Ashley ‘Crash’ Gallegos met Adam ‘Doseone’ Drucker on the streets of Oakland, a town in which the latter is a long-established independent hero. As a founder of the influential Anticon label and collective and a member of alternative hip-hop groups cLOUDDEAD and Subtle, Dose is a lifelong experimentalist, so any new project deserves attention, not least when it comes with the seemingly incongruous Bella Union stamp of approval.
Little about Go Dark is predictable, save for its sense of primal, furious urgency. Dose has spoken of his compulsion to score Crash’s vocals with the nastiest beats and he bends sound and space to make it happen here. Percussive slaps and jittering modulars saturate most of the palette of ‘Neon Young’ for a claustrophobic, erratic and hyperactive listening experience.
8-bit, noir-soul and glitch-punk are compressed into one evil hybrid on tracks like ‘Day Moon’ and ‘The Blade’, a splurge of DIY vitriol that seems to capture the spirit of the age more essentially than a classic protest song ever could. Any specific anger is too deeply shrouded in confusion and personal anxiety to allow one clear message to rise out of the mess. It is an alienating listen and it should be. Isn’t that how you feel most of the time these days too?
There are tunes hiding in here, notably ‘Beautiful Bitch’, in which Crash is able to suspend her internal squabble with herself for long enough to allow a discernible chorus to emerge, but it almost feels like a betrayal. If the lot of the artist is to reflect our society back at us, then Go Dark could have an essential role to play in 2019.
Support Loud And Quiet from £3 per month and we'll post you our next 9 magazines
As all of us are constantly reminded, it’s getting harder for independent publishers to stay in business, which applies to Loud And Quiet more now than ever, 14 years after we first started printing a magazine that we’ve always given away for free.
Having thought about the best way to support our running costs (the printing and distribution fees, the podcast and production costs etc.) we’d like to ask our readers who really enjoy what we do to subscribe to our next 9 issues over the next 12 months. The cheapest we can afford to do this for works out at £3 per month for UK subscribers, charged yearly.
If that seems like a bit of a punt, you can pay-as-you-go for £4 per month and cancel any time you like. European and world plans are available too, at the lowest rate we can afford.
It’s not just a donation – you’ll receive a physical copy of our magazine through your door and some extra perks detailed on our subscribe page. Digital subscriptions are available worldwide for £15 per year. We hope you consider this a good deal and the best way to keep Loud And Quiet in your life without its content, independence or existence suffering.