Tristan Bechet and Christopher Pravdica are Services, a band quite unlike what you might have heard before. Formed out of the ashes of well-known noise rock/wall-of-sound outfit Flux Information Sciences (Young God Records), the duo's staggeringly loud live shows assault the senses with a tower of discordant noise and distorted rhythm. How does a band comprised of only two people produce such a maddening amount of sound? The secret lies in a discovery made one day by Bechet, experimenting in the studio.
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There's a revolutionary energy reverberating through speaker boxes and live music venues across the UK. The polar opposite of the junk food-quick fix of manufactured black pop, this is audio gastronomy that nurtures, energizes and heals, and it's being spearheaded by two very different London vocalists: Mpho Skeef and Eska.
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It was 1 a.m. on the fifth floor of an abandoned council flat in London. A massive system had been brought in from Bristol and the Heatwave party was living up to its name. A visit from the authorities and the threat of closure hadn't stopped the headliner from taking the decks but all doors and windows had to be shut. Equipment was failing, a technician was under the decks screwing together a powerstrip, the place was packed with people and even at a quarter power the system was still thumping people with bass while MCs spit lyrical daggers. Read more »
"This wasn't supposed to happen," laughs Naeem Juwan. "It just wasn't supposed to happen."
Seated inside a Brooklyn falafel joint in the midst of an extended stay in New York City, the Baltimore-bred, Philly-based MC better known as Spankrock is having a good laugh at the strange arc that has led him to be associated with Baltimore club music, the bass music variation suddenly on national blast after more than 15 years as a secret handshake of sorts for Maryland-area black kids.
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