GRED5024: Quite literally the subbiest (the most subby?) tune I have heard in dubstep TO DATE, the latest instalment in the Greensleeves Dubstep series comes from Deep Medi’s very own V.I.V.E.K. (the dots, compulsory).
Musically, in terms of the actual remixing of ‘Fally Ranking’ by Johnny Osbourne, the edit is relatively simple, but to be honest, it really doesn’t matter, this works wonders. Subtlety in dance music means a lot. Basslaced and natty dread rootsy retaining those old school cowbells, with a beautiful palette of crisp, playful percussion nicely woven in, this is powerful, rolling music.
Have a listen, but if you don’t have any low end, you’re only hearing a fraction of the vibe:
Johnny Osbourne - Fally Rankin (V.I.V.E.K. Dub Version)
…and I hear you asking, as I did, ‘what does folly ranking mean?’, well here’s a discussion on the patois.
What’s more exciting, Chapter 1 of the collection has just been released on CD. This would suggest that a whole succession of vinyls are to be pressed…too bad I’m in Asia and you can’t get shit out here (apart from ordering online of course).
All sorts of big producer names on there such as Mala, LD and Cluekid, with tunes previously unreleased (but showcased in an assortment of big mixes on xlr8r and Boiler Room). Strangely, Kromestar’s banger 'Here We Come’ which came out in 2007 on Southside Dubstars label (their eleventh release at the time), has now been replaced on this CD by his really terrible comically bouncy fanfare-esque grating synth remix ‘Here I Come’, as in the name of the original Barrington Levy tune.
Regardless, big, big tings a gwan!
Previous articles on preceding Greensleeves Dubstep vinyls here and here.
I was going through J Dilla’s back catalogue and found some incredible instrumentals in the process. But one that I couldn’t stop playing was, frustratingly, only — seconds from start to finish, including fades. So, my solution was to extend it to over 3 mins so that it was mixeable. Here it is, rock out:
I’ve added a Hulo touch (think Hula Hoops). Monsieur Hulot (I’ve dropped the ‘t’, otherwise people tend to mispronounce, something like ‘Hull-Ott’, which doesn’t sound so hot) is a fictional comical character from the 1953 French classic ‘Mr Hulot’s Holiday’ (originally ‘Les Vacances de M. Hulot)
With a lot of Jacques Tati films, it’s kinda like Marmite - you either digest it or you don’t. As for Hulot himself, he’s an outsider, misunderstood, head in the clouds biznis. Here’s a clip:
While I’m on the subject of instrumentals, the new J Rocc ‘Some Cold Rock Stuff' has some incredible tracks. Unfortunately, a lot of it was on the Mystery Disc, which has 3 variations and Stones Throw do not provide a tracklisting, so I couldn't actually tell you the names of the stuff I'd really recommend.
Compositionally, in relation to the work of other crate diggers such as Dilla or Madlib, I would say these tunes are more subtle, less ‘immediate’ sounding, not quite as intense, perhaps deeper but still kick some major ass. Like Madlib, Mr Rocc likes his jazz and Afro-Cuban.
Take an intriguing and dynamic riddim instrumental, Ital Stew (‘Boy Shorts’, Mr Vegas, you know it), produced by Jah Snowcone (nice name!), ask Ornine to remix the ting, and voila, you have the Ornine Version. Clever sampling of the original bassline, mixed into something a lot deeper, more minimal, abstracted and fidgety. This is one I can’t wait to mix in, its big!
And now for the original. I considered posting Boy Shorts, but y’all know that one!
This is another Ornine favourite, the simple shifting melody and the slow stompy rhythm, with additional stuttering mid and high range vocal cutups (‘molten hiccups’) make this a pretty immersive one. Reflection time!
I just had to mention 502 Recordings somewhere, even though they’ve only had two official releases so far, they really are creating a scene in all senses!
Head honcho DJ Oneman rolled out 502-001 at the end of 2010 with Fis-T’s stupidly dark ‘Night Hunter’ (‘Deep Mover' on the flip). There's been so much hype about this tune, all over Rinse..everywhere, and understandably so. This is how to use gritty wobble to maximum effect, but it still avoids the cheesiness. It's sold out pretty much everywhere (bar the odd overpriced stragglers on Discogs)
As I’m sure you’ll agree, the cut up horror/thriller genre video fits perfectly with the atmosphere of the whole thing. Itch it back no doubt! 55555 ina chatroom.
While I’m on about Fis-T, see what you think of this, those synths are overwhelming..title is ‘Bouncer’..I see where you’re coming from!
502-002 is Jay Weed, this is just personal preference but I’m not so into this one, however the video for the B-side ‘The Naos’ is genuis - the initial monkey meditating on music through headphones is truly inspired. Once the drop falls, it has a nice propulsion to it, funky, bongos, shoes and socks off biznis, tribal and very danceable. The Naos:
Now 502-003 is the new highly anticipated one. The original tune ‘Shawty’ (the flip will be the FaltyDL Rmx) by Teeth is exceptional and again, a really tasteful video, fits well. Mondrian eat your heart out. Back in the day when powershowers were something of a revolution, instamtics were badass and hair serum wasn’t welcome. 502 are digging the retro look, while keeping a totally fresh sound. The dutty moaning female vocals along with the chilled out synths give it a drugged out feel, but the combination of the driven beat and syncopated cutting snares keep this moving. wow!
Can anyone predict their next move? (don’t call the number above)
My first post had to be a celebration of Scientist, topical since Sounds Of The Universe have just added ‘Scientist Launches Dubstep Into Outer Space : The Scientist Mixes’ to their fine selection. My favourite has got to be the Scientist Vs Asbo (Loefah & SGT Pokes) ‘Dog Money Dub’ (I keep on meaning to call it Dogday Dub!).
This tune really has restored my confidence in dubstep – it’s deep, but not dark to the extent that it becomes demonic and laughable, and most crucially it has breathing space – not just a huge sound clash of wobbles! The legendary dub engineer comes out of long time hiding to rework some heavyweight tunes making it his own, this one an intense stomping riddim that in the original switches between reflective and grimey, reminding us of Random Trios’ ‘From The Shadows' in its dark minimalism.
Scientist milks the ambient sections to great atmospheric effect and really emphasises the breaks and drops, with added reverb and echo to keep it dubbed out. Check:
Scientist has over 70 releases, of which there are too many good LPs I frankly wouldn’t know where to start and such an immense influence on the dub scene.
‘Your Teeth In My Neck’ from ‘Scientist Rids The World Of The Evil Curse Of The Vampires’ (1981), for me, is the perfect example of his skills as a producer; a palette of drums with subtle reverbs, creative use of guitar wah and above all awesome vocals from Michael Prophet with conscious lyrics. The initial drum roll is just classic dub, and the intro just bounces so beautifully into the main section
Released a year later, ‘Scientist Wins The World Cup’ has a quality record cover and a sprinkling of bangers; a version of ‘Ice Cream Love’ and ‘In Your Eyes’ both with Johnny Osbourne’s classic vocals. But the one that stands out, despite its vague title, is ‘Extra Time Part 3’. You can sort of tell this was made around a similar time as the 1980 vampire tunes; similar choice of instruments, percussive sounds, see what I mean?