Environmental Studies album cover
Environmental Studies

African Head Charge

On-U Sound

The catalogue of African Head Charge — a constantly rotating collective around visionary vocalist/percussionist Bonjo Iyabinghi Noah and dubmaster Adrian Sherwood — may be the greatest part of Sherwood’s On-U Sound movement, and this album the pinnacle of that. In fact, it is the ultimate collision of Jamaican dub culture and European industrial electronics, full stop. Constantly cascading Niyabinghi hand percussion, vast bass, the searing and jagged edges of distorted drum machines and simple sampling technology come together to make something that sounds impossibly advanced. Listening back, to think this was made in 1982 is just boggling: people possessed of infinitely more powerful technology struggle to achieve a fraction of its invention and drama.

Joe Muggs

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