Monday, August 22, 2005

missus pays last respects as one of the great series bites the dust
"a night of dubstep music and future dread sounds"


Friday, August 26

Bar Sputnik, Brooklyn
262 Taaffe Pl, Fort Greene
(G to Classon)

10pm until late

Free Admission

Cheap drinks

Joe Nice
Dave Q
Dan Gee
MC Juakali

sounds: dubstep, grime, ragga, and future dub music

More info and audio:

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

and here's me in colloquy with Stylus editor Todd Burns, part of their Stycast podcast series, a broad-ranging discussion taking in the Gaza Strip evacuations, the corruption scandal engulfing Brazilian president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, the new Salman Rushdie novel Shalimar the Clown, Jim Jarmusch's latest movie Broken Flowers, and the approaching series finale of Six Feet Under.

Sunday, August 07, 2005

renegade snares

wayne 'n' wax droppin' science re. reggaeton--argument in a nutshell: the axis of "changing same" in the genre doesn't pertain to the beat structure itself ("bumpety-bumpety, here comes the galloping major," more like a changeless same innit) but timbral variations in the snare sounds. bigupyachest wayne, this could be a way into a genre whose appeal has pretty much eluded me so far.

and here's another great piece of writing--on a late period Mo' Wax release of all things!!!!!--of the sort that can only really be done these days on bloggs and therefore kinda restores one's ever-so-slightly-waning faith in the whole blogging enterprise.

Friday, August 05, 2005

.... new content at the Rip It Up site: bunch of stuff in News (including further details of the Sao Paulo jaunt) and an interview with the author, in the Interviews section...
Talking of unlikely cover versions, I see that Deep Dish have done a cover of "Dreams". Somehow the sacrilege is only doubled by the fact they've roped in Stevie Nicks to redo the vocal. (Their new album George Is On--huh?--also includes a mash-up of Dire Straits "Money For Nothing" with Deep Dish's own "Flashdance"). For some reason Deep Dish for me encapsulate everything that is mediocre and grimly industrious about the mainstream of dance culture in the Noughties. There's a cover story on them in the June/July issue of BPM and even the writer seems bemused by the fact that they've continued to be "so unbelievably prominent". The duo's Ali Shiranzinia thinks it because "people are always wondering where we're going to go next musically, so they're always paying attention. Like with Howard Stern..." What planet is this guy on?!?!?! More plausibly, he thinks it's also down to "pure hard work. We never decided to go away for awhile and come back. We've always maintained our aggressiveness." This theme of tenacity--"We've worked too hard. We've stayed up too many nights, travelled all over the world, and given it our blood, sweat and tears. We have to see it through"--is chimed throughout the piece. That's the mainstream dance industry in 2005: refusing to relinquish its portion of the shrunken pie, blocking the new love-not-money talent from coming through.

Flicking through BPM (still mystifyingly appearing in my mailbox) is weirdly fascinating, like looking at a world I once just about intersected with that's now drifted way, way off. I recognise the words but the combinations they're in don't quite compute. What is "disco-trance" and how I can avoid ever hearing it? (That's from an ad for new Bedrock artist Luke Fair, whose music is described as "an energetic blend of disco-trance and progressive funk". Ugh). Depressing to see all these DJs--Sasha, Richie Hawtin, James Zabiela (whoever he is)--gambling on Ableton Live as the next frontier, what'll bring the audiences back to the superclubs. Why something that pushes seamless-dj-mixology to the next level of inter-track indistinguishability should be a smart move is anybody's guess. Yet in its own way the opposite trend--eclecticism, "great records from all kinds of genres," the best of the past and the present--that sort of neo-Balearic stance touted in the August issue of BPM by everyone from Damian Lazarus (if I'm not mistaken, the guy who put out Position Normal's Stop Your Nonsense) to Tim Sweeney--seems equally a dead end. Or at least, it might make for a great night-out (as it does with Sweeney, with Optimo), and it might in practice and in most instances be preferable to the mono-stylistic purist approach, but, well, it's not exactly the basis of a culture. It's more like a stalling game, playing for time until the Next Thing, the next all-consuming rallying point. I guess the synthesis that I'm imagining that would transect the purism/eclecticism binary is the scene that combines a total sense of identity with expansiveness, a voracious ability to assimilate external influences but bind them within its own fierce sense of generic self--Kogan's "context of abundance"--the model being hardcore, or 2step, or in the largest sense, some could argue, hip hop, come to think of it. Some would say house was once and still could be and sometimes still is such a context of abundance, and I can almost believe it listening to things like that fabulous M.A.N.D.Y. Body Language 1 mix (An The Original Soundtrack Turn-On), although it's still a little too much a scenic tour through both the finest views and some overlooked nooks of dance history to scream PHUTURE in my face.

(Talking of things screaming PHUTURE in your face, what's with the insane degree of 303-bashing going on? That sound is all over most of the Analord 1-11 series [parts of which are really excellent I think, a White Stripesy retro-move by RDJ that's actually paid off big time] and I was surprised to find myself really enjoying the Fabric Live mix by Death In Vegas [whose actual albums are prima facie evidence if you wanted to construct an argument about the decline of the art school rock tradition in the UK] which is pretty much one long neo-acieeed fest).

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Kpunk, brilliant, on The Cure, making a good case for the death-wishful trilogy of Seventeen Seconds/Faith/Pornography as an impressive achievement rather oppressive nullity.

Reminded me that I've been meaning, and repeatedly forgetting, to mention here the fact that
DB and Stakka, operating under the name Ror-Shak, recently put out a drum'n'bass version of "A Forest." Despite the Kosheeny female vocals, it works surprisingly well--the chasing-a-phantasm propulsion of the original suiting the tunnel-vision linearity of modern D&B perfectly.
missus on this household's new favourite programme
goddamnit i'm gonna be in a different hemisphere when this is happening:

Dipset NYC vs. Pirate Sessions UK

Aug 13, 2005, 2pm – 6pm,


Location: Amphitheater, East River Park, New York City (Grand Street @ the East River)

Line up:
KANO (679 Records)
DJ CAMEO (1xtra BBC)
KENNY MUHAMMUD The Human Orchestra ·

Press Release:

"Over the past few years, the music that has come to be known as UK grime has developed into the most vital music created by urban Black youth in London. Using the same DIY spirit as early American hip hop pioneers, DJs, producers and MCs are creating a unique statement that speaks to the kids in and around the council estates (projects) of London and beyond. Like American hip hop artists, these British artists tell tales from their hood as only they can, putting London's inner city life in sharp focus. And like hip hop, the flavor and energy is undeniably hot, Black, and straight out of the hood. The creative electricity that the collaboration between hip hop and grime would spark could open up endless possibilities. In the spirit of the many years of cross-pollination that have gone on between the UK and the US, we aim to solidify this link between the two musical genres through the HEAT event. In the classic film Wild Style, Fab Five Freddy helped introduce hip hop to the masses by bringing uptown vibes to the downtown community in the form of a free concert at the East River Park’s Amphitheater. We will take that same landmark location and bring London to NYC in the form of a truly historic collaboration called HEAT. The lineup of talent will feature some of the biggest artists to emerge on both the American and UK scenes"

Consolation prize pour moi:

"You can hear the event broadcast on 1Xtra Live - Saturday 20th August, from 11pm."

For more information, please contact Dinesh Boaz ( or Greg Poole (