it’s that time…

British contemporary art magazine Frieze asked me to write an essay on the year in music. Results can be found in the Jan-Feb issue on newstands now (or soon), and it’s viewable online.

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my Top 10 List for WFMU contains RealAudio links, functioning as a kind of dispersed soundtrack to the above piece.

tonite’s radio show can be listened to. Expect a few killer Low Deep tracks (see below), an exclusive remix by Sonido Martines, new tunes by DJ C, The Bug, Michelle, and – always – more.

My OiNK piece is being translated to Italian and will be republished soon, details on that as they come. I’ve been busy doing heaps of writing for various ‘real’ publications — expect a wave of articles in 2008. Plus a followup to the OiNk post soon here on MuddUp!

The Low Deep instrumentals album is gorgeous instrumental grime and grime/r&b hybrids, showcasing his distinctive take on time and melodic orchestration. Self-released, purchase links on his myspace.

i first heard ‘Straight Flush’ years ago and was floored. happy to say that a handful of cuts are as good as that or even better… this mp3 wont be up for long. seems that, outside the grime scene, folks aren’t checking for Low Deep, which is too bad… i could see him making serious waves in the mainstream R&B world:

Low Deep – Never See Me Fall


7 thoughts on “MMVII LOOKBACK”

  1. nice piece in frieze! some real gems in there.

    i’ve never been able to bring myself to do year-end lists, but i’d give a forward to a lot of your picks, for sure.

  2. Fantastic article (although the first link didn’t work for me… this one, however, did: These end-of-year round-ups are usually just an excuse for writers to reiterate the greatness of a very limited – and almost exclusively western, English-speaking – records. How refreshing (although, given the writer, not entirely unexpected) to get a review of the year that doesn’t just bleat on about Rihanna and the new Radiohead album. Looking forward to more Clayton-penned pieces in 2008…

  3. 2007 was indeed a good year. So here’s an off-the-cuff response to Jace’s “2007” article in Frieze, ’cause I found his usual prowess with the pen was rather aloof this time around:

    How much were you (physically) in London? To say 4/4 made any serious “inroads” (people still use that word? WW2 slang?) is an incredible overstatement. I can count the number of nights (that featured it) in London on one hand. The Blogoratti may have noted (hyped) its presence, but that’s about it. It’s still very much a Northern thing. And, let’s face it, it’s just speed garage with a little more…wobble.

    And to say that Dubstep’s creative center (by that I assume you mean London) “grew stagnant”, is pretty dismissive/narrow, given some of the recent releases that have shattered any genre trappings trying to hold them back. Say what you want about the new BURIAL record, but months later, it’s not boring, it’s an actual ALBUM, and it gets play from people way outside any particular scene. The recent Kode 9 podcast on Rinse, teaming up with Flying Lotus, is also a top moment for the scene, showcasing possibilities that are just ‘plain musical’, and not tempo restricted, or lost in the darkness.

    Indie Rock:

    I can’t speak on this.


    Poor show. You could insert any marginalized ethnic musical form for the word ‘cumbia’, and you’d still be saying the same old things in this paragraph. Flip/change the names of a few places and bammo, you have every world music blog entry of 2007. Kuduro, Baile, even Reggaeton need to move beyond this tired discourse of “poor, black, indigenous”. As the sound gets bigger, and pro-sumer recording technology infiltrates these places, surely the best is yet to come. And how many times can you use the words ‘bootleg’ or ‘mash-up’ and expect it to carry any weight? Need examples man. Bollocks to that bit. I feel like I read a hundred words and all I got was a couple name-drops.

    Word Music:

    NICE ONE. I’m very happy that you gave it to these Sublime Frequencies types though. They need a swift kick in the teeth for plundering art, without promoting actual people.

    Konono No. 1:

    Have you even listened to this band? I guess you could call it “neo-folk”, but then it would seem that the writer is the one giving them the “manicure”. They play straight up Congolese inspired African “trance” music with some rugged-ass modified instruments, speakers, and amplification. And “Afro-Punk?” Sheesh. That’s the best you could do? Seriously? It’s easy to hate on a group that has it’s press game on lock.

    Lil Wayne:

    I’m not so sure I’d go calling out Weezy on his sex preference simply ’cause you want him to join your Banjee club. I’m not saying you’re wrong, but why speculate? Rappers don’t need to be dragged out of the closet by bloggers.

    Myspace, Oink, etc:

    No problems there. Not a bad paragraph at all. Solid.

    Also, you once wrote a most clever essay DISSING year-end “lists” did you not?
    What up with that? Stick to your guns, perhaps?


  4. jace,

    i’m glad you took time to address the the problem of djs/compilers forcing the makers of the music they build their careers on to be anonymous. its a terrible/harmful trend, and it seems to be growing as new djs/compilers reproduce what they’ve seen their heroes do, think that that is how it works. meanwhile, people who, for the first time, have a chance to be heard by the rest of the world remain nameless and voiceless. it is one thing for an dj/compiler to not name well-known artist in order to avoid the, possibly, inevitable lawsuits. however, it is another thing for a dj/compiler to obscure names and titles in order to appropriate a genre and remake it in his or her own image.

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