The Bug: Darkly Sinister, With A Hypnotic Beat

The Bug i i

The Bug's "Catch a Fire" employs the ethereal voice of Kiki Hitomi to help generate a sense of running in place. courtesy of the artist hide caption

itoggle caption courtesy of the artist
The Bug

The Bug's "Catch a Fire" employs the ethereal voice of Kiki Hitomi to help generate a sense of running in place.

courtesy of the artist

Friday's Pick

  • Song: "Catch a Fire"
  • Artist: The Bug
  • CD: Various Artists, Ninja Tune XX
  • Genre: Dub

Combining a darkly sinister sound reminiscent of Portishead with a hook suitable for M.I.A., The Bug's "Catch a Fire" employs the ethereal voice of Kiki Hitomi to help generate a sense of running in place. As Hitomi sings about "kids killing children outside my doorstep," the echoes of the snare sound like rhythmic gunfire.

Minor-key chords transport "Catch a Fire" onto an eerie abandoned street, where the rain-soaked asphalt glitters under flickering street lights. Telling a haunting tale about the urban landscapes of London, the words swirl around imagery of "crackheads, pissheads and hoodrats." The song is bathed in implicit violence, with a brief bridge led by a fuzzed-out guitar, before you're launched back into that hypnotic beat.

At song's end, there's an electronic effect that feels as if it's created by bullets whizzing by a windchime through your headphones. Careful: Warning shots have been fired. The thumping beat may have stopped, but your heart is still pounding in your chest. At least you hope so.

Comments

 

Please keep your community civil. All comments must follow the NPR.org Community rules and Terms of Use. NPR reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part, and to use the commenter's name and location, in any medium. See also the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community FAQ.