Dub Pistols

Point Blank

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After recording nothing but EPs, the Dub Pistols delivered their first full-length album with Point Blank, one of late 1998's more noteworthy examples of electronica. The thing that makes the Pistols' electronica/big beat more substantial than similar efforts is their broad-minded outlook and willingness to incorporate a variety of influences. While a lot of late-'90s electronica could wear thin quickly (especially outside of a club setting), the less predictable Pistols manage to hold one's attention for a longer period and usually avoid becoming boring or one-dimensional. Point Blank kicks into high gear with the infectious, Public Enemy-influenced rap/dance number "Unique Freak" before drawing on everything from acid house and techno ("Blaze the Room") to ska ("Cyclone") and dubwise reggae ("Ghetto"). To be sure, this is club music first and foremost, but even those who could have cared less about going to a rave could sit down and admire the Pistols' efforts to avoid electronica's limitations. They don't avoid them altogether -- toward the end of the CD, the tracks start to sound mechanical and impersonal. But part of the time, Point Blank provides a memorable and risk-taking visit to clubland.

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