Around 11 years ago I returned from a great year in Australia, though when I got back to the UK I was very happy to be able to find great music without having to wait for a Gilles Peterson tape to be sent by a kind friend. And, so, one of my first buys after returning was the 1st Worldwide Mix by the aforementioned Mr Peterson. Amongst many stand-out tracks, Break Reform’s Perfect Season was, and is, a wonderful slice of modern British jazz; cool, subtle and utterly addictive, it’s, well, perfect.
Unfortunately Fractures, the title track of the Break Reform’s debut album, is anything but. With a plodding beat, a discordant piano line that sounds like a Portishead off-cut and Nanar Vorperian ‘s beautiful vocals smothered in the mix, it’s only lifted by a Koop-style vibes harmony. All in all it sounds like a bit of very average mid-90s trip-hop.
Thankfully, the track that popped up when I hit shuffle this morning wasn’t Fractures, but the version featured on the remix album New Perspectives, the U-Neek Dub. It’s not often that I’d say remixing a track in a dub-style improves it, let alone makes it more cheerful, but that’s what this version does. The whole song is made more listenable by the dub-lite make-over; it’s like the ska-fairy sprinkled some moon-dust on the frog and made a prince.
Unfortunately I can’t seem to find anywhere to link to the U-Neek Dub remix, so you’ll have to take my word for it that it’s likely to bring a smile to these long winter nights. But thanks to the magic of Amazon, you can at least sample the eternal perfection of Perfect Season right now.
#shfl11 is a self-set challenge to write a post every day in 2011 about whatever song pops up 1st on shuffle on my iPod.
Stones by icelight on flickr