Gary Clail - five albums and a 12inch

Funny sometimes, how yesterday's cutting edge can become today's old hat. A case in point being some of Adrian Sherwood's 80s to mid-90s output, namely a large part of the dub and hiphop infused, industrial tinged kind of avant-funk he brewed up with the Tackhead posse. While I think that most of Sherwood's more rootical dub reggae and reggae influenced productions still hold up more than well, a large part of those avant-funk tracks on albums by Tackhead, Mark Stewart or - in this case - Gary Clail sounds a bit dated.

Still, about half the tunes on each Gary Clail album are absolute killers (tellingly, most of them are pretty dubby though), while the rest are at least highly interesting musical time capsules from (post-)Thatcherite Britain, fueled by the undeniable fire of Clail's ranting agit-prop speech-song. And Emotional Hooligan really is a great album, hands down.

Thanks a lot to nad22 for Dreamstealers, Emotional Hooligan and Escape!

Gary Clail's Tackhead Soundsystem - Tackhead Tape Time

Gary Clail & On-U Soundsystem - End Of The Century Party

Gary Clail & On-U Soundsystem - Dreamstealers

Gary Clail & On-U Soundsystem - Emotional Hooligan

Gary Clail & On-U Soundsystem - Escape 12inch

Gary Clail - Keep The Faith


Vex'd & Distance - Metalstep Mix

(Click on the picture to download.)

Dubstep and avant metal (or whatever you want to call the actually not-so-new breeds of artsy thrashers and droning doom rockers) are definitely the hipsters current sounds of choice, at least if you go by music blogs and magazines. So by combining the two for a mix on Mary Anne Hobbs' Experimental Show, Vex'd and Distance made the wet dreams of every nerdy, trend-obsessed music blogger (like yours truly) come true. A quick look at the tracklist shows that they delivered the goods and came up with some ultra-heavy slices of pitch-black darkcore. And the best thing about it is that what seems like a great idea in theory actually does indeed sound good in reality too.

I don't really know about Jamie Vex'd, but Distance is an old headbanger anyway and really knows his metal (nice to see tracks by death metal veterans Napalm Death and Celtic Frost in there, by the way). Same goes for the show's host Marry Anne Hobbs, about whose metal past you can read more in this interview on Martin Blackdown's excellent dubstep blog.

From what I gathered on Dubstep Forum, there seems to be quite some love for the likes of Sunn O))), Boris, Earth or Neurosis among some of the dubsteppas. A guy named Blip posted his remix of the Boris/Sunn O))) track Aetna over there, which I included with this upload. I'm not entirely convinced by the results, but it's an interesting experiment and at least worth a listen.