Review: Ever ahead the game, Tom Rockwell has been self-isolating long before COVID-19 and brave sounds like these are the results of such rituals. His first productions of the new decade, they take off where last summer's "Level / Block" left us: "Vent" is a brisk sandpaper jam, all droney and groany, while the title track itself is one of the most wholesome, uplifting and sci-fi tunes he's done since his Shogun days. Elsewhere we find him getting cabin fever with man-of-the-moment Jack Workforce on the string pinging "Ditch" before closing - like all good craftsmen - with a full-on power tool of a tune "Drill". Ugly stuff. Stay indoors, stay safe, stay isolated.
Review: It's that time of year again! The scene's longest-standing platform Drum&BassArena step up with their annual flagship album and once again it's a fitting salute to all corners, all shades and all styles of the rich, wide scene. 60 tracks deep comprising absolute bangers and bliss-outs from the likes of Chase & Status, Noisia & Phace, K-Motionz, Rockwell, DJ Hybrid, GLXY and Seba, it's also home to exclusives from Kyrist, Brookes Brothers, Bou & Simula, Kanina, Kove and A.M.C & Turno. From jungle to jump-up, liquid to dancefloor and complete with three killer mixes for life when you're not practicing your double/triple/quadruple drops, Drum&BassArena continue to celebrate the widest possible scene.
Review: We're up to Part 3 of the Neosignal X EP series, a set of original tracks that aim to celebrate 10 years of the label doing some of the dirtiest bits with the dirtiest artists in the game. Phace, Mefjus, Black Sun Empire - you get the picture. All of the EPs so far have tended to have one standout tune and this release is no different. Proxima has been handed the keys to the legendary 'MPD' and he's absolutely smashed it, retaining the melody and grunge of the original but flipping it into a fresh, modernised stepper. Properly good stuff from the Dutch crew.
Review: Maximum Obsolete Medium: Rockwell returns to his burgeoning label with a bunch of pals and sacks full of fire. Antipodean arsonists The Upbeats join the fray first for the hair-scorching sizzler "Level". All rasping, high voltage sizzles and singes, if this doesn't have your dancefloor on their knees begging for mercy you're in the wrong line of work. Similar exclamations can be made about "Block" as Rockers heads to Germany for a grizzly, off-beat raffish tet-a-tet with Phace. Up another level...