Mr. Dibbs – Turntable Hardcore vol. 1

2 out of 5

Label: Puddles Frothingsquat Recordings

Produced by: Mr. Dibbs

My ears might be kinder to this if I hadn’t started with volume 2 of Turntable Hardcore, which feels more geared toward a standalone listen – volume 1, with tracks moreso culled from live sets, comes across as a continuous mix geared for a club, and takes less chances as a result.

The template is similar, and because volume 1 logically would chronologically precede 2, it started here: with Dibbs setting various rock and metal samples to a beat. But it’s also that basic on this set, whereas the next iteration turned that into more of a medley approach, chopping and screwing things up impressively. This is a more standard approach, with what feel like pre-programmed beats on top of less-inspired sources, getting mileage on the recognizability of those sources in order to get a crowd amped up. Dibbs will add scratches on top, but setting aside that I surely can’t scratch to save my life, these affections also feel rather “typical” – nothing that screams of notable turntablism.

This all makes sense for a live set, of course, when the focus is on keeping the flow, but it doesn’t make for the most dynamic listen, and the uneven mastering throughout the album – volume goes up and down; the richness of the mix is often pretty flat – makes it fairly dull background music as well.

The idea of Turntable Hardcore is still very cool, and if I were more of a club type and heard this live, picking up this disc at a show as a testament to the unique sound would be likely, but that’s predicated on that ‘if.’ Since the reality is me listening to albums at home, and listening from an album perspective, TH isn’t very grabbing. It’s true tracks are solid, but the live mixes are pretty tedious, and they’re pretty frequent on the disc – all that’s good here would be much better iterated on in the second volume.