[ArtWorK Encrusted Skull, 2005 sculpture by Amy Sarkisian www.amysarkisian.com]
Recently, I was watching a documentary on Tom Waits and amongst the high profile journalists worldwide paying homage to this great man, was a very famous American critic, Robert Christgau. Starting in 1967, Robert Christgau has covered popular music for The Village Voice, Esquire, Blender, Playboy, Rolling Stone, and many other publications. He is variously described as:
“Dean of American Rock Critics”
“Christgau is arguably one of the two most important American mass-culture critics of the second half of the 20th century. … All rock critics working today, at least the ones who want to do more than rewrite PR copy, are in some sense Christgauians.
This reminded me of the fact that this very man reviewed our Transnational Dubstep Compilation and I feel that this momentous occassion required a blog post all of its own.
Here he is in his prime supporting a Sex Pistols teee:
He reviewed our compilation on his blog on MSN, “Expert Witness”:
“which would only feature reviews of albums that he had graded B+ or higher, since those albums “are the gut and backbone of my musical pleasure;” the writing of reviews for which are “so rewarding psychologically that I’m happy to do it at blogger’s rates
Wow, that is quite something for us man, to be mentioned by someone who arguably invented Rock Critique!!! We are also honoured to be the first who unwittingly introduced him to Moombahton & Barefoot!!!
Here’s what he said about it all on his blog “Expert witness”:
In 1994 Wax Trax’ Ethnotechno proved a politely polyrhythmic techno reachout to straightforward international dance musics it secretly found quaint. It listened well and stuck poorly, the “ethnotechno” tag itself its main contribution to international understanding. Conceived, assigned, and sequenced by DJ Umb, the London-born son of Kashmiri exiles who promotes such all-embracing terms as “transnational bass” at his Generation Bass blog, this array of whomping exotica reflects its creator’s appetite for any Third World dance movement he can get his ears on, including such new ones on me as kuduro, barefoot, and–from the mysterious depths of the District of Columbia–Moombahton! Plus, of course, the bassy evolution of techno beatmaking since 1994. Speaking as someone who will never enter a barefoot club (my doctor prescribed those orthotics, dammit), I hereby extend my thanks to whoever invented that shuddering synth low end that turns background music into foreground fun without requiring you to kiss your ass goodbye. And I also testify that not a damn thing here sounds quaint. Which is to make no predictions as to how any of them will sound 17 years from now. A MINUS
He made a couple of mistakes about my background:
1. I was born in Shakespeare country, Warwickshire and not London.
2. My parents were not exiles but were invited to the UK in the 60’s by the British Govt.
Those little inaccuracies aside, I’m astounded we got reviewed by him.
Wow!!! I’ll never forget this, it’s HUGE for us, HUGE!
Just to remind you that our compilation is out worldwide and here’s all the info you need:
Artist GENERATION BASS [VARIOUS]
Album Title TRANSNATIONAL DUBSTEP
Genre Transnational Dubstep
Release Date 02 Feb 2011 USA
14 March 2011 Rest of World
Description CD & DIGITAL
1.India Sleeping – Mars
2.Kaliyuga – Engine Earz
3.Undertow in G# – Alexis K
4. Rude Profile – Fleck & Fish Finger
5.Cumbia Dub – Knowa Knowone
6.Clownie – Innamorati
7. Valium Gitan – Sa Bat ‘Machines
8.Only Human – Shem
9.Kamikaze – Dysphemic
10.Shiva Step – Barbarix
11.Bukkake – Syndeasia
12.Bhangra Fever – Midival Punditz
13. Brown Skin Beauty – (liquid Stranger Remix) Bandish Projekt
14. Dub Reflex – Celt Islam
15. Salahadeen – Jajouka Soundsyetm
Musicme.com Streaming services Spotify
So you got the CD, now get the T-shirt or get both if you don’t have any!
Here’s some of the things being said about it in the USA:
“….the nastiness previewed in the minimix plays out to one of the dopest dubstep mixes we’ve ever heard. That’s not hyperbole, that’s the power of transnational musical styles brought together over the one rhythmic style that can hold them all on the same canvas.”
The fusion between a globe-spanning palette of ethnic sounds and the digitally rendered sub-sonic science of 21st century dubstep is a natural one and not once sounds forced and incongruous
With all this talk of pan-continental influence and… traditional ethnic instrumentation, you could be forgiven for thinking that this is just a pompous and cynical cash-in, tying ‘world music’ to a flaccid dubstep backbone. But you’d be wrong – the 15 tracks on ‘Transnational Dubstep’ are made for soundsystems and immense bass-bins, not coffee tables. But then, they sound just as good at home on a lazy Sunday afternoon as they do blasting from a Funktion One system on a Saturday night.
This is about as niche as the genre gets and for those hard-nosed dubstep fans that enjoyed the genre before it hit mainstream music, this is a true masterpiece.
The blog-turned-record label may well be onto a big thing as it promotes the status of dubstep around the world because, if this release is anything to go by, then the grass roots of London are not the only place quality underground music can be found.
This album deserves to be recognized for rising above ordinary dubstep music by incorporating world music samples including exotic flutes, string instruments, vocal solos, and even accordions (yes, accordions) that will intrigue you and make you dance.
The unapologetically internationalist Generation Bass dubstep blog, who sifted through over 300 candidates to eventually come up with this 15-track program. And virtually every entry is a winner
I couldn’t be more stoked about this latest mix. This release is poised to become one of my top releases of 2011 based on how good the teaser for it is. Transnational Dubstep is the first compilation album by DJ Umb and posted up by the online blog Generation Bass. So far, it’s unlike most of the releases I’ve hear this winter mainly due to it’s distinct worldly sounds. Much of it reminds me of the sounds that I often hear in the yoga studio, Indian and Chinese instruments, but here it’s combined with a heavy sub bass and wobble as well as the occasional hip hop drops. Very unique and eclectic for sure.
In the Top 60 Dance/Electronic Releases To Look For In 2011
I set the bar pretty high when it comes to my appreciation of electronic music and am always embarrassingly titillated when I stumble upon something of the caliber which satisfies my demands. Whether it is music or any other form of art, it is the artist’s knowledge of and ability to manipulate their medium that makes for truly cutting edge work.
I’m a big fan of cultural hybridization and this compilation has to be the cutest little mixed-race baby of the underground electronic dance scene.
Even though it’s kind of amazing what people are doing in this scene, I wouldn’t just throw the album for a listen or a car ride. I would, however, go as far as to burn it for a few friends who are hard core dubstep addicts and aficionados.
Transnational Dubstep is manicured to be diverse. Also, it will likely tear through your subwoofer like it’s made of jello. Over top the ultra-low frequency bass lines, different instruments from all areas of the world take turns proving that they fit right in with synth madness. Just identifying all the sounds and styles that come through could fill a book.
Generation Bass is putting out their first compilation consisting of dubstep selections from all around the world. The 15 track hand picked compilation features established producers like the Midival Punditz and the Bandish Project while introducing breaking talent from around the bass music community including Engine Earz, Alexis K, Jajouka Soundsystem, Knowa Knowone, Shem and many more.. Look out for it 2/1/2011.
Its a rare chance to see a clash of two cultures that ends peacefully, if not beautifully.
Transnational Dubstep is definitely for fans of electronic, dubstep, dance, and club music.
From what we’ve already heard of it, it’s gonna be killer!
Instead of collecting some more hard, obvious tracks, they impressively attacked the morass of Internet tracks to come up with a final selection of 15 creations from both established producers and the relatively unknown. Even the more established names here are firmly still underground; only the most dedicated downloaders will likely recognize Midival Pundits and the Bandish Project.
Still, what the comp lacks in marquee names it makes up for in creativity. Here, dubstep meets almost every possible major world beat. That ranges from electronic-friendly sounds like South American cumbia and Indian sitar, to more unexpected traces of Balkan and even Chinese music.
It’s difficult to give Transnational Dubstep justice on paper; each track is rich in its own inventive offering. The compilation is remarkable in its many instances of non-exclusivity between the artists and the cultural influences they use: a Russian producer using Indian traditions or an Australian DJ delving into Asian-influenced sounds.
Not only does this reflect the doors that dubstep has opened as a global sound, but Transnational Dubstep reveals a slew of creative DJs and producers who are rethinking the way “world” music is perceived — all in the name of bass.
TRANS DUB DJ SUPPORT
“Something different and fresh for the listenning ear! A good listen and something that will open your mind!”
“Loving This!…..Cracking package here”
“Rude Profile…great dancefloor biznezzz”
“So surprising to hear something like this…….tracks are ones that you could imagine being on Fabric Live 37….Really into all of them….brilliant idea..”
DJ Anne Savage
“Great for chilling, this is going straight onto my ipod…deserves to do well”
Mary Anne Hobbs
David Starfire (Dj/Producer)
What a slammin compilation from Generation Bass and it’s on my top 10 of 2011″
A wild collect of dub sounds coming from all over the world
“Big in the gizzame”
Flore (Botchit & Scarper/Mixmag)
With only a first listen, i can say i’m highly impressed by the quality & the variety of the tracks, the selection is very smart cos i think all the tracks fit good together…looking forward to include some of these tracks in my mix
Supporting – “India sleeping”
“Some different vibes..nice one…big up all the crew”
Schlachthofbronx (/Mad Decent/Man Recordings/ Best Dance Act in the World)
Mistajam (BBC Radio 1 / 1Xtra, UK)
“Definitely some strong tracks……expect some support on this from me.”
DJ Allbury (Rinse FM, UK)
“so many variations on this ep, im gettin the feel for bass and the unwinding middle east sounds”
DJ Nappy (Architect of Thugstep)
You can tell that deep thought was put into track selection and layout. In a world of over-synthesized 2-step, this is a refreshing journey in audio. Organic sounds, and a treat to listen to as a whole. Quite pleasurable to vibe out to on a rainy winter afternoon”
Son Of Kick
“Overall deep and well produced. Def pick a couple tunes for the deeper shows”
Bert On Beats (Man Recordings)
“Most definitely one of my favourite and one of a kind compilation! Fleck& FishFinger, BandishProjekt and Celt Islam are winners here!”
Eastenders (Balkan Dance Act)
Your cd is one of the best compilations since the early days of “asian
underground” – brilliant!!
This is the sound… The future of dubstep… A fresh new outtake on a killer sound and genre..
Permanent Damage Records
Think that someone had to do this type of release….has lots of potential to run and run – great concept.
This release is essential for discerning ears & undoubtedly encompasses an interesting new musical direction for fusion !
Maduro [Octofoil Records/Electronic]
“The Transnational Dubstep compilation by Generation Bass is by far the best selection of ethnic dubstep I’ve come across thus far – this is truly defining a moment in music”
Eva Pacifico [Ibizarre Records/Ibizasonica]
“Ancient voices meet future music”
IDJ Mag [Russell Deeks]
“Some interesting fusions here…”
“Big Vibes..some well crafted music here…”
Southern Fried [Jay Robinson]
“Loving the regional vibes, will fit nicely into my sets”
“Awesome stuff, diverse, melodic, groundbreaking and perfect for a lot of different vibes……..loving the reggae vibes of dub reflex..top stuff”.
Peo de Pitte
“Phat as F-K!”
“Yeah man nice stuff”
Crissy Criss (BBc1xtra/BBc1 Radio)
”Big fan of Kaliyuga”
DJ Lord (Public Enemy Tour DJ)
“Killer sound……straight up”
BBC Radio 1 LEGEND – Annie Nightingale
Bhangra Fever (Piyush Bhatnagar Remix) …”gets you between the eyes” .
You can STILL download a beautiful & exclusive Pan Agnostix Flamenco remix of the excellent Fleck & Fish Finger track, the original version of which appears on the compilation:
You can hear the mini-mix…ahhhhh…. again!..lol..