Review: Paradox Music man Alaska founded the "100% ambient jungle" label Arctic Music in 2006, joining forces with Swedish producer Seba for the imprint's second release. 11 years on the duo have reunited for another trip into deep and spacey D&B territory. On the A-side you'll find "Sandpoint", an intergalactic roller that wraps echoing vocal snippets and fluid electronics around a fuzzy bassline and punchy jungle riddims. The beanbag and incense-friendly party continues on the flip, where "Be With You" sees them reach sparkling, starburst synthesizer motifs, even dreamier vocal snippets, a whisper of jazz sax and some typically bustling breakbeats. It feels like a genuine blast from the past, and that's a good thing; certainly, few make music this magical any more.
Review: Swedish sound controller Seba has dented 2015 with continuous and consistent releases, re-issues and remixes. This could quite easily be his best yet, though; "Jungle Music" is an ode to the era he first made his name. Dark, twisted and dangerous; there are many jungle tributes around right now but this is definitely one of the most authentic. "Cloudless" flips the switch with rolling soul style. Comprising warm humming subs, floaty trumpets and star-gazing synths, it plays the consummate counter to the devilish lead banger. Classic Seba.
Review: Have you ever known a Fourfit EP to be bad? No, neither have we. Following the likes of Adred, Calibre and LSB, Seba continues Soul:R's age-old traditional of innovation and forward-thinking aceness with his take on the label's four track EP series: "Hide The Tears" is the emotional heart-string snapper of the set, "Dark Horse" showcases Seba's absurd drumfunk science, "Fade To Red" takes the halftime approach and gives it a toxic twist while "Desire" closes the show on another emotional flex as swooning chords counterbalance hoover-style stabs in style. Seba on Soul:R... As you'd expect, it's a winning combination.
Review: Rewind: It's 2008, D&B is enjoying one of its many golden era (the rise of Sigma, Brookes Brothers, Chase & Status and many more modern day heavy hitters) and Dutch don Seba consolidates a decade of 12" scuds with his debut album. A heady jungle homage with traces of jazz and deep tech, it was one of the year's most critical D&B documents. Now fully remastered, it's just as impeccable and densely textured now as it was seven years ago: from the blissful brush strokes of "Silicone" to the snarling Headz-hurting "Special Ops" by way of the Bukemesque majesty that is "Forever", this remastered re-release is perfectly timed for D&B's current era... Which may well be noted as golden in years to come.
Nothing Can Replace (feat Kirsty Hawkshaw - John B remix) - (5:07) 175 BPM
Too Much Too Soon (feat Little Jinder - Blu Mar Ten remix) - (4:48) 175 BPM
Review: With summer ready to explode all over our schedules, this remix package couldn't have come at a better time. First up is John B's manic stepping beat that rips up Kirsty Hawkshaw's gorgeous lyrics in "Nothing Can Replace". Fresh and fast-paced, it's a true floor filler. On the other side, champions of intelligent, beautiful drum and bass Blu Mar Ten slot their ebullient basslines perfectly into "Too Much Too Soon", moving the rhythm with smooth rolling snare taps - with Little Jinder's unique voice piercing through washes of sound.
Review: Scene legend Seba is back on scene staple Spearhead Records, bringing with him four slices of music that are all effortlessly Seba. 'She Looks Real' is celestial and spacey, floating synths peppered over a steppy drum line that has a gritty, old school feel; the progression is constant and driving - what an opener. The steppy vibe carries on in 'Close To You', as the percussion creeps in as the tune evolves turning this one into a real listener, simplicity reigning supreme the whole way through. The pace is turned up a notch in 'Time Will Tell', featuring more old-school progression in the drum line, there's no cheap thrills or quick fixes and you have to really appreciate the genuine quality of the music. 'Why Can't This End' is the finisher, soaring vocals end things on a high as subtle synth rises and swirling background pads come together to build a rich texture of rolling liquid funk. This release takes things back to basics and honestly shouldn't be missed.
Review: When you hear the name Seba, you want to be blown away by technical agility and a swathe of electronically-charged emotion. "Inside Yourself" does not disappoint, taking dark, old school sounds to another level thanks to a ton of techno inspiration and relentless hypnotic beats. It's progressive in both style and form as it rolls on and on, taking shape slowly, unfurling into a monster of a late-night anthem. "Berberian Sound" takes tribal inspired drums and adds stabs of colour through synths and atmospherics, creating a nightmarish soundscape of twisting, writhing bass. Insomnia never sounded so good.
Review: One of drum & bass's most enduring craftsmen, Seba returns to his own Secret Operations stable with two more instant vintages. Flexing his distinctive drum dynamics from the off, "Stasis" is all about the rhythm intricacies as the drums play wildly over soft dreamy beds of synths and faraway spacy vocals. "Inner World" follows on a darker flex with some wonderfully warped bass tones, fickle drum switches and cold, crispy Headz style aesthetics.
Review: It's been a long time since Swedish pioneer Seba was last spotted on Metalheadz - over seven years in fact - but here we find him making up for lost time with four pristine pieces of drumcraft. "Machine" is a restrained, dreamy soul-stirrer that sees him teaming up with long-time vocal sparring partner Robert Manos, "Node 46" is classic Seba - all layers and mysticism and a momentum that's crafted from pure dark magic while "The Unholy" fulfils its devilish title with outrageously demonic low end harmonies. "Unreal Adventures" closes the show on a real creeper flex where the track builds on every 16 in a spell-binding way that only Seba knows how. Essential as always.