Necessary Measures
Record label: Ninja Tune (UK)
Format: 2xLP/CD
Release date: March 2003

A number of people have made quite a commotion over this album and my curiosity finally got the best of me. Pest is one of the latest signings for the mighty Ninja Tune label. Weirdbeat fanatics are beside themselves talking about this group - almost to the point of forgetting that the Ninjas have been down this road before. For those that have a short memory, two words: FUNKI PORCINI. But before I sound too anal, I must say that the accolades are well deserved, mainly because no one has done “weird” quite like this. Necessary Measures is orchestrated madness, a happy and carefree album made by and for people with Attention Deficit Disorder. There are plenty of psycho moments along the way - not a “scare you to death” psycho, more of a “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Straitjacket” psycho. Take “Slap On Tap,” for instance: the first minute sounds like a ‘70s era Stevie Wonder loop being sucked into a black hole, only to be regurgitated later as covered by a cartoon band. “Relief” sounds like drum and bass with Down’s Syndrome, its melody built around a surf guitar. Top mention goes to “Dr Umz”: incidental music for animated short films is set to uptempo breaks, which slowly morphs into manic 2-step complete with chattering MC. Pest have made a bonafide head scratcher - there is nothing else out there that sounds like this album. NOTHING.

{steve crognale}
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