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Black Sun CD

3 customer reviews

Price: £14.10 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £20. Details
Includes FREE MP3 version of this album.
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Frequently Bought Together

Black Sun + Memories of the Future + 5 : Five Years Of Hyperdub
Price For All Three: £40.08

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Product details

  • Audio CD (18 April 2011)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: CD
  • Label: Hyperdub
  • ASIN: B004RE29TK
  • Other Editions: Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 124,121 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Product Description

BBC Review

Of all the warped offspring spawned from dubstep's umbrella metamorphosis, Scottish-born producer Steve ‘Kode9’ Goodman and cerebral pal Stephen ‘The Spaceape’ Gordon stand tall at the very scalpel-sharp edge of its boundary-slashing evolution. And with second album Black Sun – arriving a full five years since standard-setting debut Memories of the Future – they effortlessly breach the stratosphere once more.

Hyperdub label figurehead Goodman's sparse and eerily inhuman beats, both spatial and spacey, invade the outer reaches of your hearing with silent coup virulence. But Black Sun also has the gears to switch up from slow-building subtlety. Where a pair of initial brain feeders – Black Smoke and Promises – contain much spiritual fulfilment, Am I subsequently drops with the propulsion of Rhythm and Stealth-era Leftfield had they been kidnapped by Lee "Scratch" Perry during one of his more lucid periods.

Having been instrumental in the manner the duo have emphasised the 'dub' into dubstep, then swiftly transcended the genre entirely, Gordon's deep, conscious vocal wisdom continues a commitment to reimagining dub's Rastafarian soul as an alien musical force. He has sweet-larynxed back-up here too, though, from Shanghai-based singer Cha Cha, who grasps the baton for three consecutive tracks that pull at the senses. At junctures such as Love is the Drug, the results wield similar effects to fellow Hyperdub project King Midas Sound, an almost academic antithesis to basic base-level bass that has consumed many compatriots.

As Black Sun's evocative mantle screams, the record hums with a menacing darkness. Yet it's not paranoid urban dread, more an unknown extraterrestrial force stalking your moods. Bullet Against Bone, for one, is a perfect illustration of the bassbin ghosts marching through the record. After blasting beyond gravity and mortal atmospheres, it's fitting that Black Sun should launch its final descent to Earth with closing collaboration and live set staple Kryon, featuring solar system-cracking kindred spirit Flying Lotus, switching on the atmospheric synth afterburners to lush effect. When a lunar time capsule next needs a musical artefact of almost indeterminable age, Kode9 & The Spaceape are your men.

--Adam Kennedy

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By dipesh parmar on 4 May 2011
Format: Audio CD
'Black Sun' is the new retrofuturistic concept album from Kode9 and the Spaceape, where the world's population is covered in radiation from an unclassified radioactive accident. This is a dystopian world full of fear and oppression, bodily mutations spread due to the radiation, sexual relationships are banned, political upheaval, some people resist, many don't.
Spaceape starts proceedings with sinister intent, `Under a spell of a random feeling/Weak, agitated, momentary breathing'. Considering it's dark content, you would think the album was all murky tones, claustrophobic bass and jarring beats. You'd be right, but there is also an uptempo immediacy throughout the album covering a variety of styles typical of the mongrel spirit of British bass music.
There's no standout track, the album is uniformly good throughout. The best tracks are the most surprising ones, 'Hole in the sky', 'Otherman' and 'Kryon' may lack the zip and residual bass of most of the other tracks but offer glimpses of new futures born from the decay of old ones. There is an awkwardness and unpredictability throughout most of the album which is really interesting. The album sounds alien but completely human at the same time, a reflection of the narrative tension that exists in this decaying other-world. Both Kode9 and Spaceape have loosened up for the better, though the guest vocalist Cha-Cha was underused, or rather underexposed alongside Spaceape's dread-poetry and Kode9's apocalyptic beats.
'Black Sun' is a proper slow-burner, no pun intended, and it took a fair few listens for it to sink in and make sense. Kode9 and Spaceape have thrown another curveball with an accomplished but unpolished album, intensely enjoyable and deeply unsettling in equal measure.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Dantron on 23 Jan. 2012
Format: Audio CD
I must admit that I only discovered Kode9 after becoming a huge fan of Burial. I wanted to find more music that evoked the same nocturnal atmosphere; this album was my first stop. And I have to say, it is awesome!

The productions are second-to-none and don't rely solely on the same old 2-step beats. The kick drums are deep and hit you in chest and the bass lines throb like nobody's business. The Spaceape is also a very talented lyricist and an intriguing vocalist; granted he is not a "singer" - more of a poet - but it only adds to the mood, especially when coupled with Cha Cha's understated yet haunting melodies. Whatever time of day you listen to this, it will instantly make you wish for darkness so you can feel its effect even more. I love to listen to this when i'm driving in the city at night. Immense!

Its hard to pick stand-out tracks on a concept album, because I don't personally think its the sort of album where you can just pick a few tracks off to throw on a mixtape. It works best listening from start to finish. That being said, I will contradict myself slightly to say its only weakness is that one or two of the tracks don't really go anywhere, which is the only reason I haven't given this a full 5 stars.

Definitely one of my favourite albums of 2011.
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3 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Colin McCartney TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 29 May 2011
Format: Audio CD
Instrumentally, "Black Sun" is a strong and innovative work - up to Kode 9's usual high standards (check the title track by way of example).

The problem for me comes from the depressing lyrics and unconvincing vocal stylings of the Spaceape. Neither of these two aspects are necessarily failings in themselves (I am a Bernard Sumner fan after all!) but on this occasion the overall impact is as unedifying, uninspiring and dismal as a Tuesday night episode of Eastenders.

To sum up in the hackneyed style of any Eastenders character you care to mention: "Pardon my bruvva [the Spaceape], he's had a charisma bypass".

Approach with caution. Give us a dub version please Hyperdub.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 3 reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Excellent! 14 Jan. 2013
By archimboldo - Published on
Verified Purchase
Listen! Hang back and enjoy the weird darkness that will surround you. I love this album! It's minimal but hypnotic, the beats are flawless and and the entire production is superb. If you like old time dub, like Linton Kwesi Johnson - imagine his music at a 3rd of the speed and with a really, really deep voice...I highly recommend it!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
W O W 21 April 2011
By Qbicle - Published on
Verified Purchase
I wasn't expecting to be as enthralled with the new Kode9/Spaceape as I turned out to be. Memories of the Future (their first effort) was classic, but wore thin when listening in its enirety. Black Sun takes a post-dubstep approach, surpassing cliches of the UK scene and adding a more futuristic, intricate touch that is almost addictive. At certain points in Black Sun, there is still a monotonous tone that almost urges to press the skip button. But, I have yet to do so. And it's much less of an urge than with Memories. Kudos to Kode9 & the Spaceape for creating music that isn't immediately catchy, but takes time to absorb and appreciate - and is it ever worth the wait!! Looking fwd to seeing the crew back in L.A.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
not what i expected 24 Aug. 2011
By Ángela - Published on
Format: Audio CD
kode9 fan, spaceape fan. 'liked what the do together. 'like most what they do separately. not what i expected (perhaps it's a good thing, surprise...)
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