Thursday, July 24, 2008

Material - Eternal Drift (promo-only) 12"

Material is an ever-evolving musical work centered around bassist/producer extraordinaire Bill Laswell. This 1994 vinyl promo (on Laswell's own Axiom label through Island US) featured a few remixes and variations on the track from the epic dub / trance / rock / experimental / hip-hop / ethno album 'Hallucination Engine', and was serviced only to DJs and clubs.

The Kupper and Hacker Tribal Remix sucks balls - generic upbeat house / dance crap. Somewhere along the way, they lost the Material song. The original mix is here, too, and it's a wonderous and deep ethno-dub experience, with hints of jazz, Afro-pop, and more. Laswell's own 'Construct Over Destiny Mix' is a bleepy re-interpretation - at once imposing, cold, and electronic. Finally, Terre Thaemlitz's mix (here chopped into 2 tracks, unfortunately, but that's the nature of ripping from vinyl and not paying proper attention) is a minimalist exercise in restraint, and this ambient variation boasts a barely-there shimmery-ness. Wonderful and beautiful, though bearing little resemblance to the original. Some good work, if you can bear sitting through the tedious exercise of the opening cut.

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