Review: With Hazard rounding up another killer year for Hype and Pascal's label with his first release in five years, Playaz take stock of 2019 with this savage showdown from all their main mandem. From the eerie gurgles and scraps of Annix & Kanine's "Jackpot" to the flabby wobbles and groans of Limited's "Soldier" to the sweet seduction twist of Jam Thieves' "Love Forever" this 25-track pack covers the entire spectrum of proper rave-primed drum & bass with all manner of curveballs and boundary-pushing badness. No compromises, a healthy balance of elder statesmen, new headliners and young talent and a sound that's distinctively theirs, Playaz are about to bulldoze into a new decade... And this is how it all begins.
Review: Portuguese powermoves: Bassbrothers return with a fat packet of bangers and twangers to keep us warm during the gloomy months. Delivered over a year after their walloping "WTF" project, the seven-track stack brings everyone up to speed. Highlights include the tongue-in-cheek sampleplay and groove ricochets of "Cowbell", the undulating tech grizzles and electric current bassline of the title track, the gnarled-out halftime toxic funker "Accents" with man-of-the-moment Shield and the jumpy dynamics and sudden eastern switches of "Badboy". Welcome back Bassbrothers!
Review: Time flies when you're a junglist... Reflecting the bossman DJ Hype's all-style signature as a selector, Playaz output covered the spectrum in style last year. You want sun-dappled soulful fire? Look for Potential Badboy. You want dirt munching gully? Look for Annix. You want leftfield stripped back surreal dark funk? Look for Bass Brothers or Jam Thieves. You want to get knocked the heck out? Look up Taxman, Prestige and Tyke. So many corners covered they smashed walls down to create new ones, Playaz killed it in 2016... Here are 25 reasons why.
Review: It was about time the Bassbrothers stepped up on DJ Hype's Playaz to deliver some rolling, twisted bass beats, because these two d&b deviants know how to mash it up good and proper. "WTF" itself is a pure hybrid tune, where dubstep and d&b become intertwinded, and the same goes for the tunes like "Kravitz" or "Dunno A Dead", except that the duo branch out and gather more influences, from R&B to ragga. "Pusher" delivers some of that classic Playaz sound, all bursting morph bass and dread, followed by the mean, lean stare of "Deadly Spawn". Killaz!
Review: Sticky fingers Brazilians Jam Thieves have been tearing up the dance in the last few years with their subgenre-smelting dancefloor-focussed D&B. Misbehaving on the likes of Radius, Serial Killaz, and Hangar, they've found their spiritual home on Hype's Playaz where all styles are welcome as long they make you bounce... Which is exactly what these 10 tracks do. From the wild west whistles and far-out bass bumps on "The Hangman" and the Qanun twanging "Favela Funk" (with the similarly talented hot blooded Portuguese-speaking duo Bass Brothers), Jam Thieves have delivered a straight-up album of dancefloor bruisers and funkers with nothing contrived or written for album's sake. Refreshing.
Review: It's been a while since the Portuguese sonic siblings last dished out a release but it's clear they've had bigger, album-sized projects in mind. Their debut long one, it's an evocative love letter to the entire scene; whipping up the genre's many fiddly little sub-sub-subgenres, this will please all fans. "Neo Babylon" rattles with Commix's "Call To Mind" era, "In The Ghetto" is a sandpaper funk jam a la Hazard, "Spiders" is a fuzzy, techy electrified stomper you could hear the likes of John B play while "Dancehall Killez" is so steppy, glitchy and unclassifiable it could make Sam Binga blush. References and comparisons aside, this is the sound of two very promising artists coming correct; the whole D&B community needs to pay attention.
Review: Portuguese Playaz poison, BassBrothers have been on Hype's talent roster since late 2013 and are finally making their label debut with a whopping six-track mission statement. Riddled with creativity, sharp drums, superb execution of samples and unrelenting energy, each of these cuts justify the cross-board hype they've been enjoying lately. Highlights include the snare-snapping steppiness of "Bolivian Yeyo", the playful use of samples and well-tamed tears of "Blastin", the twisted ragga skanks and distorted bass bitterness of "Fashion" and the industrial strength nastiness of "Shut Up". A contender for label debut of the year, this amplifies Playaz' trustworthy consistency tenfold. Ludicrously big.
Review: Think of DJ Hazard and what do you see in your mind's eye? Put that hectic mayhem and those sweaty dancefloor shenanigans together into a two track release and you've got a good idea as to what BassBrothers are all about. "Royal Rumble" is a knockout blow from the very start, punching well above those jump up expectations and delivering some serious originality and a seriously stinking bassline to boot. "Jamaican Thug" puts dancehall vibes to work, smashing dancefloors and convincing crowds they can all do an adequate dutty wine, where destructively deep bass gives in to a ridiculous build up.