Cover image for Journey inwards
Journey inwards
Bukem, L. T. J., 1967-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
[UK] : Good Looking Records : Manufactured, marketed and distributed in North America by Kinetic Records, [2000]

Physical Description:
2 audio discs : digital ; 4 3/4 in.
CDA. Journey inwards -- Watercolours -- Rhodes to freedom -- Our world -- Undress your mind -- Point of view -- Viewpoint -- CDB. Sunrain -- Deserted vaults -- Inner guidance -- Close to the source -- Suspended space -- Unconditional love -- Feel what you feel.
Format :
Music CD


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
BK:3899B DISC 2 Compact Disc Open Shelf

On Order



Ten years on from the beginning of his mixing career, and following the release of literally dozens of compilations focusing on tracks and producers from his Good Looking/Looking Good empire, LTJ Bukem finally released an album of his own. As any listener who's heard a single from any label headed by Bukem will probably be able to guess, his focus here is not quite standard drum'n'bass, but a set of earthy breaks inspired by the smoother end of '70s jazz and fusion. Compared to the other jungle pioneers who've recorded expansive double-disc albums (4 Hero, Roni Size, Goldie), Bukem's is most similar in concept and sound to 4 Hero's Two Pages, an organic LP with midtempo breakbeats and earthy workouts for instrumentalists (not programmers). Even more than 4 Hero, however, Bukem's focus on non-commercial, non-vocal productions is both confident and exemplary. Though it's been easy (and perhaps, necessary) to fault Bukem in the past for aping his influences, Journey Inwards makes it practically impossible -- especially in the context of these productions, so beautiful, so detailed, so precisely imagined they sound as though they've come straight from Heaven's recording studio. From the shimmering waves of Rhodes keyboards and the undeniably upright bass on the title-track opener (which might be a bit too expansive in its own right), Bukem moves into true drum'n'bass with a sleek, excellent two-stepper called "Watercolours" which features a downplayed, honking sax. He often returns to the Rhodes (it must be his favorite instrument), perhaps a few times too many, but every occurrence is used with the balance just right. The breaks programming isn't next-generation, but for each song Bukem finds a pattern that works perfectly with the effects to support it. The second disc is reportedly the downtempo disc, though it's only marginally different from the first. It does indeed concentrate more on influences and genre exercises, from the blaxploitation bliss of "Sunrain" (one of the few vocal tracks on the album) to the soul-jazz strut of "Deserted Vaults." Taken as a whole, Journey Inwards is an album of pure brilliance, a work that trumps many of Bukem's past productions, and signals, for what may be the first time, that his production talents are actually growing and developing. Truth to tell, there's never been a drum'n'bass double-album that shouldn't have been pared down. With Journey Inwards, it's nearly impossible to know what to cut. ~ John Bush