Hippos In Tanks have just announced details of a vinyl release of Hype Williams troubadour Dean Blunt’s Narcissist II mixtape.
When a concept-laden project comes along as seemingly explicit as Acid Ragga, you can’t help but have some pretty sizable preconceptions about what the music may consist of. Certainly it doesn’t seem like a shock to find out that Kevin ‘Techno Animal’ Martin is the one antagonising the relationship between electronic music and reggae. Since his The Bug moniker first rose to prominence tearing electronica fans a new one via vital Rephlex EPs and albums, Martin has displayed a visceral vision for where the wider possibilities of modern production might take the fundamentals of Jamaican-born sound, without ever losing sight of the all-important roots.
It’s not been made clear why Dean Blunt and Inga Copeland opted to drop the Hype Williams moniker in advance of this album for Hyperdub. Given the somewhat glib, intellectual appendage-swinging approach us writers have taken to their music since they surfaced, it’s possible they saw it as just another way to have us endlessly theorising. This shift in presence to their own supposedly fake names is the only difference on Black Is Beautiful, a gradually intoxicating album that retains every other aspect of the hazed out world of malfunctioning equipment Blunt and Copeland have occupied across countless releases.