Deconstructed Live: Jon Sheppard (Pork Recordings/Nice Up!/Bestival/Big Chill)

Hull’s finest, and admittedly only, beat warriors have shown a persistent reluctance to comply with neat categorisations – preferring instead to duck convenient labelling by the media in an ongoing quest to replace bland, genre-specific beats with something a great deal more wholesome. While the swirling synths which run through the “Tetris” LP are distinctly house, other elements were much harder to pin down; as the percussion wanders far from four to the floor constraints the melodics are equally freewheeling – shape-shifting from the super sharp horn samples of “Bye, Bye Baby” right through to the slippery keys of “White Russian.” By way of contrast, the second half of the album gave way to a series of Nightmares On Wax inspired smokers delights; dubbed low end providing the framework for sprawling soundscapes – Tatiana Ipatova’s occasional vocal touches soaked up by these all-enveloping sonic snowdrifts.

With Porky otherwise unavailable, he sent representative DJ Shepdog for the first of five visits west, the last of which – we kid you not – in a private investigative capacity, with button hole camera and other recording tech-trickery. Shep has since established the Nice Up! label, and is a regular at Bestival and the Big Chill.

About Kingsley Marshall

Kingsley Marshall is Head of Film at the School of Film & Television at Falmouth University. He also works as a journalist, contributing film, music and video game criticism, features and reviews to Clash, Little White Lies, Shook and Big Screen magazines in the UK, Sabotage Times online and Magnetic overseas. He can be found on Twitter as @kingsleydc