Ability II

Ability II


It's hardly controversial to describe Ability II's untouchable oneaway 'Pressure Dub' as a high water-mark of rooted British dance music, not to mention interplanetary dub-techno innovation (until Mark and Moritz's DNA-resequencing paradigm shift a few years later, at least). With its low-slung jacking house rhythm, immense bass-weight (and, er, its bleeps), it's bleep through and through, but David Duncan's amazingly polished and sure-footed production, and his fearless, too-much-is-never-enough application of delay, allow him to access a deep, tripped-out ambient/sci-fi/hypno dimension which contemporaries like Forgemasters and Ital Rockers only skirted the rim of, and which seems to anticipate second-wave Detroit and beyond. For 2017, never mind 1990, it is shockingly futuristic and enveloping. Can you imagine hearing it back then? People must have literally shit themselves on the dancefloor. 

This reissue from Major Problems in partnership with Compassion Cuts leads with the less feted but still original mix of 'Pressure'. They've added a Luca Lozano mix, as is their right and privilege, but I'd venture even Lozano would recognise that it's a futile exercise: 'Pressure Dub' is unimprovable. The samurai artwork too feels a bit off/irrelevant (although perhaps there is a good reason for this that we're not aware of). Nonetheless, we have to give thanks and praise for the labels' enlisting of Thomas P. Heckmann for a very solid remaster, and for having the sense to give 'Pressure Dub' the whole B-side to stretch its legs. 

Not sure what else I can say: every home needs 'Pressure Dub'. Probably you already have it. If you don't, either go on Discogs and buy a copy of the original Bassic or '91 Outer Rhythm pressing, or buy this, now. 



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