This week’s album of the week is a funky dub/jazz project from London’s DJ Ash Walker called “Aquamarine”…he calls his music “underwater jazz”, named as such for the slow, gurgling sound he produces, a sound that is the hallmark of the Dub genre he draws so much from. I love the production and sonics on this album! Favorite Song: “Under The Sun”
From Bandcamp Daily:
“I’ve been keeping myself fairly busy,” says Ash Walker. That may be an understatement. Aquamarine, Walker’s Night Time Records debut, is only his third LP, yet the young Londoner is constantly recording new music, remixing his favorite tunes, dabbling in dub, reggae, and jazz, and collaborating with his fellow U.K. dub-adjacent tastemakers. That is, when he’s not DJing as an opening act for The Specials.
“From the DJing point of view, having a broad, sort of eclectic taste in music comes out in a lot of my records,” says Walker. His previous albums, Augmented 7th and Echo Chamber, and his work with Ebi Soda, Zeb Samuels, Resonators, and more hint at that reach, moving from raucous club-core to dub to Radiohead-like, minor-key percussion jams; fans of In Rainbows will love it.
Aquamarine is a gentler beast. Across its 40-minute runtime, Walker presents a refined upgrade to his grab-bag approach to underwater jazz that focuses more on conventional songwriting, brightened by peppy sing-along melodies. It’s also the first Ash Walker effort that sounds like it was made by a band in a room, as opposed to a man by his lonesome. You can hear that right away on album opener “Under The Sun.” Fellow Londoner Laville, who serves as Walker’s voice on half the record, makes a plea to play in the sea with you; Walker’s gurgling production provides the water—loose and dubby and free. If it came out in 1974, it would have inspired suburban kids to check out King Tubby.