It feels redundant to introduce a duo so beloved by, and important to, the modern UK and global sound system community. If you don’t know Dubkasm by now, then you must be very new to the scene indeed! Working tirelessly over the last two and a half decades to forward the traditions of sound system reggae, dubplate culture, and Bristol history in particular, Stryda and Digistep as Dubkasm are truly an institution. It’s always an honor to work with them, whether live or on wax, and this record is another testament to their continuing vitality, vibes, and vision.
“Mighty Designer” is a mystical stepper of the highest order. Gorgeous flute rides a tough riddim dominated by a relentless bassline. Clocking in at 140 bpm it’s both languid and driving, heartical and militant, an opalescent jewel of a tune that is also message music: while the second half goes full dubwise, the first features a profound meditation on the wisdom of the Creator as witnessed in the beauty and balance of Creation. “When you check out… how each thing set up in a different mathematical order- you know it must be a Mighty Designer…”
On the flip, the abstract intro to “Almighty Version” signals we’re in for a tougher Part-2-style. Percussion and hi-hat tease and intertwine before dropping into the elemental bass & drum attack. The voice is stripped completely, as all-hands-on-desk focus on bass, drums, filtered percussion, and reverb and echo as instruments. Animal sounds and melodics emerge from a dense, primordial, teeming background to shimmer briefly then recede again. “Almighty Version” is a trance-inducing dub that continues the meditation on the message - through music alone.