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Side Effects

by Eardrum

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Red Eye 02:09
Sleep Test 04:45
Lightfell 05:07
Deadbeat 04:16
Family Mask 05:28
Sandblasted 05:47
Bone Room 06:03
Darker Still 07:02
Deep End 07:14


Down the steep narrow stairs to Eardrum's studio demi-monde in Clerkenwell, where you are greeted by the unmistakeable notes of an old Sun Ra tape and a sense of being deep underground.

Enter a blonde wood-panelled recording space (that late at night looks, and sometimes feels, like a sauna), piled up to the roof with kit. In the midst of this cacophony-in-waiting are Lou Ciccotelli and Richard Olatunde Baker, seasoned musicians with respective histories in Laika, Spleen, Mass, Kevin Martin's God and Ice projects as well as Cath Coffey, NT, the poet Akure Wal and various African percussion groups. Now they begin playing together, back to back, lost to the shifting patterns of rhythmic percussion. This is the simple heart of Eardrum's hypnotic groove assault.

Eardrum's second album, Side Effects, is a testament to the methods of both improvisation – afrobeat, free jazz, musique concrète and carnival street music – and the insularity of studio manipulation. Inspiration comes from Miles Davis, Lee Perry, Fela Kuti, the limitless influence of African music and the aural chaos of London life.

Side Effects evokes cinematic imagery, sparked from dark urban and untamed rural counterpoints. Musical textures are in continual flow, a sense of motor drive and movement creating a sensation akin to road hypnosis. Harnessing the talents of diverse musicians from distinct disciplines, Side Effects is the link between the ambient rhythmscape of Last Light and the dynamic, unpredictable energy of Eardrum's live performances.

The contributing musicians include Jason Yarde (J Life, Yoruba Jazz People, Manu Dibango), Folasade Barbarinde (Adzido Pan African Dance and Drum ensemble), Gary Jeff (Mass, God, Scalpel), Nii Tagoe (Adzido, Frititi, African Head Charge), Nana Tsiboe (Dade Krama, Moire Drum Orchestra, Trouble Dat) and Guy Fixsen (Laika).


released October 1, 2001


all rights reserved



Eardrum UK

Richard Olatunde Baker (London, UK)
Lou Ciccotelli (London, UK)

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