Fog - Fog

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  • In the world of turntablism, repectability usually comes in the form of a DJ releasing an album mainly consisting of old skool hip hop samples, fast and furious scratch techniques, beat juggles and more recently collabos with well known MC's (see X-ecutioners). Ninjatune mainly specialise in music that would be classified as being experimental and in this case, Fog's debut album is the Frankenstein monster of turntablist albums to come out. Starting the album off with a little preacher-like vibes on A Word Of Advice - this is ambient in it's purest form ie. no beats - the album moves on to demonstrate the more experimental side of scratching records. That is not to say that compilations such as Deep Concentration 1, 2 and 3 or DJ Shadow's Endtroducing are not experimental, it just means that the usual hip hop is given a break to explore other areas that scratching can be used for and this is well demonstrated on Smell Of Failure. It's quite hard to call this a song as there is actually no body to it, just someone scratching a record quite furiously. Folk rock is explored on Pneumonia, the album's first single, and strangely enough it works. The turntable this time is being used to create the beat and takes over the guitar for a scratching solo whereas, the guitar is being used to create the riff. More turntablism is explored on the next few tracks with FuckupfuckFuckup getting the beat juggles going and Check Fraud sounds like a ukelele player on speed. Hitting A Wall sees the singer going "off" (off key actually) on a distorted microphone with occasional turntable samples thrown in for good measure and Fool sounds like a track for a Tarantino film that hasn't been made yet - another highlight track of the album. Truth And Laughing Gas is also a decent track from the album and it seems that Fog are into creating experimental soundtrack music with their turntables as the strings used in this song have that cinematic feel. Fog are an interesting direction for the Ninja's to take however sometimes the road less travelled does produce some good moments, however this is not really one of them, apart from a few tracks, it is quite unenjoyable and really interferes with the atmosphere when it is put on.