The Bug – Angels & Devils

(Ninja Tune, 2014)

Kevin Martin, has created, produced and remixed music under various aliases, and has worked with such awesome names as John Zorn (of the great label Tzadik), Justin Broadrick (of Godlflesh), Dälek and Flowdan, just to name a few. This is the fourth album he has released under the name “The Bug”, which leaves none doubting why artists like Trent Reznor and Aphex Twin love this man.

Angels & Devils basically combines the Jamaican and African based styles of Dancehall (and Reggae) and more modern Grime with quite heavy and noisy Industrial-like sounds.

Featuring names alone such as Gonjasufi, Flowdan, Death Grips, Warrior Queen and others make this an interesting listen for any lover of experimental Hip Hop or Grime, but the style of “The Bug” is really something so personal and unique it would stand on it’s own even without the visiting artists.

The basic drum-sounds sound quite vintage, old school drum computer like, as do many of the synth-sounds in these synthetic yet strangely organic sounding beats. The overall feeling of the album is quite warm and resounding. Humming, buzzing , drony basses and leads mixed with the deep and also bright percussion sounds create an atmosphere worthy of an universe of it’s own. The soundscapes take me to a futuristic apocalyptic city by night, with buildings draped in red and blue neon. Very soundtrack-like.

Although half of the songs are not that multifaceted, they all have a special feeling of their own, and the clear highlights of the album such as “Mi Lost” with Miss Red,  “Fuck a Bitch” with Death Grips and “Dirty” with Flowdan make this an utterly cool listening experience. Had to actually buy it myself.

8.5/10 – Antti Mikonmäki

The Bug (Ninja Tune)

“Dirty ft. Flowdan” (Official Music Video)

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