April 2014 / BandaSka / 003

Here Comes The Bass

7” Vinyl Single

  1. Here Comes The Bass – MC ZULU & The Drastics
  2. Friday Night – No. 1 Station

Split 7″ with UK ska/blue-beat band ‘No. 1 Station’. Both tracks featuring dancehall chat over traditional ska riddims! The third release on Slovakian label ‘BandaSka’.

After our horn intro MC ZULU comes in hard and fast and doesn’t let up for the songs duration … Spittin’ lyrical fire at the speed of light … Ruff inna new tradition style!

Stream the track in our player above (^) for a limited time!

November 2013 / Ximeno Records / X-03

Rock With You Single

7” Vinyl Single

  1. Rock With You – The Drastics
  2. El Mensaje – Hielo Ardiente

From Dusty Groove …

A sweet reggae take on “Rock With You” by The Drastics – one that has a cool organ line tripping alongside the vocals, bringing in lots of Kingston touches to the overall vibe – yet still leaving lots of room for the tune’s famous lyrics! “El Mensaje” is a rework of Cymande’s classic “The Message” – done here with very wild keyboard work that soars up and down the scale – more spacey/moogy than the organ in the original, but with an equally funky feel! (Limited to 300 copies.)

August 2013 / Jump Up! Records

MJ a Rocker No. 2

7” Vinyl Single
Digital Download

  1. The Love You Save
  2. The Dub You Save
  3. Remember The Time
  4. Remember The Dub

So four years ago The Drastics put out this ‘lil project we just thought would be nothing more than a fun ‘lil goof..

We took some Michael Jackson accapellas and wrote, arranged, played and recorded reggae versions to the original tracks. We were pretty meticulous on the details, substituting strings for Hammond organ; synth lines for melodica and so forth.

Well, 10,000 downloads and several thousand bootleg LPs sold later, we decided to do a couple more. We took the Jackson 5′s “Love You Save’ and the 90s new jack swing hit ‘Remember The Time’ and gave them the same treatment.

This time with dubs! Download for free!

DOWNLOAD FROM BANDCAMP

May 2013 / Notes & Bolts / N+B 032

A Sonic Black Hole (Dumbhole)

7” Vinyl Single (Limited Edition)
Digital Download

  1. A Sonic Black Hole (Dub)
  2. A Sonic Black Hole (Phase)

Chris Merrill – Bass
Brian Citro – Guitar
Tom Riley – Flute
Andrew Zelm – Trombone
Anthony Abbinanti – Drums / Fender Rhodes / Piano / Roland RS-09 / Melodica / Bass Clarinet / Glockenspiel / Xylophone / Tongue Drum

Recorded, Mixed & Mastered at Dirty North Studios, Chicago IL
Written by C. Merrill / A. Abbinanti
Produced & Engineered & Arranged by A. Abbinanti

DOWNLOAD FROM BANDCAMP

March 2013 / Notes & Bolts / N+B 029

Maté Maté (Xanthines)

7” Vinyl Single (Limited Edition)
Digital Download

  1. Maté Maté (Xanthines)

Chris Merrill – Bass
Luke MacRoberts – Guitar
Tom Riley – Tenor Sax
Andrew Zelm – Trombone
Anthony Abbinanti – Drums / Organ / Clavinet / Piano
Bijan Warner – Percussion

DOWNLOAD FROM BANDCAMP

November 2010

No Lies (Drastics Roots Remix)

Digital Download

  1. No Lies (Drastic Roots Remix)

Our dude MC Zulu was part of this remix competition with the producer Dub Gabriel … It was basically a popularity contest with the winners having the most friends on whatever-music-community site it was hosted … But we threw ours into the mix anyway cause, ya know, it’s fun … So here’s the one remix with live instruments, arranging, and an actual chord progression … More power to the social network!

August 2010

Plus Two Minus One

Digital Download

  1. Change Of Plans
  2. Spontaneous 1 (Gaza Outerspace Program)
  3. Spontaneous 2 (Voiced From 20000 Fathoms)
  4. Spontaneous 3 (Dark Angels & Bright Demons)
  5. Epiphonic

2 rehearsals, 1 gig where it was anyone’s guess as to what was going on; when to play, how long to play, what to play, etc … this is what happened …

Free download!

Charles Gorczynski: Alto Sax
Nate Lepine: Tenor Sax
Andrew Zelm: Trombone, Melodica
Brian Citro: Guitar
Chris Merrill: Double Bass
Anthony Abbinanti: Drums

DOWNLOAD FROM BANDCAMP

April 2010

Ralph “Soul” Jackson Meets The Drastics In Dub

Digital Download

  1. Can’t Leave The Dub Alone
  2. Woman Pride Dub
  3. Free To Dub
  4. A Missing Dub

A few years ago we had chance to meet and work with (some of us continually to this day) Northern (Southern?) Soul Legend Ralph “Soul” Jackson. We had opportunity to perform as his backing band on several sold out shows in Chicago at The Hideout and Park West. After being “rediscovered” by East of Eden Soul DJ John Ciba while curating his Birmingham Sound compilation, we got to work on a 5 track EP of new and old Ralph material at the Drastic’s resident studio, Dirty North.

We pulled out the tape, dusted off the magnetic fields and put a hurtin’ dub on 2 of the tracks we cut with Mr. “Soul” Jackson back in 2007. No, it’s not reggae .. it’s soul … but soul if Muscle Shoals had the same kind of engineers as the Black Ark.

Ralph “Soul” Jackson – Vocals, Hammond Organ
Elliot Ross, JD Mark – Guitar
Chris Merrill – Bass
Anthony Abbinanti – Drums, Fender Rhodes, B Sax, Percussion
Tom Riley – T Sax
Andrew Zelm – Trombone
Gerald Bailey – Trumpet

December 2009 / Happy As A Lark / HAAL003

Digital 7″ Series, Vol. 1

Digital Download

  1. Fraudulent, Parts 1 & 2 (w Fada Dougou)
  2. Ever Ready (w MC Zulu & Fada Dougou)
  3. Ever Dubbing
  4. Toppa Top (w Fada Dougou)
  5. Blowtorch Version
  6. Vibes, Love, Music (w MC Zulu)
  7. Jheri Curl Version
  8. Lonely No More (w MC Zulu)
  9. Dub Me No More

The first collection of our ‘Digital Single Series’ featuring MC Zulu and Fada Dougou. 5 original vocal tracks on a variety of riddim-styles and 4 dubs/versions experimenting with sonic structures and dub exploration.

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November 2009 / Happy As A Lark / HAAL002

Lonely No More

7” Vinyl Single
Digital Download

  1. Lonely No More
  2. Dub Me No More

Our second in a series of digital singles pressed to wax. Featuring MC Zulu in a 70′s proto-lovers-rock-style. Speckled colored vinyl.

DOWNLOAD ON ITUNES

August 2009

MJ a Rocker

12” Vinyl LP
Digital Download

  1. I Want You Back
  2. Rock With You
  3. Don’t Stop ’til You Get Enough
  4. Billie Jean
  5. Smooth Criminal
  6. The Way You Make Me Feel

Our tribute to Michael Joseph Jackson .. imagine Sir Coxsone in the production seat instead of Quincy and you’re about half-way there …  These aren’t instrumentals or covers-per-se … nor a mash-up.  Brand new riddims written to accompany the original MJ vocals.

Love for MJ A Rocker …
URB
Elevator Hip-Hop
Vertigo Productions
Running Down Hill

FREE DOWNLOAD

January 2009 / Happy As A Lark / HAAL001

Love Is War

7” Vinyl Single
Digital Download

  1. Love Is War
  2. Dub Is War

Our first in a series of digital singles pressed to wax. We began in November ’08 with this offering featuring MC Zulu on the mic and a politically-charged hard dub on the “flip”. A departure from the usual Drastics heavy-handed sound, the track is definitely more or a party-groove-for sure. Don’t be a jerk and check it out.

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August 2007 / Jump Up! Records / JUMP079

Waiting

CD
Digital Download

  1. … Strikeback!
  2. Waiting
  3. Feast
  4. Famine
  5. Trapezoid
  6. Redlight (w MC Zulu)
  7. Septentrion
  8. Good Time Tonight (w Fada Dougou)
  9. Das Krampus
  10. Egos
  11. Welcome To …
  12. Nilbog
  13. Still Waiting

With their third release, The Drastics show no sign of slowing down. Refining their cutting-edge sound, Waiting comes hard and to-the-point with 12 new tracks. The album drops a perfect mixture of fresh material expanding from dub to vocal to jazz-centric improvisation carrying with it a maturity of sound appealing to reggae and non-reggae heads a like. Regular vocalists MC Zulu and Fada Dougou lend their voices over the tough “Redlight” and catchy “Good Time Tonight”. While local hornsmen Charles Gorczynski (Silences Sumire, Leaves, Colorlist) and Gerald Bailey (Black Bear Combo, Charles Mantis) lend a hand to the horn section.

“If you’re not familiar with The Drastics, you’re missing out on one of the finest dub bands in the country.”
Music Is Our Occupation

“The Drastics are a band that can entertain the reggae fan, the jazz fan, and everyone in between … “
DC Soundclash

“… another easy to listen to disc from the most forward thinking experimental dub act you are likely to find anywhere.” 4.5/5 Stars
Melt Magazine

“… fans need wait no more, the Drastics have finally delivered their masterpiece.”
allMusic Guide

“… with original riddims and melodies abounding and a style as crucial as the best American reggae gets.”
Tom Orr, Reggae-Reviews.Com

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February 2007 / Ears & Eyes

The Drastics Remixes

CD

  1. Dirty North (Obliterated Mix)
  2. Zelm
  3. To Qrunk
  4. Chris
  5. Run Qwala
  6. Caffeine Fidelity

Actually not a Drastics release, but a remix album by our good friends Silences Sumire! This album is a remix of material sourced from our sophmore release Chicago Massive. Ranging from soundscape to downtempo to drum and bass, The Drastics Remixes takes the usual Drastics sound into another plane of musical existance. This is some serious future-blip-music. Each copy hand screened by Chicago artist Shawn Stucky, album artwork from Anthony Abbinanti.

October 2006 / Jump Up! Records / JUMP076

Very Fine, Real Fine

12” Vinyl LP

A

  1.   Yureru Version (w Craig Akira Fujita)
  2. Mama Africa (w Fada Dougou)
  3. Marie’s Dub

B

  1. High Fidelity (w I Black Fiery)
  2. Persian Dub
  3. Deejay Premonition

The accompanying vinyl release to Chicago Massive …

This vinyl EP hits with 6 alternate versions and dubs of cuts taken from Chicago Massive. Featuring a handful of vocalists as well as straight riddim/dubs for selectors to play with DJs, only 6 cuts so you can rock it loud at yer next gig or party!

June 2006 / Jump Up! Records / JUMP076

Chicago Massive

Double CD
Digital Download

Disc 01

  1. Fidelity Dub
  2. Urban’s Fight
  3.  Yureru
  4. Satet Rock
  5. Anqet
  6. 10(2)k(6)
  7. Najib Najib
  8. Chicago Crazy Roll
  9. Dark Premonition
  10. Ghetto Drastic
  11. The Vacillator
  12. The Alarm
  13. Ataraxia
  14. Rollin’ On
  15. Al Q’runka

Disc 02

  1.  Nice (w Jahn the Baptist)
  2. Fidelity (w Mario Valentine)
  3. Slip Away (w Fada Dougou and Low Key)
  4. Satet Version (w Dr Ring Ding)
  5. Good Timin’ (w Cory Dixon)
  6. Ransom the Senator (w MC Zulu)
  7. Dancefloor (w Mario Valentine)
  8. Nyabinghi Blues (w Dayna Lynn)
  9. Tell Me Goodbye (w Todd Hembrook)
  10. Musical Shark Attack (w King Django)
  11. Adjust Jah Works (w Jah Scoob)
  12. Me a Rasta (w Ghanaboy & Family)

With their second release, Chicago Massive, The Drastics undertook their biggest endeavor to date. Chicago Massive is a 2 disc album boasting 27 tracks and 24 friends sharing the mic in a variety of styles. Guest musicians on the first disc include Chicago reeds player Charles Gorczynski (Silences Sumire, Leaves, Colorlist), Mike “Spider” Hobson (Deals Gone Bad), and trumpeter Rich Graiko (Void Union, Westbound Train). Guest vocalists include Drastic mainstays Fada Dougou and MC Zulu as well as friends King Django, Dr. Ring Ding, Dayna Lynn, Todd Hembrook (Deals Gone Bad), and Corey Dixon (The Zvooks).

Selected cuts off this record were also treated to remix album appropriately titled “The Drastics Remixes” by electro-acoustic duo Silences Sumire (Rope-a-dope).

” … niceness from a Midwestern band who play dub-rich music … I’d endorse this double album most heartily. 4/5 Stars.
Tom Orr, Reggae-Reviews.Com

“Following their widely praised 2005 debut, “dub masters” The Drastics don’t mess with success on Chicago Massive.”
Illinois Entertainer

“So creative are the riddims, so intriguing the dubs … The Drastics deserve much credit for moving deep into unchartered territories …”
allMusic Guide

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November 2005 / Happy As A Lark / HAAL000

Outlaw Tracks

CD

  1. Strange Keys
  2. Anquet Dub (demo)
  3. Broke Babylon (w Craig Akira Fujita)
  4. Dub Thieves
  5. Ig (Alta Villa Version)
  6. Satet Rock (alt mix)

The Drastics first and a half release, Outlaw Tracks contains alternate versions of tunes off Premonition as well as samplings of things to come.

Limited pressing of 200 copies, each hand assembled and stamped.

June 2005 / Jump Up! Records / JUMP065

Premonition

CD
Digital Download

  1. Kevlar Suit
  2. Fistful of Dub
  3. Motherland (w Craig Akira Fujita)
  4. Ransome (w Rich Graiko)
  5. Ig (w Obi Fernandez)
  6. 10k (w Vandell Harris)
  7. Bulletproof
  8. Wild Bunch (w Dr Ring Ding)
  9. Psychic War (w DJ Prince)
  10. Fivebar
  11. Kevlar Version (w Craig Akira Fujita)
  12. Fistful a Riddim (w King Django)

The Drastics first full-length album, Premonition, was released in 2005 to great expectation on Chicago’s JumpUp! Records. The album featured guest vocalists Craig Akira Fujita (Pressure Cooker, Joint Chiefs, 10 ft Ganja Plant), King Django (Stubborn All Stars, Skinnerbox), Dr. Ring Ding as well as several local underground talents. The record’s raw dirty sound quickly solidified their authenticity while their innovative approach to the music set them apart as leaders of a new school of reggae-based music.

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