a kind of stasis, or entropy, or something, entering into his own music almost immediately upon Ableton's entry onto the music-tech marketplace

Ableton and similar digi-audio programs do seem to have had an overall effect on electronic music production in the 2000s, there seems to be an inherent tendency within them that is hard (if not impossible) to resist, a tendency leaning towards what Matt Ingram calls "audio trickle"... a haemorrhaging away of thrust and drive, as a result of an infolding into recessive detail, a kind of minimalist ornamentalism... if you'd come up through the 90s, it was hard i think not to respond to the gradual onset of this vibe-lessness as a malaise.. the decadent phase following a period of vigor and advance...

when it comes to Monolake specifically, after those initial amazing 12 inches on Chain Reaction and the grey-metal-canister album, when i bought the subsequent Monolake CDs, they seemed to get progressively less involving .... less
memorable... to the point where i stopped bothering picking them up

i've listened to Ghosts once, it left no impression on me at all... but i'm going to give it a proper go on the Big System (not that big but certainly mighty c.f. this computer)

for now some flashbacks

grime thrillers

carl's post on nick love's outlaw as modern cinema du chav

reminded me of how one evening last year, idly watching recorded-earlier-that-day-footage of the Royal Wedding, and getting bored, i started flicking to other cable channels and then on one of the movie channels, i stumbled on a showing of this

then got into flicking back and forth between Adulthood and Will & Kate for a sort of two-sides-of-UK-today polarisation effect

not living in the country i simply had not noticed that there'd been a whole spate of grimesploitation/urban-yoof-action-dramas movies coming out of Britain.... they don't seem to get released here in the USA, presumably it's not a view of England that there's any niche market demand for

adulthood was the sequel to this

and then there was

and this (comedy version of kidulthood/adulthood?)

and this, described by the guardian as a grime musical (!)

oh and this near-future-dystopia-as-warped-mirror-of-present job

any more? and any of them any good? (adulthood was stilted enough to make me go back to the royal wedding voluntarily several times)

hard to believe this came out in 1984

supposedly one of the first records to use both a Roland 303 and a 808

Monday, March 19, 2012

from bas van hoof , some context on those "your last condom" dudes
Immo (Immorales), the Dutch Antillian band

that's the bubbling you've been hearing about.

you could call the dutch antilles our jamaica (mainly aruba and curacao, both still dutch) also surinam adds a little to the stew

it started in the nineties, with dj moortje

listen to, you'll recognise the chipmunk vocals and the accelarated beats

Dj Moortje - Jamaican Girls

DJ Moortje Bandje 62 kant A (Part1)

in a way bubbling was our (dutch) other hardcore, next to gabber (a pity they never really met)

some populair tunes (like number one in the charts)

k-liber - viben
K-liber Schudden met die billen.
Def Rhymz-Schudden

stuff like anti-g, de schuurman, shaun d is the bastard child of this kind of this stuff (like juke is the child of chicago house)

shaun d - pull up

de schuurman - full Effect - Poeng Ka Poeng Ka

Friday, March 16, 2012

another member of the brick bandits

more BSE-beats

Adam Schwarz tells me that this mix of his and Mark Brown represents "the new wave of Baltimore Club... I've been calling it "Shakeoff", some people just call it simply "club music"... older Baltimore Club heads call it "Little Kid Shit" or "Dancer Music" or "Hopper Music". Its super youth and dancer oriented. It ranges from like 135-150 in tempo and reaches into the Philly and Jersey Clubs scenes as well, with minor differences. Basically super weird future-club"

talking of "shakeoff" - the jitteriness and palsied interfacing of hip hop and house reminds me a bit of "party people"-era todd terry but amped up and thugged out a bit

Adam points me towards some other stuff that is even more converged with Euro sounds: Sir Phresh (formely Young Phresh) and his crew PKE

that has a bit of Dance Ecstasy 2001 trance-meets-gabber to it

Adam also recommends two guys from Dem808z crew - Rip Knoxx, "a 20 year old producer from Baltimore who samples a lot of New Metal and makes everything in Minor Harmonic Keys" and his cousin Matic

Bas Van Hoof from the Netherlands says, you want to hear some real black gabber, how about this

Immo (Immorales), a Dutch Antillian band

sounds a bit like very fast reggaeton meets Da Hool "Meet Her at the Love Parade"

from the album Je Laatste Condoom which translates as "your last condom"

Thursday, March 15, 2012

apparently Nitro Deluxe aka Manny Scretching Jr. nee Young Scretching used to play in Sun Ra Arkestra before he hooked up with Cutting Records

presumably that's why he's called the King of the Nubian Beat on the front of this 12 inch (i just have it with a white sleeve, which is a shame)

i wish YouTube had the "Closet Mission" and "Say Your Love" mixes of "On A Mission", the most far out tracks he ever did

but this is some strange celestial bizniz for sure

the mad vocal-sample as trumpet solo bit that comes in about 5.30 -- those "On A Mission" mixes are like that, to the power of ten, total phoneme-foam-phantasmogoria...

actually on this mix, the vocal wikki-delica gets even wilder

but still not out there as the Closet Mission and Say Your Love mixes of "Mission"

which are really not so far from John Oswald's "Dab"-bed up editrix of "Bad" by Michael J

i also inevitably think of where troutman takes the voice-box in the latter region of this (from 6.57 onwards) -- different technique, same kind of affect

"too much speed and we see nothing"--Virilio

"I was born with a sense that my time was running out. Not long ago, I too began blaming the speed of the internet and its corresponding mobile, digital technologies. But then I realized that the problem wasn't being able to do more, faster; it was that, faster and faster, I was spending more of my own precious time doing more of less.... We need to slow the internet down, and should probably hurry up about it"

from "Slow Media, & The Occupation Of Online Time", an essay by Ryan Alexander Diduck, at the Quietus

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

dj sliink free tunes dl and interview at

there's a blithering idiocy to these beatz that's bracing

the riddimatic equiv to Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy
"I'm Sam Tiba. I'm always high."

more mad shit, not actually from New Jersey although dude plays that stuff

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

more Nuumy bizniz in Tyga tracks

not just that echo-chambered rave siren / foghorn-bleep heard in countless nuum-trax (and most recently on a track on Zomby's Nothing)

gratuitous (and really dire) deployment of dubstep wobblage in this gloopy track

calling the junglist cru

listen to this

listen to about the 2.10 mark

that clunking sound be will your jaw

hitting the floor

yes yes it is, it is

the man like Rob Haigh

the mighty mighty Omni Trio

the bit that starts about 1.26 into this:

nearly fainted with surprise when that came in

it appears to be not even sampled so much as just superimposed, or under-imposed, the track... which up to that point had been fairly thuggish-sexist bizniz-as-usual but then (as the more tender-hearted Omni vibe comes through) switches to slightly more reflective and vulnerable, "strugglin' to survive" type lyric


s'more Nuumy stuff in a Tyga track deeper into the Careless World album

not just that echo-chambered rave siren / foghorn-bleep heard in countless nuum-trax (and most recently on a track on Zomby's Nothing)

but half way through, what a surprise, gratuitous (and really dire) deployment of dubstep wobblage

this really is black gabba

like if Underground Resistance had decided, fuck it let's throw in our lot with Rotterdam

even the title--"Emergency"-echoes all those rave-alarm panic-rush titles of 91-93

there goes that rave-siren again, and that need-a-bass kick

now that one reminds a bit of "Poing" by Rotterdam Termination Source

Monday, March 12, 2012

New Jersey Club = like footwork, only not quite as triptastic

at times like a Black American counterpart to donk, or hard house

there should be a name for this sound/style... rigid, swing-less beats that take mechanistic repetition just a little too far

"birthday cake" is co-produced by Da Internz and The Dream

"stupid hoe" is produced by Diamond Kuts

so it's not a signature sound, it's something in the air, something sceniotic... an emerging beatgeist

and for all the here-and-there echoes of bleep&bass or belgian hoover, or even B-boys on E circa 2001-2 ("snoopy trak", "what's yr fantasy") it's a new beatgeist

produced by StreetRunner and Sarom that one and it has me flashing a bit on i dunno Noom records... darktrance...

but back to the first two cuts -- here's something else by Diamond Cuts and is basically gabber, complete with an African-American version of jumpstyle

and Da Internz is responsible for that equally mechanistic dark-stark tune "Dance (A$$)" by Big Sean, the one i thought sounded like slowed-down footwork

never joining tumblr (all those "likes" etc, what a waste of space) but once in a blue moon i do see something i feel like chipping in with, viz.:

swiped via tom ewing's tumblr, stephin merritt talking quite completely out of his ARSEhole:

People like to make up genre names every once in a while. The people who make dubstep are exactly the same people who were making drum and bass — it’s just that they don’t want to call it drum and bass anymore, or jungle, the American word for drum and bass. Genre is a tyranny in music and it’s usually imposed from without.

and then Matthew perpetua piping up to agree with it!

"Funny that it’s Stephin Merritt of all people saying something very accurate about “dubstep,” i.e., that it’s essentially the same genre(s) of electronic music that was big in the 90s with a fancy new name, whether it’s Skrillex or James Blake or Burial. And that’s great! It’s not an insult! It’s the need for rebranding that is silly, not the music itself, or its lineage."

as Ewing comments, if the musicians come up with the genre names how is that "imposed from without"?

and as someone else says, "jungle as the American term for D&B"???!

but this is the same Stephin Merritt who, when i interviewed him in 1995, informed me that electronic music had not advanced one whit since John Foxx's Metamatic in 1980.
got a spare 1 hour and 40 minutes?

further to the last post

Sunday, March 11, 2012

gabber lives, apparently

although theoe pics of "gabber bitches", like the pics of gabber boys used to illustate the Vice piece, are actually all from the mid-90s - so who knows

more vintage and relatively recent pix of gabber couture and behaviour at

the Gabber Eleganza blog --

and at


Saturday, March 10, 2012

never heard this at the time

the stuff i did hear by them at the time was totally Megadog (might even have seen them live at Megadog now i think of it) and not my bag. but "the plot" joins the dots between techno, trance and ardkore niftily

[via shallow rewards]

Friday, March 9, 2012

one of the things I like to do to annoy Detroit Techno Pietist-Purists, who certainly deserve it, is to argue that Detroit didn't invent techno, it was just a way-station in the evolution of the music as it passed from Munich + Dusseldorf + Sheffield + Basildon to London + Chicago + Sheffield (again!)+ Frankfurt + Berlin + Rotterdam and... just one station on the train track that started with "Trans-Europe Express" and "I Feel Love" (and a bunch of other things obviously)

this is more than enough to goad them but the truth is, i could be even more annoying and point out that Detroit did not even invent the term "techno"


Yellow Magic Orchestra's "Technopolis" (on Solid State Survivor), 1979

Yellow Magic Orchestra's Technodelic album, 1981

Man Parrish, "Techno Trax", 1982

all predate Cybotron's "Techno City" of 1984

probably the decisive move towards semantic closure was made by Kraftwerk with "Techno Pop" in 1986 (off Electric Cafe)... that surely prepared the ground for the scrambling-around-at-the-last-minute "what shall we call this compilation then?" decision made by the Belleville 3 and Neil Rushton of Network a few years later that for some reason or other made "techno" the property of Detroit in perpetuity, as genre term and as style of music

four facets of total perfection

and a bunch of somewhat-short-of-perfection precursors and follow-ups

what i really want is the mad dubmix of "on a mission" with the psychedelic phoneme-foam and wikkywikky vocal science
[via NTS Radio]

the audio from the Critical Beats #3 panel from February 23rd, organised by the Wire and University of East London, at Stratford Circus - featuring myself, Lisa Blanning, Joe Muggs and moderator Steve Goodman aka Kode9 -- addressing the theme of Aesthetics, Innovation and Tradition

Thursday, March 8, 2012


is not as good as

or as good as this come to think of it

what is it with the old hip hop producer legends getting into dubstep?

Maria Minerva, Another Time and Place from Victoria Cheong on Vimeo.

video for Maria Minerva's "Another Time and Place" off Sacred and Profane Love EP made by Victoria Cheong of The Deeep

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

is it some kind of conceptual thing that this dubious if musically compelling Rihanna/Chris Brown re-team-up recycles the riff from "Dominator"?

this version is like Mundo Muzique 'Acid Pandemonium' ferfucksake