Dälek, "Deadverse Massive Vol. 1: Dälek Rarities 1999-2006"

This collection of non-album and vinyl-only tracks presents Dälek's range and helps to make the case that they are one of the most challenging and essential acts to emerge in the last decade.  It also makes owning some of Dälek's harder-to-find material a whole lot easier.

 

Hydra Head

Included on Deadverse Massive Vol. 1 are a handful of remixes, selections from their work with other artists, a couple of previously unreleased pieces, and the entire Streets All Amped EP originally released on vinyl by Ad Noiseam.  Known mostly for their heavy as lead hip hop that goes over well with metal crowds, Dälek spend a considerable amount of time on other weird projects where their approach to cutting up and layering sound can air itself out.  Although I'm always most impressed when the beats are hard and the lyrics are cutting through, when I hear pieces like "Music for ASM" or "3:46," I get a better idea of how the Dälek sound actually comes to life.  This disc finally brings some of Dälek's more challenging and esoteric work together with some underappreciated gems.

Although I don't care for the collaboration with Velma on "Rouge," there are moments when the Deadverse production takes over and the track shines despite the vocal.  Their remix of Techno Animal's "Megaton," (the first Dälek work I remember hearing) elevates the original and is thankfully included here as the ancient 12" is getting hard to find.  The disc closes out with the four songs from Streets All Amped, which are all classic Dälek, mixing straight ahead lyrics with dusty grooves and layers of grime. Dälek are easily one of the most pioneering acts to come out of the hip hop world in years.  For those unfamiliar with the accolades that the band gets overseas for playing in the experimental/noise sandbox, this disc is a welcome primer.