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Strictly Hot Tracks: Kid Koala – 1 Bit Blues

Canadian born Kid Koala is back on tour in the UK this year, including a killer set at Reading. Friday saw him bring his Vinyl Vaudeville tour to Bristol and his promises of music, dancing girls, puppets, turntables, robots, drinks and parlor games wasmore than delivered. This tour is a celebration of the release of his new album ’12-bit Blues’, a superb album comprised entirely of samples with a singular blues approach. Unique from his is contemporaries in his playful experimentation with childrens albums, obscure samples and inventive reinterpretations of sound. ‘1-Bit Blues’ is the albums opener and begins with the declaration of “the kid is in rare form tonight”, which is immediately interrupted by a repetitive piano loop, which jots and gitches with a surprising  groove. The track acts as a fantastic opener to the rest of the album as lays out a mass of creativity, juxtaposed to the sample of Delta Blues legend Son House establishing that “youngsters today will take anything and make blues out of it”. This track (and album) has taken the blues and recontexualised it into a playful, creative and truly interesting 21st century vision of turntablism. Naturally, the Blues is a genre founded on misery and oppression, but the chirpy canadian has taking the mirky storytelling of the vintage blues cuts and created an album of great variety with a rather chipper up-temp feel. Uncut magazine described the album thusly; “This is creating at its most creative as he thrillingly twists the blues into phantasmagorical new shapes with an almost Beefheartian sense of adventure”, which is a perfect description of 1-Bit Blues or 12-Bit Blues as a whole. One thing’s for definite “the kid is in rare form tonight”. Adam Grylls

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