Review: French D&B finesse: Vandal update their "All Cities" series with another sweet set of international groove luxury. Soul:Motion leads the charge with a roll-out of liquid twinkles. He's instantly contrasted and complemented by Joakuim who lays down a dangerously sharp stepper that recalls the most formative days of proto D&B. Digging deeper and we strike amen gold with Tim Reaper's "My Own Flying Island". Rolling at a slower 160, it's an emphatic headnod to the legacy left by Moving Shadow and the drum-sample science of artists like Paradox. Ending this spotless collection on a trippy jazzy flex, Austria's Protone and Roygreen give us "Laser Cats"; a sexy, spaced-out groove that's powered by the wonkiest triplet you'll ever hear, it will instantly whisk your floor to a faraway dreamlike state where both lasers and cats couldn't be further from your mind if they tried.
Review: Despite the eyebrow-raising name, Tim Reaper ain't scary he's actually a bloke from London called Ed. Here he awakes two tracks for our aural pleasure "All Right" is deep and warm DnB, speedy beats but full and smooth low end caresses, and "Innerspace", a tougher joint featuring relentless amen breaks and soulful breaks. It also features the not inconsiderable talents of Parallel so it's an all-round winner then!
Review: Guangzhou Underground is a collective of DJs, promoters and a record label all based in Guangdong province, China. If you didn't' know about the rising bass scene in the East, you'd better keep up because there are some serious sounds being created there. The East West Bass Test compilation features 11 exclusive tracks from producers representing US, UK, Canada, China and Macau. Highlights include the scattershot electro beats and plucked melodies of "verity" by Merouac, the moody percussive roller "Vagabond" by KOROSTYLE and the woofer busting DnB of "Freq U" by Stranjah.
Review: Expect some serious, straight up dancefloor-driven D&B from this compilation on Criminal. Kicking off with the sounds of Lighterman in "History", this one is full of yearning strings, winding bass and crashing drums. Slowly we move through "Da Lion" and "Innervisions" with its jungle influence and punchy breaks, to Ricky Force's "Konono Riddim" which is an uneasy little number with quirky SFX. Tactical Aspect's "Grey Skies" is another highlight before the fun and funky "Hear Dis" and finally, concluding cut, "Light Speed". All in all, a fun selection.