Album CD + 2x Vinyl - may 05
With "Feelin' Dank" Tom Thiel and Daniel Meteo (aka BUS) have created a truly relaxed record that mops up and re-dispenses the fun and vastness around them - the constituents of their era.
So it shouldn't come as much of a surprise when, in his own description of the record, Meteo employs terms like "loss of control". As on previous Bus excursions, dub, hip-hop and electronic elements provide the imaginary, triangulated demarcation lines for an expansive freestyle adventure playground that might even spawn the odd house track. But it is the overall mood of "Feelin' Dank" which might take us by surprise: carefree abandon has returned to dancefloors across the globe and left its mark on impassioned DJ and club-goer Meteo. On their latest outing, Bus conjure up transgressive paradises - "soul", they call it, "deepness" and "party vibe".
But the white rabbit that is "Feelin' Dank" turns out to be far more than the sum of its irrevocable nocturnal experiences. The packed 2004 Bus schedule comprised stops in North America, Poland, the UK, Scandinavia and their hometown Berlin. Playing to both acolytes of the straight bass drum and culture-supporting gallery folk, this situational variety helped to expand Bus' wealth of experience: Meteo and Thiel have now become experts at scenting out vibes, improvising and amplifying the crowd's resonance.
Moreover, a further, gentler element has snuck into the Bus mix. Almost a gesture, it draws in the listener's entire sensorial system. When, on "Rose Specs", they crank up the might of the handclaps, this kickstarts a jam which, for a good two minutes, leaves raw, untweaked keyboard and guitar tracks to their own devices. Where previously Bus chose to emphasise the concept, pit a track against itself or cherish brittle stroppiness, their genre-defying dub is now on the loose.
As on "Rose Specs", Glasgow MC Soom-T adds her boyish and soulful recitative to the instrumentals of "Diamond In The Rough" and "The Answer". Soom-T, who already graced the first Bus album "Middle Of The Road", is part of the Glasgow crew Monkeytribe. On "Feelin' Dank" Bus chose to treat her voice just like the live instruments - instead of demanding 100% mathematical accuracy they preferred to leave passages with feeling in place. Most of the Soom-T tracks, with her contributing raps and lyrics to the underlying Bus beats, were recorded during a two-week visit. Like the introductory "One Step Forward", Bus then cut out her vocals and reinserted them in a different context. They took a similar approach with Soom-T's colleague MC Rhino and Gonzales-collaborator Paul PM (whose vocals can be heard on "Twistin" and "Perdu"), while the final offbeat House of "My Night" features a session with Ras T-Weed of the Birmingham-based Overproof Soundsystem.
Coming full circle with their musical open-mindedness, communicativeness and general love of playing and experimentation, Thiel and Meteo have now found their common cause. Feelin' Dank.
about mc soom-t and the monkeytribe crew, glasgow