Various Artists

Axiom: Reconstructions & Vexations

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Ah, to be Bill Laswell. Drifting through a lifetime of ethnobeat hyper-sensation where ancestral rhythms of past tribes and humming electronics of future peoples meet in a heady stew of ganja and music. Undoubtedly, Laswell's existence is a little more pedestrian than one might like to believe, but his music has constantly taken its listeners to that place in space. For this project, several of Laswell's recent recordings, done either with bass explorer Jah Wobble or Indian percussion team Tabla Beat Science, are remixed by other artists whose future primitive music implies a whole lifestyle of out-there existence. Detroit techno guru Carl Craig crafts two mixes of Laswell's "Alsema Dub," both of which shine with Craig's uncanny knack for creating dancefloor rhythms with scathing moments of beauty. The U.K. jungle and brokenbeat pioneers of 4 Hero let "Orion" play out at its original languid pace for the first half, before dropping a breakbeat rhythm that distinctly belongs to them. And the IDM sensibilities of Bedouin Ascent lock onto the hyperspeed tabla beats of "Secret Channel." Of the more dub-oriented remixers, Karsh Kale takes "Taarut" and holds it underwater while a single bell chimes for its release. Unfortunately, the track surfaces with a slithering synth melody that is a little too snake-charmer trance. But this is the only time this collection crosses the threshold of world music, preferring to stay off-world with its spacy movements.

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