Review: The celebration of Optiv's influence continues as C4C pay tribute to his legacy and the huge hole his tragic passing has left in the game with the second of this trilogy album series Stories. Just like the 'Origins' chapter, 'Evolution' features a whole range of major league artists who've all been influenced by the late great Cause 4 Concern founder. Break, Kolectiv, Current Value, IHR, Task Horizon, Audio, Malux and so many more brilliant souls all deliver exclusive goods to the album as C4C raise money for Optiv's sons. RIP.
Review: The man, the myth, the Sofa King: DLR looks back over his dubs and serves up a selection of his own specials from across his time on Dispatch Recordings. Each cut taking its own unique twist and designed to twist melons of any fans of the originals, the oldest cut on here is 'Set Up The Set' from way back in 2012 where DLR murders out a whole new section and layer of basses. Elsewhere we're reminded of IMANU's original Signal guise on the grimacing 'Human Behaviour VIP' and EBK and Gusto's 2015 collabo-banger from DLR's Seeing Sounds album in 2015 gets an unruly alien funk twist, too.
Review: Breaking records and hearts, DLR's Sofa Sound crew present the 'Sofa Singles Club' concept whereby a bunch of dubs that were meant for release later this year have all come out early in to find some summer loving. Some of the label's most exciting names are on side along with the bossman as they get naughty, dirty and downright filthy with the wriggly basslines. Highlights include the Bad Company style reeses and massive bubbles of 'Figure It Out', the pure drama of 'Eagle Bomber' and the out-there funky freakery of 'Staying Up Late Making Music'. Don't be stupid... Do a Cupid!
Review: Man like DLR pops over from the good ship Sofa Sound to his old pals at CIA for some slug-it-out bassline mischief and the results are typically stinky. Keep at arms length as 'Don't Come Close' wafts up the joint with toxic funk, 'Back Track' (with CIA bosses Total Science) gets really smelly with its flatulent bassline and 'Squeeks' squeezes your cheeks with its overall subby sludge. Don't come too close, come even closer... DLR is a roll right now.
Review: Alix Perez and DLR together, smashing out four massive slugs for our mixing and dancing pleasure... What a treat to ease us into 2022 with! It's instant brilliance as SP joins the fray on the opening track 'Keep Up', a roller laced with subtle but deadly energy and funk. Deeper into the EP, 'Blips' is reminiscent of early Virus material with its heads-down vibe and razor-like stabs, 'Snake Style' is all about those big subby wobbles while 'Crawlway' is just pure bassline treacle oozing out of your speakers uncontrollably. What a link-up!
Review: Hello! DLR's Sofa Sound returns to the 'Sofa King Sick' series for a brand new chapter comprising 19 cuts from some of the brightest young minds and established talents across the jungle D&B spectrum. As always with the Sofa gang the vibe is warm, raw and very groove focused and the whole album is loaded with stark, dark contemporary treats. Highlights include the stern grit and drama of Submotive's 'Snowed In', the brazen futurism and moodiness of 'Uppin' The Ante' from Ill Truth, Defex and Bluejay and the siren-raising hype and soundsystem ruffage of 'Live Till 86' from ZeroZero. But that's just three of many many many killer tunes on here. Dig deep and sit comfortably!
Review: Incoming! DLR's Sofa Sound reveal yet another serious 'Sofa King Sick' VA compendium and these are the first two tracks to sample. DLR takes the lead with his distinctive baggy groove. Laidback but dark and tense at the same time; no one has that groove science nailed quite like DLR. Next up we have a complete switch-flipping piece from Sweetpea and Iris. A tense, almost psychedelically edged piece with its modulating bassline and twisted layers, 'Revolution Not Televised' is strong enough to cancel all your streaming subscriptions and getting out to experience real life again. Stay tuned for more.
Review: Boom! One of the most hotly discussed and fervently entered remix competitions in dnb in recent times, DLR presents the talented winners. All exciting new-gen acts, some a little more familiar than others, each of these interpretations hits a different sweet spot. Highlights include the technoid tension of Liohness's deep and intense remix, an addictively bouncy twist from Wingz and a massive cyborg funk rendition from man of the moment Molecular. Each one of them a winner. Sound as many pounds.
Review: One of drum & bass' premiere rolling kinds, DLR is back on his own Sofa Sound imprint exploring the contours of 174 with a furious feeling of experimentalism only created in the depths of his audio laboratory. The title track is an atmospheric masterpiece in dancefloor focused sound design, with rippling arrays of bouncing bass nodes that slam through the air in perfect choreography, the dancing partner to DLR's dastardly ambitions. 'Sufferation' is possibly the evilest on the EP, a twisted fluctuation of sound that carves a cavern through the frequency range with palpable hatred and anger; a truly scary piece of production. This EP is honestly unbelievable, and cements once more why DLR has the reputation that he does.
Review: This compilation arrives with a rich heritage of V Recordings compilations behind it, and Planet V has for a number of years been the flagship series for Bryan Gee's label. Edition four comes to a whopping 73 tracks and includes a mix as well, and all the familiar V faces are present, from Alibi to Paul t & Edward Oberon. All of the tunes have already seen the light of day in a previous form, and Disrupta and Duskee's 'Deep Thoughts' is one of the standouts, as Disrupta lays down a minimal yet funky beat for Duskee to rap lyrical over, something he does with serious presence. New gun SL8r makes several appearances, including on the excellent 'What U Need', which bounces along in a synthscape of serious depth and texture, its funky nodes nodding to the beat of a vintage blend. Crossover outfit Think Tonk also shine with 'Tom & Heavy', an offering unique in its stepping, breaksy percussion and one which oozes soulful class. There are dozens more to have a gander at, so take your pick.
Review: Does it get more legendary than DLR and Break? Not really, to be honest, and the pair have honed their rough yet precise, energetic dancefloor sound over a decade plus of hard work. DLR's Sofa Sound label has carved out its stylistic niche with aplomb since it was launched and this single is bang on the money, with the man himself dropping a single that's just as good as you'd expect. Break features on the a-side - 'Hit The Target'- which layers deeply satisfying rolling percussion over a choppy, jump-up infused bassline which oozes character and funk, an extremely hard balance to pull off and one that's been perfected here. They've also managed to incorporate the sounds of the German Stuka dive bomber from WW2, the instantly recognisable siren from which injects that extra element of aggression and fear. The b-side is even more venomous, with a spiralling bassline that twists in the knife with every turn, angled in its sharp edges and moody in its attitude. Unbelievable, Geoff.
Review: Break's Another Way album set the bar once more, as his albums always do, and now we're in the throes of its long-awaited remix project. The first single is courtesy of Workforce and Skeptical, two of the hottest producers in the game, who have both remixed Edge of Time and City Slickers respectively. The former has been spaced up from its original raw self into something much more celestial, more synthetic. It's still organic sounding but now packs much more of a punch. Skeptical has done what he does best and rolled out the original across a techy canvas of monotony and sheer grit, his penchant for simplicity shining through in spectacular fashion. Unreal.
Review: The man, the myth, the sofa-loving animal; DLR dives deep into 2020 with two corkers on Doc Scott's 31. "Banana Bread" is every bit as tasty as its name suggests. There's an old school house vibe to the rising chords and string line as it builds slowly towards to the ruffneck scrappy bassline on the drop. "Busy" is an equally addictive affair. Once again the intro fools you ahead of the twist; dreamy, deep and skippy, no one expects the dark, techno-like groove when it finally kicks in. Go bananas.
Review: DLR is taking a break from his recently exclusive dwelling at Sofa Sound to come up with this, the One More Record EP on C.I.A, a three-track jungle EP which sees the Bristolian step over onto the breaksy side of things for the first time in quite a while. Label bosses Total Science step in on the first track, 'Spluurge, which packs rave-piano influences and a tightly bound knot of central percussion that drives the whole thing forward. Title track 'One More Record' is another highlight, with a slightly stripped back approach that seeks to impress, not overwhelm, a tactic that works wonders here. Top release.
Review: Coming in hot on DLR's Sofa Sound, the duo of the moment that is Ill Truth, fresh off the back of their Flexout EP, are landing with a proper stomper. Combining the Sofa Sound mantra of hard hitting, funky beats with their own tendency for low-frequency oscillation, Jay & Haden have smashed this one out the part. The title track features DLR & Gusto and is excellent, but it's on track three 'The Syndicate' that the release hits its peak, as riotous percussion murders its way through bars of pure energy to hit its optimum conclusion. No doubt this one will be getting played a lot across the airwaves.
Review: DLR is having an absolute tear this year, and Sofa Sound seems like it's certain to be one fo the genre-defining labels of the next several years. His own productions are the bedrock of its success and he's back on his own imprint with this delicious single, the A-side of which features Hybris. 'Terminal Madness' is glitchy, precise and futuristic with a stuttering drum pattern, whilst the flip is classic, rolling and murky DLR - a torn, ripping bassline and crispy drums. Unreal.
Review: Signal, DLR and Abis is an absolutely vicious combination that blends sparse rolling funk and frenetic neurofunk, with fantastic results. This might be the techiest release so far on DLR's Sofa Sound label and we're loving it, with both cuts packing a mix of penetrating synth lines underpinned by pulsating low frequency action. 'Artworld' is the heavier of the two but it doesn't feel overproduced, instead it feels clean, powerful and incredibly precise with everything exactly where it should be. 'Deeper Understanding' rests more on DLR's stylistic base, with one of the best second drops we've heard in ages. The Sofa strikes again...
DJ Chap & C.A.B.L.E. - "Be With Me" - (4:25) 176 BPM
Murdock - "Raw Power Moves" - (5:14) 174 BPM
DJ Andy - "Acid Reflux" - (4:33) 174 BPM
Chromatic - "Footprint" - (4:58) 174 BPM
Need For Mirrors - "Go Easy" - (5:23) 174 BPM
Peshay - "Nitro" - (6:43) 175 BPM
DLR - "Dafunk" - (5:55) 175 BPM
Bailey - "Computer Life" - (5:10) 174 BPM
Simplification - "Therapy" - (5:18) 172 BPM
Alibi - "Machine Head" - (5:36) 174 BPM
Nymfo - "Warrior" - (3:49) 170 BPM
DJ Limited - "Love Is Blind" - (4:12) 58 BPM
Jumpin Jack Frost - "Chronicles" (continuous DJ mix) - (1:08:09) 178 BPM
Review: Chronic is a sub-label of V Recordings that's specifically for rolling, rapid and rough tracks, the ones that are too naughty for the main label yet too good to throw out. Jumping Jack Frost as curated this latest compilation for Chronic and it's simply too good, with a wicked mix of vibes. From the snarling funk of Philth's 'Sanctuary', the wobbling energy of 'My Flava' by Command Strange or the rough jungle on Bailey's 'Computer Life', this LP injects the old-school vibe into new-school clarity. Arguably the stand-out though is DLR's 'Dafunk, a combination of stuttering drums and upbeat samples wrapped up in typical DLR-esque fashion.
Review: We're pleased to bringing you this pack of drum driven weight as the epic trio of DLR, Hydro and WAR who combine courtesy of Sofa Sound for a bass heavy showdown. The first of the two tracks involved is a certified roller by the name of 'Not Too Late'. This one is packed to the brim with lethal electronic synth expanses and drum designs. On the flip, the pressure doesn't let up as 'Trick' strips the compositional styles back into a super groovy bag of creativity, with original synthetic sounds flying left right and centre. Excellent work!
Review: One of the most respected producers in the game, Bristol-based DLR joins the new label community with his own signature brand. With a distinctive imagery complementing his singular, snub-nosed signature, this launch release is a perfect statement of intent; "Ghostfish" worms with rasping bassline menace that refuses to quit in a way you might have expected to hear from Die around the late 90s. "Don't Make Sense" takes us down a more twisted path with rising FX and a twisted bass tones and drums so well chiselled you could save a layer of skin of your face just by reading this description. Sofa so good, right?
Review: Dubplate damage: Dispatch let rip with another killer exclusive bounty featuring three of its most talented artists. DLR & Script's "This Is Bristol" echoes with the city's rich jungle heritage as jazzy motifs, cosmic textures and glacial drums fuse full circle in the darkest-yet-dreamiest way possible. Script appears on "Burnside VIP" too as one half of Scar with Survival as their earliest collaborative release, "Burnside" gets a ruthless interrogation and a dank night in the choky. Banged up.