Jon Carter 

Freewheeling through time and space, Kris Needs continues his adventures in sound. This month: Jon Carter 

The last column of 2023 – and what a year that was! My first one in Dorset included writing the still ongoing biography, ‘Punkadelic! Nina Walsh’s Dambusting Roller Coaster With Andrew Weatherall And Beyond’, igniting the mayhem of our ‘Into The Cosmic Hutch’ podcasts, and trouncing dark forces to realise Mr Weatherall’s wish to see ‘Phonox Nights’ released.

As highlighted last August, many of the year’s deadliest electronic dirt bombs reared like thermonuclear hippo boners on Irvine Welsh’s Jack Said What imprint. After a decade away, it’s fantastic to hear my old mate Jon Carter back in the saddle, following his late 2022 return with the astonishing ‘Mighty Horses’ (featuring Betty Steeles’ surreal vocal). 

The second single, ‘Brother & Sister’ – with the sublime voice of Marshall Jefferson’s ‘Move Your Body’ partner Curtis McClain – is the track that brought him back into making keck-demolishing underground house music. This is reaffirmed by his third single, ‘The Strobe’, which celebrates “those moments when you’re completely disorientated on the dancefloor” by uncannily plugging into that eternal “losing it” basement ethos. 

Back in the 1990s, Jon beautifully soiled my original Needs Must column with roof-raising big beat broadsides fired out as Monkey Mafia. In ’96, we had a reality-testing blast DJing on The Prodigy’s ‘Fat Of The Land’ tour, but lost contact when our paths diverged. Reunited by music and storm-weathering tribulations, it’s quite life-affirming finding these three singles surrounded by further Godzilla jockstrap greatness on ‘Medication Time’, a lovingly crafted encapsulation of Jon’s mission to strafe discerning dancefloors with proper acid house mayhem. Modern recording techniques enable him to cleave the miniscule scrotum off a spineless toady at 50 paces.

Dark clouds and sinister mangled voices roll across the radioactive creepers and swarming spirits of tracks like ‘Sail We Must’ and the malevolent ‘Toy Car 10’, anchored by groin-rummaging basslines recalling 90s Murk monsters. The ambiguously titled ‘Medication Time’ rides the set’s core light in the darkness, optimism underscored by an essential driving soul that becomes personal on the effectively slide blues ‘Things That Are Real’. It really is good to have Carter’s deft presence back, alive and kicking serious rectum and summed up by his declaration, “I hope it moves your body and fucks with your mind”.

Next year, I start work on Marty Rev’s NY history, my own updated biography and a new run of mischief rumbling in the firing pods. Meanwhile, have a stellar Christmas and new year. 

‘Medication Time’ is released on Jack Said What in early 2024

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