Review: Don't be fooled by the title; D&B pioneer A Sides hasn't gone all Christian Grey on us, 50 Shades Of A is actually the sound of him celebrating his 50th birthday with eight crucial new tracks. "Raise" cuts the first slice of badboy birthday cake with a nod to the classic Bristol style, all rolling and rough around the edges. It's followed by slice after slice after slice... "Edge VIP" sees him update his 2018 Chronic banger with added bass venom, "Tower" is a pure breakbeat hurricane, "Ribs" is a twisted paranoid stepper while "Imperial" nods to a Headz style sound with dramatic cinematic tom-thumping drums. Elsewhere "Million" takes us on a dreamy vocal vibe, "Ashby" shows us A Sides' most sentimental side while "Principles" closes on a beautiful jazzy touch and ensures every flavour A Sides has been crafting since day one is repped in true style. Happy birthday A Sides.
Review: After such a massive year in 2019 with their 25th anniversary celebrations, you could forgive Metalheadz if they took their foot off the gas for a second as we hurtle into a new decade. But no, if anything they're ramping up again. And Adred's debut album is proof. From that introductory headbutt of a tune "Amenity" right through to the turbo-charged emotions and floatiness of the finale "Left Behind", the longstanding NYC artist has created a monster of a debut album here. Dedicated to his father, featuring the likes of Commix, DRS, Jamal, Strategy, Dave Owen and exploring every shade, style and sound that's inspired and drove him for the last 16 years of production, Adred has delivered a quintessential Headz album here. Essential.
Review: Every now and then, you just want a release that slams start to finish. No frills, no pretence of trying to be something that it isn't, just solidly banging D&B that gets your head nodding and your feet moving. Banzai has done that here and this single is a run of attitude-packed jump up, all of which would sound fat through a sound system. 'Menace' is a highlight, samples leading you in into a fluttering array of jagged synth-lines and boom-bap drum hits, a vibe that's quickly transferred across into 'Showtime' - snapping percussive hits, moody bass notes and melody that oozes power.
Review: It's time for another top notch link up as the legendary vocal prowess of Dynamite MC links up with the ever-ready Bazza Ranks for a tidy new single named 'Vibes Master', courtesy of Irish Moss & Kudos Records. The track itself is a futuristic, dancehall inspired chopper, driven by the high energy vocal displays of both artists, making this one an instant party starter. The project comes complete with an array of remixes, including a groovy reggae mix, a highly percussive Digital version, a high energy Drum N Bass mix and of course a smooth Funk version, giving this one some serious reach!
Review: Blackout Ja and Liondub unleash the first of their Blacklion Movements project and it's a big one; "Greatest Treasure" sees Blackout rolling out his distinctive gravelled tones, going toe-to-toe with another vital voice in modern day dancehall YT, while Liondub lays down a slinky, sexy dancehall rhythm. Weighty enough to buss up a system, roomy enough for both MCs to give all ladies in the dance a heartfelt salute, intimate enough to get everyone dancing up close... With Valentines Day en route, the timing of this could not be better. Treasure this.
Review: Bruk can really make music and his latest piece of work is out over on Sub-Cautious Audio. Full Speed Ahehad is an energetic piece of jump-up construction that doesn't hesitate to punch you in the face and its exemplified by the title track, a bass-filled expression of dancefloor hatred which moves in mysterious yet obvious ways. It bangs, basically, as does the rest of the single, with a B-side that could easily have been on the A.
Review: We're not quite sure how Chilly manages to put out so many releases, to be honest, because they're just always on it. Always on a mix of labels, this time it's Audio Overload. The title track is refreshingly futuristic, creative synth work and stepping drum smacks forming archways of diving bass force, a joy to listen to and we'd imagine pretty devastating on the dancefloor. 'You' sees Chilly on more familiar territory - naughty jump up that makes you want to hit your nan. 'Forget Me' is different again, a pummelling, fluid back end laid out beneath a rolling set of drums. Yes mate!
Review: Coming in with the reggae, junglist vibes this week is Chopstick Dubplate, who are releasing on their own label alongside Natty Campbell, an MC and vocalist who, if you don't know, sounds absolutely mint above a ragged jungle beat. 'Chicken Shop' is the title tune and deservedly so, featuring a bubbling, bouncing and banging bassline which sits perfectly beneath the flowing lyrical business being conducted by Campbell above. This EP stretches to seven tracks and highlights well the reputation that Chopstick Dubplate have cultivated over years in the game. Top stuff.
Review: Coming in hot with the filthy minimal approach this week is Concept One on Incurzion Audio, the Wales based imprint which never fails to make us wince with beautifully crafted, tightly edged music that seems more befitting the urban sprawls of London than the rolling hills of South Wales. Either way, Concept One has smashed this one, with four-tracks that, to put it simply, bang. The title tune barks at you with a grate of energy, fluid energy moving underneath and giving it a lovely, lively feel. The VIP of 'Monsoon' is a penetrating halftime number, whilst they team up with JAK for the jungle flip of 'Delta' and the distorted perfection of 'Gutters'. Sick, sick stuff.
Review: Hi Def are one of the most prolific jump-up labels around. We regularly feature their releases and they almost always smash it out of the park, this time being no different. Access All Areas is a fiery EP, featuring Ego Trippin, Filthy Habits and more, that epitomizes the type of jump-up, but also slightly different flavours as well, that, in more ways than one, has defined D&B over the past couple of years - no-nonsense, uncompromising and proudly nonchalant about what you think. It's just pure attitude, dancefloor-based music at its best and music that simply does what it wants, there's no pretentiousness or image-orientated concerns - it's just D&B. Big, big tunes.
Review: Dubstomp 2 Bass are the Birmingham based imprint of madmen who, day-in-day-out, push forth some of the vilest beats known to both the Midlands and the UK more broadly. Falco is their latest alumni and, judging from this EP, he's graduating with a first in D&B studies. 'Notification' is the standout tune from the album, a deep and dark roller that sits comfortably within current D&B trends and which hits harder than a train that's just gone off the rails, its knockout snare drum and monochromatic bassline effortlessly moving about the arrangement. 'Overthinking' gets light and 'Colliision' is the naughty kid of the groups and knows it, whilst 'Declared Hostile' is another vicious rolling little number. Cop this one.
Review: Falco's Deadlight's single on Raw Motion isn't one of those releases for people who like to sit back, sip on a mug of matured whisky and debate the stylistic evolution of music. It's not about pretention, it's about having a good time and for that purpose it's ideally suited. Two tracks full of dancefloor vigour, Falco has achieved his presumed goal of making music that'll get people moving. 'Deadlights' has that Souped Up-esque forcefulness to its bass lines, that torn, ripping feel that only a proper foghorn will get you; 'Surprised' hits that suspense in the build perfectly, leading in the snapping drums underneath something very special.
Review: Cre8 Dnb Music are one of the most prolific jump-up labels around. We regularly feature their releases and they almost always smash it out of the park, this time being no different. Fanatics' Wizards is a fiery EP that epitomizes the type of jump-up, but also slightly different flavours as well, that, in more ways than one, has defined D&B over the past couple of years - no-nonsense, uncompromising and proudly nonchalant about what you think. It's just pure attitude, dancefloor- based music at its best and music that simply does what it wants, there's no pretentiousness or image-orientated concerns - it's just D&B. Big, big tunes and we especially like track one, the title track, for its almost neurofunk approach to clunky stabs and rippling basses. Awesome.
Review: Faysha is landing on Dutty Bass Audio with an unsophisticated but incredibly fun release, one which, if you hear out live, is certain to get you moving. There's a carelessness and a freedom to these tracks and it's a tangible sense of kinetics. The title track kicks things off in style but it's 'Hey Mr Policeman' that really takes the cake, a winding, foghorn heavy track that flips between wobbling shimmers and jump-up stabs. It's a wicked track and definitely the highlight of the release. 'Ting A Ling' is another absolute banger but one that's deep and bouncy in all the right ways. Sick release.
Review: Filthy Habits and Jeopardize - two savagely on-point basssmiths usually spotted lurking around the G13 camp - land on Heist's Co-Lab imprint with this absolute barnstormer of a banger. Running drums, big flabby basses and a drive that can cut through any mix and knock crowds off their feet; both acts' longstanding collaborative history can be felt in every detail here. Tracks like this are built to last. They got the key... But what is the secret?
Review: Already donning it in bassline and garage circles, Flava D is now beginning to slap D&B into shape, too. Now officially part of the Hospital family, here she builds on previous Hospital outings "Human Trump" and "Return To Me" with her first proper debut single for the label. Bouncy, dreamy, musically layered and just the right side of cheeky, there's a timeless edge to this that's rooted in that classic liquid sound that catapulted Hospital into the big leagues in the first place. Mesmerising material.
Review: This release honestly doesn't mess around. It carries a serious sense of potency despite its clear lack of pretentious sophistication, because D&B of this type simply isn't about sophistication, it's about making something so filthy the audience won't even understand what hit them. Everyone on this release has certainly accomplished that here, I mean just have a listen to the rippling sines, percussive naughtiness and bassline badassery that is 'Get Some Juice', a beautifully spacious tune that still manages to make you feel like you've been attacked by a dog. This is a crazy release from start to finish.
Review: Short Circuit have a bit of a reputation for spewing out some of the most venomous beats in the business and their talent for pushing some of the best artists on the jump-up spectrum is undeniable. Ironlung is holding up that standard and he's doing it in style, something clear right from the start of this single. 'Law of the Jungle' reels you in with hip-hop driven, rolling energy, that quickly flips into a siren-like wail of pure, stabbing energy that's reminiscent of Annix and insanity more generally. The flip the release is equally aggressive, as 'The Gateway' opens the gate to a hellish landscape of tendrilic basses and powerful forces.
Review: Jack The Ripper quite often pops up on this site with some of the filthiest jump-up around, and this time he's coming at your ears with a six-tracker of outsized proportions, courtesy of one of the best breakthrough labels of recent times: Walking Dead Recordings. Every single one of these tunes is laden with a feeling of roughness and they all pack that jump-up vibe we all know and love so well. The title track, '10th Commandment', takes the cake for us just because its drums have been nailed so damn well and the sample work is superb. Well played Veak.
Review: Murky Digital don't tend to put out music that's weak, thin or otherwise not suitable for the dancefloor. Jaxx's Prepare For Take Off EP is a testament to that, all five cuts do some serious damage and the release overall is certainly on the sharper end of the spectrum. 'Take Off' is the best of the bunch and it's got a rough, Sofa Sound edge that injects a satisfying level of oomph into the arrangement, there's a serious vibrancy in the bass-drums relationship and it's a pleasure to listen to. 'Stacks' is a close second and its incredibly unique concoction of swirling basses and gargling pulsars adds a wicked futuristic element, all of it underpinned by a creative, stepping percussive line. There's a wicked variety here and everything feels accurate and well-placed - well played to the Murky Digital crew.
Review: Jayline is landing on Liondub in a hot minute, off the back of his 2019 Street Series release on the label and his 10 year anniversary tracks, he's come up with the Lion & the Unicorn, a four-tracker which rests on the laurels of the scene's current boon for foghorns and it does so with style. 'The Unicorn' is our favourite, with a funny load of sampling on the introduction that let's you know what it's like to be a unicorn, a dream that's burst on the drop: shattered into an array of drawn-out bass shards and shimmering sine wobbles. It's big and forebodes the rest of the release.
The Real McCoy (Conrad Subs remix) - (3:44) 86 BPM
The Real McCoy (Timbali remix) - (3:27) 86 BPM
Jim Two-Eyes - "The Real McCoy" (dub) - (3:09) 86 BPM
Review: Jim Two-Eyes and Parly B, two dancehall artists, are colliding with the world of drum & bass in this excellent release from Raider. The Real Mccoy is its name, no relation to the horse we assume although perhaps to the crisps, and it features a slick original that bumps and grinds its way through vocal tears, stabbing instrumentation and an all-round embrace of funkiness. Conrad Subs nails the remix two, keeping the vocal magic in place but undergirding it with a powerful sub and cracking, booming drum hits. Love this one.
Review: Killlill is back, back again and it's once more on Biological Beats, the label which never ceases to pump out music which pummels you, pleases and you and punishes you in equal measure. This time around he's cooked up a fiery four-tracker and it's a percy, with four slices of trademark damage that tread a wicked line between over-the-top jump-up and moody rollers. 'Gravity' is the best example of that, as the drums roll out into oblivion and a gargling expression of bass energy lights up the top end of the range in stabby, serious fashion. Energy, energy.
Review: LDT is unleashing an onslaught over on Eternal Muzic with a tight sounding four-track EP. 'Fade Away' is a dark, moody stepper that doesn't care about rules and certainly doesn't care about feelings. The main bass on this tune oozes quality and packs some serious weight, reminiscent of the Souped Up crew. 'Enemy' is slightly less crazy but it definitely is still on the crazy end, as gargled bass notes inject a whole load of force into the arrangement and there's a wicked bit of drum work to boot. Blckhry features on the last track to round out the release beautifully - top stuff.
Review: Grid Recordings is such an underrated label, honestly. The amount of sick stuff these guys pump out week after week is somewhat astonishing, from the likes of Nick The Lot, T>I, Shield and more, including today's customers: Matt View and Marvel Cinema. For this release they've strayed slightly from their usual heavy tones for something slightly more circumscribed, a bit more retrospective, and it goes down in a lovely way. There's a really nice collection of laid-back jungle steps, wispy atmospheric rollers and bassy undertones. 'Altitude' has all of the above and it makes for a sick journey through urban-edged sound, a nonchalant but still potent expression of dance music with a softer side.
Review: Bassman a talking, no propaganda! The man with the most famous finger in dance music returns to Souped Up with more murderous words of wisdom in the form of "Power To Kill". Two versions, two absolute jams: Serum and Voltage take the lead with a classic addictive riff that bumps and wriggles and a cheeky key twist on the second drop. Manny mandem of the moment Dutta follows with a grittier flex to the bassline. Full on turbine business, it's a one-inch-punch of a bassline with full distortion and maximum overdrive in the energy stakes. Killing it in all directions, both mixes provide the perfect space for Bassman's distinctive martial law.
Review: Grid Recordings always deliver tough, urban-edged sonics that don't prance around or act fancy, they just get down and dirty. Nick The Lot has delivered exactly that here, with a four-track EP of moody tones and no-nonsense drum lines. 'Blueprint' is a perfect example of said drums, with impossibly clean hits and a clear sense of space and progression, its bass stabs are almost shadowed out. 'Missing Person' is the most futuristic, with a deep back end and seriously cool synth spasms that lend it a techier feel than the other cuts on the EP. The other two are equally top-draw - make sure to check these.
Review: Premium by name... Absolute savage on the dials by nature! Englishman in Belgium Premium unleashed his inner junglist with these two hairy hurters. "Chewbacca" growls and purrs just as its name suggests. Driven by breaks but powered by a jump-up heaviness, it's the perfect sweet spot of a lot of sounds and subgenres here. "The Master" continues this grizzly theme but with more of a classic jump-up twist. One note basslines hitting with Warhead-like severity and cheeky break splashes on the fills, it's a heads-down workout that hits home in every mix situation you can blend it into. Masterful.
Review: Hailing from Canada, RMS has firmly established himself over the last couple of years as someone at the forefront of D&B's re-discovered love for jungle-influences and bouncy but hard-hitting basslines. Drawing upon those influences, he's back on Original Key for a full-throated five-tracker that kicks off with 'Down' featuring Kumarachi, a heavily weighted sine-based wobbler that pushes on every corner of the range. '90s Soundboy' has thoose wicked juddering bass pulses and that recognizable sense of hardware-based rawness, whilst the junglst vibes are seriously real on 'Mi Fi Tell Yuh'. This release has overtones of Manchester and undertones of the Great White North - proper UK underground stuff.
Review: V Recordings' Future LP finally looks set to drop fairly soon and this remix from Benny L is part of it, blending as it does the classic tones of Bristol legend Roni with Benny's more new school, harsher style of production. 'Dayz' is a timeless piece of work and Benny has flipped it on its head, rolling out some ragged breaks underneath Roni's instantly recognisable sample work and over a simple but incredibly effective bassline. Excellent stuff.
Review: The Souped Up crew are back in town and they have an offering, courtesy of Original Sin. It's a fiery, no-nonsense release that sits in the familiar vein of Souped Up influenced music, with an emphasis on the pummelling and the urban-edged knack that only jump-up D&B has. Remixing Serum himself, 'Earth Rot' has a punching, pitched-down back end that pulses and sways alongside its percussive cousin and to great effect - this one would go down well on any UK dancefloor. There's a genuine feel of aggressiveness here that only prooducers with the old-school credentials of Original Sin know how to cultivate, and it sits very nicely on the Souped Up release roster.
Review: One of the regular labels we feature are Sub-Division, a wicked little imprint that puts out a diverse sound ranging from techy rollers to jump-up steppers and even liquidy numbers. This week they've arrived with an EP from Sinexia, who, across five tracks, spans various tones and styles, all of them rooted in a sense of dancefloor aggressiveness and all of them top-notch. 'Escale Isle' is a highlight, its rolling percussive line isn't the paciest but is loping and satisfying, whilst a gargling bass and sweeping ambience sit just above and inject all the force. The title track is also fantastic, as 'Sonar' just goes absolutely hard from the outset, with a huge bassline and bigger drums.
Review: Skore has been on a bit of a roll recently and he's back on Subway Soundz for a stripped back, roughshod single which showcases an interesting blend of the minimal sound with the jump-up side of the scene. This is a style that's been taking off recently and we're very much into it, it's a bit less full-on that jump-up and not as screechy, yet still has the wicked attitude and urban-edged toughness of jump-up. 'Sauced Up' is an excellent example, with an ice-cold demeanour and multiple criss-crossing strands of reverberating bass, an amalgamation of low-frequency textures which just roll out the whole way through. Sick stuff here.
Review: Low Down Deep are regular appearances here for two main reasons. Firstly, they release a hell of a lot of music. Secondly, it almost always hits hard and in good order. So, with that in mind, let's take a look at Sota's three-track single: Bite/Signal/Down. 'Bite' is without a doubt the highlight of the EP, with an infectiously funky arrangement that's grounded in a glitchy sense of progression and movement. It goes hard, but in a way that's not off-putting or over the top. That's the general impression of this EP: jump-up, but not trashy jump-up. Just the way we like it.
Review: Last spotted on Euphonique's Subwoofah with the series statement of intent "We Here", Speaker Louis and Grimesy tag up once again for this equally heavy collection on Deep In The Jungle. Four tracks deep, each one a stinker, highlight include the bonafide bludclart jungle ruffage of "Can't Touch", the bounding subs of "Burning" and the full-strength sirens and tidal wave bass surges on the title track. Bad boys for life...
Review: Eatbrain are stepping into darker territory over on the Hungarian Eatbrain imprint with their Negative Thoughts EP, a release that brings in elements of the Neurofunk sound within the context of nightmares, that feeling of sleep without your eyes closed, the creeping sense that you need to drift off but the foreboding feeling that unconsciousness is out of your reach. 'Shinkjuko' is a highlight, with a deeply rolling and fluctuating bassline that injects both funkiness and heaviness in equal measure, an impact topped off with some wicked synth work. Shout out to the teddy bear crew!
Review: As ever with Bomb Strikes, we are given a big room banger, this time sounding bigger than ever as The Niceguys land with a very lively creation entitled 'Turn It Out'. Through a combination of heavily sampled guitar solos, vinyl scratch wizardry and incredibly hard hitting drum designs, this one is sure to send the dancefloor into an absolute ruckus come the breakdown. To accompany the instantly impactful original, Dubra gets involved with a hard hitting D&B rethink, focusing on striking synths and sharp drum designs. Lovely stuff!
All That I Need (feat Pat Fulgoni) - (5:13) 174 BPM
Is This Love (feat Lucy Kitchen) - (5:15) 172 BPM
Love Call - (4:38) 174 BPM
Think About - (5:36) 174 BPM
Fused - (5:02) 172 BPM
LUV U TNITE - (5:56) 175 BPM
Review: The Vanguard Project combines Bcee and Villem, two long-time liquid titans who have their debut LP as a duo out very soon. A self-titled piece of work, The Vanguard Project brings 12 new tracks alongside 14 classics from their joint back-catalogue, a sprawling release which dips its toes into virtually every flavour imaginable. 'Everyday is Stolen' feat. DRS was the first single to be released and we can see why, a standout track that beautifully combines his talent for spitting with singing. 'The Unknown' and 'Wicked Man' are both perfectly weighted jungle tracks, full of soul and bursting with the character of music which packs edge and funk at the same time. Dynamite MC and Leo Wood also both feature, the latter is a regular on Spearhead now and 'Elevate' is a driven, bass heavy track that frolicks with vocal touches and funky guitar flourishes. Unreal stuff here from two legends of the game.
Review: Squad up! Natty Dub celebrate 50 releases with this absolutely stinking set from some of their nearest and dearest, closest and bro-sest. Firing from all cannons, every track is a thumper; Saxxon gets his squelch on with "Brockley Fox", T>I is all screams, wriggles and giggles on "Pointless Torture", Sikka delivers one of his best tunes to date in the funk-fuelled form of "You Know", Suv and Mood give us a Bristol kiss with the slinky, hip-twisting "Mambo" and Jaxx nods his cap at the wild west of the mid 90s on the percussion heavy "Hurdles". Timeless, authentic and full of dirty funk - Natty Dub are one of the most true-to-the-core labels doing it right now. Bring on the next 50!
Review: Grubs up! Twisted Individual's cooked up a feast of undead delights for the first Zombie Recordings V/A collection and everyone's invited. Chewy, spicy and full of gully victuals, across the collection we're treated to all range of flavours; the peppery aftertaste of Filthy Habits & Jeopardize's "Mind Transfer", the fruity funk bursts of Imaginary Friends' "Rooftop Jam", the gamey aroma and meaty chugs of Yatuza & Nick The Lot's "Mystic Ways" and the sweet and sour textures of Alex SLK's "Kluture" are just some of the many highlights on the menu. Gunfinger-licking good!
Review: Gunfingers at the ready gang, Lickwood & Gunshot fire up the shots with their biggest release to date; a 20 track stacked banger bonanza from some of the sharpest new shooters in town. It's business from the off as Visuals gets busy with the cantankerous kicks and sing-along vocals on "Lights Out" and it continues to hit the target right the way through to DJ Direkt's skittering, paranoid finale "Too Hawt". Highlight heat can be found in every corner across the collection; Pablo G gets all slinky in the jungle on "The Rumbler", Jomari's "Yuh Na Hear" is a lesson in restrained ruffage, B-Plexx's "Remedy" soothes the soul with its breathy vocal and bubbly bassline, the list goes on... See you down the target practice.
General Levy & Deekline & Ed Solo - "Welcome To The Jungle" (continuous DJ mix) - (1:31:17) 175 BPM
Review: Can we get a 'wicked?' Jungle Cakes continue to team up with some of the biggest donnies in the game with this latest Welcome To The Jungle collection. This time curated and fronted by the General himself, as you'd expect this is a full-on jungle assault that covers every single angle and every single era. 47 tracks and one killer mix, hosted and toasted by Levy himself, this is one of Jungle Cakes most comprehensive collections to date: From the foundation-setting, historic vibes of "Incredible" through to contemporary bangers from the likes of Kursiva, DJ Hybrid, Jam Thieves, Benny Page and all things in between, everyone involved has delivered something special. Massive.