Asian Dub Foundation :: Community Music
Named after a project that gives underprivileged youth access to music technology and education, ADF's third album doesn't quite live up to the standards set by 1998's Rafi's Revenge. Not that this is a poor album - quite the contrary, actually. MC Deedar Zaman's vocals sound light years more advanced than they did on the debut and Chandrasonic's guitar riffs are more potent than ever. But while Rafi's Revenge was a standout in the band's now illustrious career, Community Music just takes that blueprint to another level.
Sounds like the band was listening to a lot of dancehall and ska during the making of this album ("Memory War" and "Crash"), but there is no shortage of great drum n' bass riddims here. "Real Great Britain" is an unashamedly political, explosive mash-up of punk, junglist breakbeats and reggae basslines. With lyrics that include: "Not enough schools/Not enough homes/Just phoney care in his Millennium Dome," the track attacks the actions of Tony Blair's government.
Previously featured on the Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan tribute album ("Star Rise"), "Taa Deem" is one of the most brilliant collaborations ever recorded, IMHO. It is present here in a slightly altered form but one that does not take away from its raw intensity. The dubby, eastern dance grooves of "Riddim I Like" and "Crash" are also favorites. Check the sonically improved "Rebel Warrior," previously on their first album, Facts and Fictions. Community Music is probably their most accessible album to date.
"For the consciousness of the nation..."