MANDRAKE SOUNDS: Planet Rock Remix – 2009 – Single review

Rating: ★☆☆☆☆

As the title would suggest, what Mandrake Sounds have done here is remixed Afrika Bambataa’s seminal old school electro/ space funk/ hip–hop classic. Of course the whole point of a remix is to change something – which they have – for this is a dubstep version that will probably take the dubstep world by storm. Which got me to thinking that breakbeat culture is a funny one isn’t it? In the last twenty years, for example, bpms were first boosted until drum n bass speeds were achieved – though melody and vocals were largely sacrificed along the way. Then, much more recently, along comes dubstep and gets rid of most of the percussion. Apparently the idea is that you have to imagine it or something. I like to amuse myself sometimes by speculating where this trend will lead us next. Clearly the logical step ought to be to fuck the bass off too leaving the listener to imagine everything! We’ll call that ‘No-step’ for want of a suitably ‘urban’ moniker. Shortly thereafter, I see the dawning of a radical new breakbeat movement which puts everything back in (!) – drums, bass, melody and – in a further ‘step’ of wild conceptualism on the part of the movement’s more extreme proponents – has to be performed with live instrumentation. We could call that one FUNK. Funk, incidentally, is something the original Planet Rock has in spades…and this has in no way whatsoever. Discuss.

Mandrake Sounds – Myspace

2 Responses to MANDRAKE SOUNDS: Planet Rock Remix – 2009 – Single review

  1. Anonymous says:

    From the myspace page: “Influenced by the early pioneers of UK hard dance and breakbeat Mandrake tries to stay true to that original sound created by the likes of…4Hero, Krome & Time, Dead Dread, DJ Hype, DJ Ratty, 2 Bad mice, Suberbanbase, Metalheadz etc.”
    I didn’t know all the aforementioned made boring dubstep. I never got the dubstep hype either, but I did hear some interesting tunes once at a party. Those tunes however did not dispense of all percussion, and were actually reminiscent of the old metalheads style drum n bass only with a much slower focus.
    I fear it is just us getting old and coming to the conclusion that music needs something, you may call it ‘soul’ or ‘feeling’ which the majority if not all dubstep lacks. Let’s just focus on some funk, I heard Baby Charles, New Mastersounds & 6ix Toys are all working on new material, as do Breakestra. If we all wish for it hard enough, I’m sure they will bring us some soulful, interesting, hard-hitting funk!

  2. tlansdowne says:

    Er – I didn’t actually claim that dubstep was boring did I? Admittedly this was a colossal oversight on my part and were I to write the review again I would certainly make it abundantly clear. As for the ‘aforementioned acts’ making dubstep – I don’t think I claimed that either – but if anyone as tedious as 4Hero or Metalheadz dabbled in dubstep it would undoubtedly qualify admirably as less interesting than watching paint dry.

    As for getting old being a cause of feeling that music needs something – I don’t think the one follows the other. And chek your bad self anyway. Who’s old blud?

    And finally – on the subject of funk – keep your eyes open for the new Big Boss Man LP – it’ll blow all that other stuff out of the water!