Strong Medicine I first discoverd Dalek back in 2002 when they were supporting Tomahawk with EX-Girl (what a lucky boy I was) and while the idiots in the crowd were taking issue with the MC’s weight my jaw hit the floor, Huge beats, accompanied by layers of ambient noise with MC Dalek’s furious, intelligent delivery not heard since Chuck D’s heyday with Public Enemy. This encompasses the entire 60+ minutes of the latest LP ‘Absence’. It takes influences from The Velvet Underground, Faust, Neu!, My Bloody Valentine, Public Enemy, DJ Shadow etc. Although it doesnt quite match their awesome live performance (Saw them again last month at Supersonic where they were the highlight)It’s still a powerful listen and a must for anyone into abstract Hip Hop or experimental music. 50 cent fans probably should steer clear of this, its strong medicine and not for all tastes.
I do agree that this is not easy listening and you need to put the work in for it to pay off. A simple statement could be something along the likes of Chuck D (Public Enemy) rapping over something from Godflesh or Nine Inch Nails but it’s often more challenging than that.2 tracks stick out; Asylum which is VERY heavy & aggressive and boasts some of the best scratches that I have ever heard on any Hip Hop track, and Opiate The Masses which boast a savage anti-religion stance and again more great sampling.The rapping is good (although slightly one dimensional) and all the DJ work is of high standard. Yes, I would have liked some more sampled guitar work but it’s a minor quibble.The theme to these ears is urban decay. Walk through any subway at midnight or any run down estate with this on your I-Pod or MP3 player to get a real feel of the unease that this music suggests!!
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