Review Summary: We are going to need a bigger BOSE system
A further bout of nausea kicks in as the battered little boat lurches headlong into yet another impenetrable, black wall of water.
There’s no way through, the stench of a billion drops of salt stings the nostrils as the sea air brings tears to the eye.
The old sea dog captain with eyes rabid as his moniker would suggest clutches Leftism, the 1995 debut from Leftfield in his hand and says through grizzled tone. “We are going to need a bigger BOSE system.”
And so it was in 1995, the dance scene to anyone had lived through its heady days had settled in the underground, the mainstream consisted of guitar, angst and pop sensibility. Through a melding of each of these musical ingredients a crossover was released in the form of the Prodigys’ Music for a Jilted Generation. Then shortly after Leftism appeared and the impenetrable wave was crested.
Opening with Release the Pressure ambient strains of electronic string are accompanied by the line “I’ve got to stand and fight in this creation” and then we are off on a journey which throughout the course of the album incorporates Dub, House, Soul, Punk and Reggae to broaden the taste of a generation.
The tribal beats of Afro-Left bring about visions of standing at Rorkes’ Drift spear and shield in hand squinting against the sun ready for attack.
Third track ‘Melt’ is the sort of thing that would play in the background of the Tyrell building as Deckard carries out a Voight Kompf test. Replicants’ would struggle.
‘Original’ is possibly the most generic of the tunes on offer here however that is not to say with its discordant blasts coming in after 3mins 30sec, rhythm and beats accompanying Toni Hallidays vocal performance the song is anything less then superb.
‘Inspection (Check one)’ is what good stereos were made for and this is before the collaboration with John Lydon on Open Up. The spirit, fire and provocative anger is there in all its resplendent glory as Rotten compels “Burn Hollywood, Burn. Take down tinsel town”
Leftism came from nowhere and turned heads, nearly twenty years later it still sounds as revolutionary, fresh, relevant and head turning as it ever did.
Turn it up loud, feel the beat, enter the fray, take the journey.