African Head Charge - Drastic Season (Reissue) LP
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The very welcome reissues of the seminal African Head Charge LP's from the 80's onwards are a great thing, in our opinion.
A ragged 2nd hand copy of this has been sat on the shelf here at RwdFwd for some time now, and as you may have guessed, we're big fans of oddball dub and instrumental experimentalism - Drastic Season presents itself as somewhat of a masterclass on this subject, with young Adrian Sherwood splicing up tapes and abusing the mixing board for one of African Head Charge' most otherwordly meditations in their discography.
Whereas the 'Off The Beaten Track' (the album that followed this) took African Head Charge to new exploits with the prominent (and brand new) use of sampling, Drastic Season feels perhaps more intuitive, organically unchained and human in some ways... Psychadelic as you like, late night jams, with the bass guitar wandering on it's path, brushing past the influx of percussion, followed by the haunting chants and ghostly reverbs that frequent the outskirts of the recording room and make their way back into the mixing desk, only for Sherwood to fling it back at the innocent listeners head.
It's magical stuff, freaky dubwise music for those who aren't afraid to enter the On.U zone.
Steve Barker puts it very well on his sleeve notes (included on the printed inner sleeve) but we particularly like the quote from a very rare official On.U press release back in '83:
"A high-tech rhythm mix of human, animal and machine sounds, captured on the Southern Studios digital rig by the "wackid' mixer Adrian Sherwood, up in sunny Wood Green, 'Drastic Season' features that On-U rugged bass sound. Check it if you're a dancer, a listener, a film maker, a computer programmer, a human or an animal. Special treats in store for steam locomotive enthusiasts and biologists. You've never heard such sounds in your life (to quote ESP)."
Served in a beautiful printed sleeve too, if you needed further convincing!
Includes download card.
A1 Timbuktu Express
A2 I Want Water
A4 African Hedge Hog
B1 Depth Charge
B2 Fruit Market
B3 Snake In The Hole
B4 Many Generations
I Want Water
Snake In The Hole