Maintaining the decades-deep dubwise practice of conscious musical tradition and exploratory sonic futurism, Dialog return with a second drop on their DOT series of soundsystem-spirited plates. This latest EP features the return of Jamaican vocalist Daveron Dawkins, aka Benji, joined this time by his son David Dawkins, aka Josei, on an intergenerational vocal collaboration.
Dialog is a production and performance partnership between Dutch artist Samuel van Dijk, (aka VC-118A and more) and Finnish producer Rasmus Hedlund. The pair first explored overtly ambient pastures on a double-pack LP for Astral Industries in 2022, bringing a dub-informed sensibility to their richly sculpted textures, before deciding to experiment with forthright riddims while jamming in the studio in Helsinki. A friend from a neighbouring studio heard the meditative pulse they were working on and connected them with Benji, originally from Jamaica but a resident of Finland for more than 30 years.
When he was in Jamaica, Benji's affinity for music came second to his footballing talent, which incidentally led to him crossing paths with Bob Marley and the wider reggae community in the 70s and 80s. In recent years he and Josei had worked together intermittently on jams and tracks, but the sessions they attended with Dialog marked a new chapter as they committed their improvised, universal flows to the broad sweep of riddims laid down by van Dijk and Hedlund.
Many tracks were recorded, setting Dialog up with Benji and Josei for a sustained project which moves beyond the cuts into the dance. The debut performances in November 2023 saw van Dijk and Hedlund manning an extensive live rig alongside Benji and Josei's singing and toasting, appearing in prominent Helsinki club Kaiku one week and at an intimate dance on the Salamari Sound System the next. The Dialog sound has exactly the flexibility for both scenarios, forged in crisply defined production that draws on techno, electro and ambient as much as dub, but also steeped in tradition and coloured with the warmth and character of instrumentation and vintage signal processing.
On DOT 2, we get a deeper insight into the progression of the project from the loose and flowing possibilities of the first recorded tracks through to more considered structures as the focus on Dialog's direction sharpened in response to Benji's inspiration. It's a celebration of the merging of energies - the radiant glow of Benji's Jamaican heritage colliding with the snow-capped sonics of North European techno, a living music rooted in community and collaboration but also fashioned with a modernist outlook which naturally translates to the club.
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