Asian Dub Foundation

Live: Keep Bangin' on the Walls

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AllMusic Review by

Hardcore members of the Asian Dub Foundation massive will want to invest in the DVD from which these 15 live tracks were taken, since it includes video footage, three bonus audio tracks, photos, and a documentary film. But for those with less disposable income and a simple desire to hear the band in its natural element (in front of a large, sweaty, politically receptive crowd), Live: Keep Bangin' on the Walls will do just fine. It includes versions of about half the tracks from the band's then-recent studio effort, Enemy of the Enemy, as well as a healthy assortment of earlier material and one tune that has previously been released only on an obscure compilation. That one, "Assatta Dub," is a mixed blessing. The music is a perfect example of Asian Dub Foundation's strengths, a relentlessly churning fusion of Asian flavors and reggae structure; the lyrical content is a recording of breathtakingly banal observations from the American political exile Assatta Shakur ("I hate having to struggle," she confesses bravely. "I'll be honest with you; I hate war."). Elsewhere they vent somewhat more worthwhile spleen over the unjust imprisonment of Satpal Ram and invoke the memory of India's Naxalite insurgents, and occasionally even take a break from the sermonizing to just dance to the drum ("Dhol Rinse") and celebrate London's incredibly fertile Asian Underground scene ("Riddim I Like"). Highly recommended.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1 4:49
2 3:29
3 3:08
4 4:51
5 3:28
6 4:12
7 5:11
8 4:04
9 5:40
10 5:04
11 4:01
12 4:48
13 3:36
14 4:25
15 6:13
blue highlight denotes track pick