- Listening to records by Juju & Jordash, the term "dance music" doesn't really spring to mind. The tempo might fit the mold (if a little slow), but the beat itself is too simple and utilitarian, as if its only purpose is to lend structure to the jazzy, free-form shapes that swirl around it. This was particularly true on their self-titled full-length from last year, and only a bit less so on Tattoo's Island, their first 12-inch on Philpot, an imprint that often supports such meanderings. "Tattoo's Island" is light on funk and heavy on abstract imagery—a psychedelic mess of sound, anchored by a 4/4 pulse.
The EP presents three different versions of "Tattoo's Island": two by the duo themselves, and one remix by Dutch artist Tom Trago. The two J&J mixes are similar: Plodding rhythms, soaring keys and looping bass melodies are all treated with lots of reverb and delay. Both sport a clear krautrock influence, helped in no small part by guitar leads that seem to melt beneath the whammy bar. In his remix, Tom Trago tries to whip things into shape, doing away with most of the trippy stuff to make room for a punchy beat and catchy synth line. It's a nice track, and one that's much easier for DJs to kick around, but it lacks the vivid quality of its counterparts. Like so much of Juju & Jordash's music, "Tattoo's Island" favors weird charisma over funkiness, and that only makes it more worthwhile.
A Tattoo's Island
B1 Tattoo's Island (Tom Trago's Lost In The Jungle Remix)
B2 Tattoo's Island (Dub)