Review: Rewind to November 2019. No one knew what a covid was, fuel bills were a fraction of their current costs and Phibes released their album 'Unite'. Now, as we settle into this brave new world, the duo herald the era with a massive remix reload featuring the likes of Benny Page, Audiomission, Lockerz, Terrence & Phillip, Kleu, Crossy & Jappa and a whole tonne of VIPs from the lads themselves. Naturally the results are just as hair-raising and adrenaline-raising as seeing your new gas bill or two lines on your LFT. Highlights include the savage twist up of 'IDGAF' by Crossy & Jappa, Audiomission's grizzle-fuelled twist on 'Bombz', Phibes own massive techno twist on their 'Stronger' VIP and Benny Page absolutely tearing the place up with his take on 'Triger'. Come together.
Review: Tired of pondering string theory and the idea that there may be 10 or more dimensions to explore beyond the world? Then look no further as 2020 D&B heroes Phibes bring us back to the good old 'Third Dimension' with four 3D bangers of all shapes and sizes. Coming on strong via Born On Road, the title track and 'Diva' both rattle and shake with the bees-in-a-jar rifle buzzy bass the Phibes brothers have made their signature before 'Soundboy Killer' brings in some venomous turbine reese basses before 'Roads' drives us home on a vibesy rising bassline riff. Roads? Where we're going we definitely need them. We were born for them.
Review: Can we get a 'wicked?' Jungle Cakes continue to team up with some of the biggest donnies in the game with this latest Welcome To The Jungle collection. This time curated and fronted by the General himself, as you'd expect this is a full-on jungle assault that covers every single angle and every single era. 47 tracks and one killer mix, hosted and toasted by Levy himself, this is one of Jungle Cakes most comprehensive collections to date: From the foundation-setting, historic vibes of "Incredible" through to contemporary bangers from the likes of Kursiva, DJ Hybrid, Jam Thieves, Benny Page and all things in between, everyone involved has delivered something special. Massive.
Review: Brothers in bass and real life, Phibes follow up releases on Bomb Strikes, Jungle Cakes and their own self-titled label with this massive LP follow up to their debut album Change Of Late last year. 12 tracks in total, the collection delves deep into every corner of their sound, providing certified scuds for any hour of the dance you're asked to play. From the crafty balance of euphoric light and dank dark bass on "Let Me Go" to the out-and-out stinkage of the savage dancefloor-focused "I Don't Give A F**k", this is the sound of two artists who are fully off the leash and writing what the heck they like. Other massive highlights include the rudeboy riddim "Dub Service", the toxic bass and mid 2000s Playaz vibes of "Amadeus" and the gritty groans of "Bombz". Fire in the hole!
Review: Fun loving Party Breaks and Beats label Bomb Strikes serve up a retrospective collection curated by label bosses Mooqee and Beatvandals. With 31 full-length cuts plus a one-hour DJ mix, there's no faulting the VFM as we move through breaks, funk, hip-hop and the occasional gnarlier nugget. Standouts include Andy Cooper & The Allergies' rework of Run DMC's 'Mary Mary' and Beatvandals & A Skilz's 2007 cut 'Sunshine', which mashes up Roy Ayers and Indeep. But the one we keeping back to is Mooqee's 'Supacat Police' (2006), which makes devastating, ragga-fied use of chunks from a certain KRS-One classic that we won't insult your intelligence by naming!
Review: Phibes rose to prominence with his energetic remixes of popular tracks on Soundcloud, his jump-up influenced takes on pop culture making him a favourite of those who like their D&B playful and not too serious. That same ethos is now being transferred over onto his original productions and we're liking the results, with In Session 1 displaying his talent for big beats and bigger basses. 'Permission' smacks of his older stuff, with a well-known pop track heavily sampled in the intro before the tune flips into a bubbly banger. Cool stuff.
Review: Get 999 on speed dial; Phibes thumps down at Jungle Cakes HQ, he's happier than an arsonist with a tanker of petrol... And just as hot. "Started This Fire" fuses us the big groaning flavour of the day with a funkier Q&A-style second bassline and a pure backdraft breakdown that will singe every short and curly hair within a five mile radius of the dancefloor. "Turn It Up" is another emergency situation with much more of a heavier jungle / ravey edge thanks to with its breakbeats and a high voltage bassline. Phibesy.
Review: Calling all block rockers! Phibes is back with two absolutely party barnstormers; "Block Rockin'" does exactly what you'd hope it would do. Take a classic and bring it kicking and screaming into the modern 170 era with some pretty wily amenised drum twists. "Get The Fuck Up" follows suit with more under the counter reversionism. A straight up call to arms with a mammoth bassline to match, this is pure illness in the best possible way. Your dreams have now been fulfilled...
Review: Destination: Latvia. Bombstrikes welcome label regular Dubra to the stage to take selection duties for the third in their floor-firing Bass Funk mix series. Digging deep into the groove vaults, he's picked some outstanding timeless classics such as Krafty Kuts and Dyna's swaggering entrance theme "We Do This", Stickybuds' life-affirming glitch-slapper "Clap Your Hands" and A Skillz & Nick Thayer's body-slamming "Drop The Funk". Elsewhere we get our alien freak on with Opiuo, we get our heads knocked off by Dubra himself on "Keep It Going" and Punks favourite "You Don't" from Horger and Steve among many other straight up party-battering bass jams. 24 originals and a killer mix to boot, Bombstrikes are causing some serious damage with this collection. Strike while the dancefloor is hot yo!
Review: Phibes has a track record of repeatedly delivering merciless mayhem and this latest jam on the aptly named Bomb Strikes is no different. Each of the three new tracks featured here is produced to be loud and party demolishing. "Raw 2 The Floor" is bonkers, with a demented build-up and vintage Timbaland-style proto trap beats. "Ain't That Fresh" features the classic eponymous hip-hop sample (as made famous by Les Rhythmes Digitales) getting chopped up and sprinkled over an edgy breakbeat. Lastly "Come To Get Down" riffs off classic daisy age hip-hop - all funky drummer beats and that party vibes "Whooo, yeah!" sample.
Review: Aussie party label Adapted Records like to let the music do the talking, although the title of this here compilation, Glitch & Funk Vol 2, pretty much fills you in. Now what is inside is 11 tracks all crafted for the specific purpose of simply having fun. Mid paced opener "Smile" by Faux Fur, marries a steady breaky groove with hip flavours (plenty of scratching) and some vintage soul sounds and a smooth female vocal. Elsewhere we get electro swing with extra funk on "Bootleg Brass" by Stepcat and the blue-sky synthpop vibes of Bobby C Sound TV's "Europa".
Review: Phibes specialises in delivering no-nonsense floor filling party jams. His Ghetto Beats release from late last year undoubtedly soundtrack many a Christmas and New Year party. Well now it's Spring and he's decided its time for a follow up. Volume 2 has a hip-hop theme, beginning with opener "Gangstas N Honeys" where a classic Nas rap is set to a perky, tough big beat backing track. Vintage sounding brass is added to the crowd-pleasing formula on "Real Hip Hop", "Belong To You" mixes electro and 70s soul and things wrap up with the arms-in-the-air anthem "Getting Funky Round Here".
Review: It's been a while since Irish party slappers Dirty Dubster delivered a ragga package but here we find them making up for lost time with four rock steady heaters. No genre unturned, each cut reps ragga's broadest reaches: "Walk Like A Champ" swings low with a guttural dancehall feel, "Bangerz N' Goulash" tips a nod at a Diplo classic over a salubrious digidub groove while "Follow Me" shreds up on a high energy D&B flex. For most, though, the key cut will be KayPod's Marley-mashing "Could You Be Push Forward". Could this be loved? Yes siree.
Review: Some DJs are arty farty and some are more meat 'n' potatoes. Phibes falls firmly in the latter camp - always delivering lowest common denominator party tunes. That's either a good thing or a bad thing depending on if you're the in the camp of the former or latter. There's not denying though that Phibes' recipe for cheeky big beats, funky samples and sprinklings of hip-house raps will set most dancefloors alight.
Review: Breakbeat specialists Scour turn in the fifth chapter of their Scoured Cream series and as you'd expect, it's all beats and instantly seductive basslines. Sitting somewhere between breaks and electro, these tracks are guaranteed to get any party on its way, especially if it involves university dormitories or student unions! Our tops picks have to be Phibes' "Needles" for thos soulful vocal samples, "Rockin' Cold" by Rollomatik and Cockney Nutjob's "Firepower" for the undeniable comic effect of that sample...you'll know what we mean!
Review: Every now and then, in between artist EPs, Tru Funk knock out a mini compilation of bootlegs where the original artists get spliced together like Frankenstein's monsters of funk. Highlights of this five tracker include Tom Showtime's fusing of Khia's famously filthy My Neck, My Back with some of Snoops' Gangsta Luv on "Gangsta Lick", Phibe's totally eccentric party smasher "Dig My Bounce" (which mixes Missy Elliot with No Diggity) and Spox's electro funk monster "Roses" which beefs up Haywood's '80s classic of the same name.
Review: Breakbeat Paradise Recordings certainly live up to their names with this second edition of Bring Back The Funk. Opening proceedings is Funktomas with a stuttering big room mega wobble edit of "Let Me Clear My Throat", while J Sound's is "On & ON" is R&B-poppy with phat licks of bass included. Phibes provides something that's on a EDM tip, while Conte Crux is in a hip hop sampling kind of mood. Ad'N'Kuts delivers some sleazy pop, breaks and nu-funk, leaving Mr Bristow to complete this package with a downtempo but groovy as hell "Raise Yo Hands".