Categories
Review

Bob Marley in Dub conducted by Cpt. Yossarian

Bob Marley's music is like a good friend. One has known, trusted and valued for a long time; accompanied by ups and downs, puts you in a good mood or gives comfort. Words and sounds are as if set in stone - so perfect that nothing more can be added to them.

Or so perfect that nobody can harm them: We all know Marley covers in abundance, and only very few of them do the originals half justice or can find a new aspect of the composition. One of the few successful endeavors has to be last year's album "BOB“The Austrian / German band So & So feat. Count Captain Yossarian (= Manuel Da Coll, drummer of LaBrassBanda). It is a successful attempt to have Marley's classics interpreted by a brass band - with the exception of drums, guitar and harmonica, almost exclusively wind instruments. The tuba then becomes a bass, and that is not the only surprise: Each track features a solo instrumentalist - and those are well-known musicians from Biermösl Blosn, folkshilfe, Mnozil Brass or LaBrassBanda. Ultimately, however, what defines “BOB” is sticking to the original arrangements with maximum freedom of interpretation at the same time. A successful balancing act that rightly makes the album stand out from the crowd of Marley covers:


... and because the whole thing is so beautiful and multifaceted, one could go a step further: So why not use the material Dub Produce album? All it takes is a Captain Yossarian, i.e. Manuel da Coll, to write the tracks dubbt and the Echo Beach label, which is happy to be used for experiments of this kind. The result is now as "Bob Marley in Dub conducted by Cpt. Yossarian“(Echo Beach) has been released and surprisingly takes“ BOB ”back into more conservative realms. Of the Dub Mix, rather classically reserved, is characterized by what can no longer be heard. The joy of playing various wind instruments gives way to a sedate journey through a sound space expanded with echo and reverb, which considerably reduces the recognition value of the Marley classics and thus gives new sound nuances a chance - for example when the bass tuba turns the "Exodus" bassline into a pounding furiosum lets guess. At the latest then it can be seen that the station wagon Marley, marching band and Dub is not a fun experiment, but "serious business".

Anyone who is open-minded has a clear advantage here. With their artistic standards, professional bands ensure that brass music beyond the village youth orchestra level has lost its horror, and “Bob Marley in Dub conducted by Cpt. Yossarian ”and the wonderful“ BOB ”album are excellent examples and evidence of this. More of the same please!

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Categories
Review

Lone Ark Meets The 18th Parallel: Showcase Vol. 1

For some time now it seems to have been an international trend to give current productions a clear timestamp - in the sense of "back to the past": the item may sound like it was from the 1970s or 1980s, but it is brand new. Sometimes you get the impression that you are dealing with music that sounds more original than the original. All the ingredients that once accompanied reggae on its way to its zenith are called up to offer the listeners a very special kind of déjà vu experience: vintage instruments and studio equipment, classic arrangements and songwriting as you would expect no longer knows in the genre today. Voilá: Everything like the good old days, only much better.

Anyone doing such a production must have done their homework and dealt intensively with the historical recordings; has to know how to get that special sound out of instruments and mixer; must have immersed himself in the classical genre-specific voice guidance or its arrangements - reggae compulsory subjects, so to speak. That is roughly equivalent to a university degree in "Vintage Reggae 101", and I take my hat off to anyone who deals so thoroughly with the subject.

Chapeau in front of Roberto Sanchez aka Lone Ark, who mastered this task perfectly and internalized it as a producer - as one can find on Earl Sixteen's "Natty Farming"Or Ras Teo's"Ten Thousand Lions“Can listen, including wonderfully earthy Dub Versions. Now Sanchez is not only an instrumentalist and sound engineer with his own studio, he also stands in front of the microphone as a singer - just remember his somewhat stiff vocals, which he fronted his Basque Dub Foundation has sung. He has since remedied this shortcoming, as can be seen on his new release "Lone Ark Meets The 18th Parallel: Showcase Vol. 1"Can listen to:

Wonderful, the reviewer couldn't be happier: Superb production; clear, down-to-earth and powerful mixing; Echo & Hall fly wonderfully low and last but not least: Beautiful, soft vocals transport harmonies in the typical vocal trio style. And yet, especially with the above "Build an Ark (Extended Mix)" a strange feeling arises. Haven't I heard that before? The chorus seems to be from the Wailing Souls, the verses from Black Uhuru ... isn't that the vocal line of "Shine Eye Gal"? The text even begins similarly: "I rise early looking some tea ..." (Michael Rose) vs. "Early in the morning while I make i-self a cup of tea ..." (Roberto Sanchez). Hmmm ... frowning is the order of the day - is anyone else like that?

Intentional or not, repetitions or similarities arguably inevitable in the historically accurate evocation of the glorious old days. Ultimately, however, it can never be too much of a good thing, and with the Lone Ark / The 18th Parallel Showcase Vol. 1 we have a very successful release in front of us, which can be recommended without reservation - especially what the Dubs concerns: Sanchez lets the snare roll through the soundscape, the singing spits out staccato-like echoes - KingTubby would probably not have done it differently. It dawns on me: You don't have to keep reinventing the world; Sometimes it is also beneficial to process the old qualities and thus celebrate a piece of history in the here and now. That means: After Vol. 1 comes Vol. 2, and I'm already looking forward to it.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.
Categories
Review

Sly & Robbie vs. Roots Radics: The Dub Battle

When in 2019 a new album with the martial title "Sly & Robbie vs. Roots Radics: The Final Battle“Was announced, the expectation was high: Should the more or less aged, male vocalist who's who of the golden reggae era be captured again on freshly recorded riddims, which are 50/50 from Sly & Robbie and the Roots Radics. For this, producer Hernan Sforzini gathered pretty much everyone who could still stand in front of a microphone in 2019; the potential for a monumental album was definitely there. But as it is with great expectations: They are seldom met. In this case mediocre vocal performances reproduced clichéd texts that rarely go beyond the wisdom of sayings. But that's only half the drama, because there is also Sforzini's exuberant production according to the motto "more is more": here a few keys, there still absolutely brass samples and above all more percussion, percussion, percussion! There is hardly any room to breathe in the middle mixdown - this is probably the album's biggest flaw, as you can see on the track "This Morning" by Michael Rose:

Two years and a few lockdowns later, however, we should no longer be concerned, because the ones that have just appeared apply Dub-Counterpart to discuss: "Sly & Robbie vs. Roots Radics: The Dub Battle“ (Dubshot Records) keeps what the vocal album promised. Here, too, a Who's Who is represented, albeit that of the golden one Dub-Era: King Jammy, Scientist, Bunny "Striker" Lee, Mad Professor, Dennis Bovell and Lee Scratch Perry rigorously edit the tracks, clear them out properly and ensure that those buried are resuscitated. This is where the miracle of the Dubs celebrates - which is very good in "Dub Morning, "the Scientist-edited track of the Michael Rose title above:

The comparison shows: The scientist has done a great job and thrown out everything that was Dub-Vibe is not serving. The essence remains: A killer bassline that - accompanied by sometimes exploding one drop beats - makes its way through echo and reverb. Wonderful ... Scientist can still do it, and his colleagues are not much inferior to him: Every track wins in the Dub- Enormous revision; the comparison with the vocal versions is as illuminating as possible and you can hear producer Hernan Sforzini, who is here as Don Camel, also for three Dubs is responsible, congratulations on the consistently successful release.

I don't quite understand why there are two additional tracks by King Tubby from the early 80s on the release. They have absolutely nothing to do with the original vocal album and in their simplicity, devoid of any dramaturgy, are completely untypical for Tubby. The motto “more is more” does not seem to be completely off the table for producer Sforzini.

Ultimately, it should be noted that we are in a phase in which we have to say goodbye to many of the greats of the genre - the last few months have shown this painfully. Also “Sly & Robbie vs. Roots Radics: The Dub Battle “reminds us of this: Contributors like Bunny Lee, Toots Hibbert, Lee Perry are no longer. Style Scott is no longer either, but as a Roots Radics veteran it should have been there. A generation change is in progress, which it feels like the next generation is missing. But who would come close to a borderline genius Lee "Scratch" Perry ...

Rating: 4 out of 5.
Categories
Review

Dennis Bovell meets Dubblestandart: @ Repulse "Reggae Classics"

About Paul Zasky's under the Dubblestandart label released "Reggae Classics“-Album I already tore my mouth wide and wide at this point. The qualitative difference to the predecessor was too big "Dub Realistic"; incomprehensible the decision to work with the experienced, but musically unsophisticated Firehouse crew. Fortunately, the item appeared on Echo Beach - probably the most recyclable label anywhere. And indeed: The first tracks from "Reggae Classics" celebrated their rebirth on "Dub Me crazy" (see also René Wynand's review) - a compilation for which Paolo Baldini dismantled, dusted and polished the recordings. The result was Dub-Remixes that bar everyone Dubblestandart sterility roar fresh and cheeky through the speakers. The next trick of the label was simply the tapes / files Dubto give up visionists and hope for the best. The man delivered: One wonderful, radical reinterpretation the "reggae classics" in the melancholy direction. Barring any original vocals, instead padded with vocoder effects and elegiac carpets of sound, it leaves the original album far behind.

Can you top that? It is worth a try; So off with the recordings of Dennis Bovell - keyword Matumbi, keyword LKJ. He has now given us something like a third incarnation of the album: "Dennis Bovell meets Dubblestandart @ Repulse Reggae Classics“(Echo Beach), as the bulky title is called, knows how to surprise. Instead of an official one Dub-Version (!) Bovell first sings the tracks in again before he gets to it Dub-Mixing makes. Now, it's really not that Bovell is stepping to the microphone for the first time, but the reviewer's expectations were completely different. And so it happens that the cold, awkward-angular, "Denglish" sounding vocals of Paul Zasky are replaced by the no less strange voice of Bovell. It is raw, downright coarse, brings in a shot of dirty soul, appears awkward in its own way: the ethereal “Fly Me to the Moon” cannot overcome gravity and crashes mercilessly; The revised version of “I'm no Robot” with its new backing vocals also seems strangely out of place and at times almost operetta-like due to Bovell's drifting vibrato baritone. A downgrade to the wood class, so to speak, which doesn’t look good on every track, but gives some street credibility: Culture’s “Jah Jah See dem a Come” or Steel Pulse’s “Babylon the Bandit” undoubtedly win.

The vocal tracks are more of a general store or - if you will - a € 1 shop: not everything is of the same quality, not everything keeps what it promises, some things are overpaid even with one euro. Of course, this does not apply to them Dub-Mixes that still need to be discussed, but do not require many words: They are quite successful to excellent; here Dennis Bovell is beyond any doubt, here he can Dub-Master seem: nice earthy, old-school and calm, that's exactly what you expect from the man. That's why there's an unreserved purchase recommendation. What you do with the sung addition is up to you - I put it under "musical joke", which I dig out every now and then for my pleasure. 

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.
Categories
Review

DubBeach Allstars: Dubbing up the coast

(This text has been machine translated.) You want new scientistDubs hear about the Roots Radics? You don't need to look any longer for them Dubstrand Allstars (Brizion with his brother as drummer) come on their second album "Dubbing up the coast "(Dubstrand Music) is very close to this listening experience. 

Already the debut "Dubbing on the bay“Was that dubblog.de worth a review - even if the reviewer found something to hump around: uniformity, sometimes in the form of boring e-drums that sound the same, sometimes in the form of monotonous listlessness, sometimes simple due to a lack of musical ideas. In other words: Nice try, but that could be much better.

And how to do it better: On "Dubbing on the coast “, the e-drums have given way to a live kit, which has already brought life to the sound booth; that is the sound that is needed to let handmade music breathe freely. The new pieces, arranged in the classic 80's style, appear deeply relaxed in this way, freed from the tonal dreariness. Only a snare that sounds a little too sharp disturbs the sound - which is undoubtedly a question of taste or personal preferences.

Also new is the successful melody - simple and memorable bass lines “old-school Jamaican style” (Flabba Holt sends his regards) lead to this light trance-like state that the reviewer loves so much about reggae. One likes to tip in there; you quickly begin to move in rhythm. In addition, fine guitar work and keyboards, which sometimes make it difficult for the listener, between instrumental, version and Dub to distinguish. Even the apparently indispensable melodica these days is not overused and fits unobtrusively into the musical scene. So in the overall picture a nice, well-rounded thing that clearly shows a musical development - that might mean something if you think of Brizion's enormous, but not particularly versatile Solo output as the measure of all things.

What that Dub- As far as mixing is concerned, the initial comparison with Scientist was of course exaggerated; although the direction is correct if one compares it with the corresponding recordings from the early 1980s. We don't have any spectacular ones here Dub-Caprioles, sound gimmicks or innovative mixing in front of us, but rather solid craft - although I doubt that an old-school mixing board was worked on. It doesn't have to be - it's the result that counts, and a frugal echo or reverb makes you really happy somehow.

Rating: 4 out of 5.
Categories
Review

Reggae Angels with Sly & Robbie: Remember Our Creator - Fox Dubs

California seems to be an incubator for talent who mix reggae with all sorts of influences - rock, pop, soul, hip-hop. There would be Rebelution, Tribal Seeds, Iya Terra, Slightly Stupid, Long Beach All Stars, John Brown's Body etc. etc. This is noticeable in the music itself, in the arrangements, in the mix and in the lyrics. There is more or less party going on, a little social criticism is also allowed. As always, exceptions prove the rule - including Groundation, but also the Reggae Angels. The latter act has been in place since 1992; it consists more or less of singer Peter Wardle with changing backing bands - which wouldn't be interesting or worth mentioning if… yes if not Sly & Robbie's Taxi Gang in the studio for a few years and sometimes too live spread the musical carpet for the reggae angels.

The Riddim Twins have been at Wardle's side for three albums now; always mixed by Jim Fox, who then added an extra track Dub-Treatment undergoes. Together they produce the full vocal /Dub-Package, which comes along as a double album. It works in a similar way with the new album “Remember Our Creator”, whereby the Dubs this time offered as a separate album: "Remember Our Creator - Fox Dubs“(Kings Music International). The list of those involved in the recordings alone shows that Peter Wardle is extremely well networked with the Jamaican reggae scene and was able to gather the corresponding capacities in Kingston's Anchor and One Pop studios. Not to mix the whole thing in YES, but to put it in Jim Fox's hands, seems downright ingenious.

Now you can think what you want of Wardle's singing - he reminds me of roots warriors like Cedric Myton or Lascelle Bulgin; the backing vox (including his daughter), however, to the Melody Makers minus the fire of Cedella Marley. With his thoroughly positive, God-centered lyrics, he also shapes the musical events, i.e. the arrangements. It's nice that Sly Dunbar mainly plays One Drops here and thus offers a solid roots basis for the sophisticated arrangements, which are excellently implemented. Of course, I could have done without the track with the drum machine; But it demonstrates the difference between man and machine very well - especially when it comes to feeling and a certain gentleness:

Whereby we actually ended up with Jim Fox, who with “Remember Our Creator” or “Remember Our Creator - Fox Dubs “is responsible for the sound. He is undoubtedly a master of his craft and is in a league with Steven Stanley and Godwin Logie; accordingly balanced and multifaceted its typical calm sound. Wonderful the lowered, full, soft and at the same time precise bass drum, which delivers great dynamics and makes the heart of the reviewer beat faster. Fox even manages to put a damper on aggro sax player Dean Fraser or to integrate the sound deep into the action instead of screeching on top of it - a feat in itself. Dunbar's hi-hat is not quite as successful as it is too dry and loud and offers a little too much insight into the drummer's currently not-so-exact cymbal work. The - if you want to see it so dramatically - the catastrophe of the album is a kitschy-intrusive keyboard brand Korg & Co. You last heard something like this in the 1980s, when musicians from outside the genre were indulging in reggae. I blame Peter Wardle himself, who plays keyboards and is here with a couple of oversdubs brought in. Jim Fox also guilty; he could have buried those keys in the mix. 

What should you do - he's a good guy, Jim. That's why we want it to sound brilliant, but still quite unspectacular Dub-Mix check. It's his trademark as Dub-Mixer: The original is not changed significantly, but mainly supplemented by subtle delays. Those who like that call this process “ennobling”; But I claim: The noble thing about “Remember Our Creator - Fox Dubs “is the wonderfully balanced sound that was created while mixing the vocal album. Minus the kitsch keyboard, mind you.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.
Categories
Review

Roots Makers: In Dub

Sometimes you just get stuck, and in the end you have to accept that. There is this new one Dub-Album (actually there are two albums) about which at the time of this review there is almost nothing or very little information to be found. Even though the band / the musicians / the producer conglomerate have their own Website, a Facebook-Page, one InstagramAccount and a YouTube-Canal operates; the gentlemen may not respond to inquiries either. So much of what you read here is pure conjecture.

... and so there were once three people, presumably from a francophone country, who banded together around a classic style Dub- Record album. Not particularly resourceful "Roots Makers in Dub"Named, it is the counterpart to an instrumental release, which is - no na - simple"Roots Makers“Titled. Both appeared on the same day, and the artists call themselves ... * yawn * ... Roots Makers.

One should not be fooled by this lack of imagination; the name says it all: this is one of the best rootsDub-Albums of the young year before; the accompanying instrumental album also gives rise to great joy. The riddims are catchy, instrumented in a classic style and superbly mixed; even the reviewer finds little to complain about. Well, maybe the drummer could have held back a little with the fills and there is a suspicion that there were no brass bands live in the studio - but that's about it. 

Zum Dub-Mix unfortunately (or thank God?) There isn't much to say: Classic effects, well placed; not too dominant, but also not below the threshold of perception. In short: it all fits together well and adds up to a fine one Dub-Album that people are very happy to recommend - especially in combination with the instrumentals.

Incidentally, the three Roots Makers are bidding on your Website the individual tracks as exercise tracks - sometimes without drums, sometimes without bass, guitar, etc. For (budding) reggae musicians in lockdown, one might think.

Ultimately, it is to be hoped that the quality of the music will convince the listeners, because promotion is apparently not a strength of the Roots Makers. With this in mind, my unreserved recommendation: Listen and enjoy. 

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Categories
Interview

Interview with Thomas Blanchot (Mato)

Your name: Thomas "Mato" Blanchot
You live in: Paris, France
Your current album: Scary Dub

What is your personal definition of Dub?

I would say Dub is sound art. It's a unique style that takes total control of the track - both in terms of composition (through edits) and mix (through effects). What we know today as a remix has its origins a long time ago in Dub. The prerequisite for this was a new kind of artist: The Dub-Mixer. In fact, the Beatles paved the way for it when they fired their sound engineers and took control of the recording technology themselves. The studio itself - that is, equipment including sound engineer - is undoubtedly a full-fledged member of the band when music is recorded. The sound tracks then become material that can be shaped without limits; similar to the improvising style in jazz. Ultimately, every moment is about refining every note or melody.

"Different styles of music as reggaeDub to adapt - that is my trademark. "

need Dub a reference, such as a vocal counterpart, or can it be created as an end in itself in the studio? 

At the beginning there was the edited version of a title. These are the roots of Dubwho became his own style as the repertoire grew. Producers like Mad Professor or Jah Shaka, on the other hand, have their own Dub-Tracks recorded and not used on pre-existing material. I see my productions somewhere in between; I look for well-known titles that can be easily adapted and then produce them from scratch - only about them dubto be able to practice. So I absolutely need a reference to my work and see Dub as a counterpart to something that already exists. However, my references are not found in reggae; that's the special thing about my work.

Of course you can do everything dubben - some styles are better suited for this than others. A hypnotic, melodic reggae bass can drop the listener into a trance for hours, while a harmonically supportive pop bass does not have this capacity. A melodic bass, the rhythmic skank and the placement of drum fills are, however, undisputed elements of a successful one Dub-Recipes.

"I see Dub as a counterpart to something that already exists. "

Is there a basic requirement for Dub-Production?

Knowledge and a feeling for the culture is always a good start - knowing which techniques are available and in which recordings they have been used so far is immensely enriching and provides orientation. I have hours and hours Dub Heard until my ears were bleeding. The further way one Dub-Novice is to learn and try to reproduce the classics of the genre. When you have digested it all and done it, then you “are” Dub, then you can express yourself in this art. Whoever masters the sound can tell a story without words.

How does the creation process of a typical Dub-Tracks from Mato?

Different styles of music as reggaeDub to adapt - that is my artistic identity, my trademark. And it's a good resource, the genre of music Dub To introduce people who have a completely different musical horizon. With familiar melodies I not only arouse feelings and memories, but also curiosity. It's my way of keeping music universal and my audience diverse; I and my productions cannot be taken over by a single community.

The melody is mine Dub-Adaptations. I need a fascinating melody that I fine-tune through tempo and arrangement. The rhythm has to flow of course: whether steppers, rockers, one drop - if it doesn't fit, it will be changed again. It is important not to dilute the intake; it has to remain an adaptation - by no means a complete transformation.

“The melody is mine Dub-Adaptations. "

Everything is recorded live on my recordings and no samples are used. I play keyboards, drums / percussions and bass myself; other musicians can join in if necessary. Occasionally, over the course of time, I was able to acquire a wide range of sounds and a wide variety of instruments - such as percussions, vintage synths, SynDrums and the like.

The best part of my job, however, is the mix: Coming from the old school, I've worked with different boards and techniques. I've only been using Pro Tools for 15 years; it allows me to revise the mixes as long as necessary. I also use a lot of old equipment like the Roland Space Echo RE-201, various spring reverbs, vintage phasers, self-made things, etc.

Mato productions have a typical, "clean" sound that reminds me of productions from the early 1980s - is that intended?

I'm a big fan of the 70's and 80's sounds, but don't want to imitate them - I just try to adapt the soundtracks to my own hearing. Anyway, I'm a big fan of the Channel One sound - that's my personal milestone to be reached. This sound still benefits from the glow of the 1970s, but already has a clearer, more precise sound. Add a small dose of “2.0” and the Mato sound is ready.

The drums on your recordings have their very own, unmistakable sound - soft, but with a heavy punch. Let me guess: You play the drums yourself. 

Right! I started playing when I was 13 because my brother needed a drummer for his band. After some experience I founded a reggae band - or rather: an orchestra with a brass section and all the trimmings. That was an important lesson for me not only in music: to hear the others, to perceive one another.

After school I started to study drums - first in France, then further in the USA, where I graduated from the Los Angeles Music Academy in 1998. So I'm first and foremost a drummer who plays his riddims. I adjust and tune my drums precisely to get the sound I want. This is probably the most time-consuming work in my productions, but it is the origin of my own sound identity. The drums must always be present and precise; They can only be bumpy when I'm doing hip-hop (I'm a big fan of Dr. Dre). So the secret is out: behind an album by Dub Mix producer Mato is actually a drummer's album!

Your productions don't have the extra-heavy bass that you would expect from Dub expected. He seems rather reluctant, possibly to adapt to European listening habits. How important is sound to you in general?

As with any genre of music, there is a Dub different possibilities and never just one way to get to the goal. Even if I use all means, I can still bring in my own style. As a drummer, I love powerful bass - there is nothing more effective in my music than the sub-bass because I use it. But unlike other styles where the bass is mixed in the foreground, I prefer the traditional, balanced mix. I wouldn't see that as Europe-related ... my audience is all over the world.

Your ingenious version of Daft Punk's "Homework" blew my mind at the time and I also really appreciate the albums that followed. Where does your inspiration come from, how do you choose the themes for your concept albums?

Thanks for the kind words. As I said - basically I'm a drummer, and as an instrumentalist it's hard to get a foothold in the international music scene - even if you have mastered a lot of different styles. I am in the fortunate position of being able to pack everything I like into my music: The drums are my superstar; Melodies are completed with echoes, sound gimmicks, delays and many other effects - wonderful!

"The drums are my superstar."

I'm looking for appealing concepts that allow me to implement my musical ideas. I started with two albums with reggae covers of classic French chansons (note: “Il est cinq heures, Kingston s'eveille 1 and 2"), To which the corresponding Dub-Albums followed (note: "Il est cinq heures in Dub 01 and 02"). Then I produced four reggae hip-hop remix albums that made me known internationally. In the end, I started the series of concept albums, which I've been expanding ever since. Fortunately there is no lack of inspiration - work on the next album has long since begun. 

I usually start with a concept idea - whereby it is important that the titles in question have strong melodies, can be transferred to the reggae rhythm structure and ... yes, are also spiritually acceptable. With simple sound gimmicks, titles like “Close Encounters of the Third Kind” are created Dub"Or elaborate, complexly arranged pieces like" Enter the Dragon Dub"(Note: both from"Hollywoo Dub"-Album). 

“My Holy Grail is the 'Classical Dub'-Album."

The current “Scary Dub"Release can definitely be used as a sequel to" Hollywoo Dub“See, even though it wasn't originally planned. My "Holy Grail", however, is the "Classical Dub“-Album - it took me an infinite amount of time and energy, classical music as Dub to adapt.

At the "Homework“The manager of Daft Punk contacted me about the album and asked for a copy in advance. I was very nervous and expected a "no way" for an answer - Daft Punk had a reputation for being tough when it came to their music. In the end, they only asked if you could play the album at a party - the part was approved!

The tracks from “Scary Dub“Look to me like short comic strips with all the horror sound effects. Do you agree with me or do you see the tracks in a different light?

I absolutely agree. Like in the dubblog.de review very well explained, I am a concept artist. My concept albums invite you on a journey with unforeseen events; An acoustic adventure, so to speak, within a given framework, which is clearly new in its form. 

If the concept is to score from horror classics as DubTo adapt s, the lightness of humor naturally offers an interesting perspective on it. Aren't fear and happiness two uncontrollable twin emotions? It's important, however, not to denigrate the music itself - I have a lot of respect for that. 

In my "Dub Top 5 "by the way, there are two albums that are one of my sources of inspiration and fit very well with my own work - Mikey Dread's" African Anthem "and" Scientist Rids The World Of The Evil Curse Of The Vampires ". Without a doubt, I have always been deeply impressed by the Scientist concept albums produced by Henry “Junjo” Laws!

The reviews of “Scary Dub" on dubblog.de have received good feedback - apart from the criticism that some of your Dubs are too short and end with fade-outs - or are these tracks, which are only +/- 3 minutes long, part of your success? 

I'm old school - even when I combine opposing styles of music, I want to keep the classic stylistic devices. My stories are short but substantial - also so as not to lose the listener's attention. We tend to wander, for example, when someone talks too much or too long. In this respect: yes, the short pop format is probably part of my recipe. Ultimately, it's always about the story - which you can arrange to end with an exclamation point or an ellipsis. I interpret these fade-outs as a dream that evaporates and disappears. 

"The short pop format is probably part of my recipe."

What does the future hold for Mato? Is there a concept for the next album, would you like to comment on it?

The new project will be a soul / jazz / funk tribute that is very close to my heart. Last fall I released a first single from it - one Dub-Adaptation of Herbie Hancock's "Maiden Voyage"And a new version of"Thus spoke zarathustra“, Which is inspired by jazz pianist Eumir Deodato. Next up are 45s from Kool & the Gang, Bill Withers and certainly more singles before the album is released. Stay tuned, this is going to be great!

Will there one day be a Mato album that will take place Dub-Adaptations contains original material you have written yourself?

Yes, and the project is already finished: an EP with 4 tracks, all of which I composed myself. It's a mix of my favorite styles: Reggae /Dub-Jazz / Soul / Funk and Disco. And this time the tracks are at least 5 to 6 minutes long and intended for use in clubs. On “Scary Dub“By the way, there are already three titles I have written to complete the album. Unfortunately, there are no instantly recognizable melodies for Dracula, Frankenstein or the mummy - so I wrote some myself.

If time and money didn't play a role - which project would you like to realize?

In fact, I always had to work with what was available. My first Dub I recorded it on a 4 track tape; with a microphone for the drums, a Roland synthesizer and a delay pedal for the guitars. Today I have a well-equipped studio, but the musical idea is still worth more than all the equipment.

"The musical idea is still worth more than all the studio equipment."

I am now in the fortunate position that I can do what I love and also work with a label that supports me in all of my decisions. It allows me to share my music with as many people as possible - which is a project in itself.

The “Classical Dub“-Album taught me that it takes time and experience to consider classical music with some flow Dub implement; that's why I'm planning an operaDub Project - actually more of a musical comedy that I would like to realize one day. This also requires more inspiration than financial opportunities; it should "only" be an album and not a live show. It's going to be a demanding project. Let's see how it develops.

How do you see the resurgence of Dub and roots reggae that has been taking place in Europe for some time? There are many European productions that sometimes sound more authentic than the current Jamaican output.

It is great! Music from a small island infects the whole world and you don't even need vaccinations against reggaemylitis!

Jokes aside, Jamaica is a very poor country and violence is ubiquitous on the island. Current productions are an expression of this present and the Jamaican government doesn't support roots & culture - on the contrary. Thank goodness there are many ambassadors around the world who keep Roots & Culture alive: Reggae musicians, singers, producers, sound systems, labels and sound engineers can be found everywhere - and they set standards. It's just like every creation: Ultimately, it escapes the Creator and becomes independent.

Who do you think is the greatest Dub-Artist of all time?

There are so many talented artists out there today and each of them has their own heroes - for me it's the ancestors, the inventors of the Dub: Scientist is probably my sound role model, but King Tubby is the creator of the Dub- Art as we know it today. Paul "Groucho" Smykle is my third Dub-Hero - you don't even need to read the credits if you like your stunning Dub Mixes listens. They are immediately recognizable from the very first bars. What an art, what a skill, what a finesse! It's a shame that Groucho didn't go further down this path.

And who is currently the most interesting Dub-Artist?

There are now a number of bands in Europe that Dub also perform live - with videos, light choreography, etc. You have developed a very modern style that can keep up with current mainstream music performances. 

What are your personal top 5 Dub-Albums?

It was very difficult for me to choose - the list of my topDub Albums is very long. Here is an attempt to name the five most important:

Scientist - Scientist Rids The World Of The Evil Curse Of The Vampires 
Black Uhuru - The Dub Factor
Mickey Dread - African anthem
Sly & Robbie - A Dub experience
King Tubby & The Aggrovators - King Tubby's "Controls"

Editor's note: For the sake of the fluency of the language, we did not use gender in this interview.

Categories
Review

DubBeach Allstars: Dubbing on the bay

There is this "New Releases" section on dubblog.de, which the reviewer likes to look into regularly - even if it's just to see what the colleagues put in between good and bad. That is the very, very wide range; only special and / or interesting things (in a positive or negative sense) find their way into the reviews. So bravely jumped into the flood of innovations, listened in randomly and actually found what you were looking for: It is Dubstrand Allstars' debut album "Dubbing on the bay“ (Dubstrand Music), which I am dragging into the glaring review light.

Admittedly, it's the drums again that grabbed my first attention; In their mix they are very reminiscent of releases from 1981, as if there were Peter Tosh's "Wanted Dread & Alive", Jimmy Cliff's"Give the People What They Want"Or Pablo Mosers'"Pave the way". This hard sound, which wasn't particularly bass-heavy, but with its punch at the appropriate volume probably left holes in the eardrum; this kick drum, which comes across as quite martial and almost commands where to go. The then relatively short-lived trend can now be found on the "Dubbing on the Bay ”album again - whether that was intentional or a coincidence remains open.

My second attention has that Dubstrand Allstars themselves counted - never heard, never seen, who should that be? The online research lets me run up completely for the time being; then there is still a fragment of information and it shows Brizion down. I have noticed the man several times; less because of his mediocre music than because of the sheer volume of his output: The Californian should cough once and at the other end shoot 5 albums, which unfortunately sound that way. A clear case of quantity over quality. Imagine if Vaughn Benjamin had teamed up with Brizion ... that would have been an endless flood of babbling albums.

The DubStrand Allstars, on the other hand, are thankfully not another solo project by Brizion; he takes (hurray!) a second musician - that is, a drummer - on board. No question about it, that brings the music to life, albeit with a downer: the man plays e-drums, which per se do not offer any great tonal variations. Strikes on the e-snare always sound tiring, an acoustic snare, on the other hand, sounds a little different with each strike - depending on where the stick hits the head. A small difference that makes a sound world.

Back to the album - it's not particularly bass-heavy with what feels like a cutoff at 60Hz, but see above: What was good enough for Tosh and Cliff back then should also be today Dubconceding beach all stars. Ultimately, there remains a collection of classic looking riddims; sparingly orchestrated with unobtrusively incorporated Dub-Effects. Not much has been done wrong, and yet everything seems uniform, monotonous. This is certainly not only due to the drums, but rather to the fact that only two musicians give their best: One plays the drums, the other plays the manageable rest of the instruments. There is no desire, musical ideas cannot be found. The whole thing seems more like a compulsory exercise and is therefore far from a masterpiece. However, if you are willing to lower your expectations accordingly, you will definitely enjoy "Dubbing on the Bay ”. 

Rating: 2.5 out of 5.
Categories
Review

Papa Dee: Sir Pinkerton Investigates Another Murder in Red Hut Studio

Ah ... wonderful! Again one Dub-Counterpart to a vocal release - as it should be, I mean. One thing depends on the other and in general: One foot can't run. So I present ""Sir Pinkerton Investigates Another Murder in Red Hut Studio“(Red Hut Studios) - that Dub-Album for Papa Dee's last year, rather simply named "The Red Hut Sessions" release. The anticipation was great on my part, there was already a very nice vocal from Papa Dee /Dub-Combination that has a somewhat weird appearance history, but was convincing across the board: "Papa Dee meets the Jamaican Giants"And"Papa Dee Meets the Jamaican Giants vs. Internal Dread: In Dub".

With the “Jamaican Giants” it didn't work out this time; "Sir Pinkerton" is more Swedish than Swedish (like Wasa crispbread, I would almost like to say, but the Barilla pasta cookers have long since incorporated that). To explain: Papa Dee is Swede, the musicians are Swedes; Studio, recording, mixing, mastering: everything in Sweden, through Sweden & from Sweden. What can I say: Europe rules, at least what classic (roots) reggae and Dub concerns. They have been made here very well for some time, with attention to detail and with a lot of respect for the greats. No wonder that to us some European production sounds more Jamaican than the output there.

Back to Papa Dee and his Dub-Release: The big, not entirely unreasonable topic, which has been dealt with several times in variations, is murder cases in which the famous "Pinkerton National Detective Angency" conducts investigations - by the founder, Sir Pinkerton himself. What does that have to do with the music? Nothing; Titles like “Serial Killing” or “Pure Murder” Dub“Are somehow to be understood as borrowing from Jamaican role models. 

In the end, one can say a lot of good things about "Sir Pinkerton investigates ..." (the length of the album title is really bad for marketing): Beautiful, hand-made riddims, a fine sound and a successful, classic one Dub-Mix that gives the echo loop a lot of time - King Tubby sends his regards! The only disturbing thing is the rock steady (or is it Ska?) Track, which is more or less due to a personal dislike. Out with the part from the playlist and everything is good & recommendable again.

Rating: 4 out of 5.