Mover comrade Miro with a very creditable stab at techstep
there was a moment where i fantasised about a merger or coming back into alignment of No U Turn style drum + bass and the doomcore strain of gabba:
The "tech" refers not to Detroit... but to the Belgium/Beltram sound
of 1991 hardcore. Ed Rush and Trace have been namechecking early R&S,
Frank De Wulf, Human Resource's "Dominator", etc. The death-ray malignancy
of the Mentasm stab was in turn a huge influence on the first wave of '92/93
breakbeat darkcore --Doc Scott, 4 Hero, Rufige Cru, Bizzy B. That drum &
bass people are again genuflecting towards "Mentasm" as opposed to "Bug In
The Bassbin", is the most hopeful sign in a long while.
R&S/Dominator/Mentasm is of course the roots of gabba. So my prediction
(mad pipe-dream, more like) for 1997 is a link-up between the terrorcore
end of gabba nd the techstep sound, resulting in the re-integration
of the original, pan-European hardcore of 1991
.... there's a similar doomy, gloomy vibe, dystopian cyberpunk imagery, dirge-beats, entropic
drones, the obsession with low-end frequencies ('Slaves To the Rave' starts
with this groaned "need a bass!!"--although gabba-kidz mean the kick-drum
not the B-line when they refer to bass), and above all, PCP and techstep
share this searing coldness of sound. Some of the techstep I taped off the
Grooverider on KISS show when last in England has this almost Numanoid grandeur
about it. Then you've got tracks like the Boymerang dubplate forthcoming
on Grooverider's Prototype label, with its dirge-bass riff packing the doomquake
heft of Black Sabbath. The gap between this stuff and gabba is only that
thin, and as the Doc Scott/Drumz 95/Machines style "butcher's block" beats
get more simplistic and punishin' and funkless, it's gonna verge on the gabba
what wouldn't i give for an official instrumental of "Motorsport"?
it doesn't exist, so I must sate the craving with ersatz - the "type beats"
none of these re-productions quite capture the ethereality, the mistiness of the original by Murda Beats & Cubeatz - like systems music screwed, a few bars of Michael Nyman in a deep tranquilizer trance
but fun to listen to all in a row - or even simultaneously
likewise what wouldn't i give for a vocal-free "Goosebumps" beatscape?
What would Adorno say about this?
Or about the phenomenon of loop-makers - hustling cottage-industries churning out not even beats but sub-beat components, in hopes of a way into the biz
Theodor's concepts of pseudo-individuation and part-interchangeabilty fit the way contemporary pop is made: a hit built from elements developed in different studios round the world, people never actually meeting, extreme specialization (so you have a guy whose only job is working on the vocals, another on beats, yet another on the mix of the final assemblage). the loop-maker sweatshop-of-one is the ultimate extension of Adorno-ite analysis, somewhere between vagabondage, longshoremen crowding the dock in hopes of getting some work that day, and unpaid internships
The sample packs with kick drums etc on peddled by labels or producers with a rep are related, but from the other way around: a name selling off their trademark sounds, fx, etc to hopeful aspirants