Having already been dubbed 'fire' by Krissi B and also bigged up by Butterz, the hype around the Wait EP is growing. Back with a bang, the release kicks off with Vital Techniques' speedy hacksaw-bass jam, "Make Me Feel", before Mikey B's "Damage" delivers some seriously aggressive wobble action. Then they pair up for the orchestrated dubby 2-step gem, "Wait".
Powerful sonic slappage from Brighton badman Jook. Sitting somewhere between grime, dubstep and tech funk, all three cuts live to up the Certified Banger status. "Lean Back" is all about the tightly cut stabs that wrap themselves around the stop/start kicks and snares, "Alarmed" is all about the wobbles and is just waiting for a fiery flow of MC damage while "Lucy" shows us Jook's softer, star-gazing side thanks to velvet arpeggios and some really interesting sample textures buried deep among the beats.
London's Roska shoots through another killer of an EP with new signing Jodo Kast on his Kicks & Snares imprint, and it's rough n' ready pseudo grime, as per usual. "Start The Chase" is an r&b-driven stutter-house bomb for floor pulverizing; "Capstone" truly kicks and snares its way through the mix with gun-toting percussion blasts; "Lights Down Low" goes for a more classic garage kinda vibe on its beats and female vocals; "I Want U" ties things off in house mode, for the DJs.
Locked into the wave of exciting new grime abstractions surfacing at present, Lokane comes to light with this four-tracker for Infinite Machine and sounds about ready to rip up the dance with a fearless intent. "Shake The Gears" comes laden with some unnamed MC baiting tricks which proceed to get run through the grinder around some flashy sound design beat mashing, made with a keen ear for detail and a serious experimental edge. "Million" is no slouch on the fireworks either, although it sharpens the focus around a mean bassline for maximum dancefloor impact. The wild choppiness is back on "Eastway Project" to devastating effect, with "The 5th" keeps the pressure up high to round out an EP that should come with a warning.
Brighton's Dismantle has gotten the attention of big dubstep DJ's and producers over the last few years, and he continues his impressive line of form with a new EP for T-Power's Digital Soundboy. He's brought four tracks fo pure bass aling with him; "If Not" is a tune without genre but it's certainly one which crosses the wires and mashes up house, bashment and more; "Minnion" breaks the tempo down and comes out with a stumbled groove and one hell of a percussive hook; title track "Stranded" is an unexpected carnival monster, a hybrid tune with a heavy low-end, bumpy percussion and racket and those inimitable Brazilian melodies.
Laidback Luke? No, Jason Laidback, to be exact. Purveyor of nu-skool breaks for close to two decades and formerly part of Finger Lickin' duo Slyde, it seems he's back! "Smoker Toker" is yet another tribute to everyone's favourite herb in the form of a dirty late night garage tip. "Oz Voodoo" is a return to form for Laidback, showing us his electrofied, in your face breaks he's known for. Finally "Smoker Toker" gets an instrumental version for those hot fond on the green monologue of the original.
Better known as one-half of Se7en Deadly Breaks, Aaron K is developing a strong reputation for his own solo work too. Saucy Records have certainly clocked this and have signed him up for new tune "Everything". The original sees Joe Peng (frontman of Laid Blak) and K-pop singer Tita Lau electrically combine on this rolling ragga-garage anthem. AK reworks his own track again in the soft and synthier 808 Steppa mix. Last but not least, Kurse closes proceedings with an epic, string-sample-heavy rave-tinged version.
Cardiff's Project Allout continue their never-ending run of form, this time by turning in a new artist on the block, Scruloose. The bass youngster has no problem in making his way through into the limelight with four deep and magical bass swelters. "Lights" is particularly alluring thanks to its anthemic strings and perfectly balanced vocal chops, but "Lotus" quickly takes things to rougher territories with its stuttering beat and old-school grime bleeps. "See Me Fall" is a quirky street bullet with another fine flurry of strings, while "Vybra" heads deeper into the mix and we can't help but thinking that it would sound absolutely sick with a burst of vocals riding shotgun.
After last year saw Kevin Martin's primary project looming large with the Angels & Devils album and a slew of singles, The Bug is back on Ninja Tune with a new single. "Zim Zim Zim" features seasoned dancehall MC Burro Banton raining down vocal fire over a typically grandiose Martin production, all slow, heavy-footed stomp and strangely emotive slabs of grinding metallic synth tones that sound like the end of the world bursting out of the speakers. Banton's nagging delivery sits perfectly on the track, but for those that want to home in on the subtleties of the production the "Version" provides all the space you need for those staggering sounds to roam.
Culled from last year's debut album Trust, this remix collection comes from artists that 18+ respect and occasionally collaborate with. Suicideyear's take on "Cake" is a dreamy, entrancing affair, with haunting electronic melodies and half-heard vocals set to push the listener into a trance. It's followed by the huge bass drops and dissected vocals of Mr Mitch's take on "Nectar", with Tia Maria Producoes' remix of "OIXU" is in a similar vein thanks to its massive subs. Birds cawing, clicking thumb percussion and techno bleeps comprise Audri Nix's reshape of "Crow", while Mr Mitch goes into melodic, atmospheric mode for his remix of "Nectar".
The well-travelled bass baiters Trax Couture continue to call upon their crew to reach out to pastures new as the World Series continues unabated. It's hard to keep up with the volume of quality from Rushmore's label, but after the likes of Air Max '97 and Grovestreet it's the turn of C++ to bring the heat, and that's just what goes down here across four tracks of feisty bass-laden material. "Poisonous Eye" has a serious jungle infection going on with its choppy breaks, while "Optical Fracture" brings a heavy stomping twist up on UK Funky to the table. "After Image" cools things off with a more bleepy techno approach and then there's some trap thrown in for good measure on "Bounce Trak".
New artist on the block Fang Lilies makes his way through onto the Signal Life camp, a young imprint dealing in all things bass related and which his only on its third release. Fang Lilies' style spreads across half-step, and grime, with "Echelon" encompassing all three in its underbelly. "Atmospheric Oceans" is the other stunner in the pile, a broken grime track that's been submerged far into the depths of the ether. If you're into something dark, moody but ethereal, then this is the stuff for you. An impressive debut, indeed.
Boof! The Pinch man himself returns to his own Tectonic stable and he's joined by Mumdance and Logos. All three bass heads have collaborated on Tectonic before, all with stunning results, so it's a pleasure to see them back in action. Up first is "Double Barrelled Mitzi", a dark and cavernous pseudo house bullet of a refix of Pinch and Mumdance killer "Turbo Mitzi" boasting a flurry of deranged sonics and deep, sweltering shots of low-end - a true hybrid tune in the label's familiar style. Pinch himself turns in a VIP mix of the Mumdance & Logos cut "Legion", a tribal war dance powered by broken shreds of percussion and deep waves of bass. Heavy duty stuff.
Matti Gajek, or simply known as Gajek, is a recent Monkeytown signing who released an LP as his debut, back last year. Two of the tracks from that Restless Shapes album, "Curved Engines 04" and "Restless Water Shapes 05", are remixed and juiced up by two special guests on the label. The former is reinterpreted by techno legends Plaid, who made a name for themselves on a little old label by the name of Warp, and the duo shape the tune into a lovely electronica ballad filled with starry melodies and subtle percussive twists; the latter sees Raster-Noton's legendary Alva Noto morph Gajek's original into a broken, pulsating techno drifter with a dubby edge. Excellent as always from the Monkeytown crew.
With prior form on Trapdoor and Audio Rejectz, Myth makes the leap to starting up an label with Halcyon Veil, an aptly named vessel for the haunting, introspective modern dubstep confections contained within Evaporate. The emotion weighs heavy at every time, from the forlorn bleeps of "Phoenix" to the plaintive bassline of "Semagi", while the beats hit crisp and true. With its clean, sharp edges whip-cracking around the moody melodic refrains across the tempo range, all seven tracks on this EP further demonstrate the burgeoning talents of Myth in the ever hectic bass music field.
London's Black Acre, home to the likes of Alex Coulton, Dan Shake and Fantastic Mr Fox, among other bass and house deviants, lands new artist Connie Constance on the catalogue, a fitting addition to a beautifully varied roster. "Stars" is r&b vocal showdown, backed by light beats and gentle swarms of electronics, and "Euphoric" follows a similar trend thanks to its tame melodies and deep, spiritual lyrics. "Kingdom" provides a more uplifting touch, a poppy kinda vibe to round this EP off in style.