Disrupt – Dub Matrix With Stereo Sound (Jahtari)
Jahtari main man and digital laptop reggae originator, Jan Gleichmar, releases a new album. Louder Than War’s Paul Scott-Bates reviews.
This album is one step away from genius. The label famous for producing dub and reggae on laptops and digital machines forge ahead with their very unique take on the genre and almost create a new one on the journey.
Dub Matrix is fascinating. Essentially created from the sounds of a Nintendo Gameboy, the album somehow manages to provide cracking bass rhythms and superb dubs to leave something that would have left Kraftwerk werking themselves up into a lather when they released Pocket Calculator. This isn’t s novelty album, it’s deadly serious – described as ‘extra-terrestrial 8-bit dub’ – it has some very serious beats and was years in the making fine-tuning the console-based construction using Jan’s favoured Gamebwoy.
You might recognise Zelda along the way too. Bits From The Bong has a reggae stomp beat with added vocal sound bytes. If you’re dubious, forget the origins of the sounds and think of it as futuristic dub-pop-reggae if you will, a new sound with the tried and tested formula. Break Out gives us a slowed down style before Pueblo Riddim lifts the pace again.
There’s even time for a trip-hop beat on The Future Is Ours, a title which probably sums up the album. Ending with Toploader, the album leaves you aghast and asking – what was that?! Its nine tracks pass in little over sixteen minutes. A shame in one respect but a bonus that you still have time to play again.
It’s all Old Skool microchips and real voltage being fed through music gear that disrupt is now building himself. Dub and reggae taking a step back whilst taking another one forward.
You can listen to Dub Matrix With Stereo Sound here.
All words by Paul Scott-Bates. Article first appeared on hiapop Blog here. More of Paul’s writing on Louder Than War can be found here. Paul’s website is hiapop Blog. Paul is working hard to save Radio Lancashire’s On The Wire, the BBCs longest running alternative music programme. Follow him on twitter as @saveonthewire for all On The Wire news or follow hiapop Blog on Twitter, @hiapop.