Tuesday, 18 November 2008

Beat Pharmacy – Wikkid Times

Brendon Moeller is the man behind Beat Pharmacy, he hails from South Africa and this; his fourth album under the Beat Pharmacy name, drops on Francois K’s label Wave Music.

This is deep dub techno at it’s best, you get the driving four to the floor house style beats, mixed with echo drenched chords played by sweeping synths in a Basic Channel kind of way. There seems to be a lot of this kind of thing around at the moment, not only in techno circles by the likes of Deep Chord and Shed but dubstep as well with the likes of Appleblim and 2562 bringing the vibes. What makes Wikkid Times stand out is the big vocal influence.

Vocalists include legends of the dub-techno hybrid Paul St. Hilaire AKA Tikiman from the Rhythm & Sound crew from Berlin. Also featuring is the Kode 9 collaborator Spaceape, who happens to be one of my favourite dub poets out there.

The tracks come across as a mix of a dub-reggae-danchall protest songs in a deep house or dub techno vibe, and I must say the hybrid works a treat.

Rooftops opens the album in catchy style, which features the vocal styling of Coppa. I find myself humming this little ditty sometimes; the chorus just gets in your head. The bassline has a nice bump to it while the deep echo chamber dubbed out synths offset the rhythm and give it all a sweeping hypnotic atmosphere.

Spaceape’s first track Strangers is a stunner and one of the highlights on Wikkid Times. A deep acid bass tweaks in the low frequencies and there is a dark paranoid feel to it that ups the tension of the album subtly. The vocals deal with the troubles of modern life through a kind of personal perspective.

Sunshine featuring Paul St. Hilaire is another definite standout track. This has a warm feel to it as it does its deep house thing. St. Hilaire is on good form here brining subtle melodic tones to the dubby backing track.

Other tracks of note include; The Ras B collaboration Hope & Frustration, this track deals with the ups and downs of life in general it gives the beautiful techno sound behind a brilliant and human feel to it. These tunes are both grounded and uplifting it’s pretty refreshing to hear. The slow pulse of the melody and bass are just sublime.

Each track follows a similar template and could be seen as being a bit samey at times. The flow and mood of the album ebbs subtly all the way through, yet with a driving vibe that the house beats bring to the table. So if you are in the mood for some deep dancehall protest techno you really can’t go far wrong than grabing yourself Beat Pharmacy’s Wikkid Times.

No comments:

Related Posts with Thumbnails