Review: Warning warning warning! DJ Hazard's out on the prowl with a big bag of bassline sweeties and he's not taking no for an answer. 'Stranger Danger' slays all nonces in a 20km radius thanks to its boa constrictor bassline that writhes along all slug like and menacing before squeezing the life out of you while 'Candy Bass' keeps things sweet with a deeper bassline that purrs like Michael Knight's car Kit, giving us plenty of space to focus on those rattling drums. Yummy.
Review: Wrapping up a serious year of heat, Hype's Playaz look back over their many releases of 2021 and brings them altogether in one place for those who missed out on the label's many big bruisers, bumpers and thumpers. Ranging from Xtrah's trippy, leftfield 'Droplets' to straight-up face-melters like Spaow's 'Amd Planet' with a whole range of fire in between from some of the label's (and the scene's) biggest and most respected names like Taxman, Voltage, Limited, Dunk and of course the mighty DJ Hazard, it's a pretty forthright reminder of just how much clout and musical muscle the longstanding label has - even when half the year was spent with the clubs and raves closed. Playaz ain't playing around!
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: Drum&Bass Arena: The longest-standing, and one of the most respected, platforms for all things jungle D&B celebrates an impressive 20 years in the game with this ridiculously hefty document that pays respect to the genre's every twist and turn. From scene-shattering megahits ("Tarantula", "Feel The Love", "Rock It", "Afterglow") to unarguable historical underground scene-smashing megabangers ("Machete", "Aztec", "Nasty Ways", "The View", "Champion Sound", "Turbulence", "Up All Night", "Deadline", Ram Trilogy's remix of "Pacman") by way of tracks that may have slipped under the radar ("Defcom 69", "What's Wrong", "Song For Lovers") the whole album is loaded to the lips with some of the most important records the genre's enjoyed in the last 20 years. Time to get nostalgic, time to fill those holes in your collection, time to educate your dancefloor. Here's to another 20 years!
Review: 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.
Review: Drum & Bass Arena has ruled on high for nearly 20 years, and in that time has helped to forge the careers of every drum & bass artist worth their salt. It's impossible to downplay the influence the site has had on the scene, as a club brand and an online resource, and this year their official compilation is a doozie. Featuring some of the largest tracks around right now from Friction & Skream, J Majik & Wickaman, DJ Hazard, Rene LaVice, Calyx & TeeBee, Original Sin and Optiv & BTK as well as bangers from fresh artists like Heist, Zen & Nitri, this is an essential purchase for any D&B fan. Focussing on the heavier end of the spectrum this 35 track behemoth is basically your 2013 compendium of bass. Don't leave home without it.
Review: The Playaz label has contributed some of the scene's most iconic tunes so rest assured that this "Playaz Digital Vol 5" album is absolutely jam-packed with treats a-plenty. D&B heads prepare to don your raving shoes, this one will have you more than excited! Ranging from Sub Zero's tear out jump up mayhem in "Spin Doc" to a remix of DJ Zinc's legendary "Ska", via Pascal's "P-Funk Era" and Hazard's raw and wobbly movie-sampling "Killer's Don't Die", no stone is left unturned across this excellent compilation. And for those who thought that Playaz was all raucous jump up, make sure you listen to Sub Zero's deep, murmuring "Protection" which flips the proverbial script. Something for everyone here!
Review: The Birmingham based jump up maestro that is DJ Hazard continues to stun audiences across the globe with his signature shade of D&B. And it's safe to say that the hype surrounding "Never The Same EP" is well and truly warranted. Kicking off with the title track, the echoing vocal sample immediately gives the tune an epic, almost euphoric, quality; add grouchy bass, chiming SFX and punchy drums to the equation and you have an anthem in the making. But that's not all, no; "Air Guitar" ups the ante yet again with punishing, gritty roars and growling subs. "It's A Secret" is another wobbly jump up banger with Hazard written all over it, and then "Do Without You" twists things up with more bass-driven badness. This comes highly recommended for all D&B heads.
Review: A superbly executed EP here, with VIP re-works from some of the key bods from the Playaz camp - the ineffable don of wobble jump up, DJ Hazard and his cohorts Erb N Dub, Legacy, Original Sin and brother Taxman, plus Friction and Nu Balance and newcomer Jaydan. First up is a delectable re-interpretation of massive 2011 hit "Food Fight" which draws out the vocal and juxtaposes it with grizzled bass. Next is "Alaska (VIP)" which is a glorious, fast-paced explosion of sound, and special mention must be made of the wonderful "Casino" VIP by Original Sin plus mid noughties classic "Robocop" which is updated by Taxman. Jaydan rounds things off in rowdy fashion with a VIP of "Driller Killer". An expansive package and a must buy.
Review: The wobble jump up pioneer is on fine, fine form at the moment. Having torn dancefloors apart with the incredible "Busta Move" earlier in '11, Hazard returns with one of his strongest productions since the Machete Mass EP in 2008. The delectable sounds of "Food Fight" have been blazing across the airwaves for the last few months now - expect uproarious bass pressure, spot on sampling, dramatic drops and grouchy, gritty bassline business before flipping over for the equally fabulous "Proteus". Here a tense, ticking intro leads into the creepy movie sampling and swaggering, slouchy bass driven beauty that makes up the main tune. A resounding thumbs up here!
Review: Pascal and Hype's Playaz label storms into the digital world with their fourth instalment of their Playaz Digital selection. Taking it back to the mid noughties with iconic Taxman cut "Too Bad" and seminal G Dub classic "Tink Ya Bad", before accelerating through some influential moments in Playaz history from the core crew - Hazard, Original Sin and Taxman - it's brock out business all the way with rollicking basslines and grizzled synths. Along the journey of rowdy jump up and wobble-tastic party bangers, we have old favourites like "Selector" and "Scan Darker" before moving into more recent territory with "Harry's Revenge" and "Bubbles". Big, bad and heavy.
Review: One of the True Playaz massive and a total legend in D&B, Hazard drops four new bombs on this lively new EP. "Psychedelic" lives up to its name with a range of perfectly arranged old vocal samples that Hazard drops with style over a fun jump-up beat. "Platinum Shadows" showcases some top drum arrangements, while "Against The Clock" packs some aggressive samples into the fun. "All I Can Say" wraps the set up nicely with some low squelchy bass once again anchoring rough and wicked beats. A legend who is just getting better, the Platinum Shadows EP is a must for D&B fans.