Ultimately, I can only reasonably (!) Objectively assess releases based on the temporal development of the artists. So my opinion about an album is actually only solidified when I have heard its predecessor and its successor. Without this before-and-after comparison, I only get a spontaneous impression; nothing more than a snapshot with no reference point - and I don't hesitate to say that this is the humble basis for my reviews in the dubblog is. With debuts this comparative criticism does not work per se; I ask everyone else what has changed over the course of three consecutive album releases. Has there been a change of direction, personnel changes, different producers or mixing engineers? If the albums move in different soundscapes, there are diverging concepts or perhaps even quality fluctuations; What is the relationship between the respective work and the musical reality of its time? In short: I sound out how and to what extent a (further) development caused by various circumstances has taken place. Ultimately, we are dealing with a creative area, with art - and that is not static per se.
With Paul Zasky and his Dubblestandart conglomerate, an artistic development has recently been noticed, albeit unfortunately a declining one - it was last with the album "Dubblestandart & Firehouse Crew present Reggae Classics“An unexpected, veritable drop in quality. We remember: Neither Zasky nor the Firehouse Crew were up to the task of reinterpreting monuments of reggae history. Mixmaster Robbie Ost also more or less failed with his not particularly impressive mix - probably it was from the recordings, which in stark contrast to the fine previous album "Dub Realistic“Stand, no longer to get out. A Paolo Baldini, on the other hand, who, like Zasky, is a bassist and can look back on a similarly long history in the reggae business, in my opinion eludes a temporal comparison: his productions and Dub Mixes, from “Paolo Baldini Dubfiles at Song Embassy Papine Kingston 6 "via Mellow Moods" Large Dub" up to "Dolomite Rockers“Releases are characterized by consistently high quality - in terms of both creative and sound-technical aspects.
The Echo Beach label has now joined forces for the length of an album: "Paolo Baldini Dubfiles meets Dubblestandart“Featured older and newer ones Dubblestandart tracks that Baldini with Dub-Mixes revised. Unsurprisingly, this combo works exceptionally well and I'm tempted to try the Italian Dub-Mixer the “Midas Touch” to blame: Everything he touches in his studio seems to be transformed into musical precious metal.
How does the guy do it? I can only make vague guesses; but in my mind's eye, Baldini first spreads a handful of dirt on the tracks and thus takes the music away Dubblestandart's own perfection, which sometimes leads to sterility. “Squeaky clean” is probably the appropriate Anglicism for this. Next, Baldini should split the tracks apart to separate the good from the less good - only to then carefully add one or the other new sound again without the piece of music becoming an unrecognizable mutant. The result is an audibly well-ventilated base material into which he can work Dub- Can place effects in the best possible way.
This process - whatever it actually looks like in reality - works like a makeover, especially as Paolo Baldini does Dub-Mixing approaches the matter with what feels like a dose of disrespect: nothing is cautiously or carefully placed; Echo and reverb often push themselves to the fore and remind a little - do I dare to say it? - to the Dub-Techniques of a King Tubby, whose greatest asset was also a certain disrespect for the music and the studio technology. Goods Dub must still from today Dub-Mixers are implemented with verve and filled with life; otherwise there will be studio stillbirths that cannot be beaten in terms of boredom, listlessness and cold sterility. So I wouldn't be surprised if Baldini got this Dubs worked out live: very old-school, speak spontaneously and creatively on the analog board.
That Dubblestandart likes to hand over their tracks for remixes, is well known and often has a refreshingly beneficial effect on their music. Remember the remix battle for the Marcia Griffiths feature "Holding You Close“, Which has a total of 22 versions, including the great one Alpsdub-Remix. In the large circle of DubBlestandart collaborators are now joining Paolo Baldini and insisting, “Holding You Close” is another one Dub- Missing painting. The rest of the title selection for “Paolo Baldini Dubfiles meets Dubblestandart “he restricts himself to tracks from the last four regular ones Dubblestandart releases - including two of the unfortunate recordings with the Firehouse Crew, which, despite obvious efforts, only seem like revenants. The rest, however, come to life, breathe freely and vibrate through “Acres of Space”. A small, saving one Dub-Wonder that the bar has set high for his successor.