Dark Star with Beastie Boys
ESPRESSO [4.2%] by DARK STAR
THE IN SOUND FROM WAY OUT by BEASTIE BOYS
The beer pours a lovely deep dark invincible brown (allegedly, it’s black but I’m not convinced), which is perfectly complimented by full-fat cream head.
The nose is reminiscent of an un-aged xmas cake sprinkled with a teaspoon or two of Mellow Birds and there’s also the suggestion of a well-loved vintage leather belt and a fleeting wisp of a recently stubbed out vanilla cigar – a perfectly inviting blend.
The taste isn’t explosive but that doesn’t stop it from being a supremely tasty and well concocted brew. The coffee is far more noticeable on the palate than it was to the nose and comes on like a very good filter coffee. There’s also a nice bite of dark chocolate and a touch of ash from a jazz Woodbine. The bitterness is solid and tangy and suggests that if you removed the coffee from the mix you’d end up with a much vaunted Best Bitter. The finish is pretty much as you’d expect to find after polishing off your evening meal with a double espresso and a slither of 75% cacao chocolate. Yum.
Overall, a smooth and satisfying brew that boasts a couple of interesting surprises.
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The In Sound From Way Out is a 1996 offering from the Beastie Boys – it features instrumental versions of songs that first appeared on their Check Your Head and Ill Communication albums. The lack of the Beastie’s often irritating vocal stylings means that their skill as songwriters and musicians are allowed to stand proud and alone – for me, that simple fact makes this their very finest album. The Beastie Boys were never shy about borrowing styles and ideas from other musicians and although that’s certainly apparent on this collection of songs they expertly meld the ideas together to create something unique and beautiful. There are breakbeats mixed with beats from Africa and Cuba, there’s jazz sitting happily alongside Krautrock and Funk hanging-out with 70s lounge cheese, and there’s more, there’s more! It’s an aural feast. Money Mark’s keyboards are perhaps the obvious standout instrument but MCA’s bass guitar never slips far away from your attention and is constantly impressing the ears with a smooth lick or a throbbing growl… and, of course, a couple of interesting surprises.
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… photography by landells except The In Sound From Way Out …