109

Burnt Friedman & The NuDub Players: Can't Cool

Chris M. Slawecki By

Sign in to view read count
Burnt Friedman & The NuDub Players: Can't Cool Composer, arranger, producer, and performer (on drums, marimbas, vibes, synthesizer, piano, and other keyboards) Burnt Friedman normally blasts progressive rock and jazz apart, but when working with his NuDub Players ensemble he takes aim at de/constructing avant-garde reggae and dub. Whether inspired lunacy or just plain craziness, this third NuDub release, featuring trombonist Ian Perry, saxophonist Thomas Haas, and bassist August Engkilde—among twenty musicians from Auckland, Sydney, Melbourne, Copenhagen, Detroit, Cape Town, Santiago de Chile, Cologne and Berlin—is no doubt twisted.

The first recognizable strains of reggae don’t drift into these mixes until halfway through the fourth track, “Dublab Alert”—and in general, making out the reggae roots of these gnarly dubs is generally close to impossible. “Fly Your Kite” does feature traditional Caribbean brass, but at disjointed places in the rhythm. The jerk-around of the opening “Fuck Back” speaks of broken-ness in rhythm from both the African tribal and western industrial perspectives, sounding so much more African than Caribbean that it almost does not fit with the rest of the set.

“Pater Nosser” partly consists of strange bird-like sounds that drunkenly wobble into and out of the mix while an accordion player wanders past just closely enough to hear. The Detroit collective His Name Is Alive joins Friedman to reprise their original on this groaning NuDub cover of “Someday My Blues Will Cover the Earth.” “Get Things Strait” is creepy fun, sinisterly whispered raps quietly spreading like mutant algae throughout a murky, menacing lake.

This is difficult stuff. Friedman sort of ends up breaking apart and reassembling dub music. But dub music sort of breaks apart and reassembles reggae, so what the listener often hears is an abstraction of an abstraction, and it can be difficult to follow. But if you’ve ever wondered how a Teutonic experimental / avant-garde take on dub reggae would sound, here’s your answer. It is not sunny, feel-good island music. This is a dark, claustrophobic, unsettled and unsettling sound.


Track Listing: Fuck Back; Fly Your Kite; Pater Nosser; Dublab Alert; Life Is Worth Dying For; Get Things Strait; Real Abstraction; Someday My Blues Will Cover the Earth; Designer Groove; Get Things Strait Dub; Five Star Group Travel; Consider a Bigger Wallet

Personnel: Burnt Friedman (drums, marimbas, vibes, synthesizer, piano, keyboards); Ian Perry (trombone); August Engkilde (double bass); Thomas Haas (saxophone); Theo Altenberg (vocals); Abi (vocals); Patrice (vocals); His Name is Alive

Year Released: 2003 | Record Label: Nonplace | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop

More Articles

Read June CD/LP/Track Review June
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 19, 2017
Read The Final Concert CD/LP/Track Review The Final Concert
by John Sharpe
Published: February 19, 2017
Read Desire & Freedom CD/LP/Track Review Desire & Freedom
by Glenn Astarita
Published: February 19, 2017
Read On Hollywood Boulevard CD/LP/Track Review On Hollywood Boulevard
by Budd Kopman
Published: February 19, 2017
Read The Motorman's Son CD/LP/Track Review The Motorman's Son
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 18, 2017
Read "Petite Moutarde" CD/LP/Track Review Petite Moutarde
by Glenn Astarita
Published: March 29, 2016
Read "Oblivion: The Music of Bud Powell" CD/LP/Track Review Oblivion: The Music of Bud Powell
by Mark Sullivan
Published: March 19, 2016
Read "Espiritu Zombi" CD/LP/Track Review Espiritu Zombi
by Mark Corroto
Published: August 22, 2016
Read "Portraits and Places" CD/LP/Track Review Portraits and Places
by Jack Bowers
Published: March 31, 2016
Read "Neuroplastic Groove" CD/LP/Track Review Neuroplastic Groove
by Eyal Hareuveni
Published: August 18, 2016
Read "Sir Nebula" CD/LP/Track Review Sir Nebula
by Doug Collette
Published: September 18, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: ECM Records | BUY NOW  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Buy it!