Review: If you grew up during the original rise of dubstep's fame, there is no way you can not know who the legendary Caspa is. We were therefore to see him land another new school scorcher on Ghost Town with this lively new four track project. We begin with 'Babylon Bill', a grizzly stepper, alternating between gnawing synthesizers and gritty LFOs, before the title track 'System Failure' fuses metallic percussive stabs with hard hitting basslines with great results. From here we then more into the more experimental rhythms and high pitched synthesizer designs of 'Silence Them', to take the EP down a different avenue entirely before finishing up on 'Cut That', a swampy original that sends the listeners eardrums from left to right with its naturally swaying arrangement. It's an impressive selection from one of the scenes original founding fathers, what's not to love?
Review: It's always good to see the legends of a genre return and that is most certainly the case here as we see Caspa launch another storming dubstep selection, this time supplying us with a potent six tracker via Ghost Town. We begin with the wonky LFO structures and haunting choir stabs of 'From The Gods', followed by the swivelling synth melodies and choppy drum rhythms of 'What The Brass'. Next, we welcome a gnarly selection of bass sounds which warble away with an evil tone on 'Sedated', before the more stripped back subs of 'Lost In LA' and catchy vocal sample work of 'Blame You' roll into play. Finally, the wonky synth-based pitch bends of 'Don't Know When To Stop' gives us one last jolt to finish off this fabulous return for Caspa!
Review: Released over the course of 18 months, dubstep OG Caspa's "Vibrations" series has been a wild ride. All tailored for those intimate dark rooms and well tuned systems, the 10 track project has been nothing but serious heavyweight underground stinkage and an exercise in unapologetic rawness. From the still thrilling operatives and brazenness of "Get Higher" to the techno like creeper "Ruff House Rose" and the beautifully freaky and tripped out the latest and last Vibration track "Don't Watch Man", this is the sound of a man who's flown the flag harder than most of his peers put together. The series is over but the vibes live forever.
Review: The stars have aligned on this one: Youngsta's impeccable Sentry imprint has meant the business since it launched last year with dBridge and it's got hotter ever since. Now battered and bruised by two Caspa workouts, the message is even louder. "Gutter Riddim" is a powerful groaner with warped bass and slight trap elements in the rolling drums while "Hot Head" plays with our senses with a vicious angular drop that suddenly explodes into the wobble fest of your (wet) dreams. Stinking.
Review: Remember Caspa & Rusko? Two of the main instigators of the entire dubstep sound? Well, the former's back after a lengthy session MIA, and it sounds like he hasn't changed a bit since the golden days back in 05-08. That's not to say that this year isn't fresh - it's amazing - but we mean that it's the illest, most purest form of the genre that you're gonna get nowadays. Granted, "Deja Vu" does mess up the beats considerably, and there is something unheard about it, but that wobbling cascade of bass is vey much of the vintage sort - all greezy and up for causing a ruckus! Yes, Caspa!
Review: Caspa's Vibrations series continues to reverberate the dance with its seasonal one-track scud dispatches. Following crucial jams such as "Get Higher" and "Umbongo" comes this almighty piece of bass theatre that's strident from its opening staccato strings. Marching into the bleak future with a bassline that opens up into swampy, noxious riff mid-way - and a cool scientific sample about all things solar - it's Caspa at his most forthright and stately. Feel the heat.
Review: Following the soul-shaking groove of "Umbongo", Caspa's one-track-fire Vibrations series continues with another absolute hair-raiser: "Get Higher". Fully charged with a vocal sample that's craftily morphed into a surging FX rise, there are dark cosmic theatrics riddled throughout the eerie, spaced-out groove. Caspa's in a great place right now. Feel the vibrations!
War Drum (Done Talkin') (feat $pyda) - (4:13) 140 BPM
80's Kid - (4:39) 140 BPM
March Of The Marionettes - (3:57) 140 BPM
Tales Of The Unexpected - (4:04) 145 BPM
Review: Given that Caspa has previously described his 500 album as an attempt "not to compromise", you'd expect this second digital sampler to be packed to the rafters with no-holds-barred, in-your-face gear. Certainly, opener "War Drum (Done Talkin')" - featuring the distinctive vocals of reggae toaster $pyda - is pretty robust, with sirens, wobbly sub and military drum rolls adding extra energy to a surging, dancefloor-friendly dubstep groove. The slower, string-laden - but no less punchy - "80s Kid" offers a little relief, before "March of the Marionettes" takes us deep into the realms of stoned late night paranoia. Finally, "Tales of the Unexpected" comes on like a grandiose fusion of soaring movie themes, EDM and tightly programmed dancefloor dubstep.
Review: His rawest, heaviest work to date, "500: Episode 1" is the precursor to a huge North American tour for the Dub Police founder, and he's not lost any of the individuality that's set him apart from the start. Describing the release himself as "cinematic" and "emotional", this marks a change in the producer's style, where true depth is being weighed out over heaviness and hype. Painted against a post-apocalyptic landscape in sound as well as the stylish cover art, he's marked out a new beginning for himself. We want to hear more.
Review: Some tasty, extra special treat this week from the likes of Caspa and Rusko - anthem alert, right here! There is no point introducing these two, given their invaluable contribution to the dubstep scene since its early days, but what we should say is that it feels like a special surprise to have them together again, ripping bars to pieces like they used to back in the day. "Riddem Again" is a fast, aggressive bass stepper that sound more like a grime offshoot than it does dubstep, and "Whiplash" carries the same sort of hybrid framework, except here the groove is comparatively more broken and guided by a swagger-ready injection of gunshot lyrics. "Cup Of Peace" sounds like an ode to the duo's dub/reggae roots, a slow, drunken kind of tune that sways from left to right with that inimitable Jamaican haze that has characterised much of the dubstep sound over the years. They're back and in business.
Review: Come backs don't come any better than Caspa & Rusko's reunion. Since re-colliding last Autumn the pair have done nothing but drip feed us vibes. Not formulas, no expectations, just ace tracks that are made with such a buzz it's tangible the moment you press play. Having slapped us with authentic dub, grime and badboy 808 business the two titans lick up a breakbeat and massage us with tapepack vibes. If you haven't invested in white glove, whistle or horn shares by the end of the track you should probably seek help. Massive.