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about

Last record of a thematic series in 9, called Utopian Diaries, published from 1993 to 1998 . The End of Utopia was released in 1998.

credits

released December 10, 2016

If trip-hop is really supposed to mean "trippy hip-hop," then nothing comes closer to the lysergic ideal than this multi-artist disc on Belgium's arty Sub Rosa label. No wailing divas, no corny keyboard stabs, no faux jazz; Utopia simply places classic "old school" drum breaks up front and lets the timbre and color shifts of mutating sample collages do the rest. The exception is "illbient" meta-maestro DJ Spooky, who dispenses with beats in favor of sweeping shards of noise and symphonic disturbance on "Seuqugolana" and "Reciprocal Presupposition." The other tracks kick back: DJ Grazzhoppa's "Subconscious" layers a hip standup bass figure over a funky breakbeat, glittering bells, and shortwave radio frequencies. DJ Low's polyrhythmic "Rose Soup" is a cinematic frenzy of breathless huffs and filtered drum loops, morphing into Doppler-effect screeches and the distorted sound of a woman sobbing. Part of trip-hop's original urge was the "F*** dance--let's art!" battle cry. The End of Utopia doesn't need to lead the charge; it's already behind enemy lines.
James Rotondi

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about

Sub Rosa Label Brussels, Belgium

Record and production company managed by Guy Marc Hinant and Fred Walheer - releasing records in Electronics/ Experimental/ Unclassical/ Drone/ Noise/ Concrete/ Spoken Words/ Rare recordings/ Rituals genres.

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