Jah Wobble - Bill Laswell Radioaxiom: A Dub Transmission

Fans of dub and world music will already be very familiar with the work of Bill Laswell and Jah Wobble, both individually and through the last decade of their collaborations. So it should come as no surprise that Radioaxiom: A Dub Transmission finds them further melding those musical forms. Perhaps a little less dubby than anticipated, it's still a meticulously layered recording, and the musical traditions of many cultures are quoted throughout. Percussion influences are taken from Jamaica (dub and reggae maestro Sly Dunbar), Senegal (Aiyb Dieng) and India (Karsh Kale has contributed percussion to a multitude of recordings, including Tabla Beat Science). Nicky Skopelitis' flexible guitar style captures everything from Senegalese inflection to discordant warbling accents. While Ethiopian sisters Ejigayehu "GiGi" (who's new self-titled disc Laswell also produced, and on which many of the same musicians play) and Tigist Shibabaw bring their micro-toned soul to the tracks "Alsema Dub" and "Alam Dub." Jazz accents also run through Radioaxiom: A Dub Transmission, but are most obvious on "Virus B," which borrows textures and tones, like haunting, echo-y trumpet lines, Maclaughlan-esque guitar punctuations, and discordant electric piano washes from Miles Davis's Bitches Brew. The overall tone is that of atmospheric, laid-back, world dub grooves. And, who's more familiar with it, or better qualified to do it? (Palm Pictures)