Review: 1Forty set up here to continue their exceptional run during throughout 2018 by bringing together an exciting collection of artists for the second edition of their 'Funky & Garage' season. Having been previously premiered on the new Threethousand website, we see Killjoy and Smokey 'Bubblin B' lead the way with the super groovy 'Voices In My Head' alongside Shantie and the old school pulse rolls of 'Where's Larry'. We also get gifted a breaksy funky fusion as 9TRANE and Arridim team up on 'Plazma', whilst Cardinal Sound round off an awesome selection with 'Ayy', a carnival special set to turn any dance to a bruckout.
Review: We really hope everyone out there is enjoying this new wave of UKG as much as we are here at Juno Download. The sunshine flavours are extremely prominent at the moment, especially within this wonderful new release from Matt Jam Lamont and Echelon, who deliver a fabulous four track selection to the newly launched Undagrnd Freqz imprint. With these two featuring on every track, we are also given four guest features, the first of which comes from Aki on the incredibly vibrant sub rolls and vocal slices of 'Every Step'. This is followed by the wonderful Shosh getting involved on the more mellow moogy bass rolls of 'Let U Know' before Yemi arrives with a bag of melodic punch with his inputs to 'Treat Ting Me'. Finally, the ever-ready Smokey Bubblin' B arrives with a typically colourful sack of energy, providing the perfect touches to round us off in style!
Review: If there is one thing that the 1Forty team know how to do well, it's assemble a well balanced compilation project. This latest addition to their 'Funky & Garage' series, kicks off with an absolute belter from Murder He Wrote entitled 'Honey Riddim', which features funky flavours and a hard hitting vocal appearance from Snowy. Following this, Killjoy continues with the funky theme with some hard hitting rhythmic movements on 'Disturbance', before Smokey Bubblin' B injects a lashing of garage flavour into proceedings with the stripped back design of 'Brock Out'. Finally, the uplifting arrangements and chord progressions of ''Do Me Right' from Wolfe puts the finishing touches on a great body of work.
Review: The one they called Lockt has done it again with another impeccable compiled genre compilation for the 1Forty imprint as they welcome seven top quality names across four bubbling originals within the fifth edition of the Funky & Garage compilation series. First up, garage heavyweights Sammy Virji & Smokey Bubblin' B combine for 'Santorini', a smooth bubbler, perfect for the BBQ season, followed by the incredibly catchy 'Clouds', which sees Lyrical Strally and Dakota Sixx link up with Higgo for another UKG roller. We then take a dive into the funky side of the EP as PZP firstly unveils a nostalgic bop with 'Undergrowth', combining urgent strings with highly energetic drum lines, before Tyrant calls an end to proceedings with the sweeping vocal lines and marching percussion of 'Piffment'. Lovely work!
Review: UK Garage heavyweight Smokey Bubblin' B returns with a darkened demeanour on this brand new single entitled 'The Dread'. From the kick off we are treated to sharp drum work and rhythmic prowess, soon descending into metallic synth lead liberty, coupled up with some expertly layered vocal chops and expanding percussive elements. This one is for the eyes down dances as waves of classical distorted subs are let loose!
Review: Ol' Bubbler returns to gully ground zero and revisits his game-changing, writ-flicking production that landed this time last year and asked us all to present our selector licence. Adding a rising progression to the notes and more of a warped breakdown, the VIP hits with the right amount of subtlety so it doesn't lose any of the original's character. The unavoidable Leda Stray joins the fray with a 4/4 UK funky style twist completely subverts the vibe and takes it to even murkier territories. The message remains the same: get your licences out for the lads!
Review: Don't be fooled by the title... "Turbo" ain't no white knuckle ride through the thrills and spills of the electronic jungle, but rather a toxic, sludgy bass stepper where less is blatantly more. Such a vibe from so few elements, this is why Ol' Smokey is rated as one of the best in the new garage game. As always with the Bubbler, Mind Of A Dragon is never far away. Here he really does engage the nitro with a much aggier stepping sesh. Buckle up badboy.
Review: Often heard on Flex FM, Smokey Bubblin' B is a true stepper - always producing tracks that keep them vintage flavours alive. Here he drops "Daffy' which is almost like an old skool DJ tool, in that it's simply four minutes of beautifully crafted warm and deep 2-step loops. There's no big tune, just excellent headnodding vibes. His production pal Mind Of A Dragon also steps up to the table to present his rework, which, with its scattershot UKG beats and quirky organ stabs, is a livelier affair altogether. Rude sounds in rude health.
Vintage (Mind Of A Dragon VIP mix) - (7:23) 130 BPM
Review: New Movement member Mind Of A Dragon returns to close compadre Smokey's LPR launch release with a brand new VIP. Where the original majestically chugged with chop-slapping 4x4s and organs, this version mischievously whips and necksnaps with tightrope two-steps and eerier tones. With a sense-blurring organ jitter on the fills, everything about this VIP is next level. Future vintage bizz.
Review: Flex FM's regular hot stepper Smokey Bubblin' B keeps it real. Here he sees one of his white labels get digitized for the masses and boy aren't we lucky - the vinyl will have surely sold out by now. "Vintage" takes its cue from the good old days of the 90s UKG scene: cut up organ riffs, sharp and fresh speedy garage beats and druggy vocal wafts. Doctor Nick also rocks up, smacking on the rubber gloves to perform some augmentation, turning in a smoother, leaner body in the process.
Review: Well, when we saw this title land in the store we were as surprised as anyone to see that Four40 Records, one of the most active and exciting UK bass labels across the full breadth of 2020 has just turned 10 years old. This is a pretty outstanding achievement, for a label that is still at the forefront of it's sound to this very day. The compilation of course features some of the biggest releases from across the breadth of Four40's incredible catalogue of content, from the likes of Hybrid Theory, I Killed Kenny, Pavv, Limita and more, condensing ten years of musical progression into one extended tape. We also get to hear a bag of exciting new exclusives from the newer breed of the Four40 roster, including music from The Phat Controlla, Blakk Habit, Lucas Maverick, Gemi, Badger, Patrick Kane, Yozhi, George IV and more. What an incredible way to round off the year!
Pete Graham, Ill Phill & Chris Lorenzo - "I Love You So" - (5:51) 127 BPM
Smokey Bubblib B - "Oi Oi" (mixed & compiled By Smokey Bubblin B) - (58:49) 133 BPM
Review: We thought it was going to be the case that Four40 kicked up another storm before the year was out, and we have been proven right as we jump into this top notch compilation project, primarily assembled by the UKG legend that is Smokey Bubblin B. We can see this one's quality just by perusing the tracklist, as we see top names such as Mistakay, Kastle, Mind Of A Dragon, Royal Flush and more all make their way onto the project. It in fact covers such a wide range of garage music it is difficult to define simply, from the minimal, skippy designs of Perception's 'You Make', to the more futuristic bass instrumentation and design of Tuff Culture's 'Carbon', with Doctor Nick's inspired remix of 'Mind Slip' by SMOAD being a particular stand out.