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A Word of Science

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Album Review

One year following the entry of "Aftermath" into the British charts, Nightmares on Wax released a first full-length that rivalled any other techno debuts of the time, excepting only its immediate predecessor in the Warp catalog — LFO's Frequencies. The "Aftermath" blueprint (skeletal bleep techno with the dark undercurrents cropping up in much post-rave techno) is in full force on several tracks, like the follow-up club hit "Dextrous" and the depth-plumbing bass of "A Case of Funk." Elsewhere, though, NoW expand the sound of bleep in several intriguing directions: "Coming Down" represents with paranoid breakbeats wrapped around a minimalist framework; "Playtime" sounds reminiscent of Soul II Soul; "How Ya Doin'" is a great old-school shout-out track; and "Mega Donutz" brings a British spin to playful American hip-hop like De La Soul. Unjustly relegated to the history bins (and even more of a relic because of its radical differences from the later NoW catalog), A Word of Science is much more than just the other great early Warp LP.


Formed: 1988 in Yorkshire, England

Genre: Electronic

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Originally the combined project of George Evelyn and Kevin "Boywonder" Harper -- the latter of whom was eventually replaced by Robin Taylor-Firth -- Nightmares on Wax became one of the brightest spots on the post-rave British techno map of the early '90s. NoW's debut album, A Word of Science, was -- along with early tracks by LFO, Tuff Little Unit, and Tricky Disco -- a crucial bridge between the competing influences of New York house and electro, Detroit techno and soul, London rave and acid, and...
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A Word of Science, Nightmares On Wax
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