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World Music CD Reviews Europe

ADRIAN SHERWOOD

By TOM TERRELL
Published April 19, 2006

Never Trust A Hippy
Real World

London’s Adrian Sherwood is a genius and legend. Originally a disciple of JA dub godheads King Tubby and Lee “Scratch” Perry, Sherwood has for the last 23 years been the most important, innovative and influential producer in that realm - period. Via various acts on his On-U Records label (Prince Far-I, Dub Syndicate, Gary Clail, Tackhead), he went one step beyond. In his ears and hands, dub became a darker, omnivorous (funk, new wave, rock, rap), more dystopian, spiritually narcotic auralscape. AD’s dubafonic productions for Ministry and Nine Inch Nails are industrial rock milestones. Hard to believe, then, that the 11-track Never Trust A Hippy is our kid’s first ever solo recording. Even cooler, many of the tracks—“Hari Up Hari’s” dubbed-out Vedic moan-rockers-one-drop-house-keyboard-groove soundclash, the piano/guitar-jazzed, tribal-chanted, Sly&Robbie-percolated dancehall of “Haunted By Your Love,” “Dead Man Smoking”’s joyfully shuffling binghi-bongo-palm-guitar-fatback-drum-keyboard/bass-skank-barking-dog mash up and the majestic jazzbo trumpet/Temple of Sound and Rizwan-Muazzam Qawwali-infused sci-fi dub sprawl of “Paradise of Nada Remix”—are the Maestro’s most forward works to date. In the last two decades of the 20th century, Adrian Sherwood stayed ahead of the curve. Never Trust A Hippy proves that in 2003, he still is.