In Full Effect

One of the things music blogs are for is going deeper and further, plucking out the out of print, the lost and forgotten, the obscure b-sides and alternate takes. Today I’ve got two Big Audio Dynamite B-sides for no reason other than I was scrolling through a folder and the first one caught my eye. Mainly because looking at the track name I couldn’t place it at all.

The spirit of forward momentum and trying new ideas, new sounds and new technologies that led Mick Jones through The Clash and then into Big Audio Dynamite is in full effect on In Full Effect. It was on the Contact 12″, the single that promoted 1989’s Megatop Phoenix, an album that married B.A.D.’s guitars, choruses and samples with acid house. In Full Effect is a seven minute instrumental credited to Mick and Greg and shows they could do a pretty convincing version of what was then the new thing.

In Full Effect

Three years earlier V Thirteen had a similarly dance floor bound B-side, this time soaking up electro and giving it a B.A.D. spin.

Hollywood Boulevard (Dub Mix)

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Roosevelt High

Dreadzone’s 2013 album Escapades contained a fair few gems, showing the fire is still burning brightly. This song, Roosevelt High, made the miles disappear on my journey home last night, a very satisfying piece of dub techno with some lovely slide guitar.

Dreadzone turned twenty one this year. To celebrate Greg Dread offered the people a new deal (ha!) and put together a mix of twenty one Dreadzone songs, in chronological order, from the dancefloor end of their work including remixes from Underworld and William Orbit. Bouncing.

Out Of The Black

This is a bit good and thanks to Echorich for the tip off- a remix of Out Of The Black from Neneh Cherry’s excellent album Blank Project. The songs on the album are really stripped back and percussive, Neneh’s singing blues and jazz influenced. This remix by Hot Chip’s Joe Goddard puts some clubby sounds and dynamics into it, alongside Swedish popstar Robyn.

And tying recent postees together neatly, in this Big Audio Dynamite video for C’mon Every Beatbox, Neneh Cherry busts some moves and cuts some rug. I always love the way Mick and Don sing alternate lines in this song (and there’s a guitar solo pinched from Jimi Hendrix). Surely this was where Roddy Frame got his inspiration for Good Morning Britain from too.

Dub In The Right Way

I’ve been digging Dreadzone recently. Their dub inspired techno hits the spot, uplifting and righteous. Greg Dread has a Soundcloud page that is worth rooting around in, all sorts of rarities, versions, remixes and live shows. Here’s a couple of highlights.

Dreadzone versus King Tubby

A vocal version of their 90s classic Little Britain featuring Earl 16. The instrumental version of this song was all over the place at one point and has some cultural resonance today in the light of the referendum and the issue of devolution for the regions. It’s strange to think that Dreadzone supported the Gallagher brothers at Knebworth.

 

Places

‘ve been uncovering and re-discovering bits and bobs by Dreadzone recently, which includes keeping an eye on the Soundcloud page of Greg Dread. Coming out of the ashes of Big Audio Dynamite they spliced dub with dance and made many good tunes through the 90s and into the 21st century, for a variety of record labels. Last year’s Escapades album reunited them with Mick Jones for the single Too Late. This song has been posted by Greg Dread- Places, a beautiful tune and vocal, with some dialogue sampled from Harry Dean Stanton in Paris Texas (above with Nastassja Kinski). The cost of the sample led to it being removed from the released version- which is a shame as it works really well. I’m currently playing this half a dozen times a day.

Packing

We had friends round for tea and a couple of glasses of wine each and we’re now trying to pack to go on holiday tomorrow. And I’m mucking about on the internet.

I missed this absolute gem of a song and only discovered it by accident earlier today- from last year, Emiliana Torrini and Steve Mason, noisy and way up there. The noise, I’ve just discovered, is provided by Toy.

I Go Out

And this, a remix of Lana Del Rey’s Video Games by Dreadzone’s Greg Dread. Lovely.

Lana Dub Rey

Right. How many pairs of shorts do I need?

Introduction

hird post in a row in what seems to be turning into an accidental ‘what the punks did next’ theme week. Greg Dread (Big Audio Dynamite, Dreadzone) has recently unearthed and shared a track he put together back in the mid 80s, Big Audio Dynamite’s live show intro music. It’s a five minute track with snippets and samples from BAD’s back catalogue all layered over a drum machine set to ‘loud and fast’. The band would ususally appear at around the two minute mark but this goes on for another three. It won’t embed but you can find it and download it here. Via the marvels of social media Greg said I could share it. Thanks Greg.

As a bonus this is BAD performing The Battle Of All Saints Road live on the telly in 1988. Mick suave in leather biker jacket and grey trousers, Don giving the one fingered/keyboard-playing salute…

What a good band they were.
Dreadzone are currently rocking a dancefloor somewhere in the UK, celebrating their twentieth anniversary.