The 100 Best Debut Albums of All Time

31

'Dummy'

Portishead, Dummy
Courtesy of Go! Beat Records

Portishead
Go! Discs 1994

Portishead used some of the same building blocks as fellow Bristol, England, trip-hoppers Massive Attack – woozy break beats, jazzy samples, live guitar, girl singer/guy programmer dynamic – but Beth Gibbon's brooding, pop-cabaret vocals showed to the world that you could feel real pain over a slow-dissolve groove. Dummy had a lot in common with the creepy beatscapes of the Wu-Tang Clan's RZA but its depth-charge emotional power also evoked Forties noir and late-night, last-cigarette balladry. When Gibbons' sings "nobody loves me...it's true/Not like you do," against the fragile, cold-storage Lalo Schifrin sample of "Sour Times," she's a Billie Holiday for the chillout room.

Best of Rolling Stone

Around the Web

x

Add a Comment