Jack Sparrow

Circadian

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Those who think that all dubstep sounds alike should spend some time with the work of Leeds DJ/producer Jack Sparrow, whose cleverly titled debut album is a good-natured flipping of the bird to his chosen genre's conventions. There's no real question as to what musical neighborhood he's coming from: whether it's the booming one-note bassline of "The Chase VIP," the tribal-ish "Salvation," or the soul-inflected groove of "Subterranean," the lurching rhythms and faintly sinister roboticism of dubstep are never far from the surface. But they are frequently below the surface, and that alone signals the fact that Jack Sparrow is opening the club windows and letting a salutary breeze of fresh air waft across the dancefloor. Well, maybe not always exactly "fresh" -- there are some downright scary moments of horror-show dub thrown in, along with some creepy vocal samples and one of two moments that sound a bit like GWAR caught unawares at the Black Ark. The fact that the album (or at least the promo version) is not only a continuous mix but. also a single very long track makes it difficult to tell when one track gives way to the next, but ultimately it doesn't matter that much: think of Circadian as a long, complex, and pleasantly exhausting trip into the darker corners of one of dubstep's more cheerfully perverse and frighteningly talented minds.

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