26 November 2004


There's that horrid, anal trainspotter part of me that still won't be satisfied until it can instantly distinguish whether a track is truly Grimey or whether it's actually
"Dubstep, Sublow, Techstep, 8 Bar"etc. How many of my fellow bloggers, even the London-based ones, are really that switched-on that they could make those distinctions with 99.9% accuracy? I mean, what the fuck is Sublow (Sub-Lo?) when it's at home? I recently came across a live DJ set on Soulseek from the Pay As You Go Cartel with Slimzee at the decks. I think it's actually a couple of years old (ancient history to all the hipsters), but it's a pretty cool set featuring mainly Speed Garage tunes with MCing skills provided by Godsgift and Wiley who, even on these bouncy uptempo numbers, was already going on about "Everyday I live flow like a shadow/I'm so cold and I feel so cold/and I spit a new flow still goin' on cold". Damn, that's deep! Anyway, there's one track early on that's a bit edgier than the others (the tune is "Shocka" by Geeneus) and at the beginning Godsgift actually says it's Sublow and advises turning the lights down. It sounds like a premonition of some of the FWD/Rephlex tracks I've heard this year, but also features one of the best lines I've personally ever had the good fortune to hear: "I flow like a sawn-off shotty/we are way to hotty/we were doing this since pissing in a potty". Marvelous stuff. Right, so this is a Sublow track, okay?

MP3: Geeneus - Shocka (feat. Godsgift & Wiley)

Now then, our mysterious reader states that Grime 2 is actually "dubstep in it's purest form". My initial reaction to Rephlex's second compilation was a bit unenthusiastic. I guess I was hoping it would be more extreme than the first one, when in fact it's much subtler. I'm starting to appreciate it more now. Taken on it's own terms it's got some really interesting ideas on it. Probably in five years' time I'll be hailing it as the most important document of this era! I realise that I haven't actually posted a track from the album yet and thought now would be a good time to do so. As I've already posted tracks from other releases by Kode 9 and Digital Mystiks , I've chosen one by Loefah. All three of his offerings follow a similar path: sparse arrangements with clunky kick/snare pattern offset by rolling eastern percussion loops, subby bass vibrations and so forth. I picked this tune cos it's got the best snare sound and a somewhat confrontational dialogue sample ("don't you rely on your special techniques - I might just beat them!") that suggests Loefah thinks he's got the edge on his colleagues...

MP3: Loefah - Beat Them

So that's a Dubstep track, okay? Everyone clear on the distinctions now? No? Me neither. Fuck it, I'm taking Ed DMX's advice: it's all just bloody Grime from now on. Ignorance is bliss....

Simon Silverdollar gives his spin on Grime definitions, plus some wise words from Derek Poplife, who seems to be upping the pace recently. Respec', as always...