Friday, April 25, 2008

Big Zinc Cake

"... ... ... ..."

As you can tell, we're crowding as many posts in as we can before May 1, on the basis that we may be too depressed after it to want to write again for a while. Anyway, best pick up the pace. Zinc's "Goblin" 12" on Bingo does that and is very jolly indeed, a neat shebang of colourful drum n'bass: he also produces our favourite remix of Benga & Coki's ubiquitous "Night", an umptempo junglist thing on the remix 12" with Digital Soundbwoy that knocks several shades of the proverbial out of the rather tame original (Benga's "Diary of an Afro Warrior", as you might have feared, spends far too long on the coffee-table side of the line, although in places, notably the great "26 Basslines" also previewed on Rinse 2, it is very difficult to resist: similarly, Benga & Walsh's 12" vs Darqwan, "Addicts", is worth investigating).

Cluekid's "Toadstep", on his appropriately named Bullfrog Beats label, is the follow-up to last year's amiable "Crazy Legs" but is basically a one-trick pony, the joke being that the melody is delivered by electronic croaks: mind you, the beats are worth a listen, and one trick / joke is the same as the new Darren Hayman band, and more than a lot of artists out there - witness Double Zero or Snoop's latest efforts, which are probably best summed up as woefully ineffectual (a phrase first imprinted on our brains when Radio 5 described Darren Beckford's contribution to a match).

Peverelist's "Infinity Is Now", a 12" on Pinch's Tectonic label, also has Beckfordesque tendencies, doing about as much for us as Darren did for Norwich City, but "Junktion" on the AA is really well crafted - gently warped keyboard and crackle eventually joined by a roving pulse of bass. An unexpected bonus is that if you are malcoordinated enough to accidentally play it at 33 revs, it still sounds pretty good, the keyboard turning to piano, giving you 11 minutes' worth of blissed-out, lazy sprawl.

And while we're on an instrumental tip: if you'd been wondering where all that fine London techno stuff had got to, well so were we.