Underworld - Drift

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We've been talking about this a lot on the C/D thread, but this project deserves its own one

If you haven't been following, the idea is: every Thursday they are releasing either a new track, something from the archive, or a new EP (comprised of the new stuff), leading up to the 10/25 release of "Drift Songs", which is supposedly going to be the album proper. Amazingly the new stuff does not feel rushed or poorly thought out, in fact there's a lot that ranks up with their best material (in my humble opinion). They've hit on nearly everything they've done well in the past and have explored a number of new directions that don't sound like Underworld at all. Who else is following this??

frogbs, Monday, 8 July 2019 18:03 (two years ago) link

Pretty interesting concept - noticed that the album proper is simultaneously an anthology release of all the drift tracks in addition to reworking a subset of the songs for a proper "album length" release?

I've yet to hear any of the material. Is it worth diving into? Appears to be a lot of stuff to wade through.

octobeard, Monday, 8 July 2019 22:43 (two years ago) link

the material's very all over the place but the best of it is really fantastic - so far my favourites are "Border Country", "Dune", "Custard Speedtalk" and "Appleshine Continuum"

ufo, Tuesday, 9 July 2019 08:48 (two years ago) link

Appleshine Continuum is an epic 47 minute journey

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LhcgUodizro

groovypanda, Tuesday, 9 July 2019 12:10 (two years ago) link

"Listen To Their No" is awesome if you're into the TMO/Scribble side of the group

frogbs, Tuesday, 9 July 2019 13:40 (two years ago) link

Second episode is my favourite so far. And having just heard the fourth, 'Border Country' is a clear highlight imho.

pomenitul, Wednesday, 10 July 2019 12:59 (two years ago) link

"threat of rain" is my favorite that hasn't been mentioned yet

american bradass (BradNelson), Wednesday, 10 July 2019 13:21 (two years ago) link

It's wonderful.

pomenitul, Wednesday, 10 July 2019 14:05 (two years ago) link

todays release is another rehearsal, this one from 2005, with "Silver Boots" (the original "Always Loved a Film"), "Yard Beat", and "Push Upstairs"

https://www.mixcloud.com/UnderworldLive/underworld-230605/?utm_source=ActiveCampaign&utm_medium=email&utm_content=Manchester+Street+Poem+2019+++18+unedited+mins+of+Riverrun-era+rehearsal+for+you&utm_campaign=DRIFT+DROP+-+230605

"Silver Boots" is one from my wishlist so I'm pretty happy with this. just wish I could download it!!

frogbs, Thursday, 11 July 2019 18:18 (two years ago) link

you can download it, it's just 66kbps utm_source=ActiveCampaign&utm_medium=email&utm_content=Manchester+Street+Poem+2019+++18+unedited+mins+of+Riverrun-era+rehearsal+for+you&utm_campaign=DRIFT+DROP+-+230605

quelle sprocket damage (sic), Thursday, 11 July 2019 19:32 (two years ago) link

hmmm should've figured it would be fairly easy to do that

it definitely doesn't sound great but it's an improvement on the version I cropped from the radio broadcast in 2006

frogbs, Thursday, 11 July 2019 19:40 (two years ago) link

"listen to their no" -> "schiphol test" is a wonderful experience

think ep 4 is my favorite rn

american bradass (BradNelson), Friday, 12 July 2019 23:57 (two years ago) link

https://www.mixcloud.com/UnderworldLive/atl080328/

direct from soundboard live recording of Born Slippy/Pearls Girl/Beautiful Burnout.

didn't know they were playing the original Born Slippy in 2008

frogbs, Thursday, 18 July 2019 14:43 (two years ago) link

Another live jam, almost 40 minutes this week:

https://www.mixcloud.com/UnderworldLive/leipzig-warehouse-jam-050715/

groovypanda, Friday, 26 July 2019 12:52 (two years ago) link

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eB6G7KgBX24

groovypanda, Thursday, 8 August 2019 11:38 (two years ago) link

ends about 5 minutes too early if you ask me

frogbs, Thursday, 8 August 2019 12:31 (two years ago) link

yeah it takes a bit too long to get going and then doesn't spend enough time there once it has

ufo, Thursday, 8 August 2019 12:33 (two years ago) link

the juice was barely shook!

I liked it. wonder if the box will have some longer variations of the many "film edit"s.

maffew12, Thursday, 8 August 2019 13:06 (two years ago) link

I guess that's the big question right now, if they plan to remix/extend the material or leave it as is for the album. As much as I love a lot of this stuff I kinda feel like some of it could have used some more time in the mastering stage - they use a sharp hi-hat sound a lot that can overwhelm the rest of the tune ("Appleshine" being a good example), which is something you wouldn't hear on a proper UW album.

frogbs, Thursday, 8 August 2019 19:19 (two years ago) link

speaking of 'way too short'

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E0mwQEtkik0

basically Holding the Moth pt. 2, which I'm totally cool with

frogbs, Thursday, 15 August 2019 14:58 (two years ago) link

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=79bWsFwOZDg

omar little, Thursday, 22 August 2019 17:23 (two years ago) link

no download this week!

quelle sprocket damage (sic), Thursday, 22 August 2019 23:36 (two years ago) link

Was surprised last week's was a download, tbh

the last two Episodes have had all the week-2-and-later tracks as free downloads

(Episode 2 had all its weeks as downloads)

quelle sprocket damage (sic), Friday, 23 August 2019 07:23 (two years ago) link

13 minute track this week

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AG74FOPyijY

no Karl on this one but it's really nice. lotta BF-era sounds here but it's a bit more modern and jazzy.

frogbs, Thursday, 29 August 2019 17:54 (two years ago) link

love this one! I'd been thinking there was way more Karl than not, than they've typically had across their albums. So, good restraint, like.

Someone on the Facebook pointed out that this was heard back in the original trailer with words from Dexter's Chalk over it:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0qDwIDPNdE0

maffew12, Thursday, 29 August 2019 19:27 (two years ago) link

ahhh...that's a good catch...I wondered about that track when I went back to the trailer a couple months ago. didn't recognize it here though

I wonder if all the stuff referenced in the EP2 liner notes has been released now - they reference Toluca Stars there and the with Agata from Melt Banana. should really comb through those

another interesting thing is that I've seen this referred to by the boys a few times as "Drift Series 1" which uh...implies something for 2020

frogbs, Thursday, 29 August 2019 19:34 (two years ago) link

STILL WAITING FOR SUE TOMPKINS (LIFE WITHOUT BUILDINGS), POSSIBLY??? ALLO, UNDERWORLD? :D

maffew12, Thursday, 29 August 2019 19:40 (two years ago) link

this from Karl on the Instagram posting of the "Imagine A Box" preview: "... this way of releasing our music is like a tv series - Drift series 1 has 5 episodes and each episode is made up of tracks with films - if you go to our website you can find them all in the order they came out - I hope this helps - thank you for voicing your confusion though (k)".

So yeah maybe another series?! But how many times have we seen "52 weeks of releases" (from Nov 1 last year) about this... and he's saying 5 episodes... #5 will be ending in a week or maybe two? This is only the 43rd Thursday.

Part of the fun is not having any damn clue.....

maffew12, Thursday, 29 August 2019 19:48 (two years ago) link

would imagine there's 2 more songs to go, especially since "Mile Bush Pride" was so short

meaning either 5-6 weeks of live recordings or mixes depending on whether or not they release anything the week the album drops

I think there was some recent interview where they said they had a good idea of what the album was gonna be and what they'd do next. so something's up

frogbs, Thursday, 29 August 2019 20:04 (two years ago) link

would be odd to go out on vault stuff, though some of it's been awesome

maffew12, Thursday, 29 August 2019 20:24 (two years ago) link

well they're going out on the album release which I'm presuming is gonna get promoted & reviewed in all the usual spots

frogbs, Thursday, 29 August 2019 20:36 (two years ago) link

my guess is there'll be a few new album versions of tracks (like the new version of "soniamode") they'll release in the lead up to the album

ufo, Friday, 30 August 2019 11:51 (two years ago) link

Witney, Granby, Rochdale, Preston!

I think if Soniamode is on the album it'll be closer to the original version. The second one struck me as just part of the press push they did when kicking off Episode 4 (being done with the help of a Guardian reporter and all).

I like both versions fine but i wouldn't put it on the album.

What would y'all do with one disc of "drift songs"? It is up for preorder as a double vinyl and single CD, so.. 50-80min?

maffew12, Friday, 30 August 2019 14:08 (two years ago) link

I just came up with this handful of favorites and tried to make the best sequence I could (I'll be impressed if they wind up putting anything that sounds like an album moreso than most of the episodes have)

universe of can when back
Brussels
pinetum
listen to their no
appleshine
another silent way
Toluca stars
border country

1hr. Would like to have a Necks thing included, hope there is another one with them.

surprised myself only having one from #3.. most days I'd say that's the best one

maffew12, Friday, 30 August 2019 14:30 (two years ago) link

would've put on "Doris" but it's already on the Manchester Street Poem album that came out that week. Highly recommended for anyone here who hasn't checked that out!

maffew12, Friday, 30 August 2019 14:32 (two years ago) link

I'm really hoping that there is a new track or two and that the whole thing is remixed heavily. nothing wrong with what we got just hoping for something different since I've listened to the Drift stuff so much already.

it's kind of hard to pare this down to an hour since so many of the tracks are 10+ minutes. not a lot of room for something like "Pinetum" or "Threat of Rain" (which I doubt would have made the album anyway, they don't usually put tracks like that on the LPs proper). I'm not sure if they're gonna aim for a album full of bangers or something more chill, or some combination of both. "Listen to Their No" & "Drum Street" were both played live so I assume they're both on the LP.

personally I'd do something like

Appleshine
Molehill
This Must Be Drum Street
Another Silent Way
Dexter's Chalk
Hundred Weight Hammer
Border Country
Custard Speedtalk
Tree and Two Chairs
Listen to Their No

that's about 75 minutes and it misses a few faves but it works

I would put "Mile Bush Pride" on there but I feel like we don't have the full version of that yet

frogbs, Friday, 30 August 2019 14:40 (two years ago) link

good point about the two being played live. Going to play your list later!

maffew12, Friday, 30 August 2019 14:46 (two years ago) link

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VohOhpwbk3M

seems to be the last track from "Drift Series 1"

frogbs, Thursday, 5 September 2019 16:13 (two years ago) link

says "penultimate part of episode 5" so one more left? or does that refer to when they put it out as an EP

ufo, Thursday, 5 September 2019 16:42 (two years ago) link

lol yeah my bad I forgot "penultimate" means there's one left

actually it's on YouTube now, it's called "S T A R" but you can't listen to it until 9/12

frogbs, Thursday, 5 September 2019 17:06 (two years ago) link

email: "Join us for the premiere of S T A R - the final part of DRIFT Episode 5 - Thursday 12th September 12.00 BST"

this week is the "penultimate part"

I figured this meant next week is the last song... but it's true that "star" could be just the name of the episode (it fits well with the other one word titles), with the full episode release to services as usual (and no new song, as usual). Also the email calls this week a "cliffhanger"!

who knows!

maffew12, Thursday, 5 September 2019 17:07 (two years ago) link

the specific premier time is a first?

maffew12, Thursday, 5 September 2019 17:11 (two years ago) link

some TV interface or other is apparently showing the Star video runtime as 3m45s.. and the description includes:

'S T A R' Lyrics LYRICS HERE - - - - - - - - - About 'S T A R' TRACK DESCRIPTION - - - - - - - - -

...

I'm gonna say it is a song!

This week's seems slight at first listen... the sort of new bit you might have heard as a bridge between big songs at a gig

maffew12, Thursday, 5 September 2019 17:23 (two years ago) link

most of the Ep 5 tracks seem that way. lotta jams without much structure. but I like those sorts of tracks

frogbs, Thursday, 5 September 2019 17:41 (two years ago) link

and yeah this does seem made to segue into something. it sounds like they're trying to build up some anticipation for next week's track so I'm pretty intrigued what it is now

frogbs, Thursday, 5 September 2019 17:45 (two years ago) link

CLIFFHANGER

maffew12, Thursday, 5 September 2019 17:52 (two years ago) link

Preview of the last track sounds awesome, I believe that’s the Lenny Penne beat

frogbs, Wednesday, 11 September 2019 23:33 (two years ago) link

yup! and then something else and... tomorrow will be interesting.

maffew12, Thursday, 12 September 2019 00:17 (two years ago) link

i like uncool music though. cool music is overrated. that's precisely underworlds problem.

RobbiePires, Friday, 5 November 2021 04:22 (six months ago) link

Ok put on Ring Road then

frogbs, Friday, 5 November 2021 04:42 (six months ago) link

"underworld are too cool" is not really a complaint i ever expected to hear

ufo, Friday, 5 November 2021 04:48 (six months ago) link

which of the songs on Drift are the coolest, Robbie?

bobo honkin' slobo babe (sic), Friday, 5 November 2021 04:48 (six months ago) link

& also particularly at odds with robbie's previous complaint, "ex-libertines fan discovers dance music, nme-approved trance" makes them sound pretty uncool!

ufo, Friday, 5 November 2021 04:49 (six months ago) link

mega mega cool

scanner darkly, Friday, 5 November 2021 04:58 (six months ago) link


& also particularly at odds with robbie's previous complaint, "ex-libertines fan discovers dance music, nme-approved trance" makes them sound pretty uncool!
― ufo, Friday, 5 November 2021

You must not be aware of trance being the cool thing in the dance music press now. Lorenzo Senni, Evian Christ etc. We're even, shock horror, having a full on sasha and sewer-digging--crapshoot revival with the likes of Adam Pits, Lisene, and the australian lot, Guy something.

RobbiePires, Friday, 5 November 2021 19:59 (six months ago) link


which of the songs on Drift are the coolest, Robbie?
― bobo honkin' slobo babe (sic), Friday, 5 November 2021

All of them, where's the schranz? That's what would really make it great and uncool for me.

RobbiePires, Friday, 5 November 2021 20:01 (six months ago) link

Hundred Weight Hammer is pretty rad

frogbs, Friday, 5 November 2021 20:02 (six months ago) link


Ok put on Ring Road then
― frogbs, Friday, 5 November 2021

how about this? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_JuLV93OQOs

RobbiePires, Friday, 5 November 2021 20:04 (six months ago) link

dance music ilx really doesn't need a toxic psycho "gifted child" asshole right now imo, so i'm fp-ing and not engaging and i would encourage others to do the same.

Linda and Jodie Rocco (map), Friday, 5 November 2021 20:16 (six months ago) link

i mean Underworld mk1 aka the uncool years... cmon?

maf you one two (maffew12), Friday, 5 November 2021 21:31 (six months ago) link

Sorry to overstate with nasty pejoratives but this person is not a good faith actor

Linda and Jodie Rocco (map), Friday, 5 November 2021 22:26 (six months ago) link

also true

maf you one two (maffew12), Friday, 5 November 2021 22:37 (six months ago) link


Sorry to overstate with nasty pejoratives but this person is not a good faith actor
― Linda and Jodie Rocco (map), Friday, 5 November 2021

No need to apologise, just have the balls to say it.

RobbiePires, Saturday, 6 November 2021 01:05 (six months ago) link

You’re not a good faith actor and you have terrible taste

Tsar Bombadil (James Morrison), Saturday, 6 November 2021 01:06 (six months ago) link


You’re not a good faith actor and you have terrible taste
― Tsar Bombadil (James Morrison), Saturday, 6 November 2021

I don't care, I do not believe in the irrevocability of the beautiful, unlike Kant and dance music ilx. Nothing wrong with the terrible.

RobbiePires, Saturday, 6 November 2021 01:08 (six months ago) link

No need to apologise, just have the balls to say it.

― RobbiePires, Saturday, November 6, 2021 1:05 AM (forty-two minutes ago) bookmarkflaglink

oh this apology wasn't intended for you, believe me

Linda and Jodie Rocco (map), Saturday, 6 November 2021 01:49 (six months ago) link


oh this apology wasn't intended for you, believe me
― Linda and Jodie Rocco (map), Saturday, 6 November 2021

Thank heavens for that. I would not like to be in your debt. Shame for the other poor souls, though.

toxic psycho "gifted child" asshole (RobbiePires), Saturday, 6 November 2021 02:25 (six months ago) link

You must not be aware of trance being the cool thing in the dance music press now. Lorenzo Senni, Evian Christ etc.

This was semi-true five years ago and Evian Christ probably peaked attention-wise in 2013!

mh, Sunday, 7 November 2021 15:46 (six months ago) link


This was semi-true five years ago and Evian Christ probably peaked attention-wise in 2013!
― mh, Sunday, 7 November 2021

As far as I'm aware the ritual backlash against trance hasn't happened though as one would expect it to. If anything, it's all over a lot of contemporary techno and house, see that Roza Terenzi album - sounds like a record which would have come out from the English prog superclub scene of the 90s.

toxic psycho "gifted child" asshole (RobbiePires), Sunday, 7 November 2021 17:15 (six months ago) link

It's possible you spend way more time thinking about trance than anyone else here.

Muad'Doob (Moodles), Sunday, 7 November 2021 17:40 (six months ago) link

It feels like this attempt to pin a particular musical trend or affiliation on Underworld. They’re electronic dance music for NME readers, they’re trance, they’re a crossover act. Sure, they’ve probably been all those things. I guess if any of those disqualify you from enjoying their music, then don’t bother?

mh, Sunday, 7 November 2021 18:25 (six months ago) link


It feels like this attempt to pin a particular musical trend or affiliation on Underworld. They’re electronic dance music for NME readers, they’re trance, they’re a crossover act. Sure, they’ve probably been all those things. I guess if any of those disqualify you from enjoying their music, then don’t bother?
― mh, Sunday, 7 November 2021

It's more that I just don't get the appeal. They had their 90s lager lout moments with the first album and born slippy - which I don't necessarily like but I can at least appreciate as a reflection of a particularly mid 90s British cultural moment. Now they just seem to be piggybacking over whichever populist trend will make them vaguely relevant, which is kind of sad and tryhard.

toxic psycho "gifted child" asshole (RobbiePires), Sunday, 7 November 2021 23:07 (six months ago) link

Which populist trend does each song on Drift piggyback over?

(also wouldn’t piggybacking on the trends be tryharder-y?)

bobo honkin' slobo babe (sic), Sunday, 7 November 2021 23:14 (six months ago) link

i'm not going to listen to all 7000 minutes of that abomination to offer an accurate assessment. polemic is the spice of criticism.

toxic psycho "gifted child" asshole (RobbiePires), Sunday, 7 November 2021 23:48 (six months ago) link

appleshine continuum is truly funkless, though.

toxic psycho "gifted child" asshole (RobbiePires), Sunday, 7 November 2021 23:49 (six months ago) link

polemic is the spice of criticism

Ah, to be 19 again...

but also fuck you (unperson), Sunday, 7 November 2021 23:55 (six months ago) link

the nostalgic impulse is strong, is it not? I suppose if I was paid I could listen to the whole prog opus which would make Steve Wilson embarrassed with shame for his Porcupine Tree albums not being long enough.

toxic psycho "gifted child" asshole (RobbiePires), Monday, 8 November 2021 00:15 (six months ago) link

“funkless” is a populist trend? when did this start? I

bobo honkin' slobo babe (sic), Monday, 8 November 2021 00:16 (six months ago) link

after 2011.

toxic psycho "gifted child" asshole (RobbiePires), Monday, 8 November 2021 00:19 (six months ago) link

the death of both the UK and Euro hardcore continuums, the gothification of industrial techno, lo fi house, the victory of tech house.

toxic psycho "gifted child" asshole (RobbiePires), Monday, 8 November 2021 00:22 (six months ago) link

the rehabilitation of new agey aesthetics, the turning away from degenerecy, filth, smut. airports rather than bunkers. no more friction.

toxic psycho "gifted child" asshole (RobbiePires), Monday, 8 November 2021 00:24 (six months ago) link

parklife!

wmlynch, Monday, 8 November 2021 00:38 (six months ago) link

their finest moment, darren emerson knew a thing or two about the funk.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jGWx5EPdz7w

Nothing else really like it in their discography.

toxic psycho "gifted child" asshole (RobbiePires), Monday, 8 November 2021 00:43 (six months ago) link

i'm not going to listen to all 7000 minutes of that […] Nothing else really like it in their discography.

🧐

bobo honkin' slobo babe (sic), Monday, 8 November 2021 01:36 (six months ago) link

just listen to paul hardcastle - king tut m8.

toxic psycho "gifted child" asshole (RobbiePires), Monday, 8 November 2021 02:01 (six months ago) link

Just point yourself in the direction of your dreams
Find your strength in the egyptology melodics
And make your transition into becoming a tyranical pharoah.

toxic psycho "gifted child" asshole (RobbiePires), Monday, 8 November 2021 02:10 (six months ago) link

It's more that I just don't get the appeal. They had their 90s lager lout moments with the first album and born slippy - which I don't necessarily like but I can at least appreciate as a reflection of a particularly mid 90s British cultural moment. Now they just seem to be piggybacking over whichever populist trend will make them vaguely relevant, which is kind of sad and tryhard.

― toxic psycho "gifted child" asshole (RobbiePires), Sunday, 7 November 2021 23:07 (yesterday) bookmarkflaglink

Can I please come and live in whichever universe you're in, where the delicious 11-minute spoken word beauty of 'Dune' is considered a populist trend.

The Color and The Shape (Taylor's Version) (Adept), Monday, 8 November 2021 09:45 (six months ago) link

As far as I'm aware the ritual backlash against trance hasn't happened though as one would expect it to. If anything, it's all over a lot of contemporary techno and house, see that Roza Terenzi album - sounds like a record which would have come out from the English prog superclub scene of the 90s.

― toxic psycho "gifted child" asshole (RobbiePires), Sunday, 7 November 2021 17:15 (yesterday) bookmarkflaglink

the death of both the UK and Euro hardcore continuums, the gothification of industrial techno, lo fi house, the victory of tech house.

― toxic psycho "gifted child" asshole (RobbiePires), Monday, 8 November 2021 00:22 (three hours ago) link

the rehabilitation of new agey aesthetics, the turning away from degenerecy, filth, smut. airports rather than bunkers. no more friction.

― toxic psycho "gifted child" asshole (RobbiePires), Monday, 8 November 2021 00:24 (three hours ago) link

This feels like a convenient narrative folding in the last thirty years of dance music, which could make sense if one is applying a reynolds circa 1995 lens and not directly engaging with events on the ground and/or how sonics change meaning over time as the social context for them also changes.

In particular, I can see how for soapbox purposes it might be tempting to set up this oppositional narrative where trance and new agey aesthetics are opposed to degeneracy, filth and smut ("airports rather than bunkers") - but that rests on a bunch of unspoken assumptions regarding who is currently listening to trancey techno with new agey motifs, why, how, and what all those choices mean.

First, if we're gonna conflate Roza Terenzi with trance or prog-house revivalism (and why single out her? Bicep both make more sense and are a better stand-in for "mainstream" trends; Modern Love sounds more like B12's Time Tourist in truth), it's important to note that her scene is not really about reviving trance (or prog-house) per se but is rather stealing ideas from trance, techno, 2-step, electro, IDM and breakbeat (circa 1999).

That's hardly unprecedented or something that in broad terms wasn't happening in the 90s necessarily, but prog-house and trance went there only briefly and kind of by accident - the East Coast edition of Northern Exposure 2 is my standard reference point here, but even that's not a great fit; certainly we're not talking about Tripomatic Fairytales or An Accident In Paradise or Vorsprung Dyk Technik or Ima or even Northern Exposure 1. A more accurate but more boring comparison might be the Plank and End labels - although again that might well be accidental. Sonically, I tend to think the particular constellation of stylistic influences at least implies a certain exhaustion with house, which as a rhythmic template has been broadly dominant for the last 20 years or so.

None of which is to deny that on occasion artists within this scene play with more overtly trance signifiers, or that there isn't a lot of more (sometimes overlapping but most unrelated) straightforward 90s trance revivalism at the moment within hard techno scenes - though whether it's framed as a fashion thing (say, Charlotte de Witte remixing Age of Love) or as just people doing basically what they've always done (say, Chris Liebling) largely depends on the examples you point to.

What's the attraction of trance revivalism for people at the moment? IME it has been embraced most enthusiastically at clubs and parties that promote themselves as very queer, with a strong emphasis on trans and gender fluid audiences. They're typically very sex positive, costume heavy (craft-ish dress-ups somewhere between ravey and titillating) and druggy - a lot of ketamine, acid, nangs, pills and amyl. They're also often rudimentary / outdoorsy set-ups: bush doofs and illegal parties in parks and nature reserves rather than big clubs (what clubs I've heard this music in tend to the smaller side - and yes, often they're in basements). I read the new age / PLUR vibes as being in part about reviving the pageantry of nineties rave and in part because the utopianism of the music seems to chime in with the "we're making a future society" dreams (or more cynically, pretensions) of a lot of the audience. But a big part of it is probably just that trance is druggy, and in particular works well with ketamine.

I'm not going to make grand claims for any of the above - there's nothing terribly earth-shattering about young people taking drugs and trying to make their home-brand versions of Burning Man - but I'm dubious of attempts to project some binary of dance music which is middle-class/safe/white/sexless/funkless/commodified/ versus the edgy and exciting and sexy music of the intransigent working class youth or whatever - seems like it's a lot harder to make stick in 2021 than it was in 1995. (in any event: "proper hard techno, gabba, psychodelic acidic mayhem, industrial freakbeats, dub abstraction" - this just sounds like a DJ mix for an art gallery installation at this point, other than that I'm not convinced "industrial freakbeats" is a thing).

Not that any of this has that much to do with underworld, mind. But then you seem to be mashing together a whole bunch of only-tenuously-connected-or-reality-based propositions, so maybe that isn't really surprising.

Tim F, Monday, 8 November 2021 10:15 (six months ago) link

their finest moment, darren emerson knew a thing or two about the funk.

Nothing else really like it in their discography.

― toxic psycho "gifted child" asshole (RobbiePires), Monday, 8 November 2021 00:43 (nine hours ago) bookmarkflaglink

Great track, sure, but isn't it kind of boring / tired / small-minded to just check for their one blatant martian tribute?

Tim F, Monday, 8 November 2021 10:22 (six months ago) link

Does killfile still work on this thing?

Tsar Bombadil (James Morrison), Monday, 8 November 2021 11:37 (six months ago) link


I'm dubious of attempts to project some binary of dance music which is middle-class/safe/white/sexless/funkless/commodified/ versus the edgy and exciting and sexy music of the intransigent working class youth or whatever - seems like it's a lot harder to make stick in 2021 than it was in 1995. (in any event: "proper hard techno, gabba, psychodelic acidic mayhem, industrial freakbeats, dub abstraction" - this just sounds like a DJ mix for an art gallery installation at this point, other than that I'm not convinced "industrial freakbeats" is a thing).
― Tim F, Monday, 8 November 2021

ha. Industrial freakbeats was coined by DJ Kovert (of praxis fame) an area of hardcore I don't think you have ever had much interest in (so I can't take much credit for that one, I'm afraid.)

Again I don't have an issue with trance, my issue is with the pilfering of the most tired and stayed aspects of it, why not for instance reference old 150+ bpm german hardtrance, played by the likes of M Zone at all the big raves? or even if we're chiming in with the queer angle, Tony De Vit style big pianos/hoovers handbag and hard house? Must I remind you of your posts on dubstep vs UK funky in 06-07? Insofar as there is any sort of class dichotomy, it's about dilution rather than an opposition.

toxic psycho "gifted child" asshole (RobbiePires), Monday, 8 November 2021 14:43 (six months ago) link


This could almost be a thread of its own: whether there is any contemporary dance music that is not apt to be described as insufferably middle class and conservative at this point.
― Tim F, Tuesday, 26 October 2021

I mean this might be completely true, but then cue hungry wives song, where do we go?

toxic psycho "gifted child" asshole (RobbiePires), Monday, 8 November 2021 14:59 (six months ago) link

also nothing wrong with funklessness, but only and only if the music in question fully embraces it! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NuluJnFRE-0

toxic psycho "gifted child" asshole (RobbiePires), Monday, 8 November 2021 15:18 (six months ago) link


It's possible you spend way more time thinking about trance than anyone else here.
― Muad'Doob (Moodles), Sunday, 7 November 2021

Perhaps. It has mystified me after I dropped 15 tabs of lsd one saturday evening completely in an alternate reality, whizz bang explosions, pyrotechnics, saddam hussain being skewered into a kebab, and yet, still, i couldn't enjoy it when the hosts put it on.

toxic psycho "gifted child" asshole (RobbiePires), Tuesday, 9 November 2021 00:24 (six months ago) link

six months pass...

revisiting the drift sampler today. amazing how it's their best record since beaucoup fish and yet only hints at the brilliance of the overall project

flamenco drop (BradNelson), Thursday, 12 May 2022 16:29 (one week ago) link

my only real nitpick is that a lot of the tracks may have benefitted from a proper studio master...the hi-hats are too sharp and some of the tracks sound kinda thin. like listen to the loop in "Big Bear", it's almost like it was mastered for laptop speakers. though I guess if they'd taken the time to do all that it would've messed with the concept of the project. most of it does sound really good.

curious what they've been up to since this wrapped up. Karl made it sound like they were still in the midst of a big creative outburst but we've heard virtually nothing since the pandemic started.

frogbs, Friday, 13 May 2022 19:39 (one week ago) link

still haven't listened properly to Drift

Dan S, Saturday, 14 May 2022 01:14 (one week ago) link

Beaucoup Fish was and will always be one of my favorite albums from the 90s

Dan S, Saturday, 14 May 2022 01:21 (one week ago) link


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