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Hollie Cook|Happy Hour in Dub

Happy Hour in Dub

Hollie Cook

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Hollie Cook and producer Ben Mckone decided to make a dub version of the British reggae star's 2022 album Happy Hour while going through the mixing process of the record and finding more room to explore within the lush, detailed arrangements. Happy Hour in Dub sequences the versions in reverse order of the original album's track listing, as if Hollie and her co-producers are retracing their steps. Lyrically, Happy Hour focused on themes of loneliness and self-care, creating a bittersweet dynamic when paired with music that otherwise seems fun and celebratory. While most of Cook's lyrics are dubbed out of these versions, there's still lingering feelings of hurt and disappointment, and a sense that she's attempting to drown out her sorrows. The line "love is a losing game" particularly sticks out during the dramatic "Unkind Dub," which is also filled with rushes of horns and shootout samples from old Westerns. Still, there's more upbeat tracks like "Dub My Way," highlighting "Move My Way"'s elastic bassline and garage-inspired rhythm, and adding a whirlpool of whooshing effects. Trombonist Rosie Turton gets a feature credit on "Golden Dub," a mysterious number with suspenseful strings, rich horns, and whispers hidden during the song's bridge. Joshua Waters Rudge from reggae-punks the Skints enthusiastically shouts out to Hollie during "Kush Dub," a version of "Kush Kween" which keeps Jah9's original guest verse. Kiko Bun provides some fragmented words of assurance on the tearful, slightly frantic "Dubbing On," while both he and Hollie seem to dissolve in heavy echo and tape rewind effects. "Happy Dub" takes it all back to the beginning, with Hollie trying to erase her sadness at a beachside cantina. Happy Hour in Dub arguably improves on the original album, expressing emotions that can be difficult to put into words, while also being a fascinating sonic trip.
© Paul Simpson /TiVo

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Happy Hour in Dub

Hollie Cook

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1
Praying Dub
00:05:46

Copyright Control, MusicPublisher - Joe Price, Author - Hollie Cook, Author, Producer, MainArtist - Budde Music, MusicPublisher - Ben Mckone, Author, Producer - James McKone, Author - Luke Allwood, Author, Producer

2023 Merge Records 2023 Merge Records

2
Dub My Way
00:04:02

Copyright Control, MusicPublisher - Joe Price, Author - Hollie Cook, Author, Producer, MainArtist - Budde Music, MusicPublisher - Kobalt Music Publishing, MusicPublisher - Ben Mckone, Author, Producer - James McKone, Author - Luke Allwood, Author, Producer - Maverick Sable, Author

2023 Merge Records 2023 Merge Records

3
Dub in the Dark
00:04:41

Copyright Control, MusicPublisher - Joe Price, Author - Hollie Cook, Author, Producer, MainArtist - Budde Music, MusicPublisher - Ben Mckone, Author, Producer - James McKone, Author - Luke Allwood, Author, Producer

2023 Merge Records 2023 Merge Records

4
Golden Dub
00:04:33

Copyright Control, MusicPublisher - Joe Price, Author - Hollie Cook, Author, Producer, MainArtist - Budde Music, MusicPublisher - Ben Mckone, Author, Producer - Rosie Turton, FeaturedArtist - James McKone, Author - Luke Allwood, Author, Producer

2023 Merge Records 2023 Merge Records

5
Unkind Dub
00:04:06

Copyright Control, MusicPublisher - Joe Price, Author - Hollie Cook, Author, Producer, MainArtist - Budde Music, MusicPublisher - Ben Mckone, Author, Producer - James McKone, Author - Luke Allwood, Author, Producer

2023 Merge Records 2023 Merge Records

6
Kush Dub
00:03:19

Copyright Control, MusicPublisher - Joe Price, Author - Hollie Cook, Author, Producer, MainArtist - Jah9, FeaturedArtist - Janine Cunningham, Author - Budde Music, MusicPublisher - Ben Mckone, Author, Producer - James McKone, Author - Luke Allwood, Author, Producer - Josh Skints, Author, FeaturedArtist - Steam Chalice Publishing, MusicPublisher

2023 Merge Records 2023 Merge Records

7
Full Moon Dub
00:03:38

Copyright Control, MusicPublisher - Joe Price, Author - Hollie Cook, Author, Producer, MainArtist - Budde Music, MusicPublisher - Ben Mckone, Author, Producer - James McKone, Author - Luke Allwood, Author, Producer

2023 Merge Records 2023 Merge Records

8
Dubbing On
00:03:48

Copyright Control, MusicPublisher - Joe Price, Author - Hollie Cook, Author, Producer, MainArtist - Budde Music, MusicPublisher - Kiko Bun, Author, FeaturedArtist - Ben Mckone, Author, Producer - James McKone, Author - Luke Allwood, Author, Producer

2023 Merge Records 2023 Merge Records

9
Happy Dub
00:05:20

Copyright Control, MusicPublisher - Joe Price, Author - Hollie Cook, Author, Producer, MainArtist - Budde Music, MusicPublisher - Ben Mckone, Author, Producer - James McKone, Author - Luke Allwood, Author, Producer

2023 Merge Records 2023 Merge Records

Album review

Hollie Cook and producer Ben Mckone decided to make a dub version of the British reggae star's 2022 album Happy Hour while going through the mixing process of the record and finding more room to explore within the lush, detailed arrangements. Happy Hour in Dub sequences the versions in reverse order of the original album's track listing, as if Hollie and her co-producers are retracing their steps. Lyrically, Happy Hour focused on themes of loneliness and self-care, creating a bittersweet dynamic when paired with music that otherwise seems fun and celebratory. While most of Cook's lyrics are dubbed out of these versions, there's still lingering feelings of hurt and disappointment, and a sense that she's attempting to drown out her sorrows. The line "love is a losing game" particularly sticks out during the dramatic "Unkind Dub," which is also filled with rushes of horns and shootout samples from old Westerns. Still, there's more upbeat tracks like "Dub My Way," highlighting "Move My Way"'s elastic bassline and garage-inspired rhythm, and adding a whirlpool of whooshing effects. Trombonist Rosie Turton gets a feature credit on "Golden Dub," a mysterious number with suspenseful strings, rich horns, and whispers hidden during the song's bridge. Joshua Waters Rudge from reggae-punks the Skints enthusiastically shouts out to Hollie during "Kush Dub," a version of "Kush Kween" which keeps Jah9's original guest verse. Kiko Bun provides some fragmented words of assurance on the tearful, slightly frantic "Dubbing On," while both he and Hollie seem to dissolve in heavy echo and tape rewind effects. "Happy Dub" takes it all back to the beginning, with Hollie trying to erase her sadness at a beachside cantina. Happy Hour in Dub arguably improves on the original album, expressing emotions that can be difficult to put into words, while also being a fascinating sonic trip.
© Paul Simpson /TiVo

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