Dub (Revolution Review

Dub Revolution, March 2005

Nikolai Beverungen, owner of the Hamburg Echo Beach label, is always looking for interesting ones DubManifestations. He is increasingly finding what he is looking for in the most remote corners of the world. Just in time for the last edition of Riddim, he presented his “South Africa in Dub“-Sampler, so he now serves us "The Sound Of Dub - New Zealand in Dub" (Echo Beach / Indigo) freshness Dub-Tunes from New Zealand. The crazy thing is that no matter where they are from Dubs come from, be it from France, Brazil, England, the USA, Germany or even from Kiwi country, they are always highly interesting music experiments that, surprisingly, hardly have any regional characteristics. It almost seems as if they would Dub-Plant, no matter where they sprout from the ground, always from the same one that pervades the entire globe, Dub-Rhizome nourished. Dub is not folk music, but studio music, so it is not surprising that the 15 tracks on “New Zealand in Dub“Don't sound like Shire or Mordor, but like London, Paris or Hamburg. It's “The Sound Of Dub“, As it logically emblazoned on the Echo Beach samplers. In New Zealand, this sound is in full bloom and is cherished by the local label "Loop". For three years, Mr. Beverungen viewed material and has now imported the 15 best tracks to Europe. Although the pieces of 12 different Dub-Producers, the sampler is very closed and stringent. All tracks are based on solid, warm reggae beats and from there explore the world of urban sounds such as drum 'n' bass, electronics, downbeat and melodic pop. The names of the artists include Confucius, The Black Seeds, 50Hz, Pitch Black or Rhombus - complete nobodies at international level Dub-Parquet, very wrongly, because hers Dub-Tunes undoubtedly belong in the first division. Especially the Black Seeds should have real hit potential in Europe with their pop melodies. Lee Tui is of a completely different caliber. In an angry rap - over a stoic, bass-driven beat - he demands social and ecological responsibility. The perfectly arranged one is also outstanding Dub “Winds” by Rhombus, crowned by the bewitching voice of Raashi Malik. Very, very nice, the whole thing. Let's hope that DubImporter from Hamburg still has many interesting flowers of the Dub-Rhizomes will be able to track down. Here's a first suggestion: How about Japan?

Poland is also an undiscovered one Dub-Country. The two samplers are currently available again "Dub Out Of Poland Part 1 " and "Part 2" (both import) from 2001 and 2002, on which the Polish DubScene presents. Even if some tracks are not yet properly modeled on the UKDub of the 90s, so is the quality of the one presented here Dubs extremely good. Especially on “Part 2” there are a few first-class productions, such as z. B. Dj Ridm feat. Roots Temper with “Zion”, a nice uptempo rockers track. Or even better: "ViolinDub“From the Crazy Sound System, on which a violin strikes melancholy Polish folk tunes. Memories of the Trebunja family are awakened!

Likewise Alpha & Omega speak up again, in the truest sense of the word, because their new album "Trample the Eagle and the Dragon and the Bear" (Greensleeves / Rough Trade) is a showcase album with guest vocalists. Probably inspired by Rootsman and Twilight Circus, who launched similar projects last year, Mrs. Woodbridge and Mr. Spronsen also felt like a little company in the studio. Among other things, they have invited a special star guest that nobody expected: Gregory Isaacs! A little desperate he sings against the A&O rhythm. The idea is good, but Gregory's voice needs space that this typically overcrowded rhythm doesn't give it. And so the master sounds pretty lost in the sound jungle from London. Even more striking is the disparity between voice and sound allover in the title track, on which Reuben Master desperately tries to be heard. Maybe Woodbridge and Spronsen didn't trust their concept for the final mix after all and turned the voices down to the level of the instruments. Only on the first track of the album is the ratio correct, and this was typically mixed by Mad Professor. With this vocalist in particular, it almost didn't matter whether you understood him or not, because nobody else produces as much verbal nonsense as he does: Lee Perry. The professor has succeeded in mixing the A&O rhythm in such a way that it sounds like an original Black-Ark-Ryhthm, to which Perry fits absolutely ingeniously with his minimal melody. Hands down the best tune on the album. In addition to Perry and Gregory, there are also Bunny Lie Lie, Horace Martin, Addis Youth and Reuben Master on the album, although the latter is absolutely not convincing. Unfortunately he just voiced three tracks ...

It is a very nice, experimental album "Conversations" (Suite Inc./Import) by Dubital. Behind this name are two Italians called Raffaele Ferro and Matteo Magni, who obviously love to play distorted voices and crazy sounds to solid, bass-grounded rhythms. That fits together wonderfully, because while the rhythm conveys security and structure, the effects constantly counteract this hold and thus create a very strange tension of concentration and confusion. Completely fascinating is the piece "Mama Don't Cry", which runs over a stoic-brazen computer bass and is accompanied by sugar-sweet, strange organ sounds and reverberating vocals.

“As a child, I was given cough syrup containing codeine and then watched the world around me in slow motion. I tried to convey this feeling in the sound of the Codeine tracks and songs, ”says Digital jockeywhat to him with his album “Codeine Dub" (Poets Club / Soul Seduction) succeeded in an excellent way. Especially “Opium Dub“, The album's 9-minute penultimate track is a study of slowness. Even Ernestus and von Oswald should take off their hats here. The fact that digital jockey, who is half of the computer jockeys from Cologne, has his roots in electronic music, can hardly be overheard. His tracks are extremely minimalistic and almost rationally constructed. Often it's just a jazzy piano solo that brings a certain unpredictability and organic movement to the tune, sometimes it's the voice of Terry Armstrong. Then the structures dissolve again in a complete noise all-over, only to be replaced by an old-fashioned song with piano accompaniment. Very fascinating.

Now we come to the revival selection. The two most important reissue labels, Pressure Sounds and Blood and Fire, have announced their new albums. The latter celebrates its tenth anniversary "Run It Red" (Blood And Fire / Indigo), a selection from their own pool, put together by Simply Red frontman Mick Hucknall - which is also pretty obvious, since Hucknall is one of the founders of Blood And Fire alongside Steve Barrow and Bob Harding. Amazingly, Hucknall has predominantly for his birthday serenade Dub- Pieces selected by King Tubby and his protégé Prince Jammy. All pieces are from the 70s, most of them from the first half. A solid selection, the real one Dub-Friends won't be knocked off their feet either, because the Dubs of the classic Bunny Lee productions are well known. Actually, it's the mixture with the vocal pieces that makes the anniversary album interesting. Tunes by Gregory Isaacs, Big Youth, Prince Alla, the Congos and others are interspersed here with regularity - whenever it just starts to get a bit boring.

Stylistically, the Pressure Sounds album is not too far removed from this "Down Santic Way" (Pressure Sounds / Rough Trade) with productions by Leonard Chin from 1973 to 1975. There are also some vocal tracks here, z. B. by Freddie McKay, I Roy or by a certain William Shakespeare, who turns out to be Gregory Isaacs. The sound of the productions is - in keeping with the style of the time - bone dry, brittle and at the same time rough. Even when Tubby occasionally turns in a little reverb or Augustus Pablo thinks about his melodica, the groove doesn't want to flow. Rough and unpolished, the minimalist rhythms stumble on, driven by the dryly struck snarre and tight guitar riffs. Even if the Pressure Sounds people leave no doubt that they have unearthed a real treasure here, the keterrian remark that this treasure requires a certain capacity for suffering in the listener is allowed.

How much the sound has changed with the appearance of the Revolutionaries (with Sly & Robbie) can be seen "Earthquake Dub" (Hot Pot / Indigo) by Ossie Hibbert Listen. The beats roll like clockwork here, driven by Sly's unmistakable rockers drumming. Four to the floor it goes here with a dynamic through the rhythms that one can only be amazed. Hibbert, who mixed the album at record speed, may have benefited from this, because it sounds particularly exciting Dub-Mix not. But what the tracks lack in an interesting mix, the superbly rehearsed rhythms like "Pick Up The Pieces", "Declaration Of Right" or "So Jah Say" more than make up for it.

This is followed by the album "Leroy Smart In Dub" (Jamaican Recordings). Here the beats sound even rounder and the bass warmer. Tubby wasn't exactly exhausted with the mixes (how could he, with an average of 200 Bunny Lee rhythms per week) and delivered a routine minimal mix. Sly Dunbar also seems to have calmed down a little more here. He and Santa Davis hit the snarre more sparingly, but no less impulsively, while Robbie plays gently grooving basslines. Occasionally a well-known bassline like "My Conversation" or "Zion Gate" sounds. Everything was very relaxed and peppered with scattered Leroy Smart snippets. Not sensational, but very pleasant - ideal after a long day full of nerve-wracking experimentalDubs ...

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