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Already supported by Boys Noize, Fake Blood, Laurent Garnier, Mary Anne Hobbs, Crookers, Para One, Surkin, Feadz, Salva, J-Wow, Untold, Ben Westbeech, Djedjotronic, Duke Dumont, Noob, Oneman, Christian Martin, Krikor, Jean Nipon, Crabbe, Panteros666, Bambounou, Logo, dj MA1, Destructo, Harvard Bass, Pelican Fly crew…
Back in the late 90's, TTC had just formed and I was a young rapper with an internet connection and a backpack full of dreams. I had the opportunity to travel a bit around Europe, due to my online rap network of friends and my freelance job at a now defunct French hip hop magazine, and a destination of choice was always Finland. Finland, a holy land where being a nerd was cool, where all the girls in the street looked like a banging mixture of hot blonde and eskimo, where kebabs tasted like unicorn meat, where dj Anonymous was dropping rap mixtapes full of obscure names I had never heard before, where dusty badly-recorded West Coast underground 4-track tapes from Project Blowed and Log Cabin were the biggest most important things ever, where I was accepted. I loved it there. I would go there every once in a while, first on a solo tip, then to perform with TTC, and during those visits a friendship grew with a Finnish rap group that soon became very influential in our careers and our lives: Ceebrolistics.
Ceebro' had been around for a while and had developed a style quite unique in Europe, mixture of double time raps over slow-paced beats (Californian underground style, but also early Memphis 3-6 style), with major dub, sometimes even minimal techno-dub influences (and we're talking late 90's early 2000 era, way before any notion of electronic rap was accepted even by early adopters). At that time it was very hard to find European rap groups who could ally pure rap savoir faire with an intelligent and original approach, not copying what was going on in the US, and not sounding like folkloric cornballs either. Ceebrolistics were just that.
We invited them to play a couple of gigs with us in France, they returned the favor, and we stayed in touch since then, especially with one member of the group, the tall, wise, deep-voiced MC/beatmaker Matti P. Picking up where Ceebro's huge electronic/dub influence left off, combining it with his attraction to grime and Berlin techno, Matti P's solo tracks evolved naturally towards abstract dubstep styles, but with a fresh scandinavian approach to it, focusing on the peaceful, hypnotizing aspects of those styles rather than the dark ones. We were never big dubstep fans but as time went on, Matti P's ever-evolving music tastes rejoined ours, just as house elements started to resurface in UK styles. Matti, now known as Teeth, had made a name for himself amongst DJs and fans of hybrid evolutions of the UK garage tradition, notably Rinse FM's DJ Oneman, who released Teeth's first EP Shawty on his 502 imprint in early 2011. A few remixes for Bambounou and (other finnish Sound Pellegrino alumni) Renaissance Man later, right after founding his own label "Signal Life" with fellow finnish producer Desto, Matti played us a selection of awesome tracks that appeared to us as beautifully mind-challenging as they were danceable in the coolest, most advanced club settings our wildest imagination could come up with. Teeth's love for conceptual art and poetry, his atmospheric drowsy rap roots mixed by a love and fascination for 4/4 house and techno from Chicago to Berghain, laid the foundations for this "Meme is the new Riddim" EP. We are very proud to work again with our old friend, an artist who has always inspired us with his radical choices and great taste, the amazing Teeth.
The word ‘meme’, designing an funny internet motif, stems from the word ‘gene’, and describes a concept transmitted through imitation, just like in Jamaican dancehall culture when the same beat (or ‘riddim’) is used, re-used and broken down in a variety of forms by various singers. TEETH using Cajmere’s classic “Percolator” motif and calling the result the “Percolator Meme” gave birth to the idea that a meme IS the new riddim. So “Percolator” is transfigured into a brand new meme , mutated into a proper basement jam dripping of cyber-slime and purple incantations. Awesome musical gravy robbers and Monkeytown alumni Lazer Sword isolate the soul from the original to turn it into an evil electro funk slapper perfect for aquatic pop-locking sessions in a drexciyan underwater world.
The expression "Jusqu'à Tendresse" is not quite correct french but we decided to keep it as it is because TEETH’s broken French is so charming, and to be honest we see it as his very own ‘les rythmes digitales’. It probably means ‘until tenderness’ and if ‘tenderness’ is the place where TEETH intends to go with this track I’d say it’s going to be quite a ride. More precisely an adventure-filled nocturnal ride through the Land Of Bass Bumps and nostalgic northern-light-shaped arpeggios, melancholic and sweaty. Kowton delivers a beautifully respectful techno-ey interpretation of the track, with multiple deep layers of mysterious distant drones moving in and out of this cold desert evening panorama.
The slightly more hectic and caffeine-induced smasher “Busy Crack” closes the package, marrying half time juke and scandal-navian syncopations in cracked out holy matrimony.
Release/catalogue number: SNP 031
Release date: Jun 18, 2012