Jungle....Drum'n Bass....Breakbeat....Tech-Step....Intelligent....We say: If it sounds good, what's in a name? That's what you'll be saying when you get an earful of Leon Lamont's infectiously grooving Breakbeat Mechanic (WSCD038), an album which shakes the foundations of this sample-based, breaks genre.
Not only does Breakbeat Mechanic combine equal parts hip-hop and drum 'n bass, but it was played all live, without a sampler in sight. Leon Lamont, an accomplished sticksman from St. Louis, who has played with many respected names on New York's "Downtown" circuit--including Josh Redman, Vernon Reid and DJ Logic--has no peer when it comes to double-time beats. He has been known to give two-hour live performances, unrivalled in his precison and energy. On this, his solo debut, he has also crafted real songs with complex structures and arrangements (instead of the rambling, often repetitious tracks that have become the norm today). With its many unexpected twists and turns, Breakbeat Mechanic is chock full of surprises as well as an uncompromising, innovative sound.
Behind the boards, the able hands of WordSound producer Scotty Hard (The Return of Kill Dog E./WSCD034) makes this album harder and heavier than the rest, focussing on the frenetic funky drumming and the subcutaneous bass bursts, which make it drum 'n bass. Coming from a hip-hop approach, Hard also brings a unique analog sound to the mix, which makes Breakbeat Mechanic more organic and alive than most other electronic music around. This is drum and bass the way human beings--not machines--make it. Give the drummer some.