It was the 2nd of July, 1997, right around 8:00pm. I was
traveling to Chicago with Pitchfork staff writer
Swank Porterhouse. We were rolling down I-94 at ridiculous
speeds; the sun was racing next to us, determined to get
Having nothing but 60 CDs in the backseat we were sick
of listening to, I popped this future classic in the
player for the first time. Initially, we were caught off guard by a warped
string section singing sweet melodies a la Tommy Dorsey.
That's when the unmistakably jazz riddim set in with
a knife to our throats. The string bass pounded at
a volume of ten, the saxophone smoothly keeping the
cool and the beat of Chicago dead ahead.
As the city loomed over our heads, Amon rolled out
the perfect soundtrack. Insane sampled rhythms and
loops, fireball brass sections and overpowering
orchestras led the way and I suddenly found myself more
immersed in the music than the incredible metropolis before
On Bricolage, Tobin pours some amazingly real-sounding
instruments out of his keyboard and sampler, making old
jazz music with modern technology. Up there with classic
albums by Quincy Jones and Miles Davis, Tobin is a true
example of what can be done with a little equipment and
a wealth of talent.