Krust Coded Language

As a member of the Reprazent camp, Krust collaborated with Roni Size and crew to create the wondrous New Forms in ’97; solo, his tracks for labels such as Full Cycle (self-owned with Size), Dope Dragon and V have run the d&b gamut, from jazzy to hip-hop flavoured and deep, dark, dance floor madness. Even combined they drew only a part of the picture; with Coded Language Krust dreams and creates in full-blown, emotionally charged technicolour. Ah yes, the Bristol boyz continue to up the ante, pushing drum & bass to hinterlands that the played-out jump-up crowd doesn't dare dream of. Clearly an intense man and producer, Krust works with collaborators that can match him. Spoken word artist and star of the film Slam, Saul Williams unleashes his words in the potent title track, a call to "reject mediocrity" in hip-hop, drum & bass and life. A daring choice as a first single, the song charges the ears and brain more than the feet, but DJs are sure to be rinsing "Tribute" and "Spoils of War," two slices of trademark Krust with their dark, sexy sub-bass, urgent sounds and brilliant builds 'n breaks. "Second Movement" and "Re-arrange" reflect the jazzier side of things, offering the brilliant live playing of bassist Si John (Reprazent, the Federation) and drummer Yuval Gabay (Soul Coughing); the two create magic, giving a kaleidoscopic view into the very soul of d&b. Dramatic strings run rampant throughout the album, including on the beautiful and brave "One Moment," six minutes devoted entirely to strings, and "Guilty." Here, steady down-tempo beats, bursts of sound and strings weave around the voice of Morgan who appears on much of the album, but truly shines in this range. Coded Language is a treat to decipher; highly recommended to all fans of the genre. (Talkin Loud)