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MORE FIVE THAN FOUR
Homeless at On Air East, Dundee, Thu 19-Sun 22 Jul.
Dundee is once again famous for jams. Not the kind you spread on your toast (Keiller’s factory is long closed), but jams of the musical variety, locked down by the DJs and live acts who have played at Homeless, the city’s ‘group home for heads’, since 1996. A list of those guests already reads like a ‘who’s who’ of innovators in the protean world of black music, but now Homeless has really pulled out the stops for the occasion of its fifth birthday with a mini-festival called ‘More Five Than Four‘. Featuring the cream of drum & bass (Goldie), hip hop (Ugly Duckling), nu-jazz (Jazzanova) and reggae (Horace Andy), promoter Jim Grieve describes the event as ‘a four-day mash-up of everything that gets
played at Homeless’.
Despite receiving national acclaim, Homeless has had its fair share of troubles, being made literally homeless by several venues - ‘we always seem to go into places when they’re on their last legs!’ says Grieve. Homeless even took up residence in a hotel function room for a time. Their current success, however, seems to be an index of Dundee’s economic and cultural resurgence. ‘There’s been a lot of investment,’ says Grieve. “Anybody that’s not been there recently will see there’s been a turn for the better.’
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Now, thanks to help from Soundbase, Dundee City
Council’s music development initiative, Homeless has
been able to secure the festival’s international line-up
as well as organise free workshops and talks, hosted by the visiting artists, to take place around the city. It’s refreshing to see a public body take such an interest in club culture, viewing it as a creative source rather than a scourge, and both parties are hopeful that the collaboration will result in the mini-music festival becoming an annual event.
If the council’s help (along with sponsorship from Fopp) has been instrumental, Homeless itself must take the bulk of the credit for making such a festival possible in Dundee. Away from Edinburgh and Glasgow, where complacent clubbers take guest DJs for granted, Homeless has long provided a haven for more
discerning Dundonians and all those who seek quality
in clubbing. Having put on nights in the city since 1979, Grieve sees the success of the club as ‘the peak of all those years of trying to push quality black music’. Dundee is again famous for jams - but boy these jams got flavour. (Neil McMillan)
I Tickets for all club events from Ripping Records. Edinburgh, 226 7070 and Tickets Scotland at Virgin Megastore, Glasgow. 332 4400. Details and free bookings for workshops and pre-c/ub events from Rachel at Music
Plus on 07382 432244.
LlVE HIP HOP
FOREIGN LEGION DJRedG presents: at The Bongo Club, Sun 22 Jul.
It's a common criticism that rap takes itself rather too seriously. as demonstrated by a recent 'rap Summit' called to tackle the prejudices and Violence Within the genre. There is light relief to be lOLlﬂd. however. and nowhere more so than With San FianCisco hip hop Crew Foreign Legion. For these boys it's all ab0ut haying fun and goofing-off. Think Bill and Ted meet the Beastie Boys and this Will take yOu some way towards their strange world of comedy hip hop. as showcased on their debut album Kidnapper Van. The two-MC. one—DJ combo recede even further than the ‘playgrOund tactics' of fellow Californian hip hop Crew JuraSSic 5 with the pre- school antics of their live shows. And for deck-manipulatOr Keith Griego. aka DJ DeSign. the future looks even sillier. ‘We've always been funny.‘ he says.
“and that's just reflected in Our music. I even think our album is too serious. but the new stuff's a lot funnier.‘
Doubtless this new material has taken its inspiration from the slapstick dynamic of the live shows where skinny white boy rapper Prozack and heavyweight black MC Marc Stretch work the room like a couple of stand- ups. Apparently costumes play a Vital role in this routine and Stretch and Prozac have preViously played famed duos like Batman and Joker, Fred and Barney. and Crockett and Tubbs to the hearty amusement of their fans.
All this seems a long way from the pohtical stylings and hard-line aggression of other hip hop acts but as far as Foreign Legion are concerned. they're JUSl keeping it real from their own unique perspective. ‘None of us care about that heavy stuff.‘ says DeSign. ‘We don't live With Violence so why should we talk about it. We ioke so we talk about iokes.‘ lCatherine Bromley)
The latest club news...
DANCING IN THE STREET lS generally frowned upon, but this summer the activity is given free reign at two massive outdoor events. The first of these is of course, the annual Love Parade which will hit the streets of Newcastle on Saturday 21 July. Radio One DJ Sara Cox will kick off the event at 1pm from the Love Boat overlooking the Tyne and over 250,000 revellers are expected to attend the 24 hour party. Fellow Radio One jocks Pete Tong, Danny Rampling, Dave Pearce and Judge Jules will be broadcasting live from the main stages and DJ spots from the likes of Fatboy Slim, Sonique, Erick Morillo and Sasha are all confirmed. The outdoor stages run until 11pm, followed by after-show parties at various venues throughout the city.
MEANWHILE. LEEDS, llll (leY that played host to last wail; Love Parade. Will be lioslii‘ti .‘i free dance festival in support of Nelson Mandela's 'Glohal Movement For Children on 1‘.) August. The Dance Aid' event i<; a pint effort between cluliliini; legend's Basics and Union in aSSOCiation With events team Logistics and Will take place in the heart of the City from i lain to 11pm. The confirmed line up so far includes Hybrid. Seb Frontaine (pictured). Angel Morales. MarShall Jefferson. Peace DIVI‘HCH and Yousef. to name but a few.
CLOSER TO HOME, THIS year’s Club Festival at Teviot Row House has been confirmed as going ahead. It will run in association with the Gilded Balloon from Friday 3 until Sunday 26 August and will include club nights from Arakataca, Boogie Mo Dynamo, Nameless, Headspin and Radio Babylon. A definite highlight will be the two-day Cuban Brothers spectacular scheduled for Thursday 16 and Friday 17 August.