Review: It would be fair to say that Studio K7 has pulled off something of a coup in getting Kenny Dixon Jr. to agree to compile and mix the latest installment in the long-running DJ Kicks series. It is, somewhat remarkably, the legendary Detroiter's first commercially available mix set. This triple-vinyl edition features a whopping 19 cuts - all in unmixed form - from the 30 track mix. Musically, it's a blazed, jazzy, soulful and groovy as you'd expect, and contains a mixture of downtempo beats, nu-jazz and hazy house cuts from the likes of Flying Lotus, Dopehead, Peter Digital Orchestra, Nightmares On Wax, Soulful Session and Lady Alma.
Review: With a reputation like that of Slime's, when they present their idea of garage future, it tends to be pretty definitive. Here they've done it again with a second installment of Future Sound Of Garage 2. There are 28 new joints here, all bursting with futuristic fizz. Highlights include the robo 2-step opener "Dreams" by Cup & String, the nasty bass and speedy beats of Conducta's "Be Strong" and the warm, washing synth waves of melodic bliss-popper "Goin In" by David Eliza. The future's safe in the hands of Slime!
Review: It's been a year since Slime's second instalment of their leading compilation Future Sound Of Garage series. Now the follow-up has finally arrived boasting 28 examples of what they to be consider music of the future. There are too many to name, but highlights include the ethereal and sensual future-step opener "Return" by Monoblue, the seductive, delicate chimes of the shimmering "Ever Feel" by Just Breathe, the sparse and raw 2-step of Pavv's "Let It Go" and even the uber commercial Ibiza-friendly anthem "Stone" by Project X is a (guilty) pleasure.
Review: Inspired by the lack of pigeonholing in today's bassline scene, the much respected Low Pitched have rustled up their first album, Low Pitched Presents: Resonate, which aims to capture this aforementioned musical diversity. They haven't held back either, packing a whopping 23 new jams on this album, truly laying claim to having all bases covered. Highlights include the juddering low-end juggernaut "Patterns" by Clexx, the crisp, floating in space 2-stepper "Rowdy" and the truly next level, otherworldly rhythms of "Swedger" by Sketchman. A snapshot of a scene in full bloom.
Review: If FooR were to put together a studio album, where else could it be other than their legendary home imprint of YosH. As an album 'Friends Of FooR' is a collection of high profile collaborations from the bass house giants, including both production features and high energy vocal additions. Our favourites include the swordplay duo with Endor, the skippy house textures of 'Bad Man' alongside Jay Robinson and Dekar artist' and of course the triple threat rinse out of 'Black Bandana' which features Killa P, Irah and Long Range.
Review: As always, it's a real pleasure to see the likes of Four40 hit back with yet another awesome compilation project. Over the years we have been treated to some absolute gems from these guys, a trend which continues as Kastle unveils his specially selected 'Get Right inside' compilation, complete with a full studio mix of the tracks involved. We look through the tracklisting on this one to find awesome pieces from the likes of Exit99, Opus, Duncan Powell and many more high profile names. For us the standouts of this project have to include the high energy collaboration between Jammz & Roska entitled 'Energy & Stamina', along with Witchdoctor's groovy spectacular in 'From The inside'.
Review: The information surrounding Mind Of A Dragon is still as imperceptible as ever, and this new EP for Slime adds to the mystery in a delightful way. Even the tunes, a harsh blend of garage, bass and nu-skool jungle, are dusty and covered in a layer of mystique that gets our appetites going good and proper. "Emotions" itself is a powerful garage stormer with a those inimitable r&b samples and accompanied by an intricate percussion flex, The stand-out moment for us, though, is surely "Not The Same" simply for its woozy, shape-shifting bass and forward-thinking beat arrangement. A winner.
Review: We thought it was going to be the case that Four40 kicked up another storm before the year was out, and we have been proven right as we jump into this top notch compilation project, primarily assembled by the UKG legend that is Smokey Bubblin B. We can see this one's quality just by perusing the tracklist, as we see top names such as Mistakay, Kastle, Mind Of A Dragon, Royal Flush and more all make their way onto the project. It in fact covers such a wide range of garage music it is difficult to define simply, from the minimal, skippy designs of Perception's 'You Make', to the more futuristic bass instrumentation and design of Tuff Culture's 'Carbon', with Doctor Nick's inspired remix of 'Mind Slip' by SMOAD being a particular stand out.