Roots Manuva- Awfully DE/EP

October 23rd, 2005

A while after the now classic ‘Run Come Save Me’ album was released, fans were treated to the great ‘Dub Come Save Me’ which impressively offered new Dub heavy versions of album tracks as well as some new material. A while after the release of album three ‘Awfully Deep’, Manuva again treats fans to some different takes of tracks as well as a new offering.

The new track ‘Seat Yourself’ is of the same sonic styles as all of Manuva’s more recent material. It’s of a fairly dark vibe with a really dirty bass line. There’s some very high pitched strings scattered throughout and an attempt to create an epically atmospheric effort which is let down by a quite average chorus which irriates after several play through’s.

The Lambeth Blues remix of ‘Awfully Deep’ is a live studio band version of the track, featuring piano played by Damon Albarn who invited Manuva to work on his recent Gorillaz project. It’s softer than the original in parts which is refreshing, as of late, listeners have only been able to hear Manuva on a particular trademark sound which he has been working in during this third stage of his career.

The ‘Lambeth Blues – Metronomy Remix’ of ‘Awfully Deep’ could easily be a demo version of the original song. It’s a little slower in pace and has sound effects and a drum pattern which is understated and the opposite of intense. The vocals have at points, undergone a treatment which some may love as examples of Manuva’s ‘craziness’ and which others will simply find unneccesary.

Fellow Big Dada Recordings artist Diplo, who has been doing production for the likes of Kano and M.I.A, as well as a remix for Gwen Stefani, remixes the new track ‘Seat Yourself’. It’s a half hearted version which for some time, feels like it’s going somewhere but ends up not going anywhere that special at all.

The EP ends with the original radio edit album version of the track, which shows that it was enjoyable and impressive enough not to require any remakes. This release as a whole is solid, however it would have been more entertaining to see a wider collection of remixes and perhaps a couple more totally new numbers. ‘Dub Come Save Me’ had a continual theme of representing a whole album in a new light. This is more a drawn out single release.

Die hard fans should pick this up to complete their Manuva collection, but less fanatical listeners should just stick with the new album and spend the money on any older material they’ve yet to pick up.