Release Date: November 7, 2013
Genre: Downtempo / Dub
License: CC BY-NC-ND
Label: Angel Dust Records
French Dub artist Corty has produced what might, somewhat, be considered a first for Dub music: a series of six inter-related tracks that can be listened to individually or as a single work.
Now, before I say that this work is a “symphony” in dub form, lets make this clear: it really isn’t a symphony. The relationship between classical music and Corty’s work is more based on some deliberate choices that separate this work from most dub tracks, while still being enjoyable as many dub recordings are.
Confusing? It’s not really all that confusing. It’s a matter of what the listener wants to take from the work. If you are looking for some dark and chilled dub music you will get it from this recording. If you want a more structured work, like a set of theme and variations, this work has you covered.
In many cases attempting to fuse classical elements with a contemporary musical genre end up being disastrous. That’s not the case with this release because of the careful balance Corty has struck allows the classical elements and the dub elements to feel completely natural within the piece. Neither element is washed down, or takes the back seat to the other. They exist on an equal plane in this work, and the result is wonderful.
Using a palette of darker textures to form the base of the compositions, Corty is able to move through a range of dub styles with ease, even managing to work in some dubstep elements without them becoming too jarring or annoying. The thematic material is presented in bell-like chimes, which is always a bonus for me personally. I love metallic instruments, and in this case the contrast between the chimes and dark textures is quite easy to listen to.
I would talk about track names, or some way of “framing” this work, however in this case all the tracks are named ‘Darkophonie’ followed by a number. This provides one of the clues that this is a work to be taken as a single body of composition, as is the consistency of instrumentation and texture.
Each work moves through one or more dub styles, which means there is a little something for lovers of all dub styles. It’s obvious that Corty has been working in this genre for years, and has mastered each of them.
This is a work that was a labor of love for Corty. Started initially in 2012, and finished in late 2013. It may not be the only one though, and that is a good thing. I will look forward to listening to another body of well composed and thought out dub music from Corty any day.