Music Is A Mission

To content | To menu | To search

Blockhead - Downtown Science

best of 2005Blockhead - Downtown Science
(CD+DVD/2xLP) Ninja Tune ZEN113/ZENCD113, 2005-10-17

Tracklisting CD :
01. Expiration Date | Go Download MP3
02. Roll Out The Red Carpet
03. Serenade
04. Cherry Picker
05. Crashing Down
06. Stop Motion Traffic
07. The Art Of Walking
08. Good Block Bad Block
09. Dough Nation
10. Quiet Storm
11. The First Snowfall
12. Long Walk Home

Tracklisting Bonus DVD :
'Music By Cavelight' Films (188 minute DVD)
3 full album length films: Lucid House, Mini Vegas, 'Daylight To Cavelight' by Mat Donelly
6 extra short films/videos: Lucracle, 'Flicker By Cavelight' by Brian Levi
Bowman, Jonathan Hodgson, Marcus Stephenson, Joseph Marcantonio & Sam Arthur

Tracklisting 2xLP :
A1. Expiration date
A2. Roll out the red carpet
A3. Cherry picker
B1. Art of walking
B2. Crashing down
B3. Stop motion traffic
B4. Serenade
C1. Good block bad block
C2. The first snowfall
C3. Dough nation
C4. Long walk home
D1. Quiet storm
D2. 7 miles
D3. Write back soon
D4. Nightlife

LP Artwork:

CD Artwork:

PromoCD Artwork:

Links :
Blockhead EPK

Press Release :
Tony Simon aka Blockhead debuted on Ninja Tune in 2004 with the critically-acclaimed "Music By Cavelight". It was described as "one of the most fantastically good albums you're going to hear this year" (Sunday Telegraph) and "a beautiful record" (Metro), with Blockhead himself tipped as "definitely one to watch" (Touch).

Now he returns with another set of deep, emotional instrumental hip hop, this time dedicated to the downtown area of Manhattan where he grew up and has lived his entire life, encompassing all the attitude, anger and edginess of the neighbourhood. Plus some melancholy reflections upon failed relationships and the promise of future loves. As Blockhead himself says, “Downtown Manhattan is the influence because that’s my environment, its romantic at times and violent at other times.”

"Expiration Date" presents Shadowesque rolling breaks over the kind of elegaic music that makes it a fitting memorial to 9/11. "Serenade" twists its comic opening into an electric piano-linked essay in unrequited love. "Quiet Storm" gives NYC the orchestral treatment, while "The First Snowfall" has the odd perspectives of a blizzard swirling through it.

But it's not all atmospherics. On "The Art of Walking," Blockhead shows he can come up with the kind of slack disco cheekiness that you'd more readily expect from Mr Scruff, while "Stop Motion Traffic" is pure cop movie machismo and the epic "Cherry Picker" (which moves through moods like a car whizzing past the blocks of the city) shows just how far Simon has developed his skills. Blockhead notes that, “by the time Music By Cavelight dropped I was already somewhere else musically, the overall progression is a more complete sound.”

An idea of the esteem Blockhead is held in Stateside can be gleaned from the fact that he has recently contributed three tracks (including the first single) for Cage's new album on Def Jux. The other producers on the project are DJ Shadow, El-P and RJD2. "Downtown Science" is a heavyweight album from a heavyweight artist.

Is that enough? Not quite. The cd release of "Downtown Science" also includes a bonus DVD which includes the winners of the film-making competition that Ninja ran for "Music By Cavelight". Running from traditional pop promos, to short films using the music more like a soundtrack, the whole of Blockhead's amazing first album is presented here in several visual forms.


Stay informed of all things Paris DJs and beyond thanks to our Twitter news

Annaponda Annaponda ·  04 January 2006, 08:34

Links to some that are on DVD .
Video by lucidhouse

MrZaM MrZaM ·  07 January 2006, 17:48

Many thanks for those! :-)

You might also like

Vincent Ahehehinnou - Best Woman

Vincent Ahehehinnou - Best Woman (LP, Analog Africa, 2017)

The latest Analog Africa reissue is up for pre-order on Bandcamp! The album, originally a 1978 release by Orchestre Poly Rythmo's singer Vincent Ahehehinnou, is rare-as-shit, worth nearly 4 figures if you can find a decent copy. There's only 4 tunes, two afrofunk monsters and two ballads, but...
Shadow - Sweet Sweet Dreams

Shadow - Sweet Sweet Dreams (CD/2LP, Analog Africa, 2016)

The 22nd Analog Africa release is a beauty people couldn't begin to imagine how the feeling would be to actually be playing it - until now. As rare as it's insanely great, this long-awaited reissue is the holy grail of Shadow albums. The one featuring the monster cosmic soca disco track 'Let’s Get...