Kukan Dub Lagan album "Life is Nice", Candyflip Re

alex candy

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New chill-out/downbeat release from Candyflip Records. A couple first reviews below :

Candyflip Records in Greece is out with a new album, this time going a relaxed direction. Here we get the debut album by an artist called Kukan Dub Lagan, which is Itay Berger based in Tel Aviv, Israel. This guy has been djing quite a lot around the world, but it seems like he has slowed down a little to make this chill out album. Very positive album title, and I’m sure some of these tracks will make you happy too.

The first track leads us right into a beautiful, floating, atmospheric vibe. We also get a quite happy melody and relaxing, dubby sounds and beats. Chilled psychedelic dub. A nice floating start on the album. Track 2 goes deeper into the dub soundscapes, but keeps a light vibe, with beautiful melodies and sounds. This one sounds more like reggae dub, with reggae inspired voice samples, sounds etc. Track 3 goes back to a more floating vibe again. The sounds we get in these tracks are really beautiful. Here we also get a playful bass, mystic voice samples and some kicking, slow, beats. Track 4 continues the reggae inspired dub. Echoing sounds and voice samples done in a psychedelic way. You also get some smoked out dubby beats and a happy, weird vibe through the entire track. One of my favourite tracks on this album. Track 5 starts in a bit funny way, with some sounds that reminds me of the speakers at an airport or something. Then some heavy, dubby beats start working through the track, going in a very pleasant tempo to the end.

Track 6 starts with an even weirder sound and heavier beats. Here we get more reggae influences too, and the beat goes over to an almost danceable down tempo rhythm. In my ears, this track is a bit over the top when it comes to reggae influences and I find the melody in this one a bit simple and nagging. Track 7 has a bit weird start too and sounds a bit like when I played on my Casio keyboard as a child. But, he adds some bass, a down tempo beat and more playful sounds, so the track actually becomes quite enjoyable. Not among my favourites on this album. Track 8 has some really cool, fat beats that remind me a bit of the big beat genre, but this one goes a more dubby direction. You get a tired reggae voice sample in this one too. Another favourite on this album. Dub that make you happy and relaxed. Track 9 goes a bit more experimental. A bit weirder sound picture with a more psychedelic vibe and quite a lot of variation. Track 10 has a bit more dramatic sound, with a relaxed down tempo beat, a floating background and several mystic voice samples etc. The last track on this album goes much more melancholic. Very beautiful sound picture, with great variation of sounds and melodies and totally relaxed down tempo beats. Definitely the best track on this album in my opinion.

Kukan Dub Lagan might be a very strange name you have never heard of before, but you should definitely check it out if you want to hear something different. You get a quite unusual style in this album, with mostly dubby tracks going a different direction than most other dub being released around the world.

PKS (trance.net, NO)

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First of all, Id like to say that I feel very happy for writing this review. Its been a long waiting album for me and I just received it!! I have to say that I am impressed from the quality of Itays sound and for sure it will be something new in the downbeat/chill scene with these vibes and great ,melodies that Kukan has represented. Now lets move to the review of the tracks

# 1 Life Is Nice, nice intro, with some atmospheric sounds nad pads. Together with the drums, we are getting the kukans melodies which are so great and unigue. From the very 1st track we can listen to the quality that this album delivers. Clean and sharp. Good energy in this one. "How long have u been writing electronicaaaaa".

# 2 Saiko Dub Some dub vocals with the usual pattern of the dub structure have been combined for this one. What a start bytheway!!! Heavy shit, but with Itays melodies tracks is been kept alive and groovy.

# 3 Pink The Floyd, This one starts a bit moody in this one. Some words and then here comes the kick drums with a nice vibe but still keep you down there, not letting your happy side loose. I guess that was the track meant for. 2:30 we face a 4/4 beat with some new sounds and percussions. Always fall of drums and percussions. Some good trippy sounds from the sides just to keep the mind busy. Cool track, very nice indeed.

# 4 Roots Of Vibration, Itays melody, with nice fx on some dub lyrics. Nice choppering bro. You feel the vobe coming. Wooow, nice beat and a great show of skills of quality. Liked the guitar sound and the panning effect.. I cant imagine how this will be on a sound system or with headphones!!! What a journey. 3:47 basses coming. I like your basses bro. What a track, for sure one of my favorites from the album.

# 5 Gandhi's Kick, Yeah!!! Some phat bass in this one. Delays do such a brilliant work man. Reverb also does a good job, already told u that Dubwise pattern. Good one, nice vibe. It mooved me!

# 6 Defence Yourself Jha, Starts with a melody that is combined with some vocals and the bass that gives u the whole meaning of the track. A track that makes u feel that came froma raggae bands studio!!! I love those soundz at 3:00. Which go and go and on and on!!!!

# 7 Shay-Yes-I, Again some melodies of Itays!! Yeaahhh! This is what makes u unique my friend. Long intro with some reverbed and delayed percussions and sounds and suddently at 2:37 a 4/4 beat with a kick that came to drive u to the rest of the tracks trip!! What a vibe on the 4th min and on.

# 8 No Mon Control!!!, Yes... This one I remember it during its production time. Phat bass, with nice panning and delays. How much I enjoy delays!!! Some melodies again giving u the feeling of the real vibe and driving u towards the jopurney. 1:30 some drums added. A small break to capture the attention. A nice track again with some good energy and use of fxs! I like this sounds mannn ¡weeee woooouuu¡¨¡ hehehee So many sounds in one track and still it sounds so clean and crystal. Great man!

# 9 Shinzon Romulan, Some scratching to start with. Reverse does a good job hehe... I like it and Im a lover of the OM boyz too What a great feedback they give. I like the mood of this track, make me wanna go a bit back. It reminds me of stuff. At 3:12 huge phat bass comes to shake some headz! Yeah, something like trip-hop-dub this one can be described.

# 10 The Sound Of The Sword, Some dark intro that with some melody the darkness all of a suddent became light. It makes me feel like it is a soundtrack of a movie. Yeah man, for sure this track belongs to the soundtrack of a movie, Im sure that someone will use it for a monie or something... Its ooo great. Good one!!! I like it a lot

# 11 And last but not least The Bells Of Burma. Intro of a track is the 1/3 of the whole track IMO. And yes itay u have succeded in that section in all of your tracks. Some nice atmosphere with some good pads and melods. Yeah man, this one reminds me trax of some artists that I had them up there in my list. This time, the track came from u man, and u know that I have u up there in my list with all those names that I was admiring (aes dana etc...) And yes, something is coming... wooow what a bassline!!!!!

That was my review on this great album, I hope u enjoy it as much as i did, keep the good vibes coming Itay and good luck to your future plans

CHP (Isratrance, CY)

Check it out at :


enjoy! :Wink3:
Kukan Dub Lagan – Life Is Nice


Artist: Kukan Dub Lagan (Israel)
Title: Life Is Nice
Format: CD (digipack)
Label: Candyflip Records (Greece)
Cat. #: CFCD 13
Distribution: Arabesque
Date: November 2004

Track listing:

01. 06’36†Life Is Nice
02. 06’26†Saiko Dub
03. 07’17†Pink The Floyd
04. 07’25†Roots of Vibration
05. 06’36†Gandhi’s Kick
06. 06’08†Defence Yourself Jha
07. 06’32†Shay-Yes-I
08. 07’24†No Mon Control!!!
09. 06’52†Shinzon Romulan
10. 07’06†The Sounds of the Sword
11. 08’02†The Bells of Burma

M3U playlist: http://beta.juno.co.uk/playlists/m3u/160127-01.m3u (all tracks)


Chaotic space dub!

Kukan Dub Lagan is 28 year old Itay Berger from Israel, and this is his debut album released by Greek label Candyflip Records. This is not your ordinary bunch of psy-trance/psy-chill… No, this is something different… This is psy-dub!

Let me take you thru the tracks…

#01: “How long have you been writing electronica? Ten years! They call it a decade, call it a decade…†This title-track immediately teleports the listener deep into the dub-jungle where all worries are put aside and life is nice… It’s lazy afternoon dub with digital birds, rippling percussion, flute, children’s choir, floating melodies and a very uplifting atmosphere all together… Yeah, life is nice!

#02: As the title suggests, this track digs deeper into the more saikodelic side of dub… Heavier and more hectic – as heavy and hectic as leftfield dub can be… Sounds like Itay is playing around with an old school organ and some severely cut-up beats here, though he somehow manages to maintain a joyous vibe throughout the track…

#03: Very nice intro on the PF-tribute track here… Organic, eerie and slowly building towards something big… UFO-samples alongside a deeeeeep, dubby bassline… This is very, very soothing music… Very well-produced… Reminds me of Shulman and Asura at times… Brilliant track!

#04: Ahh… Another über-cool intro with heavily cut-up voice-samples echoing into oblivion arpeggio-style… Single note synth-action accompanied by lazy percussion, a deep steady bass, guitar and all kinds of percussion, glass-bottle tapping, etc… This track really encapsulated the Kukan Dub Legan sound – and what an impressive sound that is…

#05: The Mahatma Dub Session vol. 1: Advanced Fusion. Heavily reverbed synths lines with ska-elements, reggae vibe, deep groovy bassline and the trusted drop of dub as the common denominator… This is musical tapas! Feast your ears on this!

#06: And this is very it gets really weird… I think Itay raided the waste bin of a Kingston studio cutting room… But hey, I guess we’re just not used to a raggamuffin MC all of a sudden dropping lyrics in the middle of a psy-dub album… Interesting track, but not really my fav’e blunt on this album…

#07: Echoing naïve, one-key synthlines makes out the very long, slightly annoying intro… It gets better when yet another phat bassline and voice-effects are added later on… It gets even better when a faster kick is introduced and the track turns out pretty ok… Not outstanding, but nice nevertheless!

#08: Woow – that is one deep bass! Yikes! Steady, controlled pace and very focussed… More FX are added, among them another reggae-emcee and some filtered steeldrum action… Again more Kukan analogue synths opposite little twirling melodies to balance out the deep bassline… A winning combination and guaranteed to leave a big cracking smile on most faces!

#09: The intro uses a sample similar to the Independence Day quote in IM’s ‘Release Me’ … Quite scary actually… Anywho – this is among the most psychedelic tracks on the album… And I really like the gloomy atmosphere put forward by Itay here… Stellar track!

#10: Another dub-tune focussed on the slightly darker side of things… It’s a clash of organic and synthetic sounds… I like the long character-building pads and the haunting mood this track delivers… Tasty!

#11: And I’ll be damned if Itay doesn’t go all Vanessa Williams on us and saves the best for last… Again a glum atmosphere has totally soaked this track – but when it’s done this good no-one is complaining… This is full-scale dubby ambient which just scratches you right were it itches! Life is nice!

As stated above, this is not your ordinary bunch of psy-trance… Very far from it actually! But don’t let that discourage you – it’s a very nice album indeed and a great way to expand your musical horizons. It has enough experimentation to appeal to the leftfield crowd – and enough psychedelia to satisfy the twisted downbeat crowd. In other words: this is for open-minded fans of leftfield ambient and cross-over psy-chill dub – and everything in between! Another fine Candyflip release by a visionary label which has the balls to steer of the beaten psy-path! Recommended!

Favourites: 1, 3, 4, 5, 8(!), 9(!), 10, 11(!)


External links:
Candyflip Records: http://www.candyflip-records.com
Psyshop: http://www.psyshop.com/shop/CDs/cfr/cfr1cd013.html (Audio samples available!)
Saiko Sounds: http://www.saikosounds.com/english/display...ase.asp?id=4354
Chaos Unlimited: http://www.chaosunlimited.co.uk/cgi-bin/pr....asp?LR=CFRCD13
Juno Records: http://www.juno.co.uk/IP/IF160127-01.htm
Trance Shop: http://www.trance-shop.com/de/catalog/prod...roducts_id=4267
And I’ll be damned if Itay doesn’t go all Vanessa Williams on us and saves the best for last…
nice one mate :Wink3:
This debut release from Israeli producer Itay Berger is an impressive outing. Life is Nice reminds one that music does not need to take itself seriously to be exquisite and introspective. The album combines two major sounds, stripped down dub rhythm & bass and Israeli trance psychedelia, and then exaggerates them to happily ridiculous proportions. The rhythm section mixes straight-forward and extremely bouncy drum beats with thick and soaring bass lines. The rhythms are matched with varying synth keys styles and a rich and intricate fabric of psychedelic sound.

The album is then littered with a wide range of samples that are expertly placed, but often render the listener wondering. It’s at this point that it becomes clear that music can be fun and foolish without losing its edge. Much of the album is uptempo (for dub) ranging mostly between 100-120 bpm, but has several deep downtempo grooves as well. It’s easy to imagine oneself listening to this album on the beach at the Mediterranean Sea at sunset (the time that dub is best heard), staring out over the water trying to reconcile the enormity of existence with the sheer ridiculousness of life. Indeed, life is nice.

Reviewed by Maer Israel (USA)
OEM Radio - http://www.oemradio.org
Dub Beautiful Collecive - http://www.dub-beautiful.org
Ambient Airlines - http://www.ambientairlines.com
this is a really sweet album.. nice soundtrack to a sunday morning for me! thanks itay :Smile3:
yet another review! :smoke:

I’ve had this album for a little while now, having it bring me many smiles while traversing the island of Montreal back and forth on its public transit system. The time finally came to sit down, put all other thoughts out of mind, give Life Is Nice a proper listen and review it. After a long and full day and a long yoga session, I have brought out those earphones and brewed myself a big ole cup of green tea. Here goes.

1. This one starts off with some nostalgic sounds, the sample about time passing helping that nostalgia. The melody puts one in a brooding mood. This is not the pure dub that we’ll get later on in the album yet, but it is a definitely a taste of what is to come. Meditative? Yes. Relaxing? Not so much, with all those layers. Don’t get me wrong, the layering is wonderful, it is just that this is not the track to go to sleep to. In fact, it is definitely one to wake up to, as you can practically feel the warmth of the sun on its upward journey. For some reason, it makes you feel as though you were walking the streets of your childhood, several years after not having set foot on them; possibly, those children’s voices so reminiscent of one’s own childhood in a far-off town.

2. Well, this one definitely has more of a reggae feel to it, while remaining very psychedelic. The melody in this one is very nice once again, being incorporated nicely into some roots dub. The clarity of the production is also quite remarkable with all the individual sounds so crisp and clean, melting into a medley of warmth. Great (saiko) dub, indeed.

3. This one starts off sounding a bit more northerly. An autumn foggy morning on a remote northern Scottish or Irish rocky coast possibly? The sounds of a lighthouse in a distance and waves crashing against the rocks. A childhood spent there perhaps, but the childhood is nothing but naοve and innocent, while the place is so remote. Total seclusion, allowing you to discover yourself. The sounds of a radio reminding you from time to time that there is another world out there, a world completely and utterly alien to you. Extremely atmospheric stuff and a very fitting tribute to Syd Barrett.

4. Starts off with industrial sounds that quickly merge into one of the happiest dub tunes ever. Simple pure dub, but with what sounds to be a million layers, one never interfering with another. This one consists of waves of Caribbean sound washing over your whole body, whether you want it or not. Would be THE tune to put on when coming home to an empty house after work on a sunny summer afternoon, holding a big glass of mango juice in one hand and a joint in the other.

5. Starts off sounding somewhat like an old Mum song, but with the beat catching up with it, becomes much warmer than anything Mum ever made. I fear that my head-bopping will soon be transformed into all-out dancing. This one could be remixed into a great progressive trance tune.

6. A train whistle kicks this one off, and some Jamaican vocals draw alongside it. A more evocative track than the last couple. Still quite fast and busy though. The break halfway through is very welcome and accomplishes everything it sets out to do, including making you shake your ass when the beat kicks in (can get rid of that chair for good now). Could have done with a bit less talking and a bit more singing, however. Ends with that little whistle that it started with.

7. A traditional dubby track with some psy-ambient sounds sprinkled on top. Takes a while to really get going, but the anticipation lasting over two and a half minutes is half the fun. Another one of those simply feel good tracks. The melody that starts at 4:40 will take you out of this world, if this has not happened yet. One of my favourites.

8. No Mon Control is a more ominous and serious piece, that is until the warm dubby melodies make themselves felt and confirm that no mon can control you. A very trippy little piece, this one is, with a lot of ambient undertones beneath that relatively strong beat and synthesized voices. I’m afraid that in the context of this album, this track goes a bit over the top where the psychedelic sounds are concerned. A good track nevertheless, and will undoubtedly put smiles on the faces of those benefiting from the chill space in the morning.

9. A monster talks to you at the beginning of this one. Wait, it is not a monster at all. How could it be, when the sounds he has brought are so friendly and inviting? All the same, this one is certainly more pensive that most of the rest, will invite you to sit back down and contemplate some with its foray out of Jamaica and into ambient. Somewhat Shulman-like, and you know that can be nothing but a complement. At about 5 minutes into it, the beat picks up again and carries you out of your reverie straight into the heart of the dance-floor. A very very nice one.

10. Oh wow, great melody. This one is a tad more breaks-oriented, but with that little uplifting melody coming in and out of focus all through the song. Some sounds of a construction site or the like make themselves felt midway only to be overtaken by the comeback of you already knew was coming, our hypnotizing friend. A liberating experience. (For some reason, I think that this would be Traveller’s favourite part of the album.)

11. And last but anything but least, we are taken into the poignant and idyllic world of the Bells of Burma. It’s like standing in a rain, but with the rain being extremely warm and the sounds of whose drops are magnified a thousand-fold. This atmospheric piece takes its time slowly developing into a touching and tender magnum opus. Reminiscent of a parting with a loved one.

Well, digesting the album as a whole is quite an experience. Itay holds nothing back and delivers on every single track, with only a couple that are less than absolutely perfect. In addition, he leaves no boundary uncrossed, what with the merging of ambient, eastern, dub, and even reggae with psychedelic beats that will transport you to a location previously not even dreamt of. I can only imagine the depth of the stuff he is working on now, seeing as how this was only his first release. A must for anyone into provocative and emotionally charged music. The best of its kind since the release of Omnimotion’s album, much more upbeat than Omnimotion though. A highly recommended release that gets better and better with every listen, you will not be disappointed. Oh, and also, the artwork is sublime.

Stas (Montreal, CA)
Very nice CD indeed! Behind the amazing cover art there is a smooth mixture of dub, reggae elements, phat basslines and psy-ambient sounds, forming together a specific and outstanding chill-out album, completely different from all the slow-beat records I heard in a last few months. Very relaxed songs with many layers, ideal for late afternoons with Cuba Libre and joint smoking. The one I especially enjoyed is the no.3 "Pink The Floyd" (would be nice to hear an opinion of Waters & Co. on that "tribute" song

Anyway, I am sure we will hear a lot about this guy in future!

Dj Slater (CZ)
Tribal Vision Records