FFSTIVAl 10 DAYS IN MAY
Various Venues. Glasgow, 22-29 May
The philosophy is key, GZA/Genius
Bringing together a mixed selection of club nights across Glasgow all under a single banner, Southern Comfort is launching this year’s 10 Days in May a scant few days after Smirnoff’s big blow out. Mr Scruff joins up with Fingathing for some wonky beats, Jazzanova drop yet more funk with Dan Sciliano (live) and Melting Pot team up with Greg Wilson, while gigs from all sorts from the Charlatans to
Razorlight take place across the (unsurprisingly) ten day long event.
However the real coupe, in association with Traxx, has to be the mighty Wu-Tang Clan night at the Arches, featuring GZA/Genius, Masta Killa, Dreddy Kruger and DJ Mathematics. The Wu-Tang are one of the subliminal hip hop collectives and their Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers) (1993), packed with Eastern religion, kung-fu and lyrical intensity, set a new template for the sound. But beyond this it was their values as a collective as much as their sound that stood out. They made a unique deal letting each member release solo albums in their own right for any label they fancied. It made household names of Method Man, RZA and, of course, founder members GZA/Genius and Ol’ Dirty Bastard.
‘We changed things in many, many ways,’ explains GZA down a fuzzy, scratchy line from the back of the tour bus en route up north. ‘The lyrics, the way of life, the production. We created a new direction for hip hop at that time.’ It was the philosophy and mystism that marked them out from the crowd above and beyond the production and lyrical sparring. ‘It was something that was in us. It was in all the flicks we liked so we just applied that to hip hop. It’s a philosophy that made sense, it wasn’t something we brought in as a gimmick. We still watch those same flicks, we’re still into those movies.’ That’s something GZA further cemented on solo outings such as Liquid Swords, bolstering his reputation for lyrical dexterity and flawless technique.
But things are coming to an end for the Clan, and their next album is rumoured to be their last. As GZA is happy to confirm: ‘I think we owe it to the fans. We need to go out with a bang. Even now when people look back at the history of hip hop we’ll be there, but it’s time to bring things to an end.’ It’s a sad day but the old cliche is right - it’s better to burn out brightly than fade away. But that’s not to say the solo artists the Wu unleashed are anywhere near extinction. ‘l’m just going to continue to write and fulfil myself,’ says GZA. (l-lenry Northmore) I Wii- Tang special at the Arches. Glasgow. Sat 22 May: check listings for full 70 Days in May details.
I 4.1" .
72 THE LIST 'fs 7‘.’ Ma. :>:):;-.:
HIP HOP DJ YODA
Headspin at the Bongo Club, Edinburgh, Sat 22 May
A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away. the Bongo Club played host to a little green fella who had to stand on a box to reach his decks . . . Of course. if you're gomg to go calling yourself DJ Yoda. you might expect an intro like that to precede anything written about you. But for Londoner Duncan Beiny it's a likable enough millstone to be stuck With. even though he's confessed that if he had the chance to go back to the day he rechristened himself. he probably wouldn't do it Willi the name of the stuffed Jedi Master sat next to his decks.
What he wetild doubtless keep exactly the same is his career thus
far. For the major dome of the Spreadlove night at London's Social has garnered a name for hlll‘SOii as hip hop's cut—up maestro. deing for the genre what 2ManyDJs have achieved Wllli dirty electro. His How to Cut and Paste series of mixes were recorded on the most minimal of egtiipment itwo decks and a mixer, practically prehistoric in this era of technology). yet still throw together classics of the genre like a Tribe Called Quest and the Wu-Tang Clan in new and inventive ways. Also watch out for How to Cut and Paste: The 808 Edition. which features such lesser lights as Rick Astley and Hall & Oates. Beat- laden. inventive and a sense of humour . . . the force is strong in this one. (DaVid Pollocki
What’s cock and what’s rock in the world of dance?
Trance Masters (Virgin 0 ) Even the name should fill you with fear. Three CDs of hell.
Miami 2004 (Azuli O. ) lhe Miami Winter MUSIC Conference has become the place to break a tune. This sampler of what should be chewing up the charts come Summer is a nice little primer (and a warning). Shame it all seems to be identikit vocal driven house. Fingathing lhe Big Red Nebula Band (Grand Central .00 ) Now onto some real inusiCians (thank Godi with a core of Peter Parker mixmg it up in a fluid style and Sneaky laying down some revei‘bt-zrating double bass over the top. Deep. cinematic. wonky and funky as befits its Star l/i/ai's \'/|be
Tim Wright Thirst (Mute
COO ) Not as intense as much of Wright's other work. especially his Tube Jerk output. This pushes at the boundaries of techno With vocal samples and hip hop beats breaking up the ferocity —- which is a pity.
Eddie Richards Fabric 16 (Fabric .0. ) Dropping the ‘Evil', Eddie Richards provides yet another smooth tech house addition to Fabrics fine stable. Faze Action Broad Sou/s (bar de lune 0.. ) Low key. laid back summer Jazz funk. Now where's that bloody sun to go With it?
recon white label (Highpoint Lowlife COO ) Grumbling electronica that infuriates as much as it intrigues. Wilfully belligerent but hypnotic nonetheless in its repetitive nature.
Vinyl Dialect Dialect (Bad Magic 0.. ) Lyrically conscious hip hop With bite. Spiralling grooves and infectious loops topped with lyrically dextrous sparring.
Infinite Livez Bush Meat (Big Dada O... ) Laugh-out loud hip hop that never trades its quintessentially British humour for quality. Tracks like ‘The Adventures of the Lactating Man' and ‘Worcestershire Sauce' sum it all up really.
I For more i'eViews see Records section.