Monday, May 22, 2006

The Realm of the Unwell

Bubbah's Tum - Dirty Great Mable
Tube Jerk - Eight

If ever a label were worthy of its given name, it would have to be iLL Recordings. Operating out of west London from 1997 until 2000, the noise made by this pioneering imprint was of the sickest variety, and the label was the first home of many leftfield elements of the electronic music scene, including Si Begg (Buckfunk 3000, Cabbageboy) and Animals on Wheels (Ninja Tune).

‘Spunk Jazz’ was the labels one and only compilation, showcasing a wide variety of styles including wonky techno, drill’n’bass, rhythmic fuckery and abstract jazz, and influencing a variety of current artists, including Keith Fullerton Whitman’s Hrvatski project, and Venetian Snares.

One track from that album defeats all attempts at categorisation - ‘Dirty Great Mable’ by Bubbah’s Tum. It kicks off sounding like a g-funk era Dr Dre-produced joint, except where you’d expect Snoop to pipe up, instead you get a sample of dialogue in which a deranged American describes the effects of “huffing aeroplane glue”. Then the beat comes back, subdued at first, before erupting fatter than Pavarotti after eating a walrus sandwich. The mating call of a bull moose makes an appearance, along with vocal yelps and the piercing g-funk whistle, until the whole twisted track disappears down the plughole, leaving your speakers shredded and your mind in disarray.

iLL also released the stunning album ‘Fold’ by Tube Jerk aka Tim Wright. ‘Eight’ is taken from the album and is a blistering slab of techno that sounds like it could have been recorded last week rather than 7 or 8 years ago. It builds and builds and then DESTROYS. The prolific, multi-talented Wright has recorded under a variety of guises, including Germ for GPR Recordings and his own name for excursions into a mutant hybrid of techno and UK garage for Novamute. A new Tube Jerk track will be out on the relaunched Framework Records this summer.

Complete iLL Recordings discography here
Search ebay for the Spunk Jazz compilation and the Bubbah's Tum single (with a Boards of Canada remix)
Buy 'Fold' from the Tube Jerk website
Visit Tim Wright Music
Tim Wright @ My Space


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