Yes, yes, yes! Very excited about this one....
I've been waiting for someone to take up the challenge of delving into the treasure trove that is the back catalogue of under the radar 90's UK dub outfit Arkology for sometime so it's great to see the Ace Tone label out of Berlin step up to that challenge here and deliver two of their deadliest cuts for the first time on 7".
The two tunes featured here are taken from Arkology's amazing yet frustratingly difficult to find/afford 1995 LP "The Blueprint Dubs" (mastered by none other than Aba Shanti-I) which provides the dub counterpart to their excellent "The Blueprint" LP. I was lucky enough to grab a copy a few years back but I've never seen one since...
The specific pair of tracks chosen here feel like a particularly wise selection as they do a perfect job of showcasing Arkology's distinctive take on the classic 90's dub sound which brings in influences from the broader musical spectrum that was around at the time, in particular from hip hop and also dance music in general.
On the A-side is "In The Valley Dub" which is a heavyweight stepper featuring the vocals of Ras T. Packed with characteristic seismic bass it also has some really interesting drum patterns and icy synths that give a bit of a nod to hip hop and the result is a very London sound that has an almost proto-grime feel it.
Flip it over and we're treated one of my all time favourites. The sublime "Reparation Dub" which is a perfect example of Arkology's warmer, more melodic, synth driven almost Balearic sound. I really love this kind of softer more spaced out UK dub sound that evolved in the 90's and this is one of the finest example of it that I can think of.
An outstanding little record that showcases two equally brilliant yet contrasting sides to the Arkology sound.
A: In The Valley Dub
B: Repatriation Dub