Available on: Blunted Robots 12″

Dan Hancox, a friend of mine who writes for FACT, The Guardian, The New Statesmen and tons more, referred frequently last year to the “seasick synths” on a remix of Jinder’s ‘Youth Blood’ by Night Slugs founder Bok Bok.

Bok Bok himself, in an interview with XLR8R later referred to 2009 as the “year of the neon synths”, a collective reaction to years of dubstep and garage’s preference for the greyscale. And indeed, his remix of ‘Youth Blood’ paired Jinder’s cyberpop vocals with overbearingly colourful, wonky – not Wonky – synth melodies that rock back and forth like a boat rolling on waves.

But if you thought that was seasick, then it’s nothing compared to ‘Citizens Dub’, Bok Bok’s new 12″ for Brackles and Shortstuff’s Blunted Robots label. No female vocal this time; Jinder’s cooing is replaced by drunken rambling from rapper Bubbz (“the floor’s gone all swervy and shit / they can’t all be cute, that’s the drink”) who’s effectively describing his own backing track – the synths here roll harder than before, their spinning heads practically at right angles to each other at times.

At the track’s peak, the highest notes in the melodies scatter from one side of the mix to the other, like passengers being flung from one side of a rocking ship to the other – the whole thing is basically mental, and finds kinship in ‘Sketches’, another recent euphoric synth epic by Wolverhampton’s Fantastic Mr. Fox.

Brackles and Shortstuff provide the single’s B-side with ‘Pipey D’, a typically taut, broken house track with sing-along vocal samples, but it politely defers to this single’s incredible A-side.

Tom Lea



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