Review: Brawlin Beatz are one of the most prolific jump-up labels around. We regularly feature their releases and they almost always smash it out of the park, this time being no different. Access All Areas is a fiery EP, featuring Jack The Ripper, Raptcha, J-Select and more, that epitomizes the type of jump-up, but also slightly different flavours as well, that, in more ways than one, has defined D&B over the past couple of years - no-nonsense, uncompromising and proudly nonchalant about what you think. It's just pure attitude, dancefloor- based music at its best and music that simply does what it wants, there's no pretentiousness or image-orientated concerns - it's just D&B. Big, big tunes.
Review: This release honestly doesn't mess around. It carries a serious sense of potency despite its clear lack of pretentious sophistication, because D&B of this type simply isn't about sophistication, it's about making something so filthy the audience won't even understand what hit them. Everyone on this release has certainly accomplished that here, I mean just have a listen to the rippling sines, percussive naughtiness and bassline badassery that is 'Bus Fi Dem', a beautifully spacious tune that still manages to make you feel like you've been attacked by a dog. This is a crazy release from start to finish.
Review: Raptcha doesn't mess around on this one, and it starts with 'Pinface'. Sparse and empty in all the right places yet full of life, this tune drops down from spruced up drum hits into gratingly gritty death synths, their verocity juxtaposed off percussive cleanliness. 'Dystopia' takes a steppier turn, a Benny L-esque track with another perfectly clean arrangement, low-frequency diversity and tic-tac hi-hats combining with style all the way through. Things get weightier on 'Armed Response' due to a heavy-hitting percussive line and a creative bassline that keeps you on your toes. 'Recognition' smacks of recent Jubei cut 'The Saboteur' with its old-school, Metalheadz vibe, before switching into simply banging jump-up - music that gives you the finger without showing off about it. This is a big EP.
Review: Previously spotted on Dark Arts, the rising Wigan warrior Raptcha returns on the brand new Sub-Cautious imprint. Flexing a very distinctive, minimal steppy sound (think somewhere between Skeppy and QZB) both "Rebellion" and "Kingslayer" spit with a similar forked tongue; clicks, claps, pneumatic kicks and eerie alien textures, while the former celebrates space, the latter focuses on pace. Both kill it. Capture the Raptcha!
Review: Hyrdrated Audio have clearly decided that they're going to grab 2019 by the horns and do everything they can to make this year the year that their imprint makes it. You can tell the extent of their determination from the precision with which they've curated this various artists compilation and the mix of vibes and quality is top notch. The opening tune from Metal Work says it all, a rolling grater of chopped-up bass synths that'll pace out its competitors. A favourite of ours is Skeng by Raptcha, another lovely rolling number that flips your expectations on its head with a flow of creativity - big tune. Make sure to check out the full comp - wicked stuff.
Review: Northern scene legend Adam Wigglesworth sadly passed away on April 3. This is how his friends responded... By compiling one of the biggest tribute albums drum & bass has ever seen. Just look at the amount of talent on here: Pyxis, Euphonique, Nvrsoft, No Concept, Exile, Euphonique, Dawn Raid and so many more artists have contribute to this 45 track album of which all proceeds go to Adam's family. From the blazing bass riff of Sappo's late 90s style neck snapper "Hannibal" to Exile's turbine bass growler "Symbiosis" via Sl8r's jazzy, almost Detroit style vibes on "The Mill" and various bits from Wiggo himself, this is a heartfelt salute from the entire scene to a man who'll be sorely missed.