Midland murker Holy Goof has already created some neat momentum as a DJ with appearances at the likes of Butterz and Jamz. Now he makes his EP debut with two defiantly gritty bassline house scud missiles. "Telling You" thunders with industrial strength 4/4 beats and a bitter bassline that worms with detuned grit. "Need You" flips the vibe with a little more organ action, more focus on the vocal while retaining the toxic darkness he's becoming known. Heavy.
M-1 synth sounds, thick bass, beats so sturdy you could hang a truck off them and sugar-sweet vocals sprinkled over the top. This timeless slice of foundation house has potential to tickle as many airwaves as it does dancefloors. Remix-wise we're in for a treat as Champion murks up the hook with a muddy rainbow of dark basses, Chris DS gets his organic D&B drum swing on and PVC looks back to the late '90s garage rudiments a la Matt Jam Lamont. TG Groove completes the set with a widescreen cosmic chugger that will suit house, garage and disco DJs. "All Mine"? All yours!
Rinse FM favourite A Motion is back delivering a unique, forward-looking fusion of classic speed garage and two-step. The You Know EP features four new bangers in this ilk, all peppered with further sonic elements. The spartan title-track mixes melodic wobble bass and floaty female vocals, "Close Your Eyes" features mean bass growls under hypnotic vocals melodies, "Locked" introduces spacey rave pads and "What You Do" integrates '90s house organs with raw tw-step friskiness. Fierce!
Callum Watson makes his Four40 debut with this dynamic trio of bass-laced UKG treats. The cleverly titled (especially considering his young age) "Sines Of Aging" is straight out the My Nu Leng / Mak & Pasteman playbook - a dark groove, a hooky bassline and beats so crunchy they could be endorsed by Walkers. "No Games" lives up to its name as a no-messing, heavy-hitting bass house hurter. Finally "Trove" switches the 4/4 for a sweetly skippy two-step rhythm and a more drone-like tubular bass sounds. The real treasure in this particular "Trove", however, is the beautiful chord structure on the breakdown. Bountiful.
Proof that deep dubstep can be just as balls-out-heavy as any shred-up bro-down, "Alpha House" is an outrageously naughty track thanks to an obese bass sound that dwells, lingers and grows increasingly paranoid over a slinky two-step drum arrangement. "Inorganic" develops the darkness furthermore with an intricate riddim that nods deftly at the future-garage style of breakbeats. Essential for all alpha DJs.
Tik & Borrow joined forces last year with the sole intent of fusing their DnB past with their garage-step future. Here they chose their own In:Flux label to release their latest tune, "Neuromancer", which is a forward bouncing wobbler, made even more lean by Thorpey. Elsewhere, highlights of the many mixes include Little Mester's deep and moody bass throbber and 1point5's delicate two-step influenced rework.
Local Action return to their Ginuwine and Aaliyah sampling belter from 2014, Finn's Keep Calling, with a host of remixers on board. DJ Q and Fallow tackle the lead track, with the former turning the bouncy garage heat up to 11 while the latter gets crafty with a gunshot ripping, cut-up electro-trap fusion style that should get heads all in a spin wherever it's played. Meanwhile Samename takes on "My My", turning it into a swung stomper full of pomp, ceremony and a whole lot of cheeky tones in between. Strict Face remixes "Only Boy" in a more tender fashion, making a spread out RnB bliss out from the component parts in a fine style.
If it's futurist moody garage you're after, you'd better call DJ Direct. Here we get two belters from this burgeoning Sheffield producer who's just recently signed to Nu Wave. With it comes throbbing bottom end bass and machine gun snares, "Home" is a wake up call to anyone still peddling generic garage beats, whilst "Skeng" ups the chaos with its skewed take on urban 4x4. One to watch!
The man whose favourite letter is 'b' (probably) is back, releasing relentless bass bangers as per usual. This time it's Kronik providing us with the keys to the doom boom kingdom, with the original mix of "Blues N' Twos" all moody bass bounces and skippy speed garage beats. Bubblin's own VIP mix is fizzier, with diva vocals ducking it out the mix with hazy organ stabs for a late night vibe.
Straight up strutters and dancefloor cutters take note: A2C's just updated his ever-evolving repertoire with two of his finest productions to date, and they're tailor-made for you. "Adiction" is a moreish twist on the classic house and late 90s UKG flavours with modern production muscle in the kick department. "Me Feel So High", meanwhile, switches from amens so rude they'd make Slipmatt blush. Addiction says it all... We guarantee you'll be back for more.
Bristol bass man Redlight takes a one-way trip from the '90s and polishes up his finest set of grills while en route. Following a similar hooky vocal structure from 2014's summer smash, "Gold Teeth" is fronted by a sultry fem-bot listing disparate ingredients to a futuristic rockstar life. What's more, she's backed by a super-slinky booty bass breakbeat groove that pops and wriggles with full-bodied classic electro panache. Sweeter than lemonade.
Having recently dropped big room bombs on Toolroom and OneLove, My Digital Enemy is back and he's taking things "Back To The Underground". "Jack My Body" is an infectious slice of retro house, albeit darker and more muscular, and with the guns to smash modern dancefloors. On the digital flipside "Say It" is more contemporary: fusing ravey stabs with an utterly filthy growler of a bassline that results in a killer fusion of wobble heavy 4x4 and main room house.
Having developed a sterling reputation in the UKG and dubsteppy side of the bass game, Abyss continue to mark their territories in the housier side of the low-end spectrum. Digging deep into all four-four-flavours, here the Bolton-based imprint explore early noughties electro ("Side Effects") sassy classy US garage ("Killa Sound" and "Sunrise") deep driving Get Physical-minded tech ("Deception"), chuggy warehouse melting bass house ("Booty") and sense-blurring, Bill Withers-sampling naughtiness ("No Sunshine"). Expand your mind, body and playlist.
Andypop specialises in bass music with a bit more...class (classline!). Here he delivers two more slices of thoughtful production. The title-track is a smooth, linear pounder peppered with subtle vocals snippets and weaving frequencies, whilst "Handle With Care" features trippy tropical flourishes over a mellow, arpeggiated electro shuffle. Slick!
Sub Slayers offshoot Sub Nation continues its adventures in the deeper realms with this pop-garage exercise from Sourkrush. Sitting somewhere between MJ Cole, Simbad, Jazzanova and Sunship, it's got enough versatility to find friends on the airwaves and beach parties across the summer. Those hungry for a darker sensation should jump on Dead Belly's thundering bass-heavy blend. Life-affirming.