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Radioaxiom: A Dub Transmission

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Album Review

Featuring a cast of characters that includes Nils Petter Molvær, Hamid Drake, Amina Claudine Myers, Sly Dunbar, Aiyb Deng, Nicky Skopelitis, Graham Haynes, Karsh Kale, and vocalist Gigi Shibabbaw, this collaboration between bassists Bill Laswell and Jah Wobble is many things, but it is not a dub album. The music found here is a far cry from the stripped-down, spooky reggae created by the economically strapped Lee Perry and King Tubby. What is here is some gobbledy-g**k mishmash of world musics and groove jazz. And as such it works very well. From the dubby spirits evoked in "Subcode" and "Orion," to the vocal wonders expressed amid heavily textured instrumentation by Gig on "Anselma Dub" and "Alam Dub," to the wondrous effects these two layer together — like Skopelitis' slide guitar amid bubbling echo and both basses playing half a beat apart on the same notes — this is a mind journey of an album that does, at its best, extend the time-space continuum, or at least gives the illusion it does. Also, Haynes' cornet solo on "Orion" is among the most beautifully stated and restrained he's ever recorded. The true identity of the disc can be found on "6th Chamber," with its loopy organ figures (courtesy of Myers) and the percussive weave in the center of the mix that is colored with a gentle, grooved-out soul melody in margins. All of it is smoothed over, edgeless and beautifully understated. This may not be the heavy-duty dub blowout expected by some fans of this pair, but it is an elegant, thoughtful, and very tasteful record, assembling a plethora of melodies, textures, instruments, and rhythms with taste and attention to detail. It would have been easy to wreck such beautiful mind music (in headphones this would be Valhalla) — God knows Laswell's done it before.


Born: 11 August 1958 in Stepney, London, England

Genre: Reggae

Years Active: '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Born John Wardle, Wobble was an old friend of Sex Pistols singer Johnny Rotten. When the Pistols broke up, Rotten formed Public Image Ltd., and Wobble became the bass player. After the group's first few albums, Wobble had a falling out with Rotten (now Lydon) and guitarist Keith Levene and departed for a solo career, also collaborating with artists such as Can members Jaki Liebezeit and Holger Czukay and U2's the Edge. Wobble's solo repertoire ranges from pop to pseudo-reggae to "difficult to listen...
Full bio
Radioaxiom: A Dub Transmission, Jah Wobble
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  • 6,93 €
  • Genres: Rock, Music
  • Released: 18 September 2001

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