Sunday, 27 July 2008

The Bug – London Zoo

London Zoo is the sound of the dirty under belly of the big smoke, with roots in dancehall, dubstep grime and techno The Bug brings a menacing modern soundscape to the table. This album is relentless and in your face, uncompromising and heavy as hell. Pretty much all the tunes bar one have some collaborative force involved with them the list is pretty impressive: Tippa Irie, Ricky Ranking, Killa P, Flow Dan, Aya, Warrior Queen, Spaceape and Roger Robinson. They bring some raga dancehall vocals to the proceedings. London Zoo is the hot, muggy, sinister atmosphere of our capital city.

Ninja Tunes have dropped a big one with London Zoo, The Bug mixes all the sounds and influences into a brilliant cohesive record. It comes off as some kind of new style dancehall with the deep dubbed out grime attitude of some dubstep. The musical backdrops to the very vocal heavy tracks suit the lyrical content very well indeed. Deep, heavy, claustrophobic and paranoid sounds are laid under tales of city struggles. London is described as a Zoo in the title and The Bug has a beastly primal energy to his music, and reflects the chaotic and unpredictable nature of the modern underbelly of the city. I can easily imagine this being pumped out of pirate radio stations all over London, the tower blocks shaking with the bass and clatter. This is the heavy, ‘I will take no shit’ cousin of Burial’s laid-back UK crackle drenched 2-step vision of the city.

The apocalypse sounds like it’s on the way, and we are in the middle of the war a hot dirty war in the jungle, of the twisted urban landscape, not to mention a dose of paranoia and terrorism. The lyrics deal with this subject on a few occasions. The opening track I’m not to sure about I have heard someone compare it to the Macarena and I know what they mean, it’s a hard ass version for sure but still has that cheesy edge. Skeng with Killa P and Flow Dan is a wicked tune with deep and dirty dancehall dub vibes and a nice 808 bell for good measure. Too Much Pain is a spooky little number with soulful dancehall vocals, an irresistible and dark track. Jah War is another beauty with that ace dancehall zoom zoom sample I love about that kind of music. Fuckaz with Spaceape is some deep dub poetry with a growling bassline. Freak Freak is the only instrumental on London Zoo and it’s a beauty with massive bass and even a little bit of Burial crackle (tm) thrown in for good measure. Warning is a beast with Flow Dan on the mic and huge clattering drums. Poison Dart is one of the best tunes here Warrior Queen brings it to the table in style, the Skream remix can be found bellow too. The final tune brings a little smidgen of light relief, sort of, with a slowed down soulful dancehall dub number. The Bug has made a brilliant album.

The Bug Space

Kode 9 album preview mini mix

The Bug Feat. Warrior Queen – Poison Dart (Skream Remix)

The Bug Feat. Ricky Ranking - Flying

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