Radio Ape

By Mikerak

Ddamage have been around for a while, quietly working away on a range of interesting projects. Before this latest outing on Planet Mu they'd already released two albums, collaborated with TTC, Mike Ladd and Dose One to name but a few and had tracks out on a number of comps for labels like Tsunami Addiction, V/Vm and the Squat Sampler on Kraked and Associated Industries. With the release of Radio Ape these boys can now begin to enjoy the level of exposure they always deserved. Creating a properly unique sound the Parisian duo intersperse slices of hip-hop and rock and tie it together with a shit load of distortion – dirty digital noise combined with pumping analogue funk. Like the best things in life you know it's bad for you but feels so good.

This album swings about violently from hypnotic droning waves of noise with distorted echoing drums to nasty, grizzly yet beautiful, bastardised pop. What really grabs me is the drumming, sometimes hip-hop sometimes punk rock, but its always on the money, it always fits and is always changing.

Tracks such as Ink dish out a brain-beating level of distortion, the many layers of wrongness mesh into a hypnotic rhythm that's almost trance like (by that I mean it can put you in a trance, not that its sounds like a Gatecrasher euphoric anthem for you to reach the lasers for). The distortion grows into something beautiful; the way it seems to wrap around the sounds warping into something that's so very good but not at all right. This is theme carried on into the next track Maeban, a much softer track with a whimsical melody and sexy female vocals. All very very French.

However the tranquillity is suddenly taken out from under you when I Feel So Badd kicks in. Another nasty splinteringly digital punky number with rough squealing vocoders. Real rock n roll and yet proper electronic spazz – really good stuff to flail your limbs around to in drunk abandon. And the best thing; it just doesn't stop – it's fucking relentless. Each time you think you can catch a breather it smacks you right back up again.
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