Bomb20
Reality Surpasses Fiction
Make Some Noise
2003
F



there’s no reason why David Skiba (aka Bomb 20) should have to propose articulate solutions to the world’s ills; sometimes its enough to play a part in the revolution by asking the right questions. Rarely, however, has it been enough to cut together snippets of B-movie dialogue and advert voiceovers to make silly rants over music that sounds like bad Prodigy demos.

Where his DHR debut Field Manual was fundamentally more hardcore, both in beats and content, Reality Surpasses Fiction does offer a welcome respite from the previous album’s boredom inducing heavy gabba influences, but little else to use as a recommendation point. Having stepped back from his early furious breakcore sound, this is a cleaned-up commercial cousin of that sound; a lethargic and heavy-footed big beat sound that stomps mostly at a sensible hip-hop tempo.

This past year it’s never been more obvious that the world is going to hell in a handcart, and it figures that Bomb 20 would have an opinion on who was driving. This collection, however, lacks the power and menace to make me believe that he’s angry enough (to take the system down) or smart enough (to make me believe he knows much more than his anti-establishment soundbites); his relentless proscribing of the CIA, the State, the media, and the FBI and The Man gets awfully wearing when its just firing shots off into the air.

I imagine that even those who believe in Bomb 20’s previously espoused relentless ideological struggle will find this a little tame. It’s certainly hard for me to accept him as any sort of counter-radical (the impression he gave with Field Manual), especially considering the amount of sources he uses for his pseudo revolutionary political slogans. It just means that he’s been watching a hell of a lot of media- and state-approved Hollywood B-movies and late night cable TV. Any entertainment to be gained from the moments of ingenuity within these sloganeering collages doesn’t hold up past first listen, and with the average track coming in at an average of 2 minutes each (12 of the 32 tracks being a minute or under), this release turns dull very quickly.

Lit by the pale glare of manga and late night Chuck Norris reruns, Bomb 20’s Reality Surpasses Fiction offers up nothing more involving than Commodore 64 theme tunes (the most obvious being “Game Over”) and old school sampling FX clichés (“Tough”).

Everybody already knows that reality surpasses fiction, it's old news.
Reviewed by: Scott McKeating
Reviewed on: 2004-04-14
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