Jah Wobble and the Nippon Dub Ensemble (30 Hertz/Southbound)

 |   |  <1 min read

Jah Wobble/Nippon Dub Ensemble: Cherry Blossom of my Youth
Jah Wobble and the Nippon Dub Ensemble (30 Hertz/Southbound)

Because Japanese folk tends to be elegantly austere and melodically understated you could think there's not a lot to flute, koto and percussion that could be done by way of dub.

But that would be to underestimate world music explorer Jah Wobble who previously delivered an exceptional -- and unexpected -- album of Chinese dub.

Here with a small ensemble of Japanese and Western musicians on material which can seem already reduced to essential elements, Wobble brings out rumbling percussion and deft bass work (never too hefty as befits the sound), loops vocals, echoes what little there in the percussion and occasionally (only very occasionally) makes these songs sound tetchy and almost aggressive.

K Dub 05 takes a Brixton bass line walk but is pure Japanese folk in every other element. And it works. 

There is a hypnotic effect deployed here too - but when the chant backing vocals on Hokkai Bon Uta come in you'l be wide awake.

So this is beauty and the beats . . . with lonely flute, resounding taiko drums and dub-bass.

Another surprise from Mr Wobble. 

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   World Music articles index

BEST OF ELSEWHERE 2009 Speed Caravan: Kalashnik Love (Real World/Southbound)

BEST OF ELSEWHERE 2009 Speed Caravan: Kalashnik Love (Real World/Southbound)

At last! When Elsewhere reviewed this thrilling album last year it was almost immediately deleted and people were demanding it, even more so after this group played at the Taranaki Womad where they... > Read more

Luisa Maita: Lero-Lero (Cumbancha)

Luisa Maita: Lero-Lero (Cumbancha)

There are perhaps a hundred or so singers such as Luisa Maita in Sao Paolo but doubtless her family connections -- mother a concert promoter, father a musician, uncle owning a record label where... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

Slowdive: Slowdive (Dead Oceans/Rhythmethod)

Slowdive: Slowdive (Dead Oceans/Rhythmethod)

We’ve said it before but it does bear repeating: there seems to be a (welcome) return of shoegaze . . . and when we essayed the absolutely terrific retrospective box set Still in a Dream... > Read more

The Eastern: Cthulhu (RPR)

The Eastern: Cthulhu (RPR)

Here's something we like and use it draw your attention in advance of Record Store Day tomorrow. Rough Peel in Wellington has its own label and has done vinyl of albums by the Eastern,... > Read more