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Boomkat Product Review:
Vancouver-dweller Babe Rainbow is the latest in Warp's long and illustrious tradition of free associating beat-makers, and sure enough 'It's All Happening' – opening jam on this new EP - could easily be an old Wagon Christ or Prefuse track, all diced breakbeats and repurposed jazz flutes (the good kind); it’s only the preternaturally swampy sub-bass and pin-sharp sound design that remind us we're in 2011. Wicked stuff, but a misleadingly frothy and backwards-looking start to an EP that's peppered with surprises and unafraid of the dark side: 'The Spill' is a kind of eldritch house interlude crammed with music-box chimes, faintly demonic groans and a litary of tenebrous FX, and the marvellous 'Bounty' teams noirish Vangelis synths with shuffling industrial drum tattoos. That said, Babe's true allegiances are to hip-hop, and 'Greeds' stylish beats - somewhere between Various and The Weeknd - are laced with smart, gruff rhymes from Yung Clova, while 'Set Loose' and 'Chains' are bedroom R&B epics in a top-notch, Clams Casino fashion, the latter conveying that much more drama by being beatless. God knows we know there are a LOT of these post-dubstep hip-hop dudes around right now, but this EP is a genuine stand-out, with a surfeit of ideas and minimum flab; its tough, focussed jams suggesting worlds of possibility and avenues for future exploration.