Lee “Scratch” Perry

Lee "Scratch" Perry, one of the towering figures in reggae music, is a primary architect of the "dub" sound, his landmark productions striking an exquisite balance between spaciness and rhythmic propulsion. But at Los Angeles' new Knitting Factory, an unfocused Perry never quite found his equilibrium. From the very start, the show teetered on the abyss.

A good part of the appeal of the Jamaican music known as “dub” comes from its evocative sense of anodyne entropy. With shambling bass lines rolling over choppy drum beats, treated with echo and other manner of studio manipulation, it is music that feels on the verge of collapsing upon itself. Lee “Scratch” Perry, one of the towering figures in reggae music, is a primary architect of this sound, his landmark productions striking an exquisite balance between spaciness and rhythmic propulsion. But at Los Angeles’ new Knitting Factory, an unfocused Perry never quite found his equilibrium.

From the very start, the show teetered on the abyss. Delayed by a missing bassist, the three-piece band never rose above stiff competence once he did show up, and Perry himself never connected with the band.

Hopping around the stage in a mirrored cap, reflective orange pants and a series of sunglasses, he appeared for most of the two-hour performance to be on a different planet from the band, his high tenor whine often following a different drummer before lapsing into discursive jabbering.

The live mixing of Perry’s production collaborator, the Mad Professor, managed to rouse the singer on “Inspector Gadget” and “Heads of State,” but more representative were the listless renditions of “Curly Locks,” “Roast Fish and Cornbread” and “War in-a Babylon.”

Lee "Scratch" Perry

Knitting Factory Hollywood; 500 capacity, $25

Production: Presented inhouse. Band: Mad Professor, Gary "Bullet" Williamson, Ted Cullen, Johnson "Spider" Etienne. Reviewed September 23, 2000.

More Music

  • HalseyWomen's March rally, New York, USA

    Read Halsey's Stirring Speech at the New York City Women's March

    A good part of the appeal of the Jamaican music known as “dub” comes from its evocative sense of anodyne entropy. With shambling bass lines rolling over choppy drum beats, treated with echo and other manner of studio manipulation, it is music that feels on the verge of collapsing upon itself. Lee “Scratch” Perry, one […]

  • Drake Adult Swim Upfront party

    Drake Drops Two New Songs: 'God's Plan' and 'Diplomatic Immunity' (Listen)

    A good part of the appeal of the Jamaican music known as “dub” comes from its evocative sense of anodyne entropy. With shambling bass lines rolling over choppy drum beats, treated with echo and other manner of studio manipulation, it is music that feels on the verge of collapsing upon itself. Lee “Scratch” Perry, one […]

  • Fredo SantanaLollapalooza Festival, Chicago, America -

    Rapper Fredo Santana Dead at 27

    A good part of the appeal of the Jamaican music known as “dub” comes from its evocative sense of anodyne entropy. With shambling bass lines rolling over choppy drum beats, treated with echo and other manner of studio manipulation, it is music that feels on the verge of collapsing upon itself. Lee “Scratch” Perry, one […]

  • Rihanna France Concert Canceled

    Rihanna to Perform at Grammys With DJ Khaled and Bryson Tiller

    A good part of the appeal of the Jamaican music known as “dub” comes from its evocative sense of anodyne entropy. With shambling bass lines rolling over choppy drum beats, treated with echo and other manner of studio manipulation, it is music that feels on the verge of collapsing upon itself. Lee “Scratch” Perry, one […]

  • Tom Petty Died of Accidental Overdose,

    Tom Petty's Family Says He Died of Accidental Overdose

    A good part of the appeal of the Jamaican music known as “dub” comes from its evocative sense of anodyne entropy. With shambling bass lines rolling over choppy drum beats, treated with echo and other manner of studio manipulation, it is music that feels on the verge of collapsing upon itself. Lee “Scratch” Perry, one […]

  • RCA Records Names John Fleckenstein, Joe

    John Fleckenstein and Joe Riccitelli Upped to Co-Presidents at RCA Records

    A good part of the appeal of the Jamaican music known as “dub” comes from its evocative sense of anodyne entropy. With shambling bass lines rolling over choppy drum beats, treated with echo and other manner of studio manipulation, it is music that feels on the verge of collapsing upon itself. Lee “Scratch” Perry, one […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content