Epoch – ‘Attraction Dub’ / ‘No Dread’ 12″ [Innamind Recordings]

While we’ll happily sit here and argue the virtues of live analogue editing and dub mixing to tape for days to come, we’ll do so not forgetting that the majority of our favourite new tunes continue to come to us chopped and spliced from a laptop. Most will try to emulate the old styles of manipulating tracks live, and a decent chunk will succeed and be pressed to crackly wax for us to rock a party with.

Then come along plates like these, wearing their digital tools on their sleeves, and still dripping with more soul than anything else out there. Epoch’s gone his own way on this one, stripping down and rebuilding original dubwise in to totally new creations, crafted to perfection.

The time that’s gone in to these is obvious, with almost every loop sounding original. ‘No Dread’ is based in a rough sounding roots ballad, but the elements going on behind the vocal are really what’s impressive. There’s some sort of middle-eastern influence drawn on here, with rough horns, street sounds, battered keyboards and fuzzy guitars all play in and out sparingly at different times.

The instrumental’s narrated by a violin and a very slow-feeling 140bpm, giving the whole affair a proper struggle vibe. Can’t remember being this immersed in a track from recent memory, you really feel like you’re trudging some sorrowful streets of Kingston.

On ‘Attraction Dub’ the drums feel slightly faster if not overall sparser. You settle more in to a rhythm here with guitar led offbeat rhythm and kick drum echo. There’s some sort of soothing flute throughout but the real star is the beautifully harmonised vocal hooks paired up with a more generic soundboy line. Cracking stuff.

Now for the sad news. While these tracks first surfaced in various forms about a year ago through select mixes and gigs, they only appeared ever so briefly for sale earlier this month. As expected, they flew about with little promise of more to come.

That said, the IMX001 cat# seems to suggest this but the first in a new sub-label or series of releases from Innamind Recordings. Seriously hanging to see what they follow it up with.