Review: In the dubstep halls of fame, there really are few people who can be held to such high acclaim as Kromestar. The London based musical pioneer has put together over a decade of celebrated releases spanning from soulful to downright dirt. This latest LP comes alongside the sounds of Danny Scrilla as the pair explore the expanse of emotive electronic music. The LP moves fluidly from the slower 4x4 sounds of 'Aurora' and the soundscape magnificence of 'Glare' into the more classic dubstep sounds of 'Glacial' and 'Saturns Ring'. Overall this project showcases just how creative and intuitive electronic music can be when the soul is poured into it!
Review: Now if we are being honest, there are very few producers that can say they have truly stood the test of time to the same level that Kromestar has, who through a constantly evolving production style and variation in alias has stayed on top of the game for over 10 years. This latest release with Nebula Music is a perfect example of that growth, as 'Gravity' lunges to the front, packed with dark, gritty synthesizer rolls and high energy rhythms. On the flip, we are then gifted the super alien sounding structures and bass warbles of 'First Kind', a super spacey creation drawing dubwise influences and using them with great results.
Review: A pristine four piece EP here from Kromestar and Jay 5ive, with each track tickling a different dubstep style. "Clearly Distorted" wins ironic title of the week award as it's crisp and sonically immaculate. Stripped back to just a tribal rhythm, it's also rather infectious. Adding a warm contrast, "Try Harder" is much more full-bodied soulful affair. Laced with guitars and dreamy synths, if there was such a thing as beachstep, this would be it. "Mind Pattern" is much more dancefloor oriented. Drama drenched halfstep with a sizzling bed of bass, this will raise each and every hair on your dancefloor's neck. Finally we hit the jazz-flecked "Words". Soft, subtle and sexy; it shows off this duo's musical range with panache.
Review: Two legends, one legendary label, what more could you ask for from a dubstep release? We are therefore thrilled to see a top draw link up between veterans: Kromestar and N-Type on the ever ready Wheel & Deal. The pair first join forces on the electrifying bass tones and sharp drum punches of 'Bad Trip', a gnarly roller, destined to duppy the dance. On the flip, we jump into the more experimental, system-infused subs of 'Rolling Skies', that couple Kromestar's classic unpredictable percussive movements with evil soundscaping to round this one off in style.
Review: Now here is a legendary link up if ever we saw one, as Wheel & Deal founder and legendary dubstep figure: N-Type teams up with the untouchable consistency of Kromestar for two tracks of pure heat! First of all, we dive into the stunning melodic presence and general harmony of 'Nu Era Dub', which combines starlit synthesizer patterns with a grizzly underbelly to cook up an absolute heater. On the flip, the horns come into play as we dive into 'Mutants', another futuristic ball of melodic goodness, slapping together soulful saxophone riffs with high energy drum licks and vibrant pad textures for an instant classic. What a pairing!
Review: While Hotflush may have mutated into many different forms in recent years, most would still link Scuba's label to the heady days of experimentation that fuelled dubstep's emergence. This compilation hones in on the time when wider influences were seeping into the genre with thrilling results, from Elemental's rough drum break machinations to the seminal Vex'd remix of Toasty's "The Knowledge". Elsewhere Loefah's masterful wobble on his remix of Search And Destroy is still unparalleled while Walsh & Kromestar and Jazzsteppa brought the lighter, roots influenced vibes. As a document of dubstep in full bloom, it's a worthwhile reminder for those who were there, and a valuable insight for those who weren't.
Review: As January nears its bitter end, it seems this the time to release mega compilation albums. AEI, the company behind Get Darker, UKF and D&B Arena unveil their next project: Get Darker Presents: This Is Dubstep 2012. And what an album it is. Bringing in all the flavours of contemporary dubstep, it succeeds in providing a sweeping panorama of an increasingly fractionalized scene. From the deeper sounds of Author, VIVEK, Kryptic Minds, Icicle & Distance and Phaeleh, through material from scene pioneers such as Horsepower Productions, Skream and Benga, to the more aggressive sounds of Gemini, Flux Pavillion, 16 Bit and Nero, it's all covered. A brilliant "who's who" of dubstep in 2012 - highly recommended.