Underworld & Iggy Pop

Teatime Dub Encounters EP

Caroline International

Jul 26, 2018 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share


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The pairing of Underworld with Iggy Pop, two masterful frontmen plus inventive and limitless musical accompaniment equals exponential charisma overload. Teatime Dub Encounters is this collaboration's four-song EP, whose title implies it would be a low-key affair. It is anything but. This partnership is not as farfetched as it may seem, especially considering Pop's "Lust for Life" and Underworld's "Born Slippy (Nuxx)" sat side-by-side on Trainspotting's soundtrack some 20 years ago as the most natural of combinations.

Teatime Dub Encounters kicks right off with the galloping, heart-rushing beats of "Bells & Circles." Pop borrows a page out of Underworld's Karl Hyde's lyricist/vocalist books and taps into his stream of consciousness, delivering his thoughts about smoking on airplanes back in the day in spoken word style. Hyde provides backup vocals, his distinct style making it impossible for him to be in the background. The percussion-driven "Trapped" sees Pop doing some B-52s style shouting and Hyde doing some shouting of his own. In contrast, "I See Big," is an introspective, ambient ballad, one that makes the listener feel as though they are tapped directly into Pop's thoughts on his youth and his friendships. He utters these unselfconsciously against Rick Smith of Underworld's beautifully crafted atmospherics. The EP ends on a big note with the massive, echo-filled movements of "Get Your Shirt," more instrumental than vocalized, Pop only stepping in to provide the chorus of regrettable decisions.

All of this was put together in a few casual hotel room recording sessions. It takes OGs like Underworld and Pop to remind both their peers and their successors how it is done. (www.underworldlive.com, www.iggypop.com)

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