London Calling - Echoes May 1992
Paul Mardles hears the Future Sound of London vibe from Papua New Guinea to Dollis Hill.
Papua New Guinea. What a place. What a track. Strange then that the haunting song named after said country was conceived not in the ex-Brit colony, but a good few thousand miles away. In Greasy Joe's. In Dollis Hill.
Stranger still, mind, say the protagonists - The Future Sound of London - is how it reached vinyl. Because although the track in point is like The Orb on pure ether, a view shared by Andy Weatherall whose remix is superb, it was, claims Garry Cobain, for a while at least, well, shit.
"Yeah, it was a strange track, that," he says in their cramped north London dugout-cum-studio-cum-scout hut, "cos the way we work is by one of us having an idea and the other person works around it. And it's all a bit 'pheew', 'cos you're taken aback by the other person's conviction. And, see, I had the conviction and was thinking 'whew! This is gonna be huge,' and Brian (Dougans) was, like, silent, Understandably, mind, 'cos at that time it was... yeah, sort of shit."
Now, though, thanks to Weatherall ("I think his first seven minutes are really, really good. But then those chants come in..."), but most of all the boys themselves, 'Papua...' is a dream song, a soothing aural feast. Likewise, their debut album - 'Accelerator' - which, though it has not a hope in hell of surpassing said one-off, suggests that, like those Orb boys, they can't help but trespass.
"Our motive was to put together an album that's a listening entity," says Garry, who, like his partner, numbers among his guises, Candese and Humanoid, "rather than a seven-bad-tracks-three-hits job, which is blighting the dance industry. I mean, the number of records I've bought and been disappointed by. The Beloved's was pathetic. And Massive Attack's was absolutely awful. Appalling. And..."
Confident, then, they might be, but with good reason, one might add. They are, after all, well-versed in the rudiments of techno.
"Just take your typical KISS DJs," says Garry. "We listen to Rampling, Jules, Colin Favor - and if we really wanted to make a track for any of them, we could do it in an hour. And we have done. It's easy."
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