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PREFUSE 73
Security Screenings

WARPCD140
Warp Records 2006
17 Tracks. 39mins56

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‘It’s a bit crowded’. This statement, possibly attributed to a journalist, lifted from Illiterate Interlude, sums up not only the work of Guillermo Scott Herren under his Prefuse guise, but also partly what this companion mini-album to last year’s massive Surrounded By Silence is all about. Conceived and recorded during the tour that followed the release of the album, Security Screenings is announced as a reaction to the promotional work and interviews Herren found himself entangled with.

If the list of contributors here is not as extensive as that found on Surrounded By Silence, Security Screenings features the much talked about collaboration with Four Tet (Creating Cyclical Headaches) and concludes with a piece recorded with TV On The Radio’s Babatunde Adebimpe. Here though, Herren returns to the largely instrumental sliced up hip-hop he excels at, yet the mood is, at least in part, strangely calmer and more composed than on previous records, at times evoking the sun-drenched ambiences of Savath & Savalas. Security Screenings slots in rather perfectly alongside its predecessor. A logical evolution from the intricate soundtracks created for Surrounded By Silence, the focus is once again on Herren’s surgical dissections of samples and beats in the name of the groove and his constant reinterpretation of a genre that, in its ugly mainstream incarnation at least, suffers from prolonged overindulgence.

Stripped of the clouds of vocal contributions, the Prefuse sound sparkles and shines freely once again. When in laidback mode, tracks lazily meander around quirky samples, airy sound formations and comatose beat. But it is when things heat up that Herren truly comes to his own. Meticulously dissecting rhythmic patterns and sound sources, compressing pneumatic bass lines and lacerating vocal samples into superbly effective vignettes, ranging from just a few seconds to a mere three-and-a-half minutes at the most, Herren piles up tracks and sounds at an impressive rate and, in true Prefuse style, continuously blurs the boundaries between genres. The term hip-hop has always proved reductive when it comes to this project, as it only partially defines what Herren sets out to achieve. The structure might find some lineage with the hip-hop pioneers of the early eighties, but the man injects far more than he takes, and it is once again very much what defines Security Screenings.

Surrounded By Silence, undoubtedly Guillermo Scott Herren’s most accomplish record to date, proved how relevant the Prefuse 73 sound is and demonstrated that it could work equally well as vocal support. Now reclaiming his natural ground, Herren proudly shows to his detractors that he has lost nothing of his panache. Four Tet and Babatunde Adebimpe might be landing a helping hand on a couple of tracks, but it is Herren who dictates what’s happening. Security Screenings certanly is a return to more common Prefuse grounds, but it only highlights the more uncompromissing side of Herrren's talent that some may have missed out on last time round.

4.7

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TRACKLIST

The Letter: P
With Dirt And Two Texts Afternoon Version
Illiterate Interlude
Keeping Up With Your Quota
No Special Bed
Weight Watching
When The Grip Lets You Go
Another One Long Gone
Always It's Gonna Be Like That
Creating Cyclical Headaches
Awakening To A.....
With Dirt And Two Texts Later Version With Love
No Origin
One Star And Three Stripes
Mud In Your Mouth
Breathe
Matrimonioids..... (For Elivin + Susana Estela)
We Leave You In A Cloud Of Thick Smoke And Sleep Outro

SCOTT HERREN Discography

THE SURFER'S GUIDE TO SCOTT HERREN
Prefuse 73
Warp Records
Schematic
Hefty Records
Scott Herren

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