Review: Finally! Jungle are reminded of the true meaning of their name as Paul Woolford dusts off his Special Request gloves and gives the popular pop-funk troupe a rough-housing that's so savage they'll be in intensive care for years. Spacious skippy breakbeats, hooky detuned synths and an overall dark, misty timeless feel, drop this and you'll be "Busy Earnin'" lots of dancefloor kudos.
Review: Paul Woolford's first Special Request material since signing to XL, he's gone right back to the roots (roots which XL helped dig and plant themselves) with nine tracks of heady, sweaty rave evangelism. Labelled as three EPs in one, it's as good as 2013's debut album with every track tailored for the dancefloor. From the brain-melting warped bass and tension/release of the title track we dig deep into breakbeat science... "Amnesia" is the sound of 1991 when hardcore first found its feet, "Reset It" tips it cap to A Guy Called Gerald, "Damage" ups the ice factor with synths so cold they could make Randall shiver while "Take Me" and "Simulation" are both unfettered love letters to the earliest chapters of the Whistle Crew. We could go on, but we're pretty sure you know the score... Hardcore.
Review: If you like things harsh and jungley, packed full of amen sounds and couched in the audio aesthetic of grimy warehouses and early morning smoking area haze, this is the release for you. Courtesy of Special Request via the label R&S, Spectral Frequency takes you on a journey up and down the spectrum of dancefloor frequencies. The destination? Jungle city, and it's a rough town that finds beauty in its disorder. This track climbs and climbs, distorted breaks forming the bedrock of its acceleration, before crashing onto the waves of amens which form its main body. It's perfect for the dancefloor and a seriously atmospheric method of transport.
Review: Rightly so, Paul Woolford sees his Special Request project stamped and approved by R&S with this fully sick Spectral Frequency EP. Lifting the title-track from the Zero Fucks compilation Woolford released last year, this insane banger of experimental jungle comes backed by a sidewinding beatless version in "Inverse Frequency". The EP sees two new numbers in the bassline driven bliss of "No Other Way To Say It" and the uplifting arpeggios of "Family Doggo" that offers some respite in techno from the bonafide mad breaks of "Spectral Frequency". Undeniably good. Tip!
Special Request - "Codename Turbo Nutter" - (5:41) 85 BPM
Source Direct - "Vigilante" - (7:25) 113 BPM
J Majik - "The Lost Tribe" - (5:16) 162 BPM
Shackleton - "Drawn And Quartered" - (8:11) 136 BPM
Pinch & Trim - "That Wasn't It" - (2:45) 128 BPM
Daniel Avery - "Whilst We've Got Metal In Our Blood" - (4:02) 145 BPM
Mantra - "Embers" - (5:24) 127 BPM
B.Traits - "Mameya" - (6:08) 126 BPM
Groove Armada - "Wesley Nightshade" - (6:11) 118 BPM
Unkle - "Catch Me When I Fall" (Fabric Club mix) - (10:49) 115 BPM
Review: This second 20 Years Of Fabric compilation presents a new arranged selection of the defining network of artists that have come to call fabric home. Taking in deep and atmospheric loops from Groove Armada to the light and sprinkled chords of Call Super, the sound of the Farringdon trips through the live and acoustic percussions of Margaret Dygas, the devastating hardcore cuts of Special Request and pure strads of drum and bass by Source Direct and J Magick. More recent tracks include the epic classicalisms of B.Traits acid-flecked "Mameya" to the industrial and dubbed out techno from Marcel Dettmann and Imogen. And not to be overlooked of course are bonafide classics from Unkle, Shackleton, Cassy and Sascha with "Comet Chaser".
Review: Take a look down the tracklist of Fabric 20th anniversary release and you'll be met with a generation of artists that have helped shape the institution in all manner of ways, be it legendary DJ sets or residencies to previous releases to the FabricLive mix compilations and so on. Inside you'll find a who's who of genre influencers, be they Margaret Dygas and Marcel Dettmann with their European minimal and techno connection, to the more left field and UK-centralised club sounds from Pinch & Trim, Call Super and Special Request. Classics have been leafed from Source Direct, UNKLE and Shackleton, with B.Traits, Maya Jane Coles and Daniel Avery rankable alongside Sascha, Nina Kraviz and Groove Armada in filling a most influential time capsule of club music and DJ culture history.
Review: The annual Toolroom statement of intent for Ibiza gets off to a raucous start with the good time house Camelphat remix of Fatboy Slim's "Right Here, Right Now". Despite this, the compilation isn't all about peak time pleasure. It features deeper nuggets like the sun-kissed deep techno remix of Bicep's "Opal" by Four Tet and the hypnotic break beat techno Kolsch remix of Nic Fanciulli's "Saying". However, Ibiza 2018 doesn't depart too far from the script, and label boss Mark Knight's "We Get High From the Music" is classic Toolroom - a tough tribal workout descending into filtered, vocal-heavy nirvana. That said, they deserve plaudits for keeping a close eye on new artists and the niggling acid and chimes of Peggy Gou's "It Makes You Forget" is testament to that.