Wednesday, November 29, 2006

some reviews

“breaks, dubstep, drum’n’bass album of the week”

“An excellent and resolutely non-formulaic debut.”

“Bass Clef provides a full album that transcends the mere title of dubstep by invigorating the sound with a range of interesting elements. From Dud, techno and a blatant love for deep electronica, the tracks unfold before the listener with a dark, haunting and moody feel that’s funky, fresh and extremely listenable. I particularly like the way the dub comes through and you could really see this being a smokers album. Class from beginning to end.”

“If you're able to produce the kind of bass-drops and low-end charges that inhabit much of this excellent debut album from Ralph Cumbers' Bass Clef project, you'll find yourself in very good company at the tail-end of 2006, a year that's ushered in Low-End theorists with the kind of feverish excitement not seen since the heady days of 1970's towering dub. Bass Clef don't quite straddle the tried and tested Dubstep templates that have become de rigueur for the scene as the months have passed, instead opting for a more schizophrenic approach that takes-in Cumbers' evidently well-worn collection of Idm, Dub and Jungle records, mashed up and re-processed with a heavy analogue underlay that gives each of the 13 tracks here much of their charm and untold heaviness. Not entirely unlike the Werk label's excellent Actress, Bass Clef don't discriminate against any given styles, pairing off Cumbers' Bristol roots against his current surroundings in Hackney - a sort of geographic trawl through bass culture that's incredibly modern yet well-grounded in over 30 years of beat science. "A Smile Is A Curve..." is precisely the kind of album the scene needs if it's to circumvent the faint whiff of fatigue starting to seep out of its pores. Like Boxcutter's "Oneiric" from early on this year it manages to be a jack of many trades and master of pretty much all of them - the proverbial having your cake and eating it, urban styles. Excellent.”

“Excellent dubstep compatible beat excursions w/ wild SFX – TIP”

“this bunch of skittering, playful beats, insane schizo bass frequencies, moody dub textures & excellent programming is honestly one of the best progressive electronic albums i've heard in months. He's obviously been ingesting sounds from the entire IDM spectrum for years and has just thrown his cap into the ring with this collection of futurestep classics for the laugh. Ranging from spacious minimal dubstep to Warp style pioneering technoid stuff like Milanese, taking in influences from the likes of Squarepusher etc, this CD, 'A Smile as a Curve that Straightens Most Things' (a sweet title) is an absorbing journey for intelligent beat-heads everywhere.”

Friday, November 24, 2006

Well here it is...

It's time - the album "a smile is a curve that straightens most things" is released this monday!

You can buy it from these fine independent retailers:

The Thank You List which I couldn't fit on the sleeve is:

I've also done a 30 minute mix of album tracks, and a few newer bits, for you to download and check out:
  • mp3

  • zip

  • Tracklisting:

    00:00 Welcome back to echo chamber
    04:01 Clapton Deep
    05:52 Basss & Drummm make my heart sing
    08:36 One hundred point three
    10:40 Opera
    13:35 Cannot be straightened
    16:07 Stokes Croft 5am
    16:47 How I desire
    19:39 eight zero eight
    21:58 Graham road rhythm
    23:36 Quake
    24:04 Thank you for starting fires
    26:38 That's all I remember about it
    27:11 Don't ask me to forgive you


    Monday, November 20, 2006

    sunday roast


    First off, massive thanks to everyone who turned up on friday at the Buffalo Bar in Cardiff. I may have been a little drunk. Great night though, thanks to the Forecast crew for putting me on.

    Also, if you're in Brighton this sunday, would be lovely to see you!

    Monday, November 13, 2006

    closer / faraway

    Been thinking a lot about this quote:
    "The task of the right eye is to peer into the telescope, while the left eye peers into the microscope."
    Leona Carrington
    (thanks to 20 jazz funk greats, a while back).

    And I can't stop listening to this:
  • Arthur Russell 'springfield' DFA Remix

  • Settle into the drum machines, loose like a bunch of drummers at 3am, then the horns, the euphoric house anthem chords (?!)
    and then The Voice


    Monday, November 06, 2006

    West country weekend

    (photo by Tom Blend)

    Massive thanks to Chris, Tom and Pete at Rooted and to everyone who came down for the instore on saturday - had a cracking time playing in the shop ( the highlight being presented with a pint of guinness on a tray midway throught the set!) and to all at Cosies for the set later on - lovely night. Playing on the same bill as Dub boy, the one and only Jay Le Surge and Peverelist ("the grind" sounded awesome) was a treat and it was great as always to catch up with familiar faces old and new (you know who you are...)

    Album now due 27th november!
    Here's one that didn't make it:
  • Bass Clef - Hardchord
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