Yep, this article is about the future future… Fuck 2013, what does 2014 have in store for us???
Ok, admittedly, it’s a wonky name for an article; but who cares – it’s probably accurate, when you get right down to it. Let me explain!
Jungle is coming back. That kind of fast-paced energy only stays on the low for so long… Now I know, some folks say it’s already been back, and many would point to drumstep… But drumstep is not, in my opinion, a very endearing revitalization of drum n bass / jungle. It has that overly-thick-rubber pop-dubby ‘EDM: “slow-but-it-thinks-its-fast,” aesthetic, that kind of diminishes the fundamental agility of a sound like jungle.
Plus it just kinda sucks..
And anyway, I’ve felt for years that in order for drum n bass to reaaallly make a comeback, it needed something new… True, the dubstep-influenced super-wobbly bassy shit definitely leaves a fresh stain on d’n’b, but I’m hungry much more, and I know jungle is capable of it.
I’ve been hearing some very interesting things in the realms of both Chicago juke/footwork AND rave music in recent days, as well as the two coming together to form, “a more perfect union,” – it’s something that really excites the fuck outta’ me, as a fan of old school electronic, and as a douchebag who thinks he’s cool enough to enjoy all the newer styles of dance music, too.
A More Perfect Union
In some ways, the rhythms of these two are already identical – and in many ways, different: let’s say that at this point in their relationship, they’re just exploring each other’s bodies, and learning a lot; just like two virgins, exploring each other for the first time… Or, well, actually, I guess jungle is about 30-ish, and juke is… what, 15? 16? Somewhere around there? I’m not really sure, but… Ok, so footwork-jungle is a lot like a fast, abrasive thirty year old exploring an underage kid who likes to dance and lives in Chicago – hmmm… wait, that’s a lot darker then I meant to, uh…
Alright, moving on…
The point is – … well, I don’t know exactly what the point was with that… I guess the point is that the kid from Chicago should probably call the police, as there’s some creepy thirty year old trying to have relations with it. But, uh, in terms of music, it’s a good sound. And, going back to the title premise, I think it’s 2014 style shit, because really, juke hasn’t even caught on all the way (the way dubstep or trap or moombah have) but I’m confident it will make it’s mark.
Plus, people love jungle. It’s stood the test of time, and I felt that it had to come back, in some form or another, but in a new and interesting way, as previously stated, and it fits in well with my Genre Base Theory, which I’ll explain in a minute…
Also, in this case, the thirty-something year old has just as much it could take from the teenager as the teenager could learn from the thirty year old. (I really regret having made that analogy.) But what I like about the juke/jook/footwork/footwerk music (beyond just speed – which is important, of course) is the loop’d out, housey Chicago soul vibe it has, wrapped deep inside it’s DNA.
The city that brought us house music, decades ago, never strayed too far from its love (and definite skill) of rhythm and dance, and it certainly shows in a lot of what they’ve come out with over the years.
Structurally, I love how D.I.Y. the music sounds; and in that way, it’s got that punk dynamic to it. (Jungle has that, too – jungle DEFINITELY had that…) Juke artists will sample the shit out of everything and everyone. I love that. It’s also got that sort of drumbox-swing to it, and I love when I hear a footwork beat and the snare is sometimes placed at the VEEEERY end of the beat, jerking you around, but jerking you around consistently and quickly, and in a very rough fashion… like a really fast and aggressive handjob. But you’re likely to remember a juke track (and that fucking insane footwork dancing) much longer than a lubeless handjob that didn’t last very long. Goddamn, this article is starting to get a lot more graphic than I originally intended. I meant to just talk about fast beats, and how much post-90s music has seen quite the evolution, going from slow to midrange, and now getting faster, again (finally).
Genre Base Theory
Something I’ve noticed about music trends that make a comeback: sometimes it takes a minute for a style to form a base in culture – initially, it might do exceedingly well, pop, and “die out,” only to return, a decade or two later, reinstating it’s place in culture. It might not be as big as it seemed to be when it had it’s initial and momentary blitzkrieg on the world (or, depending on the style, it might) but if it does manage to come back, it’s likely to stay around a lot longer.
Disco is a perfect example. The real reason disco died was not ONLY over-exposure, despite what a lot of people think, but also, it was a case of over-exposure at a time when people weren’t ready for it, culturally. Homophobia, racism, and a fear of anything pre-recorded and “not-rockin’-enough,” also had a LOT to do with it.
But then, twenty years later, all anyone ever tried to do in the late 90s was try to sound like it was the late 70s. Remember Beck, Jamiraquai? (…oh yea – and ALL of HOUSE music?)
I draw a parallel between disco’s rise and fall, and it’s slower, second rise, to the progression of fast electronic music in America. At first, the music got going, going, going; and then it stalled, and fell apart… The pieces got put back together, and now it’s starting to race up to speed again.
Obviously, I have to point out that there have been jungle and juke fans, producers, DJs, and 160 bpm pioneers cracking great tunes out throughout the entirety of this Fast Music Recession that we’re just getting out of now; so I guess I’m only referring to what tends to be most popular… which is why I’m not going to pretend as though something as wild as footwork jungle is all the rage right now, as a lot of folks are STILL busy battling out how to dance to 70 bpm dubstep that people keep claiming is ACTUALLY 140 bpm dubstep (spoiler alert: you can’t…) but – perhaps in 2014…
Also, I’ll point out that downtempo has already been around (though it’s been making a ‘comeback,’ lately, which might seem to disprove my notion of the rise of fast music – however, there will ALWAYS be slow and midtempo music, it’s inevitable; fast music, on the other hand, seems to come and go, which I think can be attributed to the simple fact that it’s a little on the fringe, musically. Not to say that it can’t go mainstream, but just to say that no matter what year it is, there are always going to be ten million people dancing to midtempo house music. It’s more accessible to a wider audience. But as far as the really speedy shit, it’s something to watch, as it comes and goes as fast as it’s sped-up tempo. (In fact, you might be able to draw a real parallel between the speed of a genre to the pace of it’s popularity… But, I’m not going to think about that right now. Lololol.)
I just got Kid Lib’s Kid Lib – Footwork Jungle Remixes Vol One, (check it out, please! It’s fucking fun! Visit http://kidlib.bandcamp.com/album/kid-lib-footwork-jungle-remixes-vol-one) as well as found a few other jungle-ish juke’d out jems (I mean ‘gems’)… https://soundcloud.com/groups/deeper-juke-footwork-jungle
Here’s some Kidlib …
And here’s one by Skimatix…
And here’s an excellent tune by Manni Dee and Deft:
What the Fuck Else?
I gotta say, some of these combinations (especially that Skimatix one) remind me of breakcore…which is AWESOME. I’ll definitely be posting more soon, but these were a few of the tunes I’ve been enjoying recently..
So, what else do I predict for 2014, outside of music? Biohacking, the mainstreaming of DMT, as well as lingerie barista’s and white coffee (Ask Seattle). Well, I predict at least one or two of those might happen, anyway. Alright, long rant over. Thanks for listening. I hope you’ve been confused/inspired enough to go out and create some awesome tunes of your own!
Alright, alright, I’ll add a picture of a pin up model holding onto vinyl records now, as I often like to do after a rant, to reward you for paying attention. Sort of a habit, at this point.
Ok, that about does it…