The Ace of Clubs: Benefist

In which Luke Francis Vibert exhumes the five-year-old alias The Ace Of Clubs for a seventy-five-minute workout of squiggly acid-house. All fifteen tracks are fine enough but, with all due respect to Mr. Vibert, they're also the kind of thing he can do in his sleep at this stage—which makes me wonder why he doesn't challenge himself to do something a little more innovative, especially when past releases under the Plug and Wagon Christ aliases show he's eminently capable of doing so. Yes, some tunes do distinguish themselves as above-average exemplars of the genre: “Classid” and “Ecid” add nice backbeat funk to their slippery drum machine snares and gobbling acid mayhem, and “Whorcan” and “Patriotic Acid” swing with a jazzy breeziness and syncopated élan, respectively. “Pheel The Phorce” also mixes it up by adding a hip-hop vibe to its grinding, cymbal-heavy flow, while “Fruitacid” adds soulful shout-outs to its tight groove. Yet the feeling remains that Vibert's spinning his wheels here by cranking out assembly-line tracks that don't hold a candle to wildly imaginative material like Tally Ho!'s “Shimmering Haze” and Drum'n'Bass for Papa's “Me & Mr Jones.”

August 2007