Review: Trex is one of the most talented artists to emerge in the past couple of years and Mac 2 is where it all began for him, with the release of his sensational debut album High Time on Randall's label. He's back with his next full-length outing on the imprint and it's more rough, gritty D&B that's grounded in the bare necessities: tough drums, rollicking basslines and subtle energies. Title tune 'Society' sums this up excellently, with a sample laden intro that nonchalantly rolls out into a minimalist yet still full-on rendition of dancefloor wizardry. Watch out for the second drop - the other tunes aren't far behind.
Review: It's that time of year again! The scene's longest-standing platform Drum&BassArena step up with their annual flagship album and once again it's a fitting salute to all corners, all shades and all styles of the rich, wide scene. 60 tracks deep comprising absolute bangers and bliss-outs from the likes of Chase & Status, Noisia & Phace, K-Motionz, Rockwell, DJ Hybrid, GLXY and Seba, it's also home to exclusives from Kyrist, Brookes Brothers, Bou & Simula, Kanina, Kove and A.M.C & Turno. From jungle to jump-up, liquid to dancefloor and complete with three killer mixes for life when you're not practicing your double/triple/quadruple drops, Drum&BassArena continue to celebrate the widest possible scene.
Review: Too much Tinder swiping making your fingers sweaty? Too much binge watching making your brain turn to mush? Too much work at the computer making you a dull boy or girl? Then you need "Screen Time", a new four track health warning from the unfailing skills of rising artist Trex. Fresh from his appearance on Sofa Sound (and before that Dreamers, Mac 2 and Dispatch), Trex makes his debut on Audioporn with four more trademark dark funk damagers all of which warn us of excessive screen exposure by pulling us away from our black mirrors and back onto the decks. Highlights include the big wavey riff on the title track, the flabby bassline and wild west horn on "How Things Are" and the dubby jungle bubbles of "Days Are Numbered". Screen if you wanna go faster.
Review: Getting you to more places than the Docklands Light Railway ever could, DLR takes his Sofa around the world and stops off at the homes and studios of some of the most exciting new generation artists. Every direction you check its severe roller situation as each participant step up with their finest. Highlights include the outlandish grizzles of Submarine & Scepticz's "Shingoki", the hair raising wriggles and flabby funk on Ill Truth on "Catch A Break", the infectious steppy late 90s buzzes of bossman DLR and Script's "El Mosquito" and the lush jazzy flurries of Trex's "Falling Down"... but that's just scratching the surface, the whole Sofa king thing is immense.
Zere/Magnafide & Gabriel Habit - "Mindfulness" - (5:36) 173 BPM
Trex - "Conundrum" - (5:43) 172 BPM
Criteria - "Night Dash" - (4:31) 173 BPM
Trex - "Tabasco" - (5:42) 174 BPM
Cybin & Trex - "Tall Order" - (5:20) 172 BPM
Review: Trust in Trust Audio.... Trex & Quest's imprint looks back over their first 10 releases and cherry picks some of the many highlights over the last two years to bring everyone up to speed. If you know anything about Trex's rolling gold or the labels' underground spirit, you'll already know how on point these cuts are. The big airy breezes of Zere's "Mindfulness", the spicy stank of Trex's "Tabasco" and that devilish infectious rattle and pranged out alien whirrs and slurs on Cybin & Trex's "Tall Order" are just some of the heavyweight highlights right here. Trust us; when Trust say best bits, they mean it...
Review: Trust Audio's 9th release is courtesy of Jaybee & Freeze, Trex and Latent Notion, so suffice to say it's good. Jaybee & Freeze have come out with one of the naughtiest tunes you're going to hear this year, a dystopic blend of other worldly groans and snapping drums. Imagine if Serum, Enei and Randall had a kid and it started making tunes- yeah, like that. Trex recently released an absolutely superb album over on Mac V and he's back on top form with 'Electric Jungle', a wobbling mixture of bass tendrils and percussion precision, all wrapped up nicely in a convincing, jungle package. It's subtle yet still damaging. Latent Notion continues on the jungle tip with 'Taper' and this tune is all about the drums - they're raw, ravaging and really, really good. It's classic jungle vibes and a perfect way to round out an especially solid EP from Trust Audio.
Sentierum - "Breathe Me" (feat Naima) - (5:17) 172 BPM
Crimson & Ncamargo - "Flow" - (7:22) 172 BPM
Legal - "Pour Amour" - (4:28) 175 BPM
Neve & Crimson - "Let Me Groove You" - (5:36) 174 BPM
Phog - "Memories" - (4:35) 170 BPM
Lao Wai - "Who's Fooling" - (5:13) 172 BPM
Soul Beat Runna - "Get Loose" - (4:12) 170 BPM
CGRECO - "Massive" - (4:36) 160 BPM
Enjoy - "Deactivate N" - (6:03) 57 BPM
Lizard - "Easy Nuff" - (5:38) 165 BPM
Johnatan Thomas - "Ease" - (5:21) 170 BPM
Lyndon Jarr - "Lightweight" - (4:57) 160 BPM
Review: So, this is one well packed present to say the least as The Dreamers Recordings gather up their full strength for another exceptional compilation, featuring the likes of Sentierum, Krispy, Frame, HLZ, Lizard and more, who all combine for a stripped back jungle shelldown. The full project is packed with quality from start to finish, with immediate standouts being Lyndon Jarr's emotional roller in 'Lightweight' and the sharpened drum processing of 'Who's Falling' from Lao Wai. A special shout out also has to go to Yoofee on 'Glume', which is stuffed with cool harmonies and spicy electronic pads.
Review: Another successful album graduate of Randall's Mac II academy, Trex levels up into LP mode with this superb debut long'un. The title track "High Times" gives nothing away as its dubby sways ripple and weave in the intro before Trex throws us to the mercy of his rolling gold. The hurricane grit of "One & All", the slinky trouser-dropping subs of "Real World", the introverted vocal soul and woozy horns of "Try", the haunted Commixian staccato and poignancy of "Father" are among many other highlights on this highly accomplished debut.
Review: Trust in trust! Trex and Quest's imprint hits the soul hard once again with three more authentic rolling damagers. First up is Trex and bonafide US don Jaybee with a worm-like wriggler that will sit so well in any mix you can imagine. John Rolodex follows with a harder hitting piece of late 90s style damagement by way of a riff that can slam for days while Cybin returns from his coffee break with a beautiful piece of rave-inspired work. All emotional pads and big cymbal-slapping breaks, this concludes an EP that can only be filed under 'classically trained jungle at its finest.'
Review: Consistently adding spice to our sets since he emerged on Ingredients in 2011, Trex comes correct with the fittingly-titled "Tabasco". A waspy, buzzy bass-tickled jam with rugged drums and a 3am Randall vibe stamped all over it, it sets the scene for two more exceptional floor remedies... The spine-melting synths, trippy textures and burped-out bass of "Gonna Get Up" and the slightly more understated growls and crystalline drums of "Murphy's Law". Trust in Trex. Trust in Trust.
Review: It's a Manchester thing: Nian Dub crash-land back on Dawn Raid's Hocus Pocus with a clutch of powerful tech-laced hurters. "Histories" whirls and punches like a late 90s Headz joint, "Farsight XR-20" is all about the breaks with a madcap Paradox feel laced throughout while "Conquer Dem" takes us right back to the Timeless Records era with some stunningly spliced drums. Trex joins the fray with a twisted remix of 2016's "Templar" for good measure. Welcome to the future...
Review: At just one a year old, London's Trust Audio is still in it's infancy as an imprint, but the tracks being put out here, have a distinct wisdom and understanding. First up is label head Trex who brings us some darkness with Turncoat, a warping, echoing sub is the main sound here, adorned with itchy sound effects and shuffling drums. 'Tunnel Bass' has the twisted, paranoid feel of dnb's early day's, very distinct and very different layers of bass make up this haunting beauty, out favourite being the understated low rumble. Finishing the EP off in smooth, soulful style is Criteria's 'Night Dash' a lulling, soft drop of liquid with gorgeously muffled vocals, heart-wrenching piano touches and a sub so warm it feels like a hug.
Review: The don Randall continues to smash things to "Pieces".... 16 tracks of serious rolled-out dark groove soul, it's nothing but heads down grit and uncompromised creativity with every track playing the consummate role of lead player; T>I's soul-shaking hip-twister "All I Do", Benny L's epic groaning yes-fest "Dr No", Vapour's sci-fi drama stepper "Looking Back", Trex's cosmic alien lullaby "Short Story" are just some of the highlights as we roll deep to the very end as Seba blesses the collection with a superlative re-touch on Randall, Goldie and Dego's seminal, scene-shaping bomb from 93 "The R". Randall... Still doin' it after all these years. Essential for all drum & bass heads.
Review: Trex and Quest's Trust Audio is becoming most trustworthy with every release. Now on their third outing they're bringing more kindred spirits into the fold with the fittingly titled "Tribes" EP. First up we have a straight-up LA vibe on the springy spacefunk soul of "Mindfulness" while fellow LA upstart Jaybee adds a little grime and bullish momentum to Trex's "Loco". Finally Trex closes the show with the percussion-heavy shamanistic shaker "Spirits" that sounds like a cross between Bungle and Skeppy. Cosmic.
Review: One of the dirtiest jewels in Mac 2's crown, Trex returns after adventures on Lockdown and Director's Cut with four absolutely stinking slabs of underground rawness; "Raptor" growls just as its name suggests while "Treatment" rolls out with a rough, dangerous edge that's highly reminiscent of Grooverider's Prototype output back in the day. Next up we charge head-first into "Romany's Song", a twisted piece of croaky jungle where the breaks switch and flicker like power plant and the bass squelches like a sewage plant while "Orison" brings us to a poignant close with more cosmic, dreamy layers majestically coating the precision rolling groove. Seriously masterful: Trex needs full attention now more than ever.
Review: Premium strength D&B from long-time London bubbler Trex. Last spotted on Randall's ever-reliant Mac 2 just over a year ago, he makes up for lost time with four rugged, chiselled jaw rollers. "Soul For Sale" balances vocal harmonic textures, twinkling arpeggios and a short sweet vocal sample with a simple-but-effective depth charge bassline, "Easton" is all about the jazzy jump-up, "Never See" ploughs with a Moving Fusion-style bounce while "Harlem Nights" strips the elements back for us to properly zoom into every nuance of the bulbous elastic bass he's gradually made his signature. Five star fire.
Review: Hot off Randall's Mac 2 label, Pieces is a ludicrous collection of behemoth tunes found, remixed or simply well-placed in no particular order. Why? Because he's good to us like that. Featuring a stellar line-up of OGs and freshly hooked-up newcomers, this is 18 tracks of pure drum and bass energy ready to make a mess of your cochlea. Special mentions for the DRamatic remix of Lenni Dee Ice's "We Are IE" and Trex's massive stomper "Sudden Impact" which should currently be tearing up the dancefloor in your nearest darkened warehouse with a soundsystem. Instant purchase.
Review: V Recordings sister label Chronic steps up to give us volume 2 of their Rollers series, featuring 16 exclusive tracks from the freshest talent and the most exciting names currently holding down the underground scene. The label was reborn in 2013 with the mantra of presenting the world with no frills dance floor Drum and Bass and judging from this latest offering they certainly seem to be fulfilling their mission. From the rolling jungle sounds of Bladerunner's epic "Lock Off VIP" to the distorted growls of Command Strange's "Riots" if you are looking to get the dance floor bouncing, then Chronic have you covered.
Trex & Ella Jones & Eljay - "Dark Skies" - (5:40) 173 BPM
Wagz & LJ High - "Bad Habits" - (6:00) 174 BPM
Review: Hailing from London, Trex & Eljay feature vocals by Ella Jones on their stunning offering "Dark Skies". The track builds up with a sinister vibe and synths that bring a touch of acid to the party. The tear up bass after the drop comes in unexpected but more than welcome, making sure all dancefloors will be illuminated. Next up, Coventry/Sheffield based Wagz & LJ High bring "Bad Habits" to the table. A powerful roller with fast paced breaks that wink to some of the relentless jungle rhythms from back in the days, it adds a waspy bassline and a sweeping melody to the mix to create an instant classic. Get involved!