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World Music CD Reviews Reggae & Caribbean

BILL LASWELL PRESENTS TROJAN DUB MASSIVE CHAPTER I

By Ken Micallef
Published September 27, 2005

Trojan/Sanctuary

Possessing one of the heaviest touches in the music biz, whether remixing Miles Davis or getting all egomaniacal in his own bass-lost-in-a-storm productions, Bill Laswell is nothing if not persistent. Now he has convinced Trojan, keeper of some of the world’s finest reggae, to let him loose in their vaults to perform the infamous Laswell dice-and-splice. Laswell has good taste; the artists remixed here include Sly and the Revolutionaries, Gregory Isaacs’ All Stars, Sly and Robbie, Scientist and the Upsetters. With that kind of groove-alicious material to chop, warp and extend, Laswell mostly keeps his wits about him, adding his patented low bass growl for sure, along with supersonic (and ultrasonic) effects like the sound of whirring helicopter blades, swarming insects, chattering monkeys and alien nuns engrossed in prayer. Thankfully, Laswell pays his respects and exits stage left.