RSS feed RSS Twitter Twitter Facebook Facebook 15 Questions 15 Questions

DJ Rupture & Matt Shadetek: "Solar Life Raft"

img  Tobias

With DJ Rupture, not just the morning but the entire day becomes eclectic. On his weekly radio show at New York's WFMU, the former „John Peel Show“-favourite, „Wire“-top-albums-of-the-year laureate, three-turntable-wizzard, blogger and multi-label-labelhead jumps from bouncing beats to „Maghrebi Sounds“ and from „10 minutes of very quiet electro-acoustic music from Tehran“ to mindshattering DubStep vibrations within the blink of an eye. His live sets are colourful displays of crowd-interaction, keeping feet moving yet never neglecting the necessary degree of cortical massage. His mix-CDs, meanwhile, have been regarded as anything from albums in their own right to sonical treasure chests and music-made cultural ambassadors. If this man releases something, it's not just another record. It's a statement.

Especially so with „Solar Life Raft“. The album further advances his creative relationship with producer, friend and frequent collaborator Matt Shadetek, with whom he also runs the freshly founded and felicitously fledgling Dutty Artz imprint. If Rupture represents the smart, voluble and eloquent side of the equation (he has cited Edgar Varese as an influence), Shadetek adds an element of urban grittyness and dirt to the mix. Their common ground covers  the bubbling and bouncing beats of Garage and Twostep as well as the curiously complex rhythms of experimental Electronica. It is from this intersection that „Solar Life Raft“ draws its artistic juice, it is the friction between these points of the compass that propels the action forwards with relentless momentum.

The corporeal centre of the record is built on dubby and druggy Dubstep like the opening, brass-laden twofer of Timeblind's „Space Cadet“ and Shadetek's „Strength in Numbers“, rootsy tunes like the addictively repetitive „Long Road“ by Jahdan Blakkamoore and collossaly bass-heavy stompers courtesy of acts like Cardopusher. For good measure, a bit of sultry Drum n Bass and beguiling Grime are thrown in – with Mizz Beats' „Blue Night“ a particularly compelling exclusive to the album. And yet, there is more still. Undisturbed by demands for club-compatibility or scene-affiliations, „Solar Life Raft“ toys with Sound Art and the Avantgarde, juxtaposes a couple of seconds of Luc Ferrari with a slow-simmering track of the duo's own devising, blends in a section from Contemporary Composer Nico Muhly's „Mothertongue Pt. 1“ and layers a Violin solo on top of well-chilled loops. If your feet can't dance to this, your mind will.

Not all that much is what it seems: Remixes, reworking, reinterpretations and unexpected mash-ups dominate the field. What would be nothing but transitions and seagues with other artists turn into compositional techniques here, with two different tracks occasionally running side by side for minutes. There seem to be tiny traces of tunes popping up at various passages, all but inaudibly tucked-away harbingers and memories of sound. Connections are starting to show up, links, hints, allusions and intimations. With all tracks clocking in at around the three- to four-minute mark, „Solar Life Raft“ eschews the typical construction of a DJ-set with its temporary acmes and troughs. Everything's always on the brink here, the tension curve constantly sizzling with electric excitement, a breakdown immanent. And yet, it never comes. That the simultaneity of cultures and communities, styles and scenes, flags and philosophies, localism and internationalism can collide without resulting in chaos – that, in a nutshell, is the grand statement of this album.

By Tobias Fischer

Homepage: DJ Rupture
Homepage: Matt Shadetek
Homepage: Agriculture Records

Related articles

NeuHuman: "NeuHuman"
Getting the damn-near-impossible done: Massive ...
Perfect: „French Connection“
Wild-eyed chicken-rattle craziness: Tongue-in-cheek anything-goes ...
The Oracle Hysterical: Stravinsky's Hip Hop Opera
In a recent interview with ...
Floor Sugar: Specialist Store for Asian Sound Art
Even in our globalised, interrelated ...
Beauty #1: Halogen Envelope
The way you present yourself ...
CD Feature/ Cardopusher: "Mutant Dubstep vol. 2"
Stretching the fabric of imagination ...
CD Feature/ Moogulator: "The Digital Anatomist Project"
Spacey afterthoughts: Crushes comparisons under ...
CD Feature/ Ebola: "Mutant Dubstep Vol 1"
Hints at humour: Like watching ...
Steppas Delight
History being made: A compilation ...
CD Feature/ Bill Laswell & Fanu: "Lodge"
Reverses the usual responsibility assignment: ...
Burial: Lends a Buzz to "DJ Kicks "
Just one day after Souljazz ...

Partner sites