PRINT February 1997


Ed Rush

The cover of ED RUSH’s Skylab EP (Metalheadz import) features a satellite reconnaissance shot of a city, and like so much military intelligence, it simply confirms what you already know—this music is eerily urban, the soundtrack to the nonexistent screen adaptation of Mike Davis’ City of Quartz. Rush is a junglist, an exponent of the British dance genre that whips sampled break—beats and subsonic bass lines into a disorienting brew. But where the most popular strains of jungle go for slick, lightweight textures, Rush stakes out a harsher aesthetic called techstep. Deploying the sort of haunted—house sounds that seem schlocky in other junglist, hands, Rush creates instead a haunted metropolis. The tense, skittish drums play the role of the harried city dweller; the intensely distorted bass stands in for the malevolent antagonists—bad cops, greedy developers—relentlessly tracking the urbanite down. Forget dance—this is chase-scene music. Now if only someone would make a movie good enough to go with it.

Jeff Salamon