Knives to the Treble
- Artist: Burning Babylon
- Format: CD
- Release Date:6/30/2004
Review from NICEUP.COM 'Burning Babylon is the stage name of one Slade Anderson, a Boston-based musician who came of age playing in hardcore punk bands and developed an interest in reggae during the 1990s. Like Ryan Moore (who records one-man-band dub albums under the name Twilight Circus or Twilight Circus Dub Sound System), Anderson creates his instrumental reggae albums by himself, layering samples and his own instrumental parts on top of each other to create a shifting, kaleidoscopic welter of dubwise reggae sounds. The result is impressive, as his latest album demonstrates; his sound is somewhere between the wild experimentalism of Adrian Sherwood and the more traditional approach of Moore. No dub fan should miss the chance to give this music a listen.' Review from Dubflash.com (Germany) ... 'Knives To The Treble' is one of these records which you have to listen a few times until you realize what a good album it is. My first impression was: ah, again one of these sweet American poppy reggae records. But I was quite wrong. After the third or fourth listening I started to feel that it's a really good album. And this is my opinion until now (and I have this record now for already 5 months). It surely is different than any Europe-releases you will find. Especially the beats are more funky and therefore give the whole album more variety, also the use of samples is quite extensive here. ...The style of music goes from 70s oriented roots riddims ('Roots Fi Cool') to technoid dubs ('Babylon Overdrive'). In between there are some real gems like the wicked 'King Dubby' with an awesome sweet melody, the stepping 'Diabolique' or 'Double Axe', coming along with heavy dope beats and hypnotic organ and synthie sound carpets, yeah. ...Altogether it ends up in a tasty dub-soup that I would like to recommend to all dub fans who sometimes like their dubs a bit different.' Review from Small Axe(U.K.) 'Burning Babylon are trodding on the same path as Twilight Circus - superheavy weight rhythms inspired by the Radics - only Burning Babylon are partial to a fx here and there - nothing wrong in that in moderation and this set sets stay well within the codes of dub laid down by King Tubby and the rest of the dubmasters of Jamaica. The 13 tracks hit the ground running with 'Roots Fi Cool' and move across the muscial landscape with all the ease of huge 4X4.' Burning Babylon is a one man Dub Reggae project from Boston, Massachusetts USA. Created by Slade Anderson, the heavyweight riddims of Burning Babylon's sound are firmly anchored in the 1970's Jamaican roots tradition, but with an ear for the neo dub stylings of the present day. I came to dub relatively late in my musical career. For 15 years I played guitar in various punk/metal bands in the Boston area, some of which you may be familiar with (The Freeze, Straw Dogs). Not surprisingly, the music I played mirrored what I listened to - loud and fast were the rules of my turntable. What reggae I did hear came via The Clash and, of course, Bob Marley. The word 'dub' had yet to enter my vocabulary. Although when I was still a teenager it had begun slowly creeping in around the edges, reggae stayed on the periphery of my listening experience for years to follow. During the mid 90s I began playing bass seriously for the first time. During this same period I also decided to investigate reggae more deeply. Since I was now primarily a bass player, focusing on music that was bass-oriented made sense. Wanting music that was more earthy and less slick than Marley or Tosh, I searched for albums that looked as though they might offer what I wanted. The first one I bought was Glen Brown and King Tubby: Termination Dub. To me, the cover looked as if the music was going to be pretty classic, grungy and authentic and I liked the title as well. Luckily I'd hit on exactly what I was in search of. It didn't take long for me to readjust the way I listened to music (with little or no vocals) to fully appreciate what I was hearing. Drums drenched in reverb, horns and guitars echoing into oblivion, and the most heavyweight bass I'd ever heard. It wasn't long before dub was stuck in my brain. Soon I was buying every album I could find to immerse myself in the music. Being a musician, I, of course, wanted to learn how to play this music that had so captured my attention. After a few weeks of wrestling with the rhythms, it finally 'clicked' and I recorded my first dub track. Burning Babylon was born. While I hope that I have my own unique take on dub, I've certainly been influenced by those that have come before me. Slade's words ring true, as the spirits of the usual suspects (King Tubby, Scientist, Lee 'Scratch') clearly loom large in the Burning Babylon studio.
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