Words by Jesse Serwer—
Kalbata and Mixmonster’s Congo Beat the Drum LP was created in the fashion of an original, Tubby’s-era Jamaican dub recording, using a 16-track tape machine and a vintage mixing desk. After conceiving the project in their native Israel, the producers, known for their work in electronic music, traveled to Jamaica where they recorded famed Jamaican deejays Echo Minott, Major Mackerel, Little John and the late Prince Jazzbo.
While the album’s tracks generally work within the parameters of reggae and vintage dancehall, the producers, previously known for their work in genres like 2-step and techno, bring a fresh and unusual flavor, injecting their tracks with subtle electronic touches. The title track, however, is the album’s most unusual tune, reducing music to its most basic level with nothing but drums and the inimitable vocal stylings of dancehall great Major Mackerel.
For the video to the single, which drops July 28, they’ve taken an equally stripped-down approach. For most of the video, we see just a model, in stark black and white, moving to the rhythm. When we do see the producers and Major Mackerel, they’re spliced in to ghostly effect, visual analogs to stray sounds being mixed into a dub recording.
To celebrate the release of the single, Freestyle Records have given us a test pressing of the 12″ to give away. To enter, just tell us your favorite song from the album (sample here if you haven’t heard the LP yet) in the comments and be sure to leave your real e-mail address so we can contact you. Watch and enjoy: