bankruptcy of 'nuum as concept

mos dan

fact music
for me an important function of music critics is the selection of music i might like.
you look for critics which have (in some fields) a similar taste as your own and you read about what music they like and dont like.
Reynolds' taste and mine overlap a great deal. So when he writes about how he likes funky, and which tunes he likes, this is relevant to me (and i think to most who read his blog)

yeah this is fair enough - but it helps explain my views as well, why i feel some of his writing is irrelevant to my own understanding of these music scenes (which is not saying he is irrelevant, it's a personal thing). basically ever since reynolds told blackdown in 2005 that he thought the tune of the year was kano's 'reload it' i realised i wasn't as interested in his blog as i was in others.. each to their own and all.

sorry if i was flip anyone, it's only the internet, it's not real you know.


Well-known member
the first real representation of african experience.

id stil argue that grime is that.... just cos it doesn't have the same obvious signifiers doesn't mean its not....


likes things
and yes i know tons of rave music sampled classical motifs

Hey stelfox,

Could you (or anyone) give some examples of tunes like this? I'm too young to have experience anything other than dubstep/grime/minimal/etc., and one of the things I always lamented in those genres is producers' seeming unwillingness to sample classical music, especially since you can find examples of pretty much any other genre being sampled, Bollywood to metal. Thanks!


history is made at night
Coming late to this discussion, my take is that Simon Reynolds has never, to my knowledge claimed that the 'Nuum notion is an explanation of everything or that the hardcore-jungle-grime etc. continuum is the only continuum at work. It is pretty clear to me that this continuum does exist in the sense of a continuity of (not exclusively) London (not exclusively) black musics with some common spaces (clubs and areas), personnel and infrastructure (pirate stations etc.). On a very tangible level, 15 years ago twiddling the dial on my radio there was lots of jungle, now there's an increasing amount of funky, but the stations have a basically similar vibe and function.

There are though many other continuums at work in electronic dance music, major threads and minor threads - e.g. the the whole electronic avant garde - industrial - techno continuum. If we visualise the whole thing as a tube map, funky could be a station where the post-hardcore line intersects with the disco - house line, maybe some other lines too.

I've written something on these many different lines for Datacide but I must admit their publication schedule means that it may not see the light of day for a while...

Tim F

Well-known member
Was just about to post what Transpotine did: Simon's notion of a "hardcore continuum" will never make sense if you think it's primarily about the transmission of sonic/stylistic influences in music, about familial relationships of influences between genres.

Simon's writing on the topic has always made it clear that it's about a certain community of listeners built around (largely but not solely black) East London, pirate radio etc. Only by using that as the frame can the relevance of certain sonic or stylistic motifs being reincarnated in different stylistic constellations be grasped.

I suspect the reason that people persistently misinterpret the notion is because of the desire to posit dubstep as the endpoint (or at least current position) in the continuum, despite the fact that dubstep has never really been an East London thing, with a couple of minor exceptions.

This doesn't have to be a criticism: DJ Clever's Troubled Waters [/i] and Unsung Heroes are among the finest d&b DJ mixes ever but they have nothing to do with SR's continuum. People are too quick to assume that if dubstep isn't "the nuum" it's automatically tainted by the post-97 d&b brush. But that's assuming there's an overly rigid and cyclical logic to the way the "nuum" works. There's not. It's just whatever is bumping in East London.

Simon's wrong about funky from my perspective, but not primarily in the way people on this thread are suggesting.

I think he's not picking up on what is actually a strong jamaican influence in the music. The sheer glut of ragga chat samples in the ruder, UK end of the scene is already more than a match for speed garage if not quite 2-step (but it's getting there), and sonically I think it has about the same kind of relationship to dancehall (i.e. a complicated but real one) that 2-step and grime had, respectively.

Sure, jamaican influences compete with african influences and other caribbean influences, but I think it's premature to conclude the latter two achieve prominence in funky at the expense of the former. Remember, the last time soca was so prominent an influence was 2001 and the era of "socabeat" 2-step, which was simultaneously the most obviously jamaican that "nuum" music ever got (give or take ragga jungle).

Simon complains that the music isn't cheesy/flavasome in the way 'ardkore or 2-step were, and that "Bongo Jam" constitutes an exception that proves this rule. I'd direct him towards, well, a whole multitude of tunes that fit this bill - stuff from Fuzzy Logic and Hard House Banton and Malice and Mario Productions being just the tip of the iceberg here.

However, I don't think Simon claims that funky is outside the "nuum" - it is the current incarnation of this continuum by definition, by dint of its audience/community. He's merely claiming that he doesn't like much of it. This initial and I suspect gut-level ambivalence leads him to some theoretical conclusions that I think are off-base, but then, I would say that - my initial, gut-level reaction was one of unabashed adoration.


funky... put a donk on it
hardcre... put a donk on it
nuum... put a donk on it
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hipster... put a donk on it
liverpool... put a donk on it
yacht disco... put a donk on it
zizek... put a donk on it

mos dan

fact music
the arts editor of a well-known broadsheet informed me a few weeks ago that donk is an actual genre, all springing off from 'put a donk on it'.

which makes her way ahead of reynolds - and in identifying 'donk' as a genre, way ahead of me too... and dissensus, and everyone, as far as i know.

when broadsheet arts editors are the ones telling you what the new thing is, there's something wrong. or maybe she's just wrong - that's my preferred explanation.
donk aka wigan pier aka the pleasurerooms end of scouse house aka bounce house is new and the blackout crew started it?

lol made my day that