Record Review: I Neurologici – Dub Box EP (2012)

A lo-fi dub release in the roots tradition with bucolic flute and spaced-out ambiance

Genre: Dub

Region: Rome, Italy

Artists’ Website:

Label: Strato Dischi Notlabel

I Neurologici are local dub legends from Rome, Italy. They have been operating a sound system since the 1990s and they have released two albums ‘I Neurologici’ (1999) and ‘I Neurologici In Dub Vol. 2’ (2009) as well as a live recording ‘Live al CSOA Ricomincio Dal Faro (1997).

In ‘Dub Box’ I Neurologici continue in the same direction as its predecessor ‘In Dub’ with a healthy dose of experimentation. The sound here is more underground, more lo-fi and noisy compared to the past with some 8-bit nuances . While they are following the steps of dub originators, they incorporate some minor ethnic influences and at times they expand their sound palette towards more electro-dub trajectories. In ‘Dub Box’ I Neurologici feature predominantly an organic, live sound which at times shifts to more UK digital without much of the electro or ethnic influences of the past.

Spazi Al Dub’ kicks in with 1960s vintage keys and the majestic flute of Alessandro Mazzioti, which powered by an archaic reggae I Neurologici Liveriddim draws hazy bucolic soundscapes not unlike some of Lee Perry’s far out moments. ‘Joker Dub’ is only memorable because of the hc punk intro reminding early Bad Brains. Another standout track is ‘Shaka Dub’, maybe I Neurologici’s tribute to dub legend Jah Shaka. Baring a digital feel, the flute and the heavy use of dub effects create a thick, droning bass-laden, spaced-out psychedelia.

Giava Giombini’s voice appears here and there throughout the EP, but ‘No Place 4 Babylon’ marks her first real reggae chanting with her high-pitched voice that sounds like Nora Dean. Her performance comes in the deep roots tradition with a soulful, memorable chorus. ‘Sulla Dub Strada’ signals the end of the EP in a totally relaxing trippy summer manner.

The overall production by Fabio Pieri is muddy, with a basement ambiance and a noisy, vibrating bass. The rhythm section is solid like sipping out of old cult reggae vinyls while they keys are sensible to the authentic roots sound. There are more than a couple of satisfying tracks so that it makes sense for you to download this EP for free.


More dub at Freegan Kolektiva:

Various Artists – Jahtarian Dubbers Vol. 3 (2012)

Various Artists – Strictly Analog Dub (2012)

Dubmonger – Experiments In Dub (2012, self-released)

MDC – Conception EP (2012, ODG Productions)


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