A kinetic bombardment or a kinetic orbital strike is the hypothetical act of attacking a planetary surface with an inert projectile, where the destructive force comes from the kinetic energy of the projectile impacting at very high velocities. The concept originated during the Cold War….Kinetic bombardment has the advantage of being able to deliver projectiles from a very high angle at a very high speed, making them extremely difficult to defend against. In addition, projectiles would not require explosive warheads, and—in the simplest designs—would consist entirely of solid metal rods, giving rise to the common nickname "Rods from God". Disadvantages include the technical difficulties of ensuring accuracy and the high costs of positioning ammunition in orbit.
Dial Records didn’t invent the adult sophisticate house aesthetic but their legacy looms large, infecting a host of lesser labels thriving in an age of dance music conservativism. Fittingly inaugurated at the start of the 21st century, the label always felt just barely ahead of the curve, presaging a forthcoming period in which familiarity became prized over ingenuity. Black-and-white photographs transmuted into dance music, really. By the time Cleveland’s own John Roberts released his 2010 album Glass Eights, the label was fighting for its own relevancy as an army of middling producers and labels stormed the gates. While this decade has been considerably less forgiving for the label, the records it does release these days tend to pack a hefty punch, as this opening track from Roberts’ 2014 EP Ausio shifts effortlessly from evoking a post-chillwave indie rock jam sesh into a maudlin John Hughes suburaban discotheque on a spring Saturday kinda vibe, not dissimilar to this peachy-keen I:Cube jam.
With two EPs on the Infrastructure New York label that were released in 2014 and 2015, Campbell Irvine is a producer I was not familiar with. But it only took hearing ten seconds of his skipping snares and absent kicks to tickle my ears. Competing cadences and rhythmic-melodic vibrations run parallel and perpendicular alongside and across the producer’s intoned voice, which attempts to affix a linear narrative onto a discontinuum of snow-flecked ambiance.
Happy, hardcore? Hardcore happy! From an untitled collection of untitled tracks from an unknown producer that was released on the Labello Blanco Recordings imprint in 1993, the below A1 cut feels like the other side of the “We Are I.E.” rainbow. Laying down Chicago soulfulness atop a skanking white-key bass line and a basketful of breaks, all the while turning the Bomb Squad-undewritten facet of hardcore production inside out, what really takes this track to another level is the feelings-filled vocal that serves to hold the whole unholy mess together. Wow wow wow.
When did 90s hip-hop become a genre? 1994? 2014? The archives opened a long time ago, but we’re still making sense of all the pieces, none of which will fit together into one single puzzle image, no matter how hard we try. Live Squad would likely be barely a rap-historical footnote had they not worked with Tupac, but as far as I’m concerned, it’s their 1992 single “Heartless” that deserves the type of record collector fervor saved for far more tepid fare like Main Source (who are awesome, but come on, probably not worth all that ‘Scogs money). Eschewing the obvious samples for something far more impressionistic, the beat on “Heartless” rides a chugging b-line and half-articulated rhythmic utterances atop blown-out keys and the type of strings Detroit’s second wave were colonizing at the same time. Add in some hard af verses and you have a forgotten rap classic for the ages, not to mention the below cold-blooded video.
And to close things, here’s the most humble Discogs comment I’ve seen in ages….