Clutchy Hopkins

The Storyteller

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AllMusic Review by

The Clutchy Hopkins myth continues on Ubiquity, and one wonders how long they’ll hold onto it, though for now they are layering more of the seemingly fictitious story in. For The Storyteller, the producers claim the music was influenced “by his time in jail where he met many international prisoners waiting to be deported. Lo-fi, acoustic, finger-snapping, handclapping, whistle-and-hummed jam courtyard sessions gave Hopkins the ideas which he later put to tape.” Right. It doesn’t really matter. The bottom line is the myth would have grown old by now if the music weren’t so damned good. This set does employ much more organic-sounding material than its predecessors in developing mostly nocturnal grooves. There are more vocals in this mess of tracks than on any other CH record, and the world vibe is definitely at play as well. “No Contact... Contact” has a very Brazilian feel that evokes psychedelic samba. “Light as a Feather” uses the chords of the original composition in different order with a minor-key Spanish mode woven into its keyboard line and drops slippery breaks and a hypnotic bassline. “Thinkin’ of Eva” is breezy salon society music set to a modern set of rhythmic loops. Dig the accordion that evokes both café society and the tango. ”Miles Chillin’” sounds like Augustus Pablo meeting Adrian Sherwood and African Head Charge in King Tubby's studio. The Storyteller is more laid-back than other CH outings, but it may be the most enjoyable one to come down the pipe.

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