It's an interesting situation. Certain members of Circle have been quite vocal on VIP2. Very vocal actually.
drawing lines between the bits you get something very tangled. and that's before you start adding in everything that's coming from elsewhere. yeah ardkore begat jungle, and jungle begat 2step, etc. but obviously that's not all that was going on by a mile. the term usefully points to futurist and fwd drives but its scope is still too narrow
When I interviewed Soulja, Gee and Supa D, there was lots of talk about Trident, clubs getting locked off and the such, which only added to the sense that it 1) was UKG circa 2000 all over again 2) that the tabloid "MCs = trouble, nice music = no trouble" is as clearly crap as it always was 3) that it goes to show that unless it's a club in a place thats visible to bloggers/media, ie the west end or shoreditch, it wont be considered to be happening.
well, that's all the guy has to go on in new york, isn't it?
I think the irony comes in that if it wasnt for reynolds continuum theory there wouldnt be half the tattling going on as there is. All the younger bloggers and journos are looking for the next big mutation of the bloody 'dubstep virus' cos they missed out on bragging about going FWD with 10 people on the dancefloor. Christ, maybe I'll be able to bore people about dancing to marcus nasty with 10 people on the floor at the egg? on my birthday and everything, it'll be an anecdotal peach.
As with dubstep and micro/minimal, I do wonder: what is the Big New Idea here, the genre-defining innovation, the motor propelling it and us into the zone of the unforeheard? To me, a "possibility space" involves the opening up of a virgin expanse out of which new genres form, not a gently simmering limbo where choice morsels from earlier genres bob about, maintaining a moderately energized half-life.
I don't know anything about him, read his books and thought that's not how it happened here, wondered how he managed to get some facts wrong about Sheffield and went back to making tunes, no biggy really.
Very good point, Martin.
To which I add, why does something have to be validated by 10 people on a floor to be 'innovative' and then when it becomes popular and outsiders become interested suddenly its vitality has gone? Why can't it provide a sound like its immediate present, like the sound of data streaming in incessant conduits or collecting in massive pools, and what it feels like to have all this media around us all the time? That's what minimal and dubstep are to me, someone who never experienced jungle and hasnt got on with drum & bass, and why I think a lot of dubstep in particular has a lot of similarity to something like Sunn0))) - congregational instead of euphoric, an almost ritualistic bass-worship. Which brings in the tribal-vibal things Reynolds wants, but here -
he belies a pioneer-spirit kind of analysis which is defunct nowadays and irrelevant because the energy rush of futurism has been found out as a false dawn. Blackdown's right in saying there's been loads of innovation in dubstep because it has managed to do precisely what Reynolds is describing here - a swirling jet-black cauldron where influences are traded in quantum instead of linear progressions, where mixing it is like having a gigantic black canvas of bass to paint on - changing the trajectory of nuum genres to focus more on the present.
well, i thought he was right on the money as regards the hardcore chapters. i don't know enough about detroit to comment on how accurate that was. although i accept he kind of leaves out scenes hes not that interested in. i remember 94 for being an explosive year for uk techno clubbing for instance, but thats not covered in nearly the same depth.
i loved the book, but then again i'm obsessed with hardcore rave.
talking of that thinking of starting a new blog just based around the simple concept of a list and commentary of my 500 favourite dance tunes. more news soon.
i went to fwd when there was 10 people on the dance floor a few times and thats why i stopped going cos it was the shittest club ive ever gone to by a long long long way....
ten blokes standing round drinking lager.
YOU CANNOT PROJECT HISTORY FORWARDS.
i also think that if you live significantly removed (geographically or otherwise) from the scenes you're commenting on then you need to offer plenty of caveats to your authority
as he does (he says he is at home listening to his computer, and hasnt been in a club)
isn't he allowed to blog about funky because he is Simon Reynolds, or is nobody allowed to write about music they merely heard and havent really engaged in?
it's clear that this is a real big step for london street music: the first real representation of african experience. it's also totally cool in the sense that it's, as i've said several times before, a reclamation of house itself — a style of music that, in its mainstream context, became more or less completely divorced from black britain. i mean, look at pictures of, say, fabric up against those circle party pictures and you'll see what i mean.