Norwich, U.K.’s CLYDE, the manic, straight-off-his-nutter producer, tends to use an entirely
different mood with each release in the Dome of Doom vault. His 2017 debut, My Brain & Other Animals, melded the soulful multiverse of the LA beat scene with the mysticism of a ‘60s psychedelic oeuvre. His 2018 sophomore album, Homes, worked the darkest corners of boom-bap, adorned with ominous tones and monstrous drum work. It’s like he’s pairing wine with the meal for chrissakes.
So for the Rally Start and Finish EPs he’s thematically connected to World Rally Championship culture with ‘90s era jungle and breakcore insanity. Pulled from vocal and synth samples, found in cheap record bins around Norwich—whose vinyl stores are ripe with treasures from that era—CLYDE has concocted an offbeat beaut of an electro throwback tape.
Split into 13 minutes each, across two EP’s, Rally Start and Finish, remains a bum rush for that podhole; tempos get excessive, diving pancake-flat, smashing into the rear of “in the red” sound systems, waiting to upsurge again. Across these air-raid hampered, “Amen” break infused, glitched-out 26 minutes of ‘ardcore bass-bin bedlam, CLYDE—who built this entire banana-caked trip during peak lockdown months last year—accessed his inner-teenager. Anyone hoping for that whole LTJ Bukem cool atmospheric, peaceful walk through nature shit, which I grew up on and still adore, need to take it on down the street. Seething beats, chopped and pulverized, with brain freeze twists, thrown in for texture, take up residence here.
“I am a massive WRC RALLY fan and have been for as long I can remember,” stated CLYDE in
the press release. “Jungle music and rally just seemed like they were meant for each other so it seemed a solid bet as far as I saw it.” On Rally Finish, which just dropped last Friday, CLYDE manipulates truncated bass-bin frequency real low. Knee-high if needed. All the while sprinkling tones, shouts, and whispers across the blitzkrieg drum and bass mayhem.
“Lancia Delta Integrale,” with big rolling drums, Amens without fixed gear brakes, and those block-rockin’ beats. It covers the past and future of the genre in one arrangement. There’s even an expertly used jazz piano sampling, tossed in midway for a cool blue alleviating salve, easing us toward the outro, saving us just once from the usual pyrotechnics. But for the most part, CLYDE’S fixation on scrambling brain waves remains. You can hear snippets of 4-Hero’s “Mr. Kirk’s Nightmare” shifting about the low-end booms, with off-kilter harmonics, in the opener “Drug Music.” He may have gone mad with this project, but that era of jungle was mental. It’s something CLYDE constantly reminds us of.
Label: Dome of Doom
John-Paul Shiver has been contributing to Treble since 2018. His work as an experienced music journalist and pop culture commentator has appeared in The Wire, 48 Hills, Resident Advisor, SF Weekly, Bandcamp Daily, PulpLab, AFROPUNK and Drowned In Sound.