Boomkat Product Review:
ZULI’s long awaited follow-up to 2018’s ‘Terminal’ album, a killer new set of dextrous jungle amens meets razor-cut footwork - highly recommended if yr into DJ/Rupture, Mutamassik, Lee Gamble.
After a pair of standout EPs in 2016-17, ZULI’s debut LP ‘Terminal’ was hailed an album of the year by The Wire magazine and lit up playlists across the world. He was due follow up with a club-focussed EP but, shortly before it was ready to be sent for mastering, some chump robbed his laptop and repository of recordings, so he was forced back to the drawing board, rebuilding all his soundbanks from scratch. A few years later he’s prepped ‘All Caps’; a hot-blooded brace of breakbeat chicanery intersecting voices of local MCs, his friends, and randomers at gigs, with traces of electro-chaabi - the road-level sound of Arabic North Africa - for an utterly thrilling new side that makes up for lost time.
Acknowledging inspirational cues from UK jungle via his peer and label boss Lee Gamble, ZULI performs a sort of genetic manipulation of jungle’s amen and subbass building blocks, adapting their codes to noisy, lush, and playfully aggressive, mutant ends resembling sections of DJ/Rupture or Mutamassik mixtapes from 20 years ago. Coming hot and furious with the red-lining amens and gibber-jawed vocal chops of ‘Tany’, he flings bodies between gasping footwork recalling Ueno Masaki or Rian Treanor in ‘Bassous’, to cyberpunkish steppers grot on ‘Penicillin Duck’, while taking wickedest aim at Afro-fetishists in the straightjacketed computer funk and electro-chaabi bursts of ‘Bro! (Love it).’