Wednesday, July 01, 2009


Big Two Hundred - Drum Spell

Since disbanding Bizarre Inc back in 1996 after their second album, 'Surprise', was a commercial flop, Andrew Meecham and Dean Meredith have been incredibly creatively fertile, together and apart, with less chart success but with an increasingly eclectic sound. They both dabbled in Big Beat as Sir Drew and Psychedeliasmith respectively, before coming together again as Chicken Lips in 1999 and exploring the outer reaches of space funk, nu-disco and leftfield house. On the solo tip, Meecham has been recording spaced-out analogue disco as the Emperor Machine for DC Recordings since 2003 (more on that one day - the 'Vertical Tones and Horizontal Noise' series is brilliant), and Meredith's White Light Circus project (also on DC) is Moroder/Kraftwerk influenced dirty old school electro and celestial funk (again, I should really cover this some day as it is equally good).

But my favourite post-Bizarre Inc incarnation for Meecham and Meredith was Big Two Hundred. Under that alias they recorded a solitary album, 'Your Personal Filth', released on DC Recordings in 2003; a rampant collection of dub disco, punk funk and psychedelic garage rock, very much in thrall to Bristol's late-1970s post punk pioneers The Pop Group and with nods to The Clash and PiL. It's a fucking freaky far out and hugely underrated album with a dirty, stoned sound enhanced by the fact that it was all recorded on vintage analogue equipment. Check 'Drum Spell', which sounds like an outtake from a Can album - 12-minutes of locked Krauty grooves, a bucketload of spooky echo effects and insane, voodoo-influenced, dubbed-out percussion that sounds like it's being played with human bones. And to think this fell out of the same heads that made 'I'm Gonna Get You'. I want some of whatever it was they'd been taking...

Search eBay for Big Two Hundred
DC Recordings website
DC Recordings MySpace
Chicken Lips MySpace
The Emperor Machine MySpace
White Light Circus MySpace