It's the perfect time to cue entrance music for Kevin Martin, who, as a member of ambient-metal machinists Godflesh and noisy hip-hop beat-miners Techno Animal, spent years smuggling a dub-head's stash to those peeps. In his Bug guise, he fully embraces laptop dancehall production as an extreme sport, inviting some of the UK and the Caribbean's top underground MC's for bong hits. That Pressure, his first full-length under this name, is being released by like-minded extremists Kid 606 (in the U.S.) and Aphex Twin (in Europe), definitely makes sense.
Not everything here is a full-on digital squall. Bug's got more than a bit of dub techno's hippie side to him. Tracks such as "Thief of Dreams," which features Roger Robinson's Rasta spiritualist verses, and "Live & Learn," with Paul St. Hilaire cooing lover 's rock while bass whooshes imitate upskirt maneuvers, are lovely, calmly schizoid bits of populist reggae thought. Whereas Pressure's blasts from the dancehall camp -- particularly on cuts MCed by Daddy Freddy, a gruff-voiced haranguer who once made it into the Guinness Book of World Records as the world's fastest rapper -- are as good as sinister future-funk gets. Lo-fidelity synths rumbling at midlevel, shimmying your bowels in a way that's both frightening and exhilarating: This is sweaty, lights-off-in-a-crowded-basement stylee.
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