November 6, 2014

Glitterbeat: Dubs & Versions I

ARTIST: various artists
TITLE: Glitterbeat: Dubs & Versions I
LABEL: Glitterbeat
Glitterbeat Records, WOMEX’s 2014 Label Award winner, is primarily focused on North and West African music, especially contemporary music from Mali. For its first various-artists compilation, the label invited some of their favorite remixers to take swings at deep cuts from the catalog. The result is an excellent, imaginative set of head music – no dancefloor bangers here at all. Dennis Bovell, Linton Kwesi Johnson’s long-time colleague, gives guitarist Samba Toure a deep dub vibe on track 1. German producer Harmonious Thelonious, new to me, really impresses with his maximal-minimalist approach to Ben Zabo on 5. Another remix of Ben Zabo, the Senegalese-influenced 8 by Mark Ernestus, was Glitterbeat’s very first release and it’s well worth a re-hearing. Larry Achiampong, one of the UK’s hottest visual artists, does a short, clever cut-and-paste of Lobi Traore on 7. And Nozinja, the man behind the brilliant South African Shangaan electro sound, applies his patented low-tech video-game sound to Aminata Wassidje Traore on 4 – this is possibly the mellowest track Nozinja has yet waxed. This is not your run-of-the-mill remix album, don’t sleep on it.
TOP TRACKS:    1    4    5    7    8
ALSO RECOMMENDED:    2    3    6    10

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