One of the most respected men in the game, Hazard returns with four blinding slabs of seismic sonics. Don't be fooled by the title, "Bricks Don't Roll" really does roll thanks to some unique drum programming, a harrowed hook and a sub that echoes its every peak and trough. Dig deeper for the head-turning, triplet-twisted hype riser "Mk Q", the subversive alien trippiness of "Death Sport" and the spacious reverberations and epic hollow-bass drop of "Meen Time". Hazard doesn't release EPs that often, but when he does the scene bricks it. This is beyond solid.
Unlike his more prolific counterparts on the scene, Beta 2 has been working away quietly and sporadically over the past few years, spreading his talents sparsely but effectively, like a stealth bomber. With a timeless quality only a few producers manage to evoke, his tracks always bring the glory years of D&B to mind, transitioning smoothly from 1994 to 2004 to 2014 in the blink of an eye. "2nd Page" is a masterpiece in smooth, swaying drum and bass, picking up swooning strings as it rolls past. Second track "NOD" is made of harder stuff, with rough breaks and empty, minimal atmosphere. Moving into techier territory, "Time Traveller" takes beats most familiar to fans of the likes of Burial and Four Tet, speeds them up and sends them on their way with a gorgeously soothing rumble of velvety bass and soaring atmospherics. A true gem.
Expect much skanking and rejoicing from this herbal-tinted remix release, refixed and sharpened up by none other than the Serial Killaz. First up, "Uprising" goes on a high-energy jungle flex, rolling hard and fast with plenty of upbeats and plenty of vibe. Marcus Visionary steps up next for his take, rewinding back to the old school and adding the sounds of the street to toughen up the proceedings. Serial Killaz then get back to another co-effort for a dance-friendly Radio Edit and finally an instrumental mix takes centre stage. No beat was left unturned. Fire!
Legendary label Ruffneck Ting do their thing once again with the return of K Jah to bring the real sounds of jungle back to the dancefloor. This five-track monster rips it up from start to finish, with more fire than an octogenarian's birthday cake. First up to bring the vibes is "Supaclash" with its giant bass and even bigger selection of well-poised sampling. Following up with hard-rolling "Rough Times" and old-school tinted dancefloor-shaking "It Gets Better" there's a plethora of influences here ripe for the picking. "That's A Fact" follows up with a skank-along beats, filth bass and hip-hop vocals, and finally the greatest sweets in the world get a look in with "Cola Cubes" featuring Vytol, a dark and dingy look into the early hours; cold, heavy and very, very ravey.
Liondub International come through with their usual bag of ragga jump-up goodness, and this time it's a mash up of the legendary Ranking Joe! "Ram Dance Selecta" is a serious body groover packed full of crunchy breaks and that inimitable Jamaican vocal twist - a true lesson in rub-a-dubbin'! "Jungle General" is another slice of mutant ragga funk, but a touch deeper and a little more sensual. All together, a true flash job. Run it!!
Time to pay homage to some of the greatest junglists in the biz for a lovely little detour into each of their mindsets. "Fall In Love" itself is a beauty of a track - with Eva Lazarus referencing Althia and Donna and the horns blowing pure heat there's a true dancehall vibe sizzling. First up to give it the remix treatment are Dope Ammo and Marvellous Cain who add their fun and fire twist with a hard edged drop switched into that winding bassline to send crowds wild. Mr Benn picks up the tune for its final remix and adds his own reggae vibes, swapping those dark dancefloor sounds for sunshine and tropical funky bass. Versatility and vibes - what more do you want?
Jump up heads, it's time to get nasty. A year after the release of this notorious dancefloor killer, Filthy Habits have taken to the lab once again to remix "No Cure" for the late summer crowds and boy are we grateful. Packed to burst with dirty bass and hard-spanking snares, there's not a pair of dunks in sight that could resist skanking to this. "Boiling Point" on the other hand raises up the salute to Turno's production skills with a faithful remix from Filthy Habits. Still dark, still destructive but with a sleeker, meaner level of devastating realness, this roller is going places. The favourite by far.
Judging from the reception this UK producer has been getting from Hype and Pascal, it's only a matter of time before he blows up into the big time - so listen up. Packing the biggest of punches through the use of huge drops and bonesaw bass, the Time I Did EP manages to be a collection of highly accomplished, tightly produced dancefloor detonation devices, with each track coming from a different place in the D&B psyche. From heavy-handed and wild to technical and troubled at the flick of a switch, if you've not heard of this guy yet, prepare to hear your new favourite producer take flight into the wide world.
Little known liquid upstart Furney gets another crack of the whip as Soul Deep Exclusives take him on for three stunning musical journeys into his many influences and inspirations. "Tear In The Rain" is a mash-up of modern western soundtracks and lush, rolling bass mixing old with new, whereas second track "Missing Her Missing Me" is a melancholic ramble through subs and rain-soaked atmosphere, dampened percussion and ethereal vocals adding to the gloaming. Finally, Furney signs off with the beautifully musical "Gumbo". Not at all like the food of its namesake, this dazzling track takes on many different, delicate forms from light and airy pads to twinkling keys and sultry sax, all held together by a huge fuzzy bassline. Delicious.
If you see the name "Nymfo" and you think "uh oh", you'll be pleased to know that he's done you proud once again. Joining forces with Detail, the essence of darkness himself, he's gone a step further into the abyss with this release. "Coming Through" begins with a frozen, arid, industrial landscape built from claustrophobic production and ingenious samples, turning into a monster roller built for heavy-duty demolitions. "Survivor" builds yet more tension within a soundscape, this time from a terrifying robotic reanimation chamber complete with electrocution and '80s sci-fi synth pads. Finally the pair finish up with "Tower of David", a biblically deep and dark stomper set to shake most raves to the ground.
Marky and Makoto made this almost 10 years ago. Naturally it still stands up to today's production standards with ease as the rolling breaks, a sumptuous string and horn sample and juicy bass undulations fuse to create the epitome of a soulful roller. If this isn't in your collection yet, now is most certainly the time to jump on it. Lovely.
Tamworth's own Payback signs his Seasons EP over to Soul Deep, and we ask you, could there have been a better choice for this beautiful collection of liquid rollers? Picking out sensitive, soulful riffs within the damp thud of heavy percussion, "Winters Chill" feels muffled with snow, balanced out by the trill of twinkling chiming melodies. "Autumn Fall" is a far more percussive tune, owing to the abundance of breaks and additional percussion filling up the top end to balance out silky smooth brass. Dropping hard but remaining cool and collected, it quickly becomes a big roller with a golden centre. Moving into a sunnier climate, "Cascades In Spring" has a crispier, cleaner feel with a light, airy play on pads and synths. Finally, "Essence Of Summer" is a big, hazy summer anthem, as you'd expect, packed with the soul of Brazil. A beautiful package.
A bona fide summer smash for every DJ lucky enough to get it before release, this is the result of Benny Page's recent Jamaican adventure. Teaming up with dancehall mic maestro Assassin, Benny lowers his tempo to a rifle-like 140 breakbeat riddim to create an instant sing-along smasher. Anthemic without being over-the-top. Dark without being too heavy, Benny has smashed this one to pieces, and now you can too.
Renegade Hardware hit back hard with new signing Trilo, showing the rest of the scene how it's done. Dark, heavy, techy and filled with influences old and new, this is an intelligent release filled with nods to the past but with an undercurrent of pure terror. First track "Enterprise" shows off the Slovakian producer's knack for distorted bass and skewed beats and as we carry on into "Prozac", the EP's brutally restrained mid-way point, it's easy to see why RH picked this guy up: he's got a way with horror soundscapes most producers could only dream of. He finishes off with stunningly pieced together "Baracks", switching from musical interlude to heavy dancefloor-writhing rhythms in a palpitation. Breathtaking.
Russian producer Impish has been working feverishly on his intimidatingly unique sound for some time now, bringing liquid forward to a mid-way point between easy listening and severe, cutting edge beats. This EP shows off some of his extensive talents for taking simple sounds and letting them run away with themselves, using natural and technical percussion together and tying everything with his own brand of rolling and at times ragged basslines. "Wake Up" begins as a deep, atmospheric roller, the dreamer of the collection. Second track "Solo Dancer" features Intersoul and his soulful influence can be heard in the light piano melodies playing under wispy washes of colour and atmosphere. Rounding off with deeply resonant bass and creaking, erratic percussive elements, it's a beautiful thing, full of experimentation and sheer down-and-dirty enjoyment and you need it in your collection.
Two relatively unknown artists step out of the shadows to bring two beautiful explorations in D&B's technical underbelly to life. "Huge" is a consummate example of minimal melody taken from years of techno worship and sped up to match skitterish amens, underpinned by long drawn-out synth notes. It's simple and complex at the same time and there's more than a little influence from epic '90s game soundtracks involved. That's not a bad thing. "Untaken" packs more of a tropical feel, with a clear after-the-monsoon feel about the production and gorgeous layering between melody, reece and samples. This is a tune that would feel at home on any dancefloor and would make even the most stoic of crowd turn their downturned faces to the sky.
Since making their debut on Dispatch Survival and Script have gone on to genuinely scar the D&B landscape with their unforgiving, unrelenting dynamics. "Palermo" is the latest chapter in this next-level narrative; all bendy bass that groans and moans with disturbing demonic textures, it's one for the latest of hours. "Over Easy" is a little deeper as the bass sits back a touch and allows the crisp drums to take up a little more of the spotlight. Finally we hit "Screen Test", the most subversive track of this razor-sharp trio, the drums switch and step with pristine precision while another demonic bass message makes itself clear. Massive.
Beautiful and otherworldly like the dazzling glare of the sun from which he took his name, Russia's Dmitry Gorbunov takes shimmering sounds and takes them off into the atmosphere. Unlike his jazzy counterparts, his brand of liquid is very much inspired by the microfunk and more technically-minded productions of his local peers Bop, Subwave and Unquote. This might go some way into explaining why each track is as unique to him - there's arguably more experimentation in Russian D&B than in any other part of the world. Switching from serene to stepper in the blink of an eye, this is incredible stuff - you need to watch this guy's steps.
Two of Soul Deep's finest join forces again to bring a little class and decorum to the D&B scene. "I Have A Dream" gets things started with a classic break intro as lush piano loops and swoops between bars. As dreamlike as it is sensual, it's a chilled track perfect for lazy late summer days with a bit of a twist - Martin Luther King makes an appearance, lending some much-needed sanity and peace to the busy outside world. "Black Coffee" follows, mixing jazzy grooves with blues and soul samples, rolling beats and an addictively deep bassline. This is D&B for sophisticated souls.
TIB continues to tease us with the imminent release of his debut album Section Nine. "Rekall" is pure savagery as his monstrous bass rips and tears across the mix with unfettered ugliness. Ably backed up with BBK's surefire spits, it's instant carnage material. Remix-wise Sub Slayers have left no stone unturned; Naiive conjures up a ripsnorting D&B tear-out session, Roughmath throws down the bro vibes with Datsik-level aggression, 601 tease us with spacey rave elements before dropping into the foulest breakbeat shred set-up and INF1N1TE closes the show with a half-tempo D&B slammer. No product recalls here - bring on the album already!