Music Reviews

Artist: Dieselboy (@)
Title: The Human Resource
Format: 2 x CD (double CD)
Label: System Recordings (@)
Rated: *****

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While for some Drum & Bass may be an acquired taste, there's no denying the quality and craftsmanship of the selections in Dieselboy's collection of recent tracks, The Human Resource. In this 2-disc set, twelve of Human System-released prime cuts stand individually on the first CD, whereas on the second one these tracks -- along with many others -- are woven into a continuous mix. The artwork reflects a cool Frankensteinian, 19th-century-Eugenics theme of "Assembling the Monster," i.e. the mix of Disc Two.

The style is (you guessed it) fast and hard-hitting, as all good D&B should be, anthemic and yet with grit and edge. "Mass Hysteria," track 2 of Disc 1, contains a rather funny sampled pastiche of a TV preacher's histrionics ("Dogs and cats living together!!"). Track 9, "Barrier Break" by Kaos featuring Messinian, has a militantly Crunk intro and breakdown, an interesting and logical twist to the familiar Jungle stylings. The spoken intro to Disc 2, which sounds like it was cribbed from Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, is cheesy and a trifle embarassing, but other standout tracks from the first disc (Evol Intent & Fwon's "The Rapture" and DJ Fresh's "Wargames '03") carry the mix handily.

The Human Resource maintains a healthy ratio between media samples and guest vocals, a continuing trend in dance music. Disc 1 is somehow more remarkable as a whole, and may grow on you faster with repeated listenings all the way through, than if you were to encounter it at the dance club, but fuck it, it's all got plenty of voltage.

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