Low End Activism

Low End Activist

Record label
Sneaker Social Club
Catalog Number
Release Date
November 22nd 2019


A1Street Level
A2Signal To Noise (Ratio)
A3Signal To Noise
B1Low End Activism
B2Neighbourhood Nationalism
B3Muzikon 90

The fair was a symbol of the unity of the estate - a multi-ethnic working class community bound together both by the looming presence of the car factory (where a massive portion of the residents worked) but also the long simmering social divide in Oxford. Since the founding of Oxford University, the country's elite have needed people to do their dirty work, predictably exploiting and marginalising them in the process. As the city and its colleges expanded, so these communities were ushered out of town. The tensions between the classes reached a flash point repeatedly throughout the centuries, and it was no different during the 1991 riots on the Blackbird Leys estate. As with similar riots elsewhere in Britain - Brixton, St Pauls, Toxteth, and elsewhere - heavy handed, not to mention misguided, police tactics loom large in the story, where the elite and the authorities fail to understand the community, how and why it functions the way it does. Drawing on this snapshot of Oxford life, far from the international facade of the city's privilege and power, with a deep-rooted, personal perspective, Low End Activist channels the raw energy and expression of Muzikon's sound and frames it in the dread bass pressure that such soundsystems directly led to. It's not dark music, but rather an intense one, defiant and proud like the Blackbird Leys community and so many of the social situations that gave rise to rave culture in the late 80s and early 90s. The people from the estate would take their skill, knowledge and access to "the factory" and use it to joyride high-end sports cars - a celebration of personal liberty in the face of social barriers enforced by the very people who would buy such things. Now Low End Activist applies his own craft to an amazing artefact from decades past, not so much joyriding with it as respectfully doffing his cap to the community in a show of solidarity, letting the jubilant sound play out once more.