1 Speed Bike - Droopy Butt Begone!
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1 Speed Bike
Droopy Butt Begone!

Aidan Girt is one wacky fellow. Not only has he contributed drumming and computer cut and paste skills to the Exhaust release, but he plays percussion in Godspeed You Black Emperor. 1 Speed Bike is his official moniker under which he creates his chopped-up beats and now he's releasing even more music upon the world with his debut Droopy Butt Begone! As the title may or may not suggest, this is one album that sort of rides the fence in terms of what it's trying to say. It's a cross between toilet humor and socio-political ranting over decontructed hip-hop beats, rave anthem odes, and haunting soundscapes with thump.

And perhaps nothing less than this should be expected from a guy who has his hand in so many different projects. I hate to make the association, but I'll compare it to the television show of South Park. Maybe he's just throwing everything out on the table, from fart jokes to serious critiques of capitalism, and it's up to the individual listener to decide what they take from all that. You can laugh as he starts talking about farting up a storm after a steady diet of cabbage and beans or you can do a bit of reading and find out why he's calling capitalism a 'worldwide cancer system' (although you may or may not have the same feelings yourself already).

Since you already know a bit about bipolar message of the album, I feel that I should go a bit more into depth on the music, because there's some really cool stuff going on within the disc that again shows that the Constellation label is branching out into new areas and succeeding. The nice thing is that even if you've heard some of the other beatwork done by Girt is that this release is still different. The first track "The Day That Mauro Ran Over Elwy Yost" starts out with some light little keyboard progressions but starts slamming along soon after that with a galloping beat and some rumbling low end. About halfway through, it changes gears almost completely (after a bpm doubling rave sendup) and drops off into a dark hip hop beat. The end of the track ends with Girt sending out a shout-out before things lock into the extra-deep rumble and live-drumming sounds of the second track (one of several with super-long titles).

The third track recalls bits of work by DJ Shadow, while on the fourth track, things are slowed down and thickened so much that your subs will get yet another lively workout. It recalls some of the slower tracks on a Ninja Tune release, but with a bit more abrasion. He even taps a bit of a dub vein on "My Kitchen Is Tiananmen Square" and although it doesn't quite fill the lofty shoes of the title, it's a slick track. Just in case you weren't confused enough by things, the album closes out with the sound of a toilet flushing and then it's all done. At just over 36 minutes on 8 tracks, it's a pretty short release, but it's not a throwaway album at all. If you like the dark chunky beats served up with a side of humour, it's a pretty good bet. Whether you think they're also allowing too much artist indulgence is your call. Personally, I'm all for it if this is the sort of music that's going to be created.

rating: 7.2510
Aaron Coleman 2003-06-19 00:00:00