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'Pendulum Version'



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ECHOES
'Pendulum Version' (LP/CD)
Most modern examples of todays dance music (for want of a better term) tend to be constructed by those who, though over-familiar with a couple of turntables, probably think that F Major is some kind of anti-Tory jibe.

Which isn't to say that DJs aren't incapable of making decent music. But as the Dub Funk Association (alias Kelvin Richard) clearly indicates here sometimes even the most '90's sound benefits from a little musical talent. The Pendulum Version, his second LP, is by turns a Pabloesque journey through the outer regions of dub, and an idiosyncratic hybrid of black music styles. 'Version To Die', for example, is an extremely funky groove witrh moody, abstract embellishments, while 'Good Man's Dub' is reminiscent of Shaka dances with it's militant beat in contrast to the 'Good man with a loving heart' vocal line. In fact, there are myriad of vocal samples which draw the listener in. This in tandem with a few joints, could be the soundtrack to a moody independent film directed by Hal Hartley or Spike Lee.



STRAIGHT NO CHASER
'Pendulum Version' (LP/CD)
That the advice on the sleeve of a release by the Dub Funk Association says File under Reggae, Dance Ambient shows the confusion out there. Though I suppose it should really say, 'No categories-No limits'. The Dub Funk Association skilfully blends together a pretty sonically creative, modern rockers dubby sound. Very impressive, the kind of tunes I look forward to hearing when the urge to listen to three hours of unrelenting hardcore rockers dub becomes too hard to suppress and the smoke, eye-stinging atmosphere of the Dub Club in Tufnell Park holds out a friendly welcome.
FUTURE MUSIC
'Pendulum Version' (LP/CD)
Truly original dub albums are few and far between, so the sleeve's promise of 'hints of jungle, house and ambient' is immediately enticing. Unfortunately the first few tracks are quite disappointing, solid dub yes, innovative no. The likes of 'Dub Of Spirits' and 'Influence' are stylish old school dubs, but nothing that hasn't been done already over the last few years by the likes of Jah Shaka or the Orginal Rockers.

The album really only kicks off in the second half, with the garage piano and near jungle breaks on Scientific Wizard, a move cuminating in the rushing snares and deadly deep subs of 'Restless Breed', which knocks most jungle dub plates for six. well worth investigating for these stylistic crossovers.



JAZID
'Pendulum Version' (LP/CD)
The second LP from Dub Funk Association finds Kelvin Richard on an excursion through the history of dub. On the first two sides of this double vinyl collection, old ground is re-trod, recalling '70's experimentation with 'Dub Of Spirits' and the electro-influenced 'Justice Dub'. The Association competently recreate the stuttering production skills that accompanied man's first cautious steps with the sampler, but towards the end of the first record you begin to wonder where this is all heading. However, it falls into place as the journey continues right up ther path of sound of the present day via techno (House Of Trance) and offers a tantalising glimpse of Christmas future with the final track 'Ambience'. Ambient-jungle-dub anyone? Don't mind if I do.
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