UK-based Calypso Muzak has been boasting bass-face inducing jump up and roller DnB since 2006. Associated with Co-Lab Recordings, and propelled forward by label leaders Heist, DY8 and Benny Colab, Calypso has shelled out speaker-shattering weapons from the likes of: Simula, T>I, Levela, Turno, Too Greezey, Conrad Subs, Hoogs, Jeopardize, Oz, Motiv, Heist himself, and more.
Review: It's been a busy old year for rising talents Shadre & Salvage as they've released consistent sluggers on the likes of Grid, Shadow Demon and Zombie. Now comes their debut on Heist's Calypso Muzak. Four cuts in total, each one of them tickles in a unique and nicely off-beat type of way. The bassline on 'Bumba' is go grungey you feel you need a shower after listening to it, 'Don't Be Afraid' flips the triplet groove into something sharp, shuffled and incredibly contemporary while StillZ joins the crew for the deadly 'Salamanca Rhythm' before the duo complete the EP with another quirky and original drum flavour on 'Infinity'. Don't be a sleeper on this.
Review: With some cool, dark, artwork, Illament has landed on Calypse Muzak with a hard-hitting four-tracker which combines a penetrating sense of attitude with a non-nonsense approach to musical arrangements. 'Lone Walker' has an warped-out, Souped Up vibe in its arrangement that feels powerful to the extreme and is perfect for a crowded dancefloor, especially with its underpinning in some weighty percussion. 'Double Up' is the roller of the bunch and grounded in wobbly atmospherics and a sense of space which makes it a pleasure to listen to, its snapping drum line providing the ground rock underneath. Yes boys.
Review: Woi to the oi, Filthy Habits return to Heist's Calypso Muzak with three of bubbliest bubblers you've seen this side of the annual bubbler awards. 'Life Choices' kicks off with an exceptional late 90s Bristol twang, complete with big strings and a rising Size-style bassline. 'First Strike' has more of an electrified hum to it. Think early Hazard with its hornets nest bassline and swinging breaks that sit right back in the mix. Then there's the grumpy finale 'Mirage'. Again hitting with a late 90s vibe but just a hint more tech to the mix, it's another reminder of how timeless Filthy Habits' productions are. Strike it lucky.
Review: Calypso Muzak are a regular here on Juno and for good reason, their proclivity for steadily releasing rough but energetic, whole-hearted cuts is strong and their small size doesn't prevent the release of top-quality music. The A-side is the strongest on the release, with a Souped Up-esque feel to its cracking percussion and a torn, broken back end that rips across the range with style. The flip side is a VIP of 'Even The Odds' and blends a range of stabs and wobbles in big fashion.
Review: Coming in hot with an EP that's positively deadly, Motiv lands on Calypso Muzak in stunning form. Hypnotize is aptly named because it's just that: hypnotic. There's a rawness, a depth, to its elements and every inch of the package feels carved out of urban, rough-edged stone. 'Turmoil' is the highlight of the release, with a tantalisingly good drum line that tumbles ove ritself in eagerness to mess you up, its bassline companion not far behind and just rippling with force and movement. The title track samples the classic Biggie tune and puts a junglist spin on it, whilst 'Taking Lives' rolls out with abandon and 'Last Breath' is a cheeky, cheeky growler. Top notch.
Review: Following on the heels of his last absolutely wicked release, Oz is back on Calypso Muzak for a showcase in how to produce gruff, no nonsense drum & bass that hits you hard and steps over the body. 'Hunter' feat Dubbz is the perfect example, as the pair team up for a raucous jump up tune that growls in its stabs and wobbles in the sub bass. The old school jump up vibe carries on into 'Bear', with an urban edge to the sound that smacks sharply of the pioneering jump up producers of 10 or 15 years ago. The rest of the release is equally as on point - big ups Oz.
Review: Conrad Subs can really make music and his latest piece of work is out over on Calypso Muzak. National Anthem is an energetic piece of jump-up slash jungle 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 EP, with special mention going out to 'Nothing But Styles' featuring Erbman, which is a superbly funky, make-you-wanna-dance type endeavour.
Review: Often spotted on Low Down Deep, D&B long-timer The Force links up with newcomer Psych for two hair-raising jams on Heist's Calypso. "Head Trip" lives up to its name. Spacious and tense, it's characterised by pranged drawn-out bass notes and eerie harmonics. Real creeper business. It's back up with "Feel Good" also has a telling title... But don't go expecting euphoria for nothing. Vibes as gutsy as this cost at least 10 disgusting bass faces. Where's nan when you need her?
Review: Prestige can really make music and his latest piece of work is out over on Calypso Muzak. A Gift 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 EP, with special mention going out to the final track 'Clean', which has a filthy gargled concotion of low frequency energy that wouldn't sound out of place on Souped Up. Top notch.
Review: Jinx has been around the block and then some in the world of jump up drum and bass, with his work appearing on a variety of labels, all of which respect his tendency to err on the side of the naughty and nasty. This EP on Calpsyo Muzak is no different, packing five heaters, including a Jaxx remix. Title track 'Dead Sound' is the highlight, with a punching percussive line that grounds the bassline in a sheer cliff face of big, bouncing beats, the perfect under-carriage for a bassline that really doesn't mess around. Truly excellent stuff that's carried out well across the rest of the EP.
Review: Jeopardize is back and oh boy, this release is absolutely top notch. For anyone out there who likes their rollers dark and dirty yet precise and engineered with quality in mind, you'll be into this release. With two harsh tracks, this release is just bursting with quality and if we ran a label, we'd certainly be writing these names down for the future. The first track, 'Futurama', excels in its simplicity, with all the work being done in a simple yet devastating drum pattern and its relationship to top-notch bit of back end work. The flipside follows this pattern: stunningly solid drums, fat basslines and arrangements rooted in simplicity, allowing the small details to shine. Wicked release.
Review: Jaxx can really make music and his latest piece of work is out over on Calypso Muzak. Bionic 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 EP, with special mention going out to Iyahbinghi Ancient for his contribution to the excellent 'Fix Up', as well as for having a wicked name. Top stuff
Review: This release from Jeopardize has artwork straight out of Bioshock and the music itself is equally devilish. Dropping on Calypso Muzak, Jeopardize is coming at you with a four-tracker, a full EP of barebones drum work, roughshod synth construction and animalistic energies. The title track is very, very Serum-esque, with a strong hardware edge to the synths and a no-nonsense attitude in the arrangement. 'Ultimatum' is the highlight of the release, with a serious CNVX vibe in the back end and an old-school tint that courses through its production. Seriously sick stuff.
Review: There's something about the name Skore which just emanates dastardly undertones, in the words of the always quotable Super Hans, "an impending sense of dread." Unlike Super Hans, however, Skore can actually make music and his latest piece of work is out over on Calypso Muzak. Thrashing Machine 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 EP. Top stuff.
Review: With two massive "Abstract" EPs and an equally hefty dispatch on AFT, 2018 has been Oz's most prolific year to date. So he's celebrating with a good old fashioned ruckus... "Beat 'Em Up". "Apoka" lights the fire with brazen dramatic operatic effect while the title track pistol whips us into submission before a hornets nest bassline stings from all directions. Deeper into the EP we glide of "OMG", another heavily orchestral influenced piece before "Rockers" shuts up shop with a groaning understated rumble roller. Wounders all round.
Review: The evil nature of this release is apparent straight away, its artwork featuring a ghoulish, smiling goblin who's devilish character spreads easily into the tunes. 'Hobgoblin' itself is snarling and pissed off, a ghoulish blend of synth energy and back end force that twists itself over and under, back and forth. 'Pirelli's Elixir' is equally as insane, a good display of sound design acumen that bodes very well for Ceph's future, as does 'Regular Creepy Smile', a minimal roller that lands with pinpoint precision and delicate yet forceful depth. This is three-tracks of top notch stuff from a relative newcomer - grab it now.
Review: Starting off with a threatening vocal sample, followed in quick succession by a time-stretched 'f**k', the title track on Will Ryan aka Simula's latest EP for Calypso Muzak shows that as always, he means business. Compounding this mood is percussion that is fired in like dum dum bullets over a tightly sprung rhythm. "Demon" is more stripped back and repetitive, but that doesn't mean that this emerging UK artist has mellowed out. Robotic vocal samples and a bass that wobbles its way up and down the sonic spectrum ensure that when it comes to forward-thinking but menacing drum'n'bass, Simula leads the way.
Review: You got questions? Nepo's got answers. Or explanations, as he'd prefer to call them. The whirling seasick chords and croaky bass explains why you'll be leaping like a frog to "Allergic", the spacious arrangement, crafty sample dig and evolving bass textures of "Explanation" explain why you quite enjoy dancing like a robot these days while "Heppier You" explains why you've got repetitive strain injury in your rewinding hand. Finally "UFO" explains why alien lifeforms definitely do exist while the breakneck drop and savage dynamics of "Try It" explains why you have nightmares most nights. Ah, sweet closure. Thanks Nepo!
Review: Flexing the likes of G13, Multi Function, Cre8 and Dub Damage between them all, rising riff-wizards Filthy Habits and Jeopardize collide for the first time on Heist's Calypso with six outstanding jams that cross the board into all corners; "Widowmaker" is all about the dagger-like riffs, "Chillum Riddim" hits with a jungle edge due to its heaving ragga call to action, "Infiltrators" rolls with an electrified buzz, "Black Widow" wobbles and scorches in equal measure while the dense, groaning basses on "Respawn" drag us all back down into the swamp where we all belong. Finally we have "Nothing To Lose" where a plucked one note bassline hammers a stern message beneath some star-lit euphoric synth textures. Time to say goodbye to the wife!
Review: Usually spotted causing riots on Ruffneck Ting, The Force steps over to Heist's Calypso Muzak with four outstanding moments of riff-inflicted sonic showstoppery. "Hallucinate" rolls with a sense of jumpy/funky bassline mischief that's reminiscent of the early 2000s without getting too nostalgic. Elsewhere "The Boogieman" brings us into the future with a gruelling, grizzly bassline that's reminiscent of your worst nightmares, "Living Dead" is the sharpest peaktimer of the set with its infectious, soaking wet savageness "Living Dead" while "Mash It Up" warbles and wobbles on a classic jungle bass tone and skippy break in a similar way to DJ Die's early 2000s work. Forceful.
Review: Not to be confused with Belgian hardstyle duo, this Russian outfit go hard in a wholly different way... The sole preserve of dub for the last six months (sported only by the likes of label boss Heist and titans playing at a Noisia-level), all four tracks showcase Lowriderz at a premiership level: the abstract textures on jugular-cutter "Moving Images", the deep sepia wooziness of "Blonde Lover", the slinky subs and badboy funk of "Money" and the seasick rhythm of "Interplanetary Experiments"".There's some serious diversity and creativity going on right here.
Review: Heist invites New York's Hoogs to the Calypso crew with one of the label's most generous EPs to date. Those aware of Hoogs' 15 year repertoire will already know what to expect; cross-board ruffage with a cheeky US twist on the classic UK jump-up foundation. Heady, sharper and big in the lean riff game, highlights include the downward spiral of bass paranoia on "Gorilla Glue", the rattling jungle freshness of "What You Say" and the higher-toned bassline trippery of "Midnight Killing". Audio insanity.
Review: Heist's Calypso Muzak continues to unearth fresh talent and give them the spotlight they deserve. Envenom's time to shine... Building on the sturdy foundations dug on Multi Function and Train, each of the five cuts shows how he subverts and twists jump-up and tear-out conventions: "Blizzard" layers bass in thick impenetrable sheets, "Killer Bass" is a space voyage over asteroid terrain while "Deaths Door" has a bass riff and breakdown so harrowing you'll need counselling for three years. Dig deeper for some skillish switches and trippy fills on "Warning", aluminium aggro on "Stimulation" and broken glass, handclapped funk with the playful riff on "Bad Juju". Devilish.
Review: Simula is Will Ryan, a 20 year old DJ and producer from Milford, Godalming, UK. This release comes courtesy of Calypso Muzak, affiliated with the mighty Co-Lab Recordings imprint out of Colchester Essex. Simula throws down some seriously dark and nasty street level beats/ bass here, following proudly in the UK tradition. Highlights include the grinding and jagged future beat of "Distress Signal", the body bashing techstep of "Heavyweight" (which is reminiscent of classic Ed Rush & Optical) and the absolutely fierce darkside breakbeat science of "Stinker" which calls to mind classic DJ Die or Krust. This guy is seriously one to watch!
Review: Belgian behemoth Spaow makes his Calypso debut with a brutal six-piece that won't just shake the life out of you but will resuscitate you just to duff you up again. The message is clear from "Manneken Pis" as the dusty funk sample degrades into a turbine bass licks that can genuinely knock a dancefloor off its feet. "No Music" is a chance for Spaow to show off his squiggles and sound design collection while "Good Old Things" warps the dickens out of an old jazz sample before dipping low into a wonky distorted bass lick. Elsewhere we blaze the bass lasers on "Kuma Bear", we hit more sample-twisting gold on "Nonchalance" before ending with the lullaby/nightmare counterplay on "Reverse Life". Spaow's biggest release to date, without question.
Review: LA-based bass dealer Aweminus gets lively on Heist's Calypso imprint... And it's a full-frontal assault of extreme proportions. Highlights among the five on-point tracks include the dark/light mirror pattern on "Logariddim" where we flicker from sizzling dubs to sinewy midrange, the clipped string hook that breaks into sheet metal bass waves on "Dead Simple" and the skittering, scuffy glitches and twists of "Skitzo". Awesome.
Review: Cranked and severely on the edge of losing control, this EP is a testament to how far jump up has come over the past few years. Adding double speed percussion and pushing a more technical sound, T>I is showing in tracks like "Patchy" and "Sudden Threat" that there's more to the dancefloor than chainsaws and samples from Snatch. Taking influences from the whole spectrum of drum and bass, it's a testament to the real work producers are putting in to keep the genre alive and kicking. You'll be hearing more from this guy, so get him in your collection now.