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25 Mar 13
Played by: Thang, Alkalino, Commodore 69 (Hot N Heavy), Jack Fell Down, Cocaine On Her Dress, Benny Kane
Review: Jay 'Chubba' Richards has been popping up all over the place of late, with recent releases on Sirch and Odea Records. Here, he brings his particular brand of contemporary house and UK funky fusion to Republic. "Moody" - so-called because it features a prominent sample from Kenny Dixon Jnr talking about his MPC - sets the tone, layering tough electronic percussion over a monstrous bassline. "Diamonds" sounds like a fusion of classic UKG and '90s house, while "Broken" feels like the sort of thing that Hypercolour should be signing (think nice chords, tasty vocal stabs and bassline-driven deep house flavour). There's also a tougher, UK funky-flavoured tweak from Vedicis and Vanshift that's well worth a listen.
22 Apr 13
Review: With the imminent return of Daft Punk reminding us all of Paris's vibrant electronic music heritage, local label ClekClekBoom pop-up to provide us with a wide-eyed snapshot of the current Parisian underground. There are hints of familiar French staples - the stomping Ed Banger-ish ravery of The Town's "Dice", the classic house flex of Coni's "Missing You Nire" - but for the most part Paris Club Music Volume 1 dances to a different beat. With label regulars French Fries coming to the fore, much of the album is devoted to the sort of hard-to-pigeonhole bass music that takes its influence as much from B-more, R&B and UK garage as filter funk and electro-house.
17 Mar 13
Review: It's been a long journey for James Edward Jacob, from young thrash metaller in Leicester to aspiring dubstep producer in college, and now hot future bass property. This EP of his own VIP mixes is premier grade stuff, expertly produced and cleverly tweaked for different moods. "Fade" gets three different interpretations here - a club mix that sees big crescendos drop into totally nasty 4/4 garage basslines, a different club mix that goes deeper with soft pads and a retro Enya-goes-RnB vibe, and finally the Etherwood version, all melancholic DnB, forlorn vocals and piano fused with low bass and urgent beats.
02 Apr 13
Played by: Homegroove Project, Mooqee, Sw, B. Jinx, Juno Recommends Uk Funky/Garage, Huxley, Funk And Filth
Review: The chart-bothering Surrey siblings Disclosure are back with possibly their best offering yet. Released on the Hot Chip-affiliated Greco-Roman label, "Control" is a superb slice of sultry and soulful minimal garage, with short of breath vocals that echo vintage Janet Jackson. Joe Goddard seriously challenges the glory of the original with a mesmerising doomy, acid-tinged electro-disco version. Bonus tune "Lividup" is an ecstatic bleep-garage joy and there's further fun with "Boiling" being given cosmic trance (Dixon) and mega camp house (Medlar) workovers. Plus "Whats In Your Head" gets a boombox house mix by Mak & Pasteman.
15 Apr 13
Review: A cursory listen to this EP would easily lead the listener to believe it was made by some underground British bass guy who wears his baseball caps sideways. But they'd be wrong; Klaves is actually 21 year old producer Mikolaj Gramowski from Poland who has pretty much beaten the British producers at their own game: "You" is an awesome blend of late 90s garage and house. "Hope It Gets To Love" is sassy future garage, and our fave is the Fault Lines remix - a slamming house scorcher featuring the kind of thumping kick not head since "Da Funk"!
25 Feb 13
Review: Wow! Are people looking back with rose-tinted glasses to 1995 already? Well at least this 'musical magpie' is only borrowing ideas and sounds rather than copying wholesale! Possibly a bit darker than his previous releases this EP features dubby UKG ("1995"), glitchy, post-dubstep ("Hypno", "Fallen") and even a bit of wobble-heavy UKF ("Roots").
26 Feb 13
Review: Swedish duo Savage Skulls have been making some serious noise in bass circles since about 2008. Now they've gone stateside, talking Frenchman Douster with them and signing up with Steve Aoki's Dim Mak label. This EP is unrepentantly aimed at the dancefloor: "Bass Kick" is hysterical, peak time madness with heavily compressed tropical beats and ascending synth melodies, "TRT" is tough party-garage with EDM-friendly trance breakdown and finally "Nicole" is total pop-dance euphoria.
18 Mar 13
21 Apr 13
Review: The success of Taiki & Nulight's recent low-key release Late Nights has now seen it expand into a full-blown EP. Again released by Herve's Cheap Thrills, the title track is a dubby, wobbly 4x4 garage roller. "Take Me Up" is a straight up, hands in the air party anthem, "Footwerk" is dark, deep and very late night bassline houser , but it's all about "Offkey" for sheer next level sounds.
12 Mar 13
Review: If dance music was professional sport, the Dirtybird roster would be in the premier league, with Claude Vonstroke the whip cracking manager. Here he rounds up his top players for an exhibition match, allowing them to flex their muscle and strut their stuff. It's all killer, no filler, dirty house music - highlights of which include the nasty funk of Justin Martin & Ardalan's "Wheelgunner", Munnibrotherz's sweet n sour "Drum Machine", the future-booty-bass of "Black Girls White Girls" and the surprisingly techno "Coefficient" by J Phlip.
01 Apr 13
Review: Don't worry, "Dappy" isn't an ode or homage to N-Dubz' ratty frontman. In fact it couldn't be further from Dappy's cheesy UK grime-lite if it tried. Romping away with a resonant warbling bass and unrelenting 4/4 stomp, it's an ultimate buzz cut that doesn't sound too far away from a Dirtybird record. Remix-wise Belgian ghetto-groover Kill Frenzy pitches down the vocal sample and adds much more of a haunted flavour to the groove. Either version is dark enough to send Dappy crying to his dear old mum.
22 Apr 13
Review: Deftly exploring the creative possibilities in the endless badlands of a post-dubstep landscape, Krueger references everything from juke to techno across his two originals. "Giggles" is a paranoid, minimal masterpiece that refuses to be pigeonholed, while "Can You" is basically acid house if it arrived twenty-five years later. Complex yet stark and simplistic both are the epitome of electronic music's earliest, most essential ingredients. And the remixes are all pretty special, too...
18 Mar 13
Review: Veteran duo Andy Jay and S-Tee have come a long way from their garage roots, now choosing sizzling future-tropical vibes instead. "Gotta See You Move" is a joyous hands-in-the-air party bomb with bonkers percussion, a rousing vocal from Sophia Ellahee and a cheeky Reel 2 Reel-style synth riff. Akira sticks with the 90s for a Nightcrawlers-esque remix, Ednasky delivers a killer deep and jazzy 4/4 garage workout. Elsewhere Prospectors Stateside go all tech-housey, LK1 goes bouncey-house and there's also a cool wobbly dub house mix.
11 Mar 13
Played by: Dev79, Doshy, Top Billin DJ Team, Cosby (Car Crash Set), Highgrademuzik Aka Don D Selectah
Review: Have you ever seen a policeman on acid? No, neither have we thankfully! If the country's protectors turn to psychedelic drugs there really is no hope. No, we're much happier hearing "Police On Acid", a rasping series of warping bass licks over a vicious Radioactive Man style breakbeat, it's much more fun than seeing men of the law lose their minds. Elsewhere on the release we're taught to count badly with the help of a staccato trap-style bass workout ("123789") and taken on a mesmerisingly scenic sinewave journey ("Q"). Oozing variety and creatively, all law-abiding bass lovers should check this.
11 Mar 13
13 Jan 13
Played by: Homegroove Project, Fort Knox Five, Mat Cant, Nic Fanciulli, Matta, Tee Circus, Rack N Ruin, Lucent
Review: Despite only unveiling themselves to the public in 2010, Black Butter Records have already ascended to some impressive heights with a string of hugely popular bass/UKF releases. This first 'proper' label comp features five names from their roster, remixed by many more. It's literally fizzing and popping with retro-futuristic ideas and sounds: from the B-more drum machine orgy of "Be More (3hrs & Woz mix), to Matta's accelerated electro version of Kidnap Kid's classic "Vehl" and Vince Clarke's elasticated tech-house version of "Lazarus Taxon", to the scuzzy, rave-inflected house of Codec's "What You Need", the thoroughly ominous bass tones of "Hackney Heat" by Racknruin via the eccentric end-of the world beats of "Trick Green" by Hostage.
25 Mar 13
04 Mar 13
Played by: Smutlee, Juno Recommends Dubstep, Juno Recommends Uk Funky/Garage, Dev79, Top Billin DJ Team, Cosby (Car Crash Set), Highgrademuzik Aka Don D Selectah
Review: Although there's a few claimants to the Spooky moniker, this one is a grime DJ who hails from London's East End. Here, fledgling label Oil Gang have coaxed a pretty varied release from the man behind 2010's cult hit, "Spartan". "Coolie Joyride" is a cut up of a familiar Coolie riddim, famously featured in Nina Sky's hit 'Move Ya Body'. "Electric Fence" is swaggering half-time electro dancehall and "Rhythm & Slags (Part 2)" is a menacing electro-grime anthem.
20 Apr 13
29 Apr 13
Review: Earlier this year Sunday Roast smashed it with the action-packed Space Walk EP. Well, you can't keep a good man down, and now he's back with another six tracks of forward-looking UKG. It's a harder sound than last time, but highlights include the carnival doom-beat of the title track "Intuition", the peak time psychosis of "XTC" and the propulsive yet dreamy bassline house of "Optical".
15 Apr 13
Review: For his latest signing, Gilles Peterson looks closer to home - Brighton to be precise - where he found the Anushka duo of Max Wheeler & Victoria Port. Not particularly exotic, but the music, which they describe as 'bass music from the future', covers that requirement. Theirs is a blend of deep bass, glistening synths and breaky urban beats flavoured with digital riddims ("Wired"), deep tropical ("Yes Guess") and soulful house ("I Have Love 4 You"). Definitely going places.
01 Apr 13
Review: Reading's Jook 10 has forged a relentless path through the UKF/bassline scene with a series of perfectly crafted DJ tools and bangers alike. Here are his latest four tunes and they're a mixture of both: the tropically-tinged slammin 4x4 "Trees" is a lean and mean tool as is the drum heavy "Jumpy Jumpy", while the likes of "Platinum" is total hands in the air trancey moombahton.
04 Mar 13
Played by: Mr Brainz / Orpheus:ldn, Juno Recommends Uk Funky/Garage, Highgrademuzik Aka Don D Selectah, J69
Review: All aboard the remix express! Four40 follow up last month's b-boy two-stepper from IKK and Slick Don with four sparkling reversions. Pedro 123's re-imagination strips the original back into a plinky plonky trap attack that comes in both vocal and instrumental forms while KSH add much more of a bashy grime riddim. Then there's the obligatory VIP for added rewind pleasure. Get to the "Crux" of the matter... It's a vibes ting.
10 Apr 12
11 Mar 13
Review: At seven tracks NDread is treating us to a project of near-album proportions here. And with a sound that's becoming as distinctive as it is deep, it's got the alluring flow of an LP, too. The title track ignites proceedings with a skippy two-step and a weave of dreamy washes and textures. Authentically classic yet forward thinking, it sets the scene for the rest of this memorable release. Other highlights include the late 90s four-to-the-floor UKG pump of "Time To Go" and fang-sharp two-step sexiness of "Bad Habit". Timeless vibes; a must for all garage and bass heads.
18 Mar 13
18 Mar 13
Review: Not to be confused with the Parisian indie band of the same name, this Panda is a hotly-tipped bass trio from the UK. Not much is known about them other than their few releases have already garnered support from the likes of Groove Armada and MJ Cole. Not a bad start indeed, so with the music left to do the talking let's hear what it has to say: "Foolish" is cool and crystalline house music disguised as warped 90s RnB with a catchy pitched (up, down and sideways!) vocal. "All That I Can Give" keeps the soulful vocals but is a more straight up garagey house number that boasts plenty of swishes and light key stabs.
12 Nov 12
Played by: Mr Brainz / Orpheus:ldn, Ya Dun Know, Hxdb, DJ Cure (Aufect Recordings), Commodore 69 (Hot N Heavy), Mike Hindle - Immersed Audio, D3adl1ne, Konnekt - Hot N Heavy, Major Notes
Review: It seems that Julio Bashmore was not a one-off: there must be something in the water down Bristol way and it's resulting in a serious bass epidemic. My Nu Leng are a duo with an amazing futuristic take on house music. "The Grid" is just relentless groove, dark and twitchy with all kinds of sinister effects drifting in and out. "Hips N Thighs" is even more next level, like a weird, twisted booty cut on downers and stranded in a graveyard rave. Under a full moon.
25 Mar 13
06 May 13
Played by: Commodore 69 (Hot N Heavy)
Review: When 123MRK's Noname EP dropped in 2011 creating waves all around the dubstep and bass music scene. Moulding the sound of his generation into a style all his own, the Frenchman suddenly found himself held aloft as an innovator as well as simply a producer of sounds. This remixed release of his seminal EP was a lofty undertaking and the finished item features remixes from some of the future dubstep scene's brightest young stars alongside long-time innovators. From Liar's metalic, lo-fi flavours to Troy Gunner's understated clicks and swirls; ViLLAGE's heart-pounding house remodelling to Heblank's old-school twist, even the likes of Pixelord and ReSketch play their garage-influenced hands to create an all-new modern-day canvas of what exactly bass music is right at this moment. It can never be truly defined, but this is a pretty good encyclopedia.
04 Feb 13
Review: Having already delivered some attention-grabbing techy UKF bombs on Deadplate and Rebirth, Bristol's Ryan Bronfield now finds himself on esteemed imprint Some Think Sounds. In keeping with the label's style, "The Way It Do" is housier: deep and sensual without being boring, and full of quirky, off kilter percussive elements and effects. "We Trapped" is deeper and weirder: sounding like the wheels could fall off this disco bus at anytime, and all the more fun because of it. Damu also remixes the title track in a dark techno fashion that wouldn't be out of place in a vintage DJ Hell set.
22 Apr 13
Review: Prague's Meanbucket have snapped up some raw new talent in the shape of Dutch producer 618. This here is his debut release and with one listen it makes it clear why he's created a buzz for himself. "What You Do" is a brutal booty bass assault with serious juke overtones, while "Amsterdammed" applies heavy bass to the kind of techno heard in Berlin in the good old days. Remix wise, the title track become minimal hip-house by Boeboe, thumping house by Embryo Planet, freq bending electro by Seymour Bits and incredible dark electro-house by Veit B.
22 Apr 13
Review: Decibel and Flowdan tore things up with "Skanks" earlier this month, and now they're back with a tasty remix package spanning all types of bass styles. Network delivers a deep and dark bassline house version, pitching Flowdan's vocals down into the murky ether, while I Killed Kenny builds on the original's frenetic style with a rave-infused UK funky bomb, something mirrored on DJ Cable's similarly furious remix. Lol Gurlz meanwhile offer a moody and atmospheric take filled with syncopated, head-nodding drums, while Toni Moretti's remix offers much the same but with trippy hi-resolution percussive tones. Amazing stuff!
01 Mar 13
Played by: Mr Brainz / Orpheus:ldn, Bert On Beats, Juno Recommends Uk Funky/Garage, Highgrademuzik Aka Don D Selectah
Review: With a name like "Piano Loco", you'd expect this latest cross-cultural dancefloor smash from the Man Recordings camp to be full of furious key bashing. It duly delivers, with the original version - a veritable carnival of surging electro bass, buoyant Brazilian drums and twisted electronic noises - boasting some serious Latin piano action. It livens up an already sweaty and intoxicating concoction. The four accompanying remixes shuffle the parts in a variety of inventive ways, with Ackeejuice Rockers' slowed down version and Chong X's cumbia-inspired percussion wonk-out most impressing. That said, there's something particularly sweet about Poirier's surprisingly melodic rework.
12 Dec 12
Played by: Hybu, Mr Brainz / Orpheus:ldn, Odiggity, Juno Recommends Uk Funky/Garage, Hxdb, DJ Cure (Aufect Recordings), Commodore 69 (Hot N Heavy), Shouts!, Blind Prophet (South Fork Sound), Martin Sauvage /Soukouch Ethnik/, D3adl1ne, Konnekt - Hot N Heavy, Lucent, Allmostt, Cosby (Car Crash Set)
Review: San Francisco's Hot n Heavy Recordings mark their third birthday with a new action packed compilation, released on the symbolic date of 12/12/12. Featuring 14 fresh cuts spanning future bass, deep house and leftfield garage. Highlights include the tropical melancholia of Laney's "You Need To", the menacing minimal vibes of "Hairdresser" by Allmostt, the sparse, abstract garage of HxDB's "Spectator" and the slammin' raw, retro house of "Darlin" by D3adl1ne.
04 Feb 13
Review: Born into life kicking and screaming back in 2010, London via North Devon label Shifting Peaks has slowly but surely earned a killer rep in the world of bass and underground house. This is their second compilation and boy is it packed full of goodies. Highlights include the melancholic urban-tropical vibes of Mak & Pasteman's "Do The Same", the psychedelic Chicago vibes of Marshall Jefferson & Noose Heads' "Mushrooms", the heartbroken jukeisms of Cut Off! Cut Off!'s "Second To None" and the sublime King Of Arabs' "The Years Without Art".
25 Mar 13
Review: Here we have a split single featuring artists on the Loose Squares roster getting remixed to within an inch of their lives. First up is Ghettotech don Calculon, whose recent collaboration with Austin Speed, "Back The Fuck Up", is turned into a killer slow juke meets jungle synth-fest by the producers themselves. Sinistarr's "Ross" however, is outsourced: and placed in the hands of LA's Drip (aka Atlantic Connection) where it becomes a phenomenal deep bass-meets trap joint.
25 Mar 13
Review: OH91 (aka Omari Champagnie) is the latest in a long line of fierce new young producers hailing from Bristol. Following on from the hype of his track "Yellow", he's back with a newie, "NoGo". It's a bouncy slice of retro early 90s house with a techy edge - totally infectious. Carlos steps up to the plate with his remix that takes in more obvious retro synths, hard tribal breaks and some pretty deep subbass. One to watch!
25 Feb 13
Review: Greenmoney Recordings return with a short but sweet one-tracker from fresh label signing Queenie, a vocalist who's previously worked with Stay+ and Baxta and who makes her production debut on this release. "And Every" is the perfect combination of underground UK house, rhythmic inventiveness and low end bite, with sweet vocals, weighty drums that recall Canadian producer Kevin McPhee and the kind of garage swing of a classic Zed Bias record - an auspicious debut!
23 Apr 13
Review: The long-awaited solo LP from US-based soulful bass music producer Kastle has been the talk of music blogs around the world for months. Now its finally made it to a full release , there's something of a feeling of satisfaction that can be heard in each track. Whether that's projected by the listener or not might be hard to prove, but there's a definite positive energy that flows through everything Kastle produces. From the garage beats of "Been A While" and "Red Light" to the irresistibly hip house groove of "Insatiable" and trap-hop crush of "Death From Above", it's clear that versatility is what this album is all about. Clean, crisp production matched to soulful, blissed-out dance music that's unashamedly fashionable yet different enough to be taken seriously. An album of 2013 no doubt.
12 May 13
Played by: Big Dope P
Review: Bristol's DJ Die has gone one better than signing Addison Groove to his Gutterfunk imprint, he's only gone and collaborated with him on both tracks here as well! The footwork-influenced side project of Headhunter, Addison Groove assumes charge of "Keyhole" - a stripped back excursion into sultry voodoo beats. Meanwhile on "Hydropump", DJ Die takes the lead steering this ship into breaky hip-house waters in the process.
29 Mar 13
Review: Four To The Floor have been blazing a trail of future-garage destruction over the last few years, building up a solid regular roster in the process. Here's a killer round up of what their acts are currently up to. In the case of 8th-Ski, quite a bit: 60s kitsch lounge finely cut with some feisty breaks on "Jazzy Style", melancholic UKF on "Makes Me Wonder" and euphoric retro house on "On Me". Solution is currently all about slammin' speed garage, while Aleks Zen ends things with the celebratory sax-house vibes of "Let You Know".
13 May 13
Played by: Phuturelabs
Review: Given Unknown To The Unknown's wide ranging remit, including bassline garage, Detroit electro and Chicago house, it was perhaps inevitable that a genuine 90s house record would find its way onto the label at some point. Originally released in 1992, OHM's "Tribal Tone" was supposedly the first tune to use the Korg M1 sound that was later immortalised by Robin S' "Show Me Love", and had considerable impact at the time, being championed The Shamen frontman Mr C, being licensed to R&S sub-label Global Cuts and US label Vibe, and finding itself remixed by the Sabres of Paradise trio. Here it finds itself with three similarly great remixes, a stripped-back, raw groover from Marquis Hawkes, a horn-heavy piece of 90s action from Capracara and a thundering mid-tempo effort from Northern Souls. Essential!
25 Mar 13
Review: Given the ubiquity of classic garage-inspired house records over the last 18 months, it was probably inevitable that some bright spark would eventually decide to put together a themed compilation. To be fair to Needwant, they've done a pretty good job. While there are plenty of big, scene-defining records present - HNNY's "For The Very First Time", Dusky's "Flo Jam", Medlar's mix of Disclosure's "Boiling" and George Fitzgerald's "Child" - there are also of plenty of admirable cuts from lesser-known names and relative newcomers (see the excellent contributions from Ben Pearce and Purple Velvet). Job done.
04 Mar 13
Review: Founded back in 2007, London imprint 2nd Drop has deftly steered its way through the post dubstep fracture across some twenty releases. Arriving at their fifth & a half anniversary, the label offers up a thrilling snapshot of their enduring diversity on their maiden compilation Future Foundations. Familiar label names like Djrum and South London Ordnance offer their atmospherically swung take on dub techno, while label newcomers like Last Magpie and Alex Coulton provide some bouncy, UKG inspired techno. However, it's the frenetic jungle-inspired take on footwaork from Manni Dee and Deft that offers the biggest surprise in what is an already essential compilation.
25 Mar 13
Review: Gary Spence aka T-Polar is a prolific producer from Belfast. Here he demonstrates his considerable production skills over four future bass corkers. "Feetwork" is not as fast as the genre it's name references, instead its trippy, leftfield 2 step of the highest order. "Twinkle Toes" is quirky garage, riddle with chopped up RnB vocals and fun vibes, conversely "Little Big Man" is dark, moody and warped. The Unknown remix of the title track is even darker, evoking the serial killer disco vibes of recent Burial material.