– GUERRILLA WARFARE –
As a British chap who likes a lot of what The West small-mindedly refers to as ‘world’ music (often really just folk music from outside English-speaking countries) I’m always a little surprised when people from elsewhere reveal themselves to be musical Anglophiles.
I mean, what about good ol’ Blighty’s fish-n-chips-n-mushy-peas musical soundscape could possibly appeal to those with more exotic vistas?
However, every now and then a musician comes along who reminds me how ‘cool’ Britannia is to the outside world.
Parisian producer and DJ, Neue Grafik is one who’s always worn his UK-centric broken beat & grime influences on his sleeve but now he’s kicking them all up a notch on a new mini LP, recorded at the “home of London’s flourishing jazz scene” Total Refreshment Centre.
Fittingly, it’s called Foulden Road (TRC’s Hackney home address) and promises guest performances from Brussels flautist Esinam, sax sovereign Nubya Garcia and Melbourne vocalist, Allysha Joy.
To those familiar with Neue Grafik’s sound, Hedgehog’s Dilemma comes as a bit of a sonic shock and that’s because, for the first time on record, he arrives in the form of an ensemble, backed by the drums of Dougal Taylor (Vels Trio), bass of Matt Gedrych (MaddAddam) and sax of Jordan Saintard.
Arranged for the quartet by trumpet’n’turntables polymath Emma-Jean Thackray, the track bears all the usual hybrid jazz, house, hip hop and afro-beat eccentricity of a normal Grafik track but with added beef.
It’s still a bit off-kilter enhanced but it all just feels a little louder, more visceral. Just more.
Of course, it helps having the elastic, ecstatic, erratic vocals of south London rapper and poet Brother Portrait. But, even without (and, let’s face it, we have to wait a fair while for his introduction), the song still bristles with energy and lust for London life.
“The idea is to incorporate musicians with their own sensibilities, collaborating together as a reflection of our society; unreal & rebellious, but with magic moments, and full of hope” says Grafik of the release.
Foulden Road will be released on 27 September.
MORE FROM THIS WEEK’S MIX
P.S. You can find all of the tracks reviewed above in the 45 Revolutions per Minute playlist below or click to access the 45 RPM Playlist on Spotify itself.
If you like what you hear (or even if you don’t), please engage in dialogue with me @45rpm_Reviews on Twitter. And, if you’d like to receive updates weekly, please subscribe to the email list to get these recommendations sent to your inbox weekly.
– SV –