The Black Dog

Genetically Modified

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Having announced an intended departure from the music business through his website only a year earlier, Doug Hart's Dukebox imprint managed something of a coup in 2001 through the acquisition of legendary electronica producer Ken Downie. The first results of the deal saw the release of Unsavoury Products, which witnessed Parisian beat poet Black Sifichi shaking words from the tech trickery -- an amorphous segue of bible babble, illuminati, Egyptology, and a broad anti-globalization theme. A year on and the the Black Dogs are back, having handed over their masters to an astonishing range of electronic heroes who apply their own dogmatism to the free spoken magic of the original Products. While the genetic modifications of the KLF's Jimi Cauty, Mescalito and labelmates A1 People are in keeping with the original, and the post-jazz beats of Laub and an explosive take from C-PIJ improve on their respective originals, so CJ Bolland, 808 State, and the Beloved make a disorienting break for the dancefloor. Although purists may well perceive Genetically Modified as a further dilution of the mysticism which has traditionally surrounded the Black Dog, there remains a strong sense of Downie amongst the dysfunction, whether the tongue-in-cheek adverts which intersperse the music or the still-stunning contribution of Sifichi.

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