DJ Food/Funki Porcini | Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

DJ Food/Funki Porcini 

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DJ FOOD/FUNKI PORCINI

DJ Food is an alter ego for Coldcut, the pioneering duo of Matt Black and Jonathon More. Coldcut put British hip-hop on the map with their remix of Eric B. & Rakim's "Paid in Full," and their cut-and-paste-style collaborations with a variety of vocalists--reggae crooner Junior Reid, the Fall's Mark E. Smith, and a then-unknown Lisa Stansfield--were influential in the development of what's now called trip-hop. DJ Food is a fairly accurate representation of the general aesthetic of Ninja Tune, the label that the duo runs. The group, which also includes PC (Patrick Carpenter) and Strictly Kev (Kevin Folkes), uses sample-heavy hip-hop as a foundation on which to construct a complex, tightly arranged profusion of rhythmic and melodic loops. The recent A Recipe for Disaster (on Shadow in the States) is held together by thick, funky grooves--from slo-mo hip-hop breaks to furious drum 'n' bass rollers--while the foreground samples vary from complementary melodic fragments to rhythmic reinforcement. Though they're definitely geared to the dance floor, DJ Food's creations also make for interesting listening--the dense sonic patchwork constantly reveals new subtleties. For this rare gig, DJ Food will be PC and Strictly Kev performing on four turntables. Funki Porcini--one fellow who calls himself James--also spins an intricate web of samples, but as heard on the new Love, Pussycats & Carwrecks (Ninja Tune USA) veers heavily toward jazz in his appropriations. Undulating layers of electric piano, lonesome trumpet cries, and skitters of bebop saxophone somehow fit neatly into murky, impenetrable rhythmic schemes that, while not exclusively drum 'n' bass in nature, usually favor jungle's inherent complexities. Funki Porcini will combine turntables and preprogrammed samples for this performance. Former Chicago DJ whiz Mark Farina and LA's Wish FM also appear. Saturday, 10 PM, Smart Bar, 3730 N. Clark; 549-4140.

PETER MARGASAK

Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): Photo of Funki Porcini.

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