Today on Ecléctico you're listening to the English post-punk band Scritti Politti. What makes today's song truly unique is how the band stretches their sound into a soulful, dub-bound groove. You'll go deeper with an excerpt from a review by Nitsuh Abebe on Pitchfork.
'The "Sweetest Girl"' by Scritti Politti
1981 | Dub-influenced, post-punk band from Leeds, England
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At the end of this set, you get the biggest transition of all: An absolutely incredible single called "The Sweetest Girl". The impossible drumming is gone, replaced with the slow high-hat tick of a drum machine; the trebly guitar scratch is gone, replaced with Robert Wyatt on keyboards and a dub-appropriate synth-piano part. And suddenly this band is anything but skittery-- suddenly you're floating in a zero-graving soul number, a creamy make-out piece emerging from the post-punk basement. Gartside writes in his note that this music is "evocative of extraordinary times," and it's in that transition that you feel it: A moment where rickety avant-dub could proceed without blinking into upscale soul and English funk. You can compare the first part to the Pop Group, or the Slits at their most outré; you can point out how often groups like XTC tried to tread on the second part (see Oranges and Lemons). But they're both big, big stretches: Most bands couldn't sound like this no matter how hard they tried.
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