Lamb

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Mancunian downtempo/drum'n'bass duo Lamb were one of the first groups to add a lyrics-based vocalist to steadfastly jungle-based productions. Unlike other vocal-based groups (such as Everything But the Girl and the Sneaker Pimps) who've dabbled in rolling breaks as a quiet accompaniment to a clearly dominant vocal lead, Lamb dwell in brash musical contrasts and, occasionally, contradictions that make their songs as musically complex and exploratory as they are vocally catchy. Formed in 1994 by producer Andrew Barlow and vocalist Louise Rhodes (the former an in-house engineer for So What management, the latter a daughter of folk-singer parents and a budding songstress), Lamb nailed a contract with Mercury subsidiary Fontana almost straight out of the gate. The group's calling card, the "Cotton Wool" single, already showed field-leaders such as Gerald Simpson and Fila Brazillia were on their side (each contributed a remix). But if anything it was the untouched title track that illustrated Lamb's commitment to keeping the music interesting (the track rows along on a thick double-bass sample and absolutely brutalizing drum sequences) while filling it out with a big dose of tunefulness. An additional single ("Gold") followed, with Lamb's self-titled debut released in the Fall of '96 to widespread acclaim. Like the previous singles, much of Lamb explores song-oriented deployments of jungle, but the album also adds elements of downtempo and ambient-ish electro-jazz as well, making for one of the most diverse, stylistically mature debuts in recent memory. Most recently, Rhodes lent her vocals to Sheffield legends 808 State's Don Solaris LP (on the track "Azura"), and the success of Lamb's debut also brought a fair amount of remix work their way. The pair also added touring to their repertoire (Lamb's release was followed by a European tour with labelmates Galliano), combining their electronics-heavy productions with live instrumentalists. Second album Fear of Fours appeared in 1999. - Sean Cooper

Lamb - Official site.


Lamb albums I own:



Lamb







1. Lusty (4:09)
2. God Bless (5:53)
3. Cotton Wool (5:07)
4. Trans Fatty Acid (7:36)
5. Zero (5:33)
6. Merge (5:44)
7. Gold (5:40)
8. Closer (3:57)
9. Gorecki (6:30)
10. Feela (17:11)