It is with much sadness, and conversely a touch of gladness, that I bring news of the final gig for the Mighty Asterix in NZ before he heads over the ditch - a move that is obviously being made for familial rather than musical motives.
The sadness comes from the fact that for the last 18 (possibly 19 I'm not so good with dates) years, the diminutive don has been my one and only choice of local MC, something that was apparent from the very first time I heard him bless the mic. The gladness, of course, is that we've managed to squeeze this engagement in (and a little Unitone recording) before he heads off. We've had a couple of gooduns down in Welli this year (with Vital Sounds HiFi at the Cuba St Carnival, and warming up for The Bug & Warrior Queen) but after all this time and what must run into at least a couple of hundred (if not more) gigs together... a proper send off is required. I'm sure The Turnaround will provide just that, and I can't wait to swing in behind Paul for what I can guarantee will be a very, very special set.
Even though many of our best gigs have been done 'on the fly', I'm going to be flinging him down a disc of fresh versions so that we have some in the bag, as it were. The forecast is for Asterix to be slinging his singjay superbosity over a heaping helping of the most discerning dancehall, some wobble-free dubsteppery, definitely a nip into nuevo cumbia, a bit of ip-oppery, a coupla Unitone HiFi exclusives, who knows what else and no doubt something special and appropriate for the Turnaround crowd. Excuse my drooling all over the keyboard, I can barely wait!!
By way of a little warm-up here's a couple from Asterix that you'll be unlikely to find elsewhere. I've already chucked a track (still up for a mo) from the session we had with the Newtown Sound crew at Ghetto Red Hot last year here, and as a little Easter oeuf here's another from that same gig. This is more end of the night biz, as his Mightyness jumps up on Daseca's 'Jail' instrumental for Busy Signal. It's straight out of the desk so the levels are a bit out of whack, and I'm not sure if Paul had done this one over ever before that night, but it's only a little taster right?!
Also there's a never released Mannaseh remix of 'Guiding Star' that isn't hugely different to the one we chucked on 1996's 'Rewound and Rerubbed' album, though I've always had a soft spot for it as a Stinksclusive anyways. I doubt this will ever be released formally, so grab it while you can. We had a rah about more recent Roots Gardening from the evergreen Mr Rapahel here, and I strongly suggest you check some of that too.
Can't resist sticking in his strangest contribution to the first Unitone HiFi album - 'Babylon' getting the right regal remix from the late Muslimgauze. We were fortunate enough to apparently be the first people Bryn Jones agreed to remix and he pretty much took apart the whole album and fed it through some mighty distressed machinery. We've given permission and the original recordings of all the Muslimgauze mixes we have (even identifying the songs is tricky as he took parts from tracks and juxtaposed and jammed together like a man possessed, truly possessed!) to a French fanatique, who is purportedly putting them out as a very limited CD. I'll keep you posted on that project as we hear more. For many years afterwards, even after his untimely passing in 1999, I would hear little skanks, drum sounds and more from 'Wickedness Increased' , appearing in Muslimgauze productions, and that was of profound satisfaction and absolutely no irritation to me.
Nowt to buy here (we will get round to making the Unitone HiFi back-cat available at some point in the future, honest) unless you want to be traipsing around Discogs and the like.
JAIL RIDDIM - THE MIGHTY ASTERIX
GUIDING STAR (MANASSEH MIX 1) - UNITONE HIFI FT. THE MIGHTY ASTERIX
BABYLON (IZ IRAQ) MUSLIM GAUZE REMIX - UNITONE HIFI FT. THE MIGHTY ASTERIX