Review: Noisia's Division operation deliver their very first multi-artist EP featuring far-out bass tests from the likes of Monuman (AKA northern D&B upstart Emperor), Signs, ARKTKT, Ponicz and JNTHN STEIN. Not a well-travelled road in sight; each act delivers something resoundingly fresh and exciting : Noisia & Ivy Lab get insanely lopsided, Monuman digs a filthy bass grave before lifting us to the heavens with evocative chords, Signs gets the motor running with an array of twisted engine samples while ARKTKT activates a spacey trap mode, all bouncy and gravity-free. Last but not least, Ponicz shreds up with a toxic instrumental hip-hop swag while JNTHN STEIN kidnaps a rainbow then pushes it down the stairs... In the same way Division push the envelope.
Review: Hot on the heels of their first V/A halftime/beats-based EP, Noisia's Division serves up another deliciously leftminded multi-artist EP. "Nomad" says it all; screwloose bass, haunted elements and an all-round alien vibe, Noisia and Mony/Poly have truly killed it. Other highlights include the screeched out craziness of Posij's "Grab The Cookies" and the rave breaks and garbled sample abuse Bleep Bloop's "Recombine". Seriously forward-thinking, let's hope these Division EPs continue for the foreseeable.
Review: France's Vandal Ltd are never limited to one genre or style, that's just not the way they operate. Instead, they like to experiment across all corners of the bass spectrum and, from tripped-out d&b to militant dubstep, they always seem to call the shots. This right here is the third instalment of the Grand Royal series, and the cast is clearly up for causing a bit of damage through the lower end of the hertz range. Our picks from the bunch are Signs' gnarly bass stepper "Bluntwraps", Hast's neo-grime escapade called "Badder Than Dem", and Stayhigh's closing tune "Don't Leave Me", a futuristic jungle bullet wrapped in an r&b flow. Another fine Vandal release.
Redeyes And Signs - "Only For A Moment" - (4:25) 170 BPM
Redeyes - "Stand Tall" - (3:47) 170 BPM
Redeyes - "For The Leaves" - (3:46) 172 BPM
Redeyes - "Only You" - (3:51) 170 BPM
Redeyes And Signs - "Only For A Moment" (dub) - (4:39) 170 BPM
Review: Following his crucial North Quarter opus "Blueprints", Toulouse OG Redeyes joins Doc Scott for this beautiful 31 outing. Instant tingles are triggered the second the humanised harmonies on "Only For A Moment" breeze in. A true emotional whirlwind, there's a touch of Intalex's influence coded deep into the spaciousness. Elsewhere "Stand Tall" is another subtle riser with strings that morph so gradually you won't even notice you're playing air violin, "For The Leaves" adds a touch of dusty jazz piano to the finger-clicking party while "Only You" brings us back down from the clouds with a sublime slice of molten soul. Layers.
Review: Coming through on the likes of Eatbrain, Methlab, Shogun and Vandal, it was only a matter of time before French firesmith Signs appeared on Division. He's brought out his gnarliest finery for the occasion, too, as we're flung and flipped chaotically amid the abyssal space between the futuristic halftime beats. From the warped atonal prang outs and slimy drums of "Strangers" to creeped out vocal manipulations and trippy block-knocking rhythm of "Paper Bag" via the sludgy robot march and broken glass shatters of "Purple Frog", Signs has cooked up something seriously sick right here. Time to go skinny dipping.
Review: You can do this the easy way or the hard way... Whether you untie your shoelaces or not, your shoes are going through the window the second "Unchained" drops. Signs has officially levelled up. Bringing up the rear are Friction and Karma with a walloping roller where the bassline takes a much more active role in the story than it would in a more typical liquid cut. "Turn To Nothing" is Ed.It at his finest; restrained, barbed and tooled up with a sharp sample. Finally North Base close the show with their most delicate track to date as "Unexplained" shimmers with Technimatic-level pianos. Don't even think about fetching your defenestrated footwear.
Review: Tronik Youth's London based tech house and nu-disco force Nein is back with a weighty 17-trackcompilation celebrating his current label roster and a love for more retro-inspired sounds. From the grinding electro-punk of Justine's "Infernale Cavale", to Freudenthal's dark synthpop epic "Bilderblast", there's plenty of stylistic range here. Highlights come thick and fast on Yes Means Nein, with the gutsy EBM groove of Tunnel Signs "Hellfire" and a remix of Emperor Machine's "Sisco Seeker" from label mainstay Rodion and Fabrizio Mammarella particularly standing out!
Total Science - "Infinite Pathways" - (6:53) 172 BPM
Break - "Emeralds" - (6:20) 172 BPM
Signs - "Unchained" - (5:34) 172 BPM
Friction & Karma - "No Return" - (5:05) 174 BPM
Ed:It - "Turn To Nothing" - (5:45) 174 BPM
North Base - "Unexplained" (feat Charlotte Haining) - (4:42) 173 BPM
Review: What a crazy trip it's been.... Four months ago Shogun commenced their 100th release celebrations with the start of a four-part series that's seen some of the label's finest releases and broadest scope in recent years. Now all 16 tracks are available in one package, ranging from the horn-hazed bliss of Friction & Karma's "No Return" to Phace's deep space synth tear-up "Mumbo Jumbo" by way of Technimatic's string-surged "Transference" and Ivy Lab's impeccable shake-up of SpectraSoul's "Glimpse", if you're uncertain on just how on-point Shogun are then this collection firmly states exactly where Friction's label is at... And where they're heading.