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Five Star Review

KMFDM: In Dub

There is music that literally makes you sit up and take notice. A few weeks ago my daughter asked whether I "KMFDM: In Dub“(Metropolis Records) would know; I absolutely have to listen to the album once - after tons of heavy sounds from early childhood, she knows her "old man" too well. And what shall I tell you? The “In Dub“Is one of those again Dub- Curiosities that have always cast a spell on me.

KMFDM was founded in 1984 by Sascha "Käpt'n K" Konietzko as a performance art project in Hamburg, moved its headquarters to Chicago in 1991 and has been successful in industrial metal / industrial rock for over 36 years. None other than the ON .U sound mastermind Adrian Sherwood, who has been exploring the endless possibilities of the Dub-Musik, produced the KMFDM album "Don't Blow Your Top" in 1988 and continued with its mixture of industrial, rock, Dub creative standards again.

About the album itself, “Käpt'n K” said in an interview: “The idea of ​​a Dub-Making a plate had been brewing for a number of years. I just never found the time to sit down and tackle the project. Some of my earliest musical influences were Dub and reggae and I did the project really old school. The dismantling of the original tracks and the brass arrangements were a lot of fun for me. In doing so, I found out that songs are at 125 BPM too dubben is not so ideal. It worked best with the slow and really fast tracks. ”That sounds very interesting. So I got down to the album and delved into the matter. “Käpt'n K” has reinterpreted twelve songs that span their entire career. Already after the first full rimshot on the snare at "Dub Light “I knew that this was an album to my liking. I would never have dreamed that this groovy and rocking source material would be so skillfully integrated Dubcostume transfer. Lucia Cifarelli sings “Everything Old Is New Again” on “Real Dub Thing ”and thus perfectly defines the power of“ In Dub". KMFDM hymns are reinterpreted and garnished with a hodgepodge of meditative grooves with groovy guitar passages, high-pitched horns, intense organ sounds and heavy bass lines, as on “A Dub Against War "," Hau Dub"," Bumaye "presented. With “Bumaye” I mean to hear a sequence with Nina Hagen's voice.
All in all, an album that is bursting with ideas and yet Dubheads will polarize. Quote from a fan: “My girlfriend likes reggae, but KMFDM not so much. Now she likes KMFDM too ”. For ON .U Sound Addicts from the very beginning, “KMFDM: In Dub“An easy exercise and access to those seldom heard sounds may be a little easier.

Rating: 5 out of 5.
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Review

The Archives: Carry Me Home Dub

A year ago the highly acclaimed original "Carry Me Home: A Reggae Tribute to Gil Scott-Heron and Brian Jackson" from The Archives was released. A big budget production by Eric Hilton (one half of Thievery Corporation) and Darryl “Trane” Burke. Superbly rehearsed, recorded and marketed reggae retro sound. the Dub-Version was only a matter of time. Now it is available: "Carry Me Home Dub“By The Archives (Montserrat House). The big budget can be heard with every note. Everything is just right in terms of sound. And yes, of course it is more real Dub, although it is not uncommon for vocals to be heard. But the music has nothing to do with sound system nights. It wants to be played on Sunday mornings at breakfast or at a neat - but cool - dinner. It is about "sophisticated" Dub, tasteful and stylish. But all too often there is also a bit of boredom inherent in “high-quality” works. Everything is calculated, appropriate and balanced, reflective and intellectual. There is simply a lack of what is fun: hard contrasts, surprising, sometimes disruptive ideas, courage and daring. So I'm not sure how to rate the album. It is undoubtedly of absolutely high quality, but I don't have much fun listening to it. Phew! Maybe I just lack the level.

Rating: 3 out of 5.
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Review

The Return of Pachyman

Retro reggae is (almost) always very popular. Many producers struggle to reproduce the sound of the Black Ark, the early Revolutionaries or Channel One. Pachyman fits in seamlessly there. The Puerto Rican, who lives in Los Angeles, is based on the sound of the late 1970s and offers a fresh one, characterized by small melodies and lively rhythms Dub-Style. He plays all of the instruments himself in his basement studio - you can watch some nice videos on YouTube.

My colleague gtkriz once criticized Pachy's sound harshly: “He presents a sound image that gives the impression of being with the artist in a rather musty, dull rehearsal room that is padded for sound insulation. Nothing is embellished there; the loud hi-hat and the cymbals sound tinny, the bass drum and the bass are dry and flat. ”Well, where he's right, he's right. But the question is: Is that really to be assessed so negatively? Or should retroDub doesn't sound like that? If you answer yes to the last question, then of course the follow-up question immediately follows: Why the copy when there is the original? Which brings us to the philosophical proseminar. That's why I don't want to go into any further detail here, but simply announce: I like his new album "The return oh Pachyman“Exceptionally good. the DubIt's wonderfully playful, the melodies nestle in my ears and the mix makes for good entertainment. And yes: I also enjoy deciphering the many quotations. I get the feeling that Pachyman and I are “one of an kind”. That's why I like him, I like to watch him in his basement studio and hear "Return ..." when I'm in a good mood. Welcome back Pachy!

Rating: 4 out of 5.
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Five Star Review

Gladiators: The Time Is Now Discomixes

The Gladiators are undoubtedly a veteran of reggae history and their musical roots can be traced back to Clement “Sir Coxsone” Dodd's Studio One. My first encounter with their music was only in the mid-1970s. Their then producer Tony Robinson had made a deal in Europe and so the first (regular) albums of the Gladiators appeared on Virgin Records. Albert Griffiths died on December 15.12.2020, 74 at the age of XNUMX after a long illness of Parkinson's. The head of the trio with classic harmony vocals à la Wailers, Culture, Abyssinians, Israel Vibration, Meditations, Mighty Diamands etc. has the appearance of the "Gladiators: The Time Is Now Discomixes“(Tabou1) and I can imagine that he was very happy with the end result. Dartanyan "GreenLion" Winston, a young American sound tinkerer in his early 30s from Ohio, has chosen a few tracks from the almost inexhaustible repertoire of the Gladiators and created wonderfully classic discomixes. Eight original songs are skilfully deconstructed and reconstructed with a ton of energy, studio and mixer magic. Dartanyan "GreenLion" Winston pulls out all the stops and delivers a wonderfully sparkling sound bath of vocals, echo, reverb and delay. My highlights, the eight-minute title, are: "Fussing and Fighting" - a Marley song that most clearly shows how much Albert Griffiths' voice resembled Bob Marley's - and "Dreadlocks your Time is now" of course. The album cover gives the impression that it was created under the influence of psychoactive or even more hallucinogenic substances in the hippie era. Even if I had made a slightly different selection of songs, “The Time Is Now Discomixes” is, in retrospect, a wonderful homage to the wonderful gladiators who, undeservedly, were always a bit off the side of the really big vocal trios.

Rating: 5 out of 5.
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Five Star Review

Jallanzo: Dubam 'It & Luvin' It

It always says that it is in Jamaica Dub just about to die. But then the intensive care patient still twitches every now and then and makes everyone present in a state of excitement. Most recently on Teflon Zincfence's album "Dub Policy ". Now another shock wave is going through the intensive care unit: Jallanzo publishes with "Dubam 'It & Luvin' It“A great one Dub-Album made in Jamaica. Jallanzo ?? I didn't know his name yet, but I did know his music, because the multi-instrumentalist, songwriter, singer and Dub-Producer played for the a few years ago Dubtonic Kru, whose music I really appreciated. So now a solo project - in the form of one Dub-Albums! I have no idea who recorded the tracks here, whether they are secondary use or from the outset as Dubs were planned. I only know: you sound breathtaking. So crisp, powerful and dynamic that they would be a pleasure, even if it weren't for the perfect timing, the beautiful melodies, the ingenious arrangements and the inspired mix. Everything is just right here - except for the ugly cover. One reason to forego vinyl. The title of the album comes from a quote from Jallanzo: “Music is my life, my life is my music and I am dubbing it and loving it ”. Jallanzo has dedicated himself to music since he was 13 years old. He mainly works as a studio musician and can be heard on the productions of many well-known artists. Let's hope that we will be able to enjoy his music in the future even without vocals in the foreground.

Rating: 5 out of 5.
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Five Star Review

Dub Spencer & Trance Hill: Black Album

The Zurich Dub-Combo Dub Spencer & Trance Hill is in dubblog a regular guest. Their albums usually get 5 out of 5 stars, which is the highest rating. If a friend points out a “previously officially unpublished, only known to a small circle” work that has appeared on YouTube via Twitter, then of course you will listen carefully. Since September 2020 the "Black album“Apparently online there and has so far reached a good 800 listeners. So it remained an insider tip and raised even more questions for it. Indeed: What is this “Black Album” about?

Band bassist and manager Marcel “Masi” Stalder sheds light on the matter on request. Around the time of “Riding Strange Horses” (2010) Nicolai Beverungen worked for his record label Echo Beach - wherever Dub Spencer & Trance Hill publish their stuff - the idea of ​​an Echo Beach anniversary album had with verdubGood versions of well-known songs, to which the people of Zurich should also make a contribution. Because at that time Stalder and colleagues had so much fun recording strange songs dubTo put on a nice dress, they suddenly recorded around a dozen tracks with the idea of ​​releasing them as a separate album. The problem: The rights were not available for all songs. Therefore, the album disappeared in the drawer - with the exception of one song that made it onto the aforementioned "Riding Strange Horses", which was only equipped with cover versions: "Enter Sandman" by Metallica.

The rest of the "Black Album" found the light of the public in a different way. For one thing, it offered Dub Spencer & Trance Hill to their fans after concerts on self-burned CDs; However, it was a very small edition of only around 100 pieces. On the other hand, Echo Beach brought out a best of the Zurich band in 2017 with “Return Of The Supervinyl”. As the name suggests, only on vinyl, but with a treat - a link to the "Black Album", which was never officially released. Because the activation of the link was only possible in a roundabout way and required a lot of nerve, the vinyl edition was quickly sold out, the ominous work was still reserved for a small group of interested people. Until it was uploaded to Youtube almost a year ago. Presumably from a fan.

Now that the winding paths of the “Black Album” have been clarified, the most important question still arises: Is it worth listening to the ten songs on it? Absolutely - if you are on verdubbte cover versions are available! Marcel Stalder explains with a laugh that every member of the band has brought in his “youthful sins”, his “musical hateful love”. What Dub Spencer & Trance Hill made it out of it is - once again - simply great. Even “The Final Countdown” by Europe (the original causes me physical pain personally) is an experience. In contrast to “Riding Strange Horses”, the original voices are missing on the “Black Album”. But it doesn't matter. That was the only way James Brown's “I Feel Good” could turn out so spooky and gloomy. Nothing more is revealed, except that one likes to put up with such youthful sins. The album fits in seamlessly with the early work of Dub Spencer & Trance Hill one. It is not difficult to read from the previous lines that the writer would like an official publication at a later date.

Tracklist:

1. "Enter Dubman "(" Enter Sandman "by Metallica)

2. "The Final Dub Down "(" The Final Countdown "from Europe)

3. "Eye Of The Lion" ("Eye Of The Tiger" by Survivor from the "Rocky IV" soundtrack)

4. "Bomb Back" feat. Nya ("Bomb Track" by Rage Against The Machine)

5. "Chilly Jean" ("Billie Jean" by Michael Jackson)

6. "Tire" ("Fire" by Jimi Hendrix)

7. "I Feel Stoned" ("I Feel Good" by James Brown)

8. "Owner Of A Dub Heart “feat. The Homestories ("Owner Of A Lonely Heart" by Yes)

9. "The Sea" ("The Ocean" by Led Zeppelin)

10. "Until The End Of The Disc" ("Until The End Of The World" by U2)

Rating: 5 out of 5.
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Five Star Review

International Observer: Bat

(This text has been machine translated.) I'm slowly running out of words of praise. I've already written my fingers sore about the works of International Observer - behind which the lead singer of the historic Thompson Twins, Tom Bailey, hides. I love his relaxed Dubs beyond measure. What fascinates me most is that on the one hand they are incredibly relaxed, but on the other hand they are extremely exciting. It's a crazy paradox. Who knows reggae and Dub from New Zealand, can guess what I mean by that: Perfectly timed rhythms full of groove and inner tension, presented in slow motion. Fascinating. Tom Bailey also knows his trade. His tracks are superbly produced: crisp, dynamic, full-sounding. And then there is the ingenious arrangement, the fantastic bass lines and the wonderful, colorful, shimmering melodies. Everything from the mix interwoven into a large, comprehensive, multi-layered euphony.

There is actually no category or the dubs by Tom Bailey. It is undoubtedly one hundred percent reggae-dub technical perfection, which at the same time has completely emancipated itself from reggae. Crazy, right? Tom has created a completely independent dub-style that admittedly makes use of the reggae aesthetic, but otherwise leaves genre conventions behind. No “Yeah” exclamations, no sirens, no steppers, no historical basslines or brass sections - observer Dubs are utterly themselves, without quotes and superficial references. That's why I can't even imagine his music at a sound system event, even with the best of intentions. Unthinkable! But it would be perfect for a New Zealand pop open air festival.

The meticulousness of the productions also explains why the Observer only sporadically releases new EPs (let alone complete albums). Here quality comes before quantity. "Bat“ (Dubmission) is his latest work. After “Mink” and “Pangolin” it is the third EP in the “animal series” - and this is of course as excellent as all other works of this extraordinary dub-protagonist.

Rating: 5 out of 5.
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Review

Mungo's Hi Fi: Antidote

(This text has been machine translated.) It was time for Mungo's Hi Fi to release a proper Dub-Album. The three Scots produce their fingers sore, put out the coolest albums and EPs in staccato and save up Dub?! Okay, "Serious Time" got 2014 a Dub-Pendant, but that's about it. But now it's over: "Antidote“(Scotch Bonnet), the new Dub-Meta-Work of the Glasgower is here. "Meta" because it contains ten Dub-Versions of titles from Mongo's oeuvre. So the meta-study of the existing Mungo's productions - which brings us right to the title: “Antidote”. Corona sends its regards. But the Mungo's crew does not refer their antidote to the evil virus, but "it's an antidote to all the stress and restriction of modern life". Aha, there seems to be a bit of frustration. No wonder. For a sound system that lives from festivals and parties, the last few months should have been an imposition. Anyone who knows the Scots from live performances will know that they rock any party. Their mix of old school dancehall and modern bass music is simply irresistible. I've already spent the most beautiful sound system nights in the bass waves of Mungo's Hi Fi. So I was all the more astonished that “Antidote” is NOT being party-music. Dub is obviously serious business for the three guys from Glasgow. Almost academically, they dissect their rhythms here, rigorously cut them down and reduce them to drum and bass. Quite puristic and consistent. Unexpected, but not bad. "It's a sonic journey that will leave all who enter cleansed and replenished on the other side," they promise. A purification cure, in a way. This is exactly the cure they have given their music and the result is a Dub-Catharsis. Pure and clean, as Gregory would call it. May we start cleansed into the newly won freedom.

Rating: 4 out of 5.
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Review

Prince Hendrik and the Other Members of The Royal Family: Aquadub

As a child he was crazy about music and as a teenager he was fascinated by the magical sound of reggae and ska. For this reason he flew to Jamaica to the roots of reggae at the age of twenty, where he lived for two years from 1989 to 1991, married a Jamaican woman and fathered a daughter. The 52 year old Hendrik “Prince Hendrik” van Houten from Arnhem says about his time and life on the Caribbean island: “I was young and very receptive to everything. I lived in Rasta communes, learned a lot about Rasta philosophy and Nyahbinghi drumming. My stay there had a very positive impact on me. "
In the mid-1990s, Prince Hendrik arrived as a single father in the Arnhem artists' quarter Klarendal and built his “Kitchenrock home studio”, a multitrack recording and mixing studio, in his house. Since 2012, three albums have been released on CD under the name “Prince Hendrik and the Other Members of The Royal Family” and now “Aquarius / Aquadub“(A Sky High Underground Production) re-released in limited and numbered edition of 300 copies on vinyl.
“Two friends I have known all my life and with whom I used to be in bands play along. One on drums and bass, the other as guitarist and cellist. I take care of the vocals, keyboards and the recording process myself, ”says van Houten and continues:“ For me, sun and beach are not inextricably linked with reggae. I have nothing to do with the party variant of reggae and even less with dancehall and raggamuffin. The latter often glorifies aggression and hatred. ”So almost everything has been said about the reggae style of Prince Hendrik and his friends. We are offered a kind of relaxed, handmade “underground reggae” - as Prince Hendrik himself describes his style. I involuntarily associate “underground reggae” with the early, sometimes Spartan but always highly interesting ones Dub-Work of a Keith Hudson. “Aquadub“Both vocally and stylistically. On “Aquadub“There is no sound too much, every instrument and every small one Dub-Effect gets its space and enough time to develop in the ear. I especially liked the cello, which occasionally comes up with small but fine melodies surrounded by a beautiful guitar sound. A chance find of honest, handmade music that I would like to recommend to everyone.

Rating: 4 out of 5.
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Five Star Review

Lee Scratch Perry meets Daniel Boyle: To drive the Dub Starship through the Horror Zone

I often find myself asking: "How would Jim Morrison, Jimi Hendrix, Bob Marley and many more sound today if they hadn't died much too early?" This question comes to mind when I hear Lee "Scratch" Perry. No, no, thank god Scratch is still alive. But what if Lee “Scratch” Perry hadn't slipped into an increasingly unpredictable, depressive, and destructive phase in the late 1970s that ended up with the flaring of his Black Ark studio in Washington Gardens, Kingston? How would albums from Black Ark Studio sound like today? Fortunately, there is an Adrian Maxwell Sherwood and a Daniel Boyle who still have the ability to inspire this man, who is well over 80 years old, to top performance.

Maxwell Livingston Smith alias Max Romeo produced his masterpiece in the Black Ark as early as 1976 together with Lee Perry and the Upsetters - a massive mountain range that is still visible today in the vast Reggae landscape. Almost 40 years after "Was in Babylon"In 2015 Max Romeo, Daniel Boyle, Lee" Scratch "Perry and three great Upsetters published another collaboration:"Horror Zone". “Horror Zone” is by no means a cheap copy of “War ina Babylon”, but rather a successful connection to old times, so more of a kind of further development. That was the case with the vocal album "Horror Zone" DubAlbum in good old fashion already with. And what's next? After this "Lee Scratch Perry meets Daniel Boyle to drive the Dub Starship through the Horror Zone“Was already released in 2020 in a limited vinyl edition for Record Store Day, now that follows Dub Album of the Dub Albums in digital form. Boyle and Perry have the original "Horror Zone" -Dubs subjected to another processing on the mixer and refined a cosmos with tons of cave-like reverb and analog special effects, which according to credits Lee "Scratch" Perry is attributed. Once again we are convincingly heard that it is not a challenge for Perry & Boyle, an already good one Dub-Mix album one more time because these two Dubmasters are always able to go one better. The result can be more than heard, because the two have an intergalactic, dubcreate a wise supernova that shines the entire galaxy even brighter than the original.
Daniel Boyle's Rolling Lion Studio produced, recorded and mixed exclusively with analog devices from the 50s to the 80s and the characteristic Black Ark sound, which is understandably not 100% achieved. Nonetheless, I'm pretty sure that “Lee Scratch Perry meets Daniel Boyle to drive the Dub Starship through the Horror Zone ”will be a new classic in Lee“ Scratch ”Perry's overall / life's work.

Rating: 5 out of 5.