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general strike (steve beresford & david toop) - Danger In Paradise
David Toop has suggested that Danger In Paradise, an album of material he recorded with Steve Beresford and David Cunningham as General Strike between 1979 and '81 as "hauntology before its time". In some sense he's right: some of the queer-pitched electronics and impishly sinister samples on the record wouldn't sound out of place on a Mordant Music or Focus Group transmission. But first and foremost, General Strike is a potting shed avant-dub masterpiece, covering enormously wide ground: 'My Other Body' is a beautifully bass-heavy, almost Antena-esque pop original voiced by Dawn Roberts (singing lyrics culled from Foucault's Mental Illness And Psychology), 'Guided Missiles' is nuclear-paranoid doo-wop, and Sun Ra's 'Interplanetary Music' and 'We Travel The Spaceways' are reinterpreted in a way that somehow reconciles their afro-futurist origins with a bimbling, bumbling sensibility unique to Blighty's suburbs. Cunningham's extraordinary tape treatments and the ensemble's anything-could-happen, patchwork approach to composition place the album at a heart of a British DIY tradition that has brought us The Shadow Ring, Flaming Tunes, Cleaners From Venus and This Heat among others (it's no surprise to learn that portions of it were recorded at This Heat's Cold Storage studio space). All in all a terrific, gloriously unusual record - originally issued on cassette by Touch in '84, and later on CD by Piano, this new edition from Staubgold represents its first time on vinyl. Essential.