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Andy Rantzen ('longside Sheriff Lindo) practically owns the Australian digi-dub genre. Active from the early 90s, unlike Lindo who only really produced two albums, Rantzen (who hailed from an industrial background) carried on producing throughout the 90s and into the 00s; touching on dub, minimal wave, lo-fi and techno with his own unique and intriguing flair. Also well known alongside Paul Mac as Itch-E & Scratch-E his ability to blend all the disparate elements of rave and free party culture into a cohesive, sophisticated and solid body of work is second to known, making him one of the most under-rated and accomplished producers in our humble opinion.
Since Efficient Space excavated Andy Rantzen’s mind-bending “Will I Dream?”, the rest of the world has become better acquainted with the darker & dubbier side of one of Australia’s rave superstars. Making it perfect time for another selection of tracks from Andy’s incredibly diverse oeuvre, 6 songs that sit somewhere between 80s digital reggae, 90s rave and the horizon of our accelerating future.
"Lifting the Veil" speeds up snappy drum programming and a thundering bassline to breakneck speeds, pitting them against sombre chords and strings, perfectly capturing the reflective headspace of a night drive through babylon. “Cosmic Vibrations” harks back to the development of fully computerised rhythms emanating from Jammy and Tubby’s Waterhouse studios, by way of Erskineville. In the same vein, “Bedtime for Boo Boo” sees Andy joined on the boards by the aforementioned dub technician Sheriff Lindo, creating a dynamic digi-dub number that is sure to come alive on any soundsystem worth its weight - a worthy showcase for two of Australia’s finest reggae talents.
Flip the disc to find “Move It”, the most concentrated dose of the jungle vibes that permeate the EP. Rantzen channels the headrush sonics, breakneck drums and euphoria of D’n’B’s heydey, nailing the red-eyed early AM atmosphere of a Sydney warehouse ca. 95 - and it's just as likely to cap off the night of many a secret inner west location to come. “Magic Lantern” marries a dreamy synthesizer melody with a wicked, subby bassline. If there was a dancehall scene in “Ferngully”, this would’ve been the soundtrack, with enough low end to really rattle the treetops. On closer “Dub Generator”, a slightly-creepy mechanized voice urges you to 'leave your worries at the door...come and join your friends upon the floor' - an introduction to the dancefloor or an induction into some sinister cult? Whatever the message, the dub chords and massive bassline lull you into the headspace where these words take hold.
All songs recorded at Masking Tapes, Liquid Blue and 1/66 Enmore Rd, 1997-2000.
Matt says: One of the most highly anticipated releases of the year for me this folks. Anyone with a penchant for dub, digital esoterica or lo-fi electronix needs this in their life. Sublime.
A1. Lifting The Veil
A2. Cosmic Vibrations
A3. Bedtime For Boo Boo
B1. Move It
B2. Magic Lantern
B3. Dub Generator