The Clashification of Dub - Dub Spencer and Trance Hill (Echo Beach)
What a brilliant record this is. I’ve played it about six times since buying this one on spec. Fuck but it’s great.
See, this is why I like exploring Amazon. The Clash were panned in their day for their dub experiments, journos always banging on about how super they were live.
Funny. I saw them once and got bored fairly swiftly. Their LPs are not always cohesive, but sod that. That’s what cassette tapes were for, and making your own versions of their LPs was always fun.
These Swiss characters thought that there was still room for exploration in where the Clash headed. And they’ve proved that theory right.
First, their approach isn’t what you’d think. You know how jazz musicians used to take a certain part or two of a popular tune and alter it into some kind of emotional transcendence? Bird, Coltrane, Davis, you know. The songs wouldn’t always be recognisable either - and did it matter?
Did it bugpoo. The cover of the “Clashification of Dub” says it all; the Clash’s “Give ‘em Enough Rope” period artwork played with - it’s instantly recognisable - and the western noir aspect emphasised.
The cover - depicting a BIG double stack of speakers - tells you everything. It’ll bring your mood right up, it’s a platter of endorphins without the fixed smiles the xfactors demand.
The 12 songs tinkered with here are perfect, intelligent (I demand intelligence from musicians, they’re not cricketers) clever, humourous and are that rare thing, wonderful background and foreground music. There’s a certain poise here, and the fact that none of the songs have any sort of vocal imply a certain humility as well. Even more interesting is that it seems the boys are serious nutters for reggae and dub - there’s a lot of clever little things in there which I keep discovering.
I’m not a huge fan of reggae, much less dub, and not trance neither but this is the real deal, the business. That huge Clash box set I bought - I kinda hoped they’d have put out a dedicated dub disc. This will do nicely in the meantime.