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Thread: Jungle

  1. #406
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    Epic Woebot post about Jungle comps

    http://www.woebot.com/2015/11/hardco...drum-bass.html

    Some very controversial opinions in there. Gauntlet territory even.

    A slight riposte:

    There's not a single good jungle track with a live MC on it.



  2. #407
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    Quote Originally Posted by droid View Post
    A slight riposte:
    hey droid

    first up - you like those tracks my friend - so i wouldn't take that away from you.

    speaking personally they are OK but i could actually have used them as examples for my argument. (1) and (3) are slow. (1) takes ages to build and the MC is a flat. top cat works great when sampled but on (3) the instrumental is join-the-dots stuff.

    (2) works but, and i mention this in the post as a tactic that did give results, GQ is sampled off the mixing desk at a party. if not (i'd be very surprised) then Hype has skillfully coaxed an energised performance and cut it up.

    it's a nuanced argument but i think i'm pretty consistent. i'm not saying that live MCs on the radio over a DJ spinning records wasn't great - it was - but put those MCs on the records and pft - no energy.

    equally when top producers got their hands on half-decent dancehall tracks the remixes could be great.

  3. #408
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    gotta say I'm loving the analysis from you Woebot =)
    articulated like I could only dream of!

    Sent from my GT-I9195 using Tapatalk

  4. #409
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    Quote Originally Posted by Woebot View Post
    hey droid

    first up - you like those tracks my friend - so i wouldn't take that away from you.
    Ha. Of course, taste is taste - but!

    speaking personally they are OK but i could actually have used them as examples for my argument. (1) and (3) are slow. (1) takes ages to build and the MC is a flat. top cat works great when sampled but on (3) the instrumental is join-the-dots stuff.
    Have to seriously disagree on 'Rinse out'. Its beautifully poised, with a very precise tension between the vocals and the music... holds things back until you almost cant stand it and then drops in an artfully restrained, yet ruff as fuck pitchshifting amen for just long enough... a masterclass. Heard this played out for the first time in years at a dance & while back and it was devastating.

    Rolldabeats (meant to link the remix) - yep, youre right, I actually have the tape the sample is taken from somewhere BUT there is little or no manipulation of the voice and the way Hype has used the samples is actually extremely close to GQ's live MC style and the feature that made him so great - he knew when to keep quiet, so in that sense I think this qualifies as an (almost) live MC. Also a killer.

    Ruffest Gunark... hmmm... Its certainly not slow anyway. Was about 5 years ahead of everything else in terms of tempo - this is partly as Voyager and Rap were trying to stick to the original tune which ran in at over 90bpm IIRC - so much so that they even filched the bassline. I agree its one dimensional, thats part of what makes it so effective.

    it's a nuanced argument but i think i'm pretty consistent. i'm not saying that live MCs on the radio over a DJ spinning records wasn't great - it was - but put those MCs on the records and pft - no energy.
    Dont get me wrong, Im not generally a fan of MC's, I agree that there are few examples of good MC'ng on record, but they do exist. Full ragga vocals are in a different category

    Also, its kind of a tautology. Jungle MC's were never meant to be on record. They took their energy from the audience feedback & vibe at the rave or at the radio. Live MC on vinyl is like live drums on jungle - it can work, but the artist has to be exceptional.

    BTW - there is one tune that seriously strengthens your argument. Cant find it on YT, but the lyrics alone are horrifying:

    http://www.future-music.net/stage/ly...ad-thewestern/
    Last edited by droid; 22-11-2015 at 08:57 PM.

  5. #410
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    In the context of differentiating between inherent reference points of jungle as a whole and flavours that come and go, I have a couple of thoughts with regards to early 90's dancehall.

    There's a particular bass timbre common in 1994 jungle:...





    ... that isn't dissimilar from early 90's ragga:...





    Although they do sound like the 808 booms of electro as well.

    The relatively snare intensive Tin Pan dancehall may be have influenced jungles own snare freneticism:




  6. #411
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    In reality Jungle and Hardcore owed very little to Reggae, Dub or Dancehall. It's a particularly facile argument that critics make but one which has almost no bearing on musical truths...

    ...And did Jungle really have a musical debt to Reggae? This is strictly wishful thinking. Reggae was never anything more than a flavour. You don't talk about Jungle having a musical debt to Horror movies. Certainly there were some spellbinding tracks that used reggae samples but it was the very act of sampling those voices which activated their vibe. And the amount of tracks which sampled reggae? Even in 94 it was in a minority.
    Probably the most contentious assertion... so much so that Im not convinced it isnt a wind up!

    Its drum & bass, and reggae/dancehall was not only a flavour (and even if it was, it was probably the most dominant flavour, in 94 certainly).

    No, reggae is entwined in the sonic DNA of jungle. Reggae gave jungle the bass - more specifically, bass as melody. Sure, you can argue for the primacy of hip hop (& funk/soul) through breaks, but it was reggae's bass that allowed the breaks to work at a faster speed. It's no accident that 160 was the core tempo during the golden years. 70-80(ish) bpm was also a popular speed for a huge amount of dub and reggae, and it was the halftime bass that underpinned the breaks and allowed the music to run at that pace. Reggae's bass enabled jungle to speed up whilst retaining a groove, and is arguably as much a foundation as breaks are. Look what happened to breakbeat rave when it accelerated without bass - it became happy hardcore with the 4/4 providing the low end.

    There's also ritual... dubplate culture, rewinds, soundsystems... and whilst its true that most jungle producers didnt come from reggae, a huge amount of them were infused with that culture.

    EDIT, To simplify - Hip hop is the Spaghetti, Reggae is the tomato sauce. You cant have a meal without the pasta, but you cant eat the pasta without the sauce. (Techno is, the, I dunno... Garlic? Basil?)
    Last edited by droid; 23-11-2015 at 02:35 PM.

  7. #412
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    Me and droid had a back and forth on the 'Music Pioneered in the 2010's' thread about jungle rhythms. My argument was that in 1994 the rhythms were complex versions of tresillo rhythms derived from dancehall.

    I'd argue that one component distinguishing Jungle from hardcore and the drum and bass that followed it was that it by and large avoided a steady snare emphasis on the 2 and 4 which is more hip hop indebted.

  8. #413
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    Quote Originally Posted by sadmanbarty View Post
    Me and droid had a back and forth on the 'Music Pioneered in the 2010's' thread about jungle rhythms. My argument was that in 1994 the rhythms were complex versions of tresillo rhythms derived from dancehall.

    I'd argue that one component distinguishing Jungle from hardcore and the drum and bass that followed it was that it by and large avoided a steady snare emphasis on the 2 and 4 which is more hip hop indebted.
    Yeah, I think its a case of correlation and causation there, or, more accurately, similarity versus lineage.

  9. #414
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    Quote Originally Posted by droid View Post
    Yeah, I think its a case of correlation and causation there, or, more accurately, similarity versus lineage.
    Possibly, although it would be a bit strange if rewinds, mc's, dubplates and the whole of Ragga Jungle are a direct lineage, but the rhythms are somehow not. I can't imagine many jungle producers being steeped in latin or 'world' music, which is the only other place I've heard similar kind of rhythms.

    Of course jungle producers may have come up with it by their own volition, but even then enough of them were exposed to/ fans of dancehall that it may well have been a subconscious process by which they adopted these rhythms.

  10. #415
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    Just a couple more things...

    The tax man never saw a penny of it. It shouldn't need saying, but with the luvvies of the left drooling over the 'nuum clearly it needs emphasising, Hardcore Jungle had nothing whatsoever to do Socialism.
    I think the 'luvvies' of the left (who are these people anyway?) might be interested in the nuum, or rave/hardcore, not based on how much tax was being paid,which by any measure is a strange criteria to use to measure 'socialism', but rather the self-sustaining, alternate systems of finance, economics, distribution, communication & organisation created by rave... so no, it had nothing to do with socialism, but had everything to do with anarchism.

    Widely lauded as the greatest thing to happen to mankind ever, the "Amen" break signalled the beginning of the end of Jungle. Something like Edge of Darkness' "Come Together" here has an extraordinarily eccentric riddim - slightly mismatched and sloppy even. Rufige Cru's "Terminator" is here - signalling a highpoint of Darkcore's search for a rhythmic psychedelia. "Amen" on the other hand brought a kind of Pot Noodle, "just add water" approach to beat-making in jungle - just slap it on.
    I actually have some sympathy for this... I dont think it was the beginning of the end, in fact the embrace of the amen in 94 preceded & coincided with probably the most radical period in the history of UK dance music, but I do agree that the amen has become a yoke around the neck of producers ever since... its like artificial MSG, so delicious it's almost impossible not to use it, and once it's in the pot it cant help but become the dominant flavour...

  11. #416
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    Quote Originally Posted by sadmanbarty View Post
    Possibly, although it would be a bit strange if rewinds, mc's, dubplates and the whole of Ragga Jungle are a direct lineage, but the rhythms are somehow not. I can't imagine many jungle producers being steeped in latin or 'world' music, which is the only other place I've heard similar kind of rhythms.

    Of course jungle producers may have come up with it by their own volition, but even then enough of them were exposed to/ fans of dancehall that it may well have been a subconscious process by which they adopted these rhythms.
    Well, I think partly what your doing here is identifying a similar feature and assuming a direct relation, whereas the genealogy of breaks and polyrhythms in jungle can be traced with surprising accuracy through individual tracks and producers, and is IMO very much a product of the layering of breaks and general studio experimentation.

    Bass culture & ritual generally, does have a direct and easily identifiable lineage though.

    Im not arguing against osmosis btw. Its clear that a lot of reggae simply seeped into jungle.

  12. #417
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    Quote Originally Posted by droid View Post
    the genealogy of breaks and polyrhythms in jungle can be traced with surprising accuracy through individual tracks and producers

    Im not arguing against osmosis btw. Its clear that a lot of reggae simply seeped into jungle.
    Fair enough, I think we're probably more on the same page then I thought.

    If you could be bothered I'd be interested having a listen to that genealogy.

    All I would say is that the earliest tracks I know of that are more rhythmically jungle also use yardy vocal samples:






  13. #418
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    Quote Originally Posted by sadmanbarty View Post
    Fair enough, I think we're probably more on the same page then I thought.
    Ha. Yes. I think I was playing devil's advocate in that thread.

  14. #419
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    One more thing... (Im starting to feel like Columbo here)

    For a moment forget Ragga Twins "18" Speakers" or SL2's "On A Ragga Tip", if you want to hear a Hardcore tune which tries to engage with Reggae and displays the characteristic degree of baffled misunderstanding try Austin's "Unity in Dub" - it has only the most slender slither of a connection, an occasional offbeat skank. And this a track ostensibly claiming to be "in dub"!
    Two tunes that engage brilliantly, not with reggae - with dub.

    This is IIRC, decoder in an earlier guise. Beautifully captures the spirit of dub through use of reverb & delay to endlessly refract the rhythm. Spacious, epic, disorientating 21st century dub.



    Another one from the same camp. Huge bassline driven tune with a rhythm section dominated almost entirely by dub techniques.

    Last edited by droid; 23-11-2015 at 03:09 PM.

  15. #420
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    matthew is my friend and i enjoyed his article BUT lol he always has a pop at lefties in everytthing he writes and

    What about the MCs? Again, not really, no. With the likes of Moose, Conrad, MC Det, 5ive-0, possibly there is structural debt to the fast chat of the Saxon sound system, but the flavour and styling are rarely inflected with patois.
    actaully loads of them came directly from hackneys unity sound... ragga twins obviosuly but also navigator, coe gee was around, peter bouncer, eastman who run kool fm was/is a reggae guy... shabba d was white but obviously ínfelcted with patios' reggae was an enromous influence on jungle, overstated while hiphop is understated though i agree. i remember rodigan claiming jungle ís just dub speeded up'' which is clearly risible

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