Review: Honkey Phonk founder Jayl Funk outta Germany brings his cards to the table with this Four Aces EP, turning to disco as an inspiration for the most part with a sweet touch of samba in "Together". With a rocksteady groove and blaxploitation funk backing the horns, vocals and extra piano rolls of "Feel The Heat", it's the filtered strings of life and roller disco decadence of "Something" that accompanies the '80s-pop elements, spaced-out vocoders, and undeniable dancefloor vibe of "Fantastic Sunshine". Four of a kind.
Review: What an incredible link up this one is as the king of crunch, known to the world as Bonobo, links up with T.E.E.D for a delightful two track experiment, doused in euphoric energy and production class throughout. We begin with 'Heartbreak', a summer-time breakbeat epic, perfect for the late-night BBQ setting as big room vocal leads sit atop of pulsating chord lines and super groovy breaks for a proper party-starting vibe. On the flip, '6000' alongside Outlier takes a slightly slower path, focussing primarily on acidic filtration and classy 4x4 drum beats, adding some real contrast to the A-side. This is a top quality link up to say the least and we can't wait to hear more from the two outfits in unison!
Review: Next up from the Breaks 'N' Pieces team, Skeleton King arrives for the third volume of their self-titled release series, bringing us six spicy new breakbeat rollers. We kick off with the booming sub stabs and big room vocal leads of 'Lockdown Eases', with the unusual percussive melodies and breathy vocal textures of 'I'll Be There' and groovy UKG riffs of 'Connection' following closely. Next, breakbeat as a genre gets a whole 2020 revamp as the glitchy sampling of 'Water Tap Metal Bowl' rolls into play, followed by both the clunking drum pulses of 'Kept It Raw' and lounge-like garage chord harmonics of 'Waiting For It To Be Over', which rounds off this top quality project with a perfect finale.
Review: Matt Edwards departs from the script for his latest Radio Slave material. Taking influence from old school hardcore and a cut and paste production approach, on "Stay Out.." he delivers twitchy, good-time break beats that are full of hip-hop and soulful vocal samples. It's quite a departure for the creator of linear techno tracks like "Grindhouse" and "Another Club". On "Wait A Minute", Edwards returns to the techno realm; while still containing a repetitive vocal sample that intones the track's title, the rattling percussion, tough kicks and driving rhythm all come together to form a deadly effective big room techno track.
Review: A less is more approach from the post-mixdown mind of the venerable Jan Schulte, aka Wolf Muller, operating here under his Bufiman alias! Schulte first debuted the project via Versatile Records back in 2015 and with this three-track maxi he delivers a stripped back, bonus mixdown of the Albumsi LP Dekmantel released earlier this year. Described as a release for world peace and dance music for frogs, this follow up is largely inspired by a sleeping Dutch classic called Jive Rhythm Trax, with Bufiman turning in some downbeat, slo-mo rave vibes in "Under Control Now' - serious warehouse heat - to the solidly warped tropical tones and percussive drum machine mainframes of "Apo-Calypso". Find the EP's ultimate rhythm number in "Hoolock Rock". Bufiman goes Drumsi.
Review: It's time to jump onto the sample pad and cause some serious madness as Urban Shakedown sees Aphrodite join the party for a vibrant four track expanse. We begin with the title track 'Do It Now!', a super choppy rinse out, combining nostalgic breakbeat manoeuvres with booming subs for excellent results! Next, 'There Is No Other' takes a more lofi approach with a smooth low end and fuzzy drum textures, before 'Assassinator' flips the script with some carnival ready whistle-work layered into more pounding drum designs. Finally, we dive down an acidic alley as 'Quasar' fuses moogy synth warbles with scattered breakbeat lines to round us off in style!
Review: Funkwise is the studio alias of Bali-dwelling British DJ/producer Adam Wise. With over a decade's experience behind the decks, he made the move into production in 2019, and here he returns with a three-tracker for the Cheeks label. Up first is 'Late', a funk-fuelled deep houser with a big, fat squelchy bassline at its heart. That's followed by 'Danger Danger', another mid-paced affair which blends funk, disco and house influences, and which sports a jaunty, jazzy lil' keys riff and some fine space disco stabs. Completing the EP is the Jive Talk Remix of 'Late', which takes us into full-on early 80s electrofunk nostalgia mode.
Review: The Denham Audio team have been in incredible form of late, dropping a tonne of heavyweight releases with the latest in that run being this potent three track selection on the fabulous Sneaker Social Club. Their unique approach to future-breaks is made very clear right from the off as 'Top Buzz' delivers a vibrant shake up of percussive precision and overpowering sub pressure, before the more choppy slicing of 'Rubadub' gives us a more heads down, subs up experiment. Finally, to finish off we see Borai get involved with the party on 'Pocari Sweat', a euphoric breakbeat masterclass, sampling heavily reverberated chord lines for that dash of nostalgia we all love.
Review: Now we most certainly have stumbled upon a real gem with this one as WDDS lands on the fabulous Hectare Discs Recordings for a weighty new two track drop, exploring the more technical side of breakbeat creation. We begin with a look at the title track 'Get Into', a super punchy collection of sliced up breakbeat expressions and cloud-like chord progressions, making this an almost post-jungle style creation. On the flip, 'Lies From Diefeffel', continues along a similar vibe but with a much more packed out sense of texture, layering numerous pad instruments and floaty soundscapes into the background of the piece with magnificent results!
Review: Putting out all matter of house, techno, rave and bassline wares since 2015, Shall Not Fade is home to the likes of Mall Grab, Rick Wade and Earth Trax to Big Mizz! The label now gives rise to Adelphi Music Factory, a house duo outta Sheffield inspired this time by old school rave, slowed up hardcore, twisted jungle and two step rhythms. Add some Detroit techno and you're met with Joy & Fantasy, a four-track EP recreating modern Hacienda vibes in "Area 39" to some slamming chord driven house in "The Comedor". UK touches abound in the driving, crowd pleasing "Cuba' (tip!) alongside the pumping, dubbed out and club-ready "Jura". Adelphi Hit Factory
Review: A breakers banquet sounds like quite a messy affair - all those head spinning moves sending plates of food flying in all directions. Cris Crucial's Flawless EP thankfully fails to make a mess. Instead he delivers and unapologetically retro riot of late-80s, early-90s hip house jams that are all about the party. Highlights include the big beat scratch-a-thon "Anything Funky", the laid-back gangster funk of "Big Crucial Thing" and the 60s funk-sampling instrumental "Trouble Bucket".
Review: Chest-pounding, banana-munching party bizzle from Russian newcomer Electrogorilla. "If You Really Like" is a widescreen swinger with rich instrumentation reminiscent of Ronson's Version but remixed by Skeewiff. Dig deeper for Ugly Duckling style backpack hip-hop beats on "What You Rockin For" and "All Get Down" before climaxing with the more uptempo deep swing step science of "Ain't That Funky". Delicious.
Review: Lashings of Latvian party pounding right here... Having developed a reputation for carving up a repertoire of detailed bootlegs, Arteo goes legit with this fizzy four tracker. "LetAss Party" is full of big beat twists and turns. Think Wiseguys on steroids and a team of award winning life coaches. "Everywhere I go" is a heavier, more club-focused jam with a wiggly metallic bassline and a super-tight sample on the breakdown. "Nobody Else" does the mid-range bass jitterbug in a way so sassy it could make Featurecast blush while BBP label boss Badboe brings the finale fire with a slinky, squelchy take on "Time & Place". Essential party business for the summer and beyond.
Review: Introducing Mr.Doris & D-Funk who make their debut on Bombstrikes. Known for sets and residencies at Glitterbox, Space and Pacha, the Ibiza-based Mr.Doris hooks up with Sydney selector D-Funk to wheel in a fusion of explosive soul, hip hop and house grooves with touches of vocal class from N'Fa Jones and Cantaloop. Led by suave and waxed lyrics sung with jazzy tropes alongside warm rhodes, broken beat rhythms and a hot chorus to boot, Aldo Vanucci turns up the horns in his remix while adding weight to the drums and that all-famous 'turn it up' vocal. Word.
Review: 2019 was a massive year for Pets Recordings with an impressive late run of releases from artists like Truncate, Mathias Kaden and Psychemagik. Belgian producer Beton opens the Polish label's 2020 account with this Dockside single, some three years after his debut opus via Pets Recordings back in 2017. Launching his own label Trek U that same year, with a release on Twin Turbo in 2018, too, Beton resurfaces with the sound of breaks and nostalgic rave in "Dockside", with its raw kick drum and liquid bass a super combi alongside playful synths and melodies. "Transmodal" on the flip looks towards old school trance and breaks again with touches of acid and cathedral atmospheres in this snare-heavy trip through the abyss.
Review: Delivering a fifth record for your stash of hardcore electro and house music wares in 2020 is DJ Haus, continuing to fly the flag high for Unknown To The Unknown during these modern times. Sending in three tracks here, a highlight almost without saying is the melodies and sweet tones of "Analog Chime" in combination with Haus' trademark gnarly acid progressions. "WiFi Network" adds a new spin to what a dial up modem might sound like in 2020 thrown amongst some splashes of Drexciyian electro while the title-track is a righteous piece of deep sea dwelling computer music. Dial up. Plug in. Download.
Review: Drop your pants, shake ya hair! Smoove's ode to thy has landed (RIP Phife Dawg). Replete with vocal snippets from both Dave's Letterman and Chappelle, to all matter of rappers, talk show hosts and MCs, Smoove's two-part A Quest Called Tribe EP cuts a stroll through the funk and sample-based pastures of instrumental hip hop and beatmaking. Acid jazz and mixtape progressions to boot!
Review: Four pristine, dub-flexed booty-busters from Southsea's sassiest soundbwoy Maars: highlights include a genuinely unique blend of Chali Tuna and Crooklyn over "Take Five", a wicked switch up with Outkast and Errol Dunkley on "Dub Jump", a skank-maxed rub of The Alkaholics on "Feelin Irie" and a super-tight mix of The Beatnuts and Barrington Levy on "Barrington Got Props". It might not be the summer anymore, but with this selection playing the sun will always be shining. Warm as toast.
Review: Wow, it's safe to say that Holding Hands have stumbled upon some gold with this one as Desert Sound Colony fuse the old with the new across four bad boy breakbeat originals. We kick off 'The Darker The Room The Bigger The Tune', a homage to both hardcore roots and futuristic pitch slicing and progression, before the shuffling drums and electrifying melodies of the title track 'Pulled Through The Wormhole' whirl into play. Next, the combination of punchy percussion and dreamy padlines of 'Echo Shaper' give us something a little bit different before 'The Gobbler' rounds us out in style, linking up choppy synth plucks with a moogy UKG bassline for a truly unique final run out.
Review: Next up from the Holding Hands team we see them unveil the second edition of their critically acclaimed 'Slow Jams' season, showcasing the most experimental breakbeat on the market. We begin with the genius of 'Breaka', who combines metallic, bouncy subs with junglist rhythms to create a real party starting anthem, followed by Guava's 'Outerbody Innerspace', an acidic experiment in groove. Next up, Lrds arrives with a lesson in drum processing and arrangement on the incredibly lively 'Quanda', before Dawn Razor delivers parts one and two of 'Be As One', an uber fusion between breaks, garage and techno, putting the finishing touches on an excellent selection.
Review: For this latest outing from the E-Beamz team, we see them welcome the combined powers of Denham Audio & Borai for a seriously heavy breakbeat adventure, kicking off with the relentless rhythms and scattered ditherings of 'Skrrrrt'. Next, we dive into the techier stylings of 'Oldboy', before the phasing synthesizer lines of 'Euphoria' and cloudy atmospheric pads of 'Intraleks' move into play. Finally, we engage with the shimmering chord movements and bouncy rhythmic layout of the title track 'Clouds Across The Stars', bringing a very well laid out EP full circle. Excellent work!
Review: We were thrilled to see Private Caller back at it once again as the return is made to Hardcore Energy, delivering a very exciting four track project in the process. The 2020 Lockdown mix of 'Helter Skelter' is why we find ourselves kicking off, as nostalgic rave chords and sweeping junglist basslines are let loose to run wild before the spacy pads and crunchy breakbeat murmurs of 'Backwards' arrive shortly after. Next up, the bouncy synthesizer melodies and shuffling drum lines of 'Bring That Back' give us another throwback punch, before rounding the project off on the incredibly acidic Fantazia mix of 'History In The Making', another rave-ready piece of breakbeat brilliance.