Review: Now we don't know what is in the water where Cartridge is living right now, but blimey! This new selection from him on the super-consistent Locus Sound imprint is yet another showcase into his dubstep-driven brilliance, kicking off with the sub-shattering low end and unpredictable drum manoeuvres of 'Iron Lung', before 'Two Of Us' combines fluttering melodic inputs with lethal bass growls. Next, 'Tek Time' unleashes a stunning soundscape of glitchy lead synth designs and haunting string jerks, before rounding the EP off in style with the crunchy bass exploits and groovy percussive marches of 'Brute'. Awesome work!
Review: As dubstep and bass music in general continues to expand worldwide, we are starting to see more and more experimental selections come together, with this fantastic 14 tracker from the Cosmic Vibrations crew being just what the doctor ordered. They deliver an hours worth of smooth introspective soundscaping, with the roster including top names such as: Biome, Congi, Occult, Ill Chill and more. The whole tracklisting just breathes originality, with our favourites including the stunning UKG designs of 'Eyes Down' from the fabulous link up of Bonobo and Andreya Triana, alongside 'Nothing', an impactful piece of stepper poetry, crafted between the wonderful Rider Shafique and the ever-ready Om Unit!
Review: So at this point in time, it's hard to imagine Alix Perez making a stale tune, as he lands here on the wonderful 1985 music for another twisted collection of heaters. We kick this one off with a look at the spooky overtones and warbling synthesizer growls of 'Ravana', before the shivering LFO designs and glitchy melodic plucks of 'Lifeline' stutter into play. Next, 'Post-Mortem' arrives with more lethal reese bass action driving the stripped back drumwork forward in a blaze of system energy, before rounding off with the catchy arpeggiator flexes of 'Ends' alongside Headland. What a project this is!
Review: There really does appear to be no stopping the onslaught of releases that Dalek One is delivering at the moment, with this latest six track adventure landing on the legendary Deep Dark & Dangerous imprint. We kick off with grizzly distortion and choppy drum textures of 'Sorcerous Behaviour' before the warbling LFO's and electronic synth pulses of 'Run And Hide' are let loose. Next, 'Casting Spells' a bitcrushed wobbly punch alongside chunky sub drives and minimal drum designs of 'What Go' and the alien synthesizer slaps of 'Tunnel Vision'. Finally, 'Roll Out' delivers a much more dub-influenced punch with an electronic twist to round off proceedings in style!
Review: The run that Duploc find themselves upon is pretty astonishing, with nothing but top quality releases landing in their catalogue. Their latest outing sees Coltcuts return for the fifth edition of the 'Dupplates' series, kicking off with the chiming melodic movements and hard hitting drums rops of 'You Said'. From here, we then move into 'My Dear', a serious sub-buster, driven by eastern instrumentation and powerful bass textures, combining with a serious punch. Next, it's on to the VIPs as we firstly check out the dramatic, drum heavy overhaul of 'The Vihaan', before finishing off with the super crunchy synth bass slaps and sharpened snare snaps of 'The Phantom' rework. Serious Dupplate business!
Review: It seems difficult to imagine anything stopping Dalek One's reign of supremacy across the more grizzly realms of dubstep, with his recent run of releases being nothing short of outstanding. He makes his return here alongside the 786 Recordings crew for a stomping selection, kicking off with the vibrant sub designs and glitchy leads of 'Echo Signal'. This is then followed up closely by the super techy bass designs and metallic percussion of 'Nobody Got My Style' which unleashes more groovy rhythmic instrumentation over the top of a lethal sub line. Finally, 'Binary' gets involved for the final showdown on 'Shackled' a grotty electronic roller, packed with gargantuan bassy flavours and minimal drum work. Fabulous!
Review: For this mighty selection, we see Mystic State land on the incredibly impressive Artikal Music imprint for another absolute shellout, this time consisting of two tasty solo pieces and two corking collaborations. The title track 'Tomahawk' makes the most of a twisted, eastern-sounding string line, pressed between moogy bass plucks and crispy percussive elements to match. Next up, the VIP mix of Hemisphere is unleashed, jam packed with neurotic bass twists and sharp drum patterns. We then move into the remixes, as the legendary J:Kenzo joins the party for the sub-heavy expressions of 'Competition', before JFO's additional input on 'Cuatro' wraps the EP up with some serious sauce.
Review: Now this sure is a tasty link up as we welcome the top quality combination stylings of both Numa Crew and Riko Dan, two veterans in their respective scenes, delivering banger after banger for years. The track itself takes the name 'Babylon' and is a certified rave-ready roller, driven by Numa Crew's incredibly crisp instrumental triplet structure, dripping in sub heavy sauce and bouncy clap energy. This base provides the perfect platform for Riko to unleash his lethal patois flows, making this one a must have for any 140 DJ!
Review: Following his entry appearance on the label's cracking Edition V/A a while back, Welsh deepsmith Cesco makes his full debut on Alix Perez's 1985 with four sterling stripped-back steppers. "Angry Waves" sets the pace. Pneumatic drums, clipped vocals and the groaniest bass you'll hear this side of quarantine, anger never sounded so good. Elsewhere "ABR" whips up graveyard feels, "Ping Pong" plays pocket billiards with your brain while "Chair Dub" brings home the bacon on a moody 140 tip. What a label debut. Keep Cesco on your radar.
Review: Within the constantly evolving expanse of the dubstep scene, consistency has become king, which is why labels such as FatKidOnFire have found themselves rising to the top of the mixture. Their latest project sees them invite the wonderful divisings of Ourman into action with four potent originals, kicking off with the unusual melodic twists and delicate drum designs of 'Out Here'. This is then chased up by the more haunting atmospheric pressures and gnarly sub-driven undertones of 'Phantom' before 'Nirdsong' deploys an array of tumbling percussive lines and eastern woodwind slaps to add a whole new dimension. The project then rounds off with the incredibly punchy composition of 'Lost Winds', combining more eastern melodies with minimalist percussive stabs and spacy structures. What an EP!
Review: We are absolutely loving what the team at Manuka are putting together far this year, with the label seemingly intent on exploring the swampier side of techno and dubstep. This latest selection Kahter definitely dives down that path as we explore the title track 'Metanoia', a sizzling metallic jamboree, stuffed full of unpredictable percussive lines and vibrant subs below. Next, 'Eostix' gives us a robotic throwback into stuttered synthesizer displays and breathy percussion. On remix duty, head honcho: Hypho steps up to unleash an 808-driven rethink of 'Metanoia', with Pluralist then slapping down some choppy rhythms within his computerized overhaul of 'Eostrix'
Review: Wow, when we saw this we couldn't quite believe it as the legendary Kryptic Minds unleash an unexpected gift, remastering two of their original classics with a bit of a 2020 paintjob. Firstly, we hear 'Badman' get the newschool treatment, a groundbreaking original that combined gut busting sub basses with a grizzly mid range LFO synth to send dances into frenzies around the world. Next, 'Distant' receives a similar makeover, with this one focussing much more on intricate drum delays, unpredictable vocal influxes and subtle sub warbles. Two absolute classics, made even greater than before, courtesy of Osiris Music UK.
Review: There is a certain level of quality we have come to expect when taking in new music from Iron Shirt Recordings, a level which they hit and surpass with this latest tasty number from Chikage. The title track 'Fall Of Light' greets us firstly with a spooky introductory soundscape, with luscious pads slowly descending into some grizzly UKG goodness. This is then chased up with the smooth textures of 'First Contact' along with Wreckage's minimal remix. Next, we encounter the crunchy percussive inputs and writhing bass designs of 'Sleep Paralysis' before the tempo leaps up across the gnarly halftime vibes of 'Duality Of Man'. Finally, the shimmering vocal influxes and sweeping pads of 'Half Moon' alongside the eerie rhythmic designs and bone-chilling high end of 'Last Stand' see the project out perfectly.
Review: Following on from an exceptional string of releases, we see the magnificent K-Lone land on Wisdom Teeth for a top quality LP project, showcasing just how forward thinking his sound is. The whole project is a masterclass in soundscaping and atmospheric processing, with a softened, almost meditative hypnosis running through the heart of the tracklisting. From the chiming melodies of 'Yelli' to the pleasing arpeggio expansions of 'Bluefin', it's just a fabulous listen. Although we would highly recommend taking this one in on long play, we would pick the constantly evolving percussive grooves of 'Cocoa' as our favourite for this one!
Review: Following on from the earlier release of the first edition of Skream's Unreleased Classics', Skreamizm now presents a very vibrant second volume, this time exploring his previously archived creations from between 2004 and 2006. Unlike the first volume, this selection sees the sound really take a turn towards that more classic dubstep approach, focussing more on halftime snare structures over bubbling, funky beats. We see Skream move through the weird and wonderful, from the quirky synth glitches and patois vocal samples of 'Hurt The Soundboy' to the slightly dissonant harmonies of 'BassTrapz' and jazzy arrangements of 'Live & Learn'. There's something for everyone in here as we ride through a fabulous chapter of UK music history.
Review: Oh boy.. Three of modern bass music's finest players collide for the first in a series of collaborative long players on Deep Medi. The results - as you'd expect just reading the line-up - speak for themselves. Every artist's signatures is coded deep into the collection; Kahn's unpredictability and robustness, Commodo's grit and funk and Gantz often unfathomable depths and eastern twangs are all present as we wriggle and writhe to the detuned harmonies of "Crystal Collect", get twisted on the tripped out drum dynamic of "Kibosh" and lose ourselves in the spacious jazz-minded drums of "Unmistakeable". Truly unique.
Review: The levels we have seen coming out of the Artikal Music imprint over the past few years have been nothing short of exceptional, with this latest two track masterpiece from Sabab being no exception. We begin with a dive into the swirling synthesizer whirlwinds and dizzying sub pulses of 'New Dawn' which combines eerie atmospherics with dubwise drums in perfect balance. On the flip, we take in 'Downshift', a much fuller creation, jam-packed with colourful arpeggiator tones and a constantly shifting bass-heavy soundscape, certain to dazzle dances up and down the country!
Review: Are there many better pleasures in the dubstep world than seeing a new Crucial Recordings drop? When we then see that Sleeper and Youngsta are back in collaboration, it becomes really hard to contain our excitement. We kick this one off with the jittery synthesizer pulls and spacious drum designs of 'Systematic Error', one hell of a title track and a perfect way to set the tone. Next up, the weighty sub smashes and eerie melodic moogs of 'Hello', followed closely the stunning harmonic structures and gnarly synthesizer grooves of 'Iridescence', which when coupled with subtle percussive rhythmic action provides us with the perfect outro. Lovely!
Review: Sentry Records has put together some serious releases over the last few years, showcasing the latest and greatest in dubstep and its surrounding genres. We are therefore introduced to and absolutely storming compilation here as we reel off bangers from the likes of dubstep legends such as Caspa, Truth, Sukh Knight, Youngsta and more. For us, the highlights of this incredible compilation are quite clear, kicking off with the stunning production of 'Judas' from Nomine, who brings forward his uniquely metallic sound design on mass. Another absolute heater we couldn't forget is the spooky yet satisfying 'Crocodile' from Dayzero, packed with wicked drum flavours and haunted overtones.
Review: The Mungos crew lay down a gorgeous naked beat and invite emerging Essex mic-man Charlie P to spread it with lyrical command. The result is a perfect slice of modern day dancehall dub that will charm every style of bass DJ thanks to its big warm subs, soft skanks and a slick-tongued mic command that lingers in your mind long after the track's finished. For something a little darker head for Kahn's remix: continuing his Midas touch, the Bristol don gives this an intricate, drum-heavy twist. Ruling.
Review: Next up from Joe Nice's legendary Gourmet Beats imprint, the steppers vibes remain strong as Bukkha arrives on the scene packing a scorching new original. As a composition 'Sekkle Tune' is a track designed to push any system to the maximum, boasting a pulsating sub-line combined with minimal drum arrangements and froggy delay inputs, shaking any room to pieces. We also get gifted a fabulous remix addition, as RDG makes an appearance, reworking the track into a less subtle stomper, packed with dizzying delay spikes and the occasional tooting horn.
Review: We have come to really look forward to Simply Deep releases, who again touchdown with an impressive selection here as they welcome the super experimental sounds of J-Shadow, one of the most unique producers working within the tech-grime hybrid bracket. Kicking off with the unpredictable rhythms of the title track 'Modulator', running through the spacey pad textures of 'Gene & Defect', the glistening percussion of 'Side-Step', the choppy snare slaps of 'Inflation' and haunting harmonic structures of 'Glaciers', this EP proves to be an expert showcasing in the science of sound. This one also comes complete with three top quality remix additions from the likes of 9TRANE, Jubley and Pro.Tone, making it one of the most unique packages of 2020 so far.
Review: Albion Collective have had an undeniably fire 2019, showcasing an array of exciting new artists through their highly respected label platform. They continue this energy as they invite in the spooky sounds of LSN for four tracks of pure power, kicking off with the scattered, unpredictable drum work and warbling electronic subs of 'I Don't Know What That Means'. The title track rolls into play next as 'Oscillator' combines hard hitting bass tones, shimmering Asian melodies and haunted female lead vocals for a tasty recipe, followed by 'Gone For Never', a lethal combo of violent bass slides between LSN & AxH. To round up, the choppy, hip-hop drum work of 'Rubberhands' provides the perfect contrasting finale!
Review: It's always a pleasure to see new music from the legendary Plastician, a producer whose place in UK underground's history books is beyond secured. It's clear that alongside numerous live streams he has been keeping himself busy in the studio as he unveils 10 scorching new originals within his 'Deep In The Drives' LP, courtesy of his beloved Terrorhythm. The tracklisting boasts everything from the emotive harmonic structures of 'Alone Time' to the more classic grimey switches of 'Gully' and 'Magma'. Plastician's versatility is his strongest attribute, which is what makes this project so powerful, with our favourites including the old school snare chops and shifting melodic sampling of 'Resolution', alongside 'Jackal Riddim', which reworks a classic grime melody into something completely new!
Review: Well, what a selection we have here as Strictly 140 drop one hell of a compilation project, featuring an array of dubstep heaters under the title of 'The Overseas'. Featuring nine absolute scorchers, this project sees the team showcase some of the hottest names in the 140 scene right now, including WZ, Dalek One, RDG, Gaze Ill, Pharama, Roklem, Sebalo and more. For us there are a couple of very clear standouts from this project, with Subtle Mind's stunning 'Subtle Mind' composition being one of them, alongside the twisted eastern string tones and pulsating subs of 'Nani' from Ourman!
Thanom X Aimerie - "Fasten Your Seatbelt" - (4:08) 140 BPM
Repulsion - "Safe Lock" - (4:35) 140 BPM
Ophi - "Reaver" - (3:55) 140 BPM
Review: The fantastic Sublimated Sounds are back with a top draw compilation, featuring 10 tracks from some of the most exciting new names across the dubstep expanse. The blend of styles is worked to perfection, from the riddim inspired synthy madness of 'Reaver' from Ophi, the neurotic growls of Thanom & Aimerie's 'Fasten Your Seatbelt' or the more subtle subs of 'Stealth' from Basiclee. Our highlights have to include the haunted rolling weight of 'Fuck Your Eyebrows' from Thromb and of course the distorted brilliance of Tetrah's 'Soul at Hazard'. A great collection ideal for any dubstep fanatic.
Review: If we are talking about legends of the UK underground, there really aren't many names that rank above Skream. A veteran of many sounds, we see him return to his roots with this latest selection to release some prized unreleased classics, spanning from 2002 to 2003. This is a must have selection for any serious steppers fan, with the project bleeding authenticity across the entire track listing, from the bubbly drum bounces and warped bass tones of 'Depth Charge' to the grimey synth textures of 'Disfunktional Minds' and high energy eskimo-inspired drum switches of 'Oh My Gosh'. It's one for dubstep historians, that sees Skream's earlier more grime-influenced productions finally land in the public domain.
Review: We are absolutely loving the direction that the legendary Alix Perez has been taking recently, driving his uniquely techy production style into the dubstep scene with fantastic results. This latest project on 1985 music is the perfect showcase of just how good it can be, kicking off with the eerie atmospheric sweeps and gnarly bass excursions of the title track 'Last Rites'. Next, the engulfing subs and classic vocal fx sampling of 'Deep Six' burst onto the scene before the stripped back bass tones and impactful reverberations of 'Spooked' touch down. The project is rounded off with a dive into 'Melodrama', a track teetering with emotive energy and rolling sub tones, driven by it's unique, Burial-like lead vocal line.
Review: If we were to rate project this in terms of consistency, it's a match made in heaven as the ever-ready Mr.K links up with one of 140's most prominent and respected label imprints: White Peach. This one kicks off with the swampy LFO movements and glittering drum dances of 'Red Handed' before the haunted atmospheric design and busy high percussion of 'Okoustik' quickly follows. Next, the sublime sub designs of 'Aro' run through like a steam train, making all in their path move, before the fluttering flute arrangements and heavily syncopated drum shuffles of 'So Vague' sees the project out with a bang.
Review: 2017 has been an incredible year for Zha's White Peach imprint, with a plethora of high profile releases hitting stores at regular intervals. The latest in this impeccable line comes from Bristol's own; Bengal Sound. The title track is a work of art, with heavily swung mysterious eastern sounding samples and rolling hi hats taking the lead. We move quickly from that to dubstep fueled artillery with '2 Worlds' which focusses on tremendously heavy sub frequencies and unpredictably skippy drum arrangements. The EP continues with the dubstep theme as we move onto the B-side with 'Silence Soundboy'. This one is pleasingly reminiscent of early DMZ releases, bringing the combination of subs and space out to play. Finally we wrap up with the haunting dub-infused arrangement of 'Pablo'. This one is ghastly, with plenty of percussive and melodic vibrancy lurking just below the swampy surface. This one is definitely another winner from the seemingly unstoppable White Peach brand!
Review: For us, White Peach really are one of the most impressive imprints doing it right about now, with a near flawless year of releases under their belt, they continue to push out music right down to the wire, with this latest drop from Taiko looking to be their final of 2019. This EP is a masterclass in 140BPM production, with the title track 'Miners' combining spooky, eastern string patterns with choppy drums and potent subs to kick us off with a storm, followed by more eerie melodic structures within 'Prism' and some seriously cool, almost wooden sounding percussion on 'One Of Us'. We finish off with the more gentle string plucks and lofi drumwork of 'Just Like We Used To Do' putting the final touches on an incredible year for the White Peach familiar.
Review: As ever with the now legendary Artikal Music imprint, we are gifted a fantastic four track selection, courtesy of the dubwise divisings of Sabab. We kick off with the title track 'Guidance', which perfectly combines classic rootsy vocals with dungeon-ready drum smacks and earthy subs for a real heavy hitter. The bass tones continue to play vital roles as the shimmering low-end of 'Youthman Dub' and more explosive synthesizer rays of 'Harmonic Dissonance' come next. Finally, all hell is let loose on the tearout bass instrumentation of 'Dutty Babylon' which sees the project span the full breadth of the dubstep banner.
Review: Los Angeles based deep dubstep imprint is back with local producer Ago, who offers us some more contemplative bass therapy from the darkside. First track "So Mi Seh" features delay drenched ragga samples over a deeply serious bassline and paranoid reefer atmospherics. Second track "That's What I Was Talking About In '96" gets a bit more fierce with its nostalgic, sampled dialogue soon giving way to a tough yet retrained beat assault and intense sub bass pulsations.
Review: To be honest, it's about time that Logan Sama had the space to compile his own series of mythical London club Fabric's, Fabriclive series. The grime DJ started his career back on the equally important Rinse FM back in 2002, and has been an important part of the club's development over the years that saw grime and dubstep blow up. At number 83 in the series, Sama drops a selection of tunes that are wholly representative of his DJ sets in Fabric's Room 1; the mix contains tunes by everyone from grime pioneer Wiley, to vocalist and producer JME, and a whole load of lesser known names that have kept the grime scene evolving. This is the real deal, there ain't not other like it around these days. Recommended.
Review: We are always excited to see a new offering from Innamind Recordings, who here invite the futuristic production stylings of DE-TU inside for two tracks of pure steppers power. We begin with a look at the eerie nature of 'Stay Low', which applies a dark and demonic vocal line with spooky atmospheric pad layers and sharp drum switches with fantastic results. On the flip side we also take in 'Come To Play', an incredibly potent original roller, driven by warbling sub textures and a spacey vibe which runs throughout the composition, providing an excellent contrast between the two tracks.