Review: After making an impression on us with a series of debut releases over the last few years, Milan's Big Hands appears on Beat Machine with a daring mini LP. This is the sort of blow-your-mind gear that spans just about every genre it possibly can, and does so with utter grace and elegance. Tagged as 'bass' on our charts, Arcane Mosaics is much more than your typical UKG side-stepping; there a re elements of noise, ambient and electronica in here, all mashed up and blended into a fiery cocktail for those audacious 2017 tastes. Is it techno? Is it dubstep? Could it be house? Well, that's for you to decide, but Big Hands sure leaves plenty of clues scattered here and there, amid the incessant beat science that swallows the entirety of these seven dance experiments. Recommended!
Review: Introducing French duo BNDT72, a pair doing their part in pushing and developing France's footwork scene with an eclectic and infectious sound since 2016. This Lost EP arrives as their most accomplished work yet, drawing in with it a remix from OG Chicago head DJ Spinn on the title-track. Spin opts for a more soulful and less frenetic approach to the sounds of BNDT72 that turn up best on rave tracks like "Watcha", with deeper house vibes gracing the synth, and percussive change ups in "Tell Me" to the dubstep funk of "Retro". Find 70s dub reggae motifs and jungle breaks in "Gyal Dem", with the title-track going large on its instrumentation. Get lost.
Review: ITOA's endless stream of quality bass music ranges from the footwork school of thought to the utterly dubbed-out stepperz style. He's up on Beat Machine this time, and it looks like he's decided to stop somewhere in the middle, offering "Strange Attractor" as the lead tune, a fast-moving, jungle-fuelled frenzy that really turns the whole hardcore continuum on its head. There's a remix from Sully, and this one is a jungle pure-breed, shooting off all of its percussive fury into a dark, break-heavy groove that'll get the heads nodding.
Review: We find these days it is a rare occurrence for us to not be impressed with a new J-Shadow drop and this latest six track adventure follows that same pattern, kicking off with the super unpredictable drum switches and eastern string lines of 'Orlov's Casket'. Next, we dive into the luscious soundscapes of 'Acid Genie' before the grimey drum pulses and vocal slices of 'NXT1' and unpredictable reversed string arrangements of 'Voyager-2' are unleashed. Finally, the twisted bass textures and monstrous bass designs of 'Contact' are let loose', followed by an incredibly well thought out remix of 'NXT1' from Gantz to see us out with a bang.
Review: As far as genres go, there appears to be none of a more rapid rise than juke, which seems to be picking up more and more momentum as the year moves on. We here see two very hard hitting creations, the first of which comes from J(AY).A.D, who kicks off proceedings with the stacked drum designs and constantly shifting landscapes of 'Root Of All E.v.i.L (Paper)', which draws influence from all around the globe. This is then followed up immediately with a more direct trap-style rethink from Taso, adding some punchy sub pressure to proceedings.
Review: Beat Machine are simply unstoppable these days, dropping bombs left, right and centre - and these guys really can refer to their output as being explosive! This time they come through with the dread bass of Kuthi Jijani, a debutant who's clearly understood the entire bass process from the get-go, and these five tunes are everything you'd want form your typical Saturday night bass bullets. Fire and fury are unleashed via the rolling punch of drums that drives "Peshi" forwards, while "Fluvial God Decompose Our Bodies" centres its efforts around the all-out cacophonous thanks to an unexpected wave of noise. "Serpent" is a new strain of highly abrasive d&b, the sort Noisia would be proud of, while "Yonder" steps back into more traditional 'step' territories; Ipman's remix of "Discarga" is a hypnotic, sinister ride down the impenetrable wormhole of bass. TIP!
Review: Beat Machine here return to continue their footwork inspired rampages, doing so with the employing of Pablo Dread, who comes up with this highly experimental 'Burnin' EP. We begin with the junglistic drum rolls and powerful sub pressure of 'Watch It', before we then lean into 'Fyah Burnin', throughout which the jungle themes continue to roll. To follow, we dive into the intense drum clicks and ascending bass tones of 'What's Going On', which rounds up the originals nicely. We are then treated to Fixate's heavyweight D&B rework of 'Fyah Burnin', completely revamping the track into a stripped back roller.
Review: As the year comes to a close, we can safely say that it has been an incredible 12 months for the more experimental sounds within electronic music. We have noticed a real surge in individualism, with this latest drop from the Beat Machine team providing a perfect example. For this one, Soreab is joined by Parallax's sharp vocal prowess on a system-ready title track named 'Wrinkles', built around tripletted rhythms and rolling kick drum patterns. We continue to take in the taste of originality as the acidic bass tones and super choppy drum rhythms on 'Watchme' take us for a real ride into the unknown. On remix duty for this one, we see Basic Rhythm give a tidy re-lick to 'Wrinkles', with the ever-ready Benton on hand to dish out a vibrant dose of breaksy goodness on his overhaul of 'Watchme'.
Review: Simon/Off, better known as Sun People is based in Graz, Austria and runs a radio show on disko404 radio / Sub.fm. There's some smooth and chilled out bass therapy in the form of "Flowers", which is well indebted to UK and US influences alike. Parisian Moresounds gets on board for even more low-end intensive experience with his remix of the said track. This guy's one to watch!
Review: Footwork junkie Ticklish hits up Beat Machine with a solid floor masher that is veritably hybridisable in its gene-pool and stylistic approach. "Lost" contains elements of just about every noticeable genre of UK dance music, and with a break-driven rhythm, Ticklish lays down an absolute belter of a tune back by a powerful morph-bass. Bass pioneer Addison Groove is up for remix duties, and the man transforms "Lost" into a chillier, more minimal once tool with a neat 808 approach and some bouncy bass tones for hypnotic effect. Sick.