Review: Whether he's slapping us around with Savage Society, poking our frontal cortexes on Never Say Die or getting jiggy in the jungle on the likes of Dub Damage, Aweminus is one of the few US artists who can flex this well around both 140/170 tempos. In the past he's proved his 360 skillishness on Calypso, Clawhammer, now he's doing it on Dub Damage. Highlights include the raw sheet metal bassline grit of ED-209 homage "Damned", the waspy lip-curling tubular bass on "Another One" and the infectious step-funk of "The Wabbit Hole". Highly wecommended.
Review: Blackphil is landing on Dub Damage Recordings with his Pagan EP, as you can probably tell from the name of the label it's coming out on, it's a seriously murky bit of work. You think that from the start of the first track, which leads you in with a luscious bit of synth work which quickly devolves into a pummelling expression of force. The rest of the release is powered by the same relentlessness and 'Economic Collapse' carries an expansive back end that undergirds a sequence of menacing sounds and tones whilst 'Something In the Woods' possibly has the most creative bassline on the release in a wicked display of dancefloor heat. Sick stuff.
Review: Countdown to blast off in D-Minus zero seconds: Cardiff bass crusader D-Minus continues his rampant run of muscular musicianship on Dub Damage with some of his most hair-raising riff-focused cuts to date. "Deproramme" slaps and tickles with a Tyke-like charm, quite light in its make up but more addictive than heroin-laced e-cigs. "Bun It Up" is where the real KO kicks off as a toxic bassline refuses to quit under the command of MC Tommy D. Deeper into the EP "Dry Socket" gets greased up with a sticky, slimy sense of playful funk while "Secret Weapon" takes on more of a neuro twist with its denser, complex textures. Gritty.
Review: Prime bass burper D-Nasty lets rip with his first two exquisite thumpers of the year. "Back To Square One" is all about the riff. An infectious lead that your crowd will be singing along to before the end of the first 16, it's an excellent double-drop missile for those moments where there's space for a whole new hook. "1997" takes a more brutal route with a doubled-up sandpaper bass groove that wriggles more than it grunts. Think Tyke with more of a Belgian twist
Review: German hammer man, Desire lets us peak into his psyche with one of his largest bodies of work to date. We're hit with a loose funk from the off - "Cut The Midrange" flexes a classic sample with hooky mischief, "Pull Up" shakes with some savage triplet rumpy pumpy while "Think First" tips a wry nod at "Mr Happy" it is gusto and bass texture. Wrapping up we have the stupidly infectious one note riffy hook of "Professionals" while "00572" wins two awards... Catchiest title and most unique sound design of the EP. Jugular-punching.
Review: Kre & Friskie's Dub Damage imprint recruit the big guns for two chop-walloping versions: Original Sin reminds us who's boss with an insane shake-up of Guv's 2012 "Power Moves". Adding 50 lanes of sonic traffic to the maddening riff, this won't just wake your floor up but the entire neighbourhood within 50 square miles of the club. Sub Zero, meanwhile, takes the rusty robot lament of "Bad Manners" and adds a sizzling hornet nest buzz between the mournful one note hits. Play it really loudly they next time you see someone with their elbows on the table... Lessons will be learnt!
Review: First name Enta, last name The Dragon; this rising UK producer is such a beast with his basses he could batter a whole fleet of mythical creatures and still have enough firepower left to slay a rave. You need proof? Check the thumping subs, stripped back groove and metallic alien textures of "Tripping" and the grotty, weirded-out laser bass wonk of "Glitch" then check your singed body hairs. Firesome.
Review: Bubbler klaxon! Exile returns with two more super sharp shooters spaciously designed for deep mix pleasure. "Jungle Animal" whisks us deep into the tropics with a steel drum Q&A hook that fits so snug into any track you can imagine mixing it into while "So Scared" flips and flickers with more of a gutter bound bassline that scrapes the muck out of the ground, squeezes it tightly into a rubber ball and bounces it back in your purdy little face. Scared? You will be!
Review: Belgian badmen Fanatics make their debut on Dub Damage and you'd be wise to pay attention. "Cloud Nine" is a little more stripped-back to their usual full-flavoured affairs but their well-tamed lasers are kept in check over a lean tripletty rhythm and some breath-taking graveyard pads. Looking for a little more in-your-face hype? Stick "Mariana" on and watch your whole floor get pulverised by those kicks and groaning bass. Handle with caution.
Review: Ingenuity continues to reach higher ground with his debut on Dub Damage. Two floor-focused jump-jams, "Higher" is all about the subtle jazzy harmonics, sultry vocal and knee-knocking bouncy bass. Listen closely and you'll hear an array of cheeky references with MC snippets and speed garage FX. Nicely done. Looking for more of a flattening fiasco? Jump straight on "Blackout" and watch your entire floor turn into a river dance. Mental.
Review: No questions asked, no hesitation: When Jack The Ripper tells you to pump it up, you just do it, okay? A swaggering heavily swung two-step leads the charge, a plunging bass texture adds the weight while a classic rave vocal hits the message home. Trust us, you'll be pumping all the way to bank. "Samples" switches our focus to Jack's trust dagger as his signature stabby bass and razor sharp drums draw blood on every 16... Before healing you with subverted euphoria on the breakdown. Two serious vibes, one powerful release... Pumping ain't easy yo!
Review: Dub Damage Recordings don't tend to put out music that's weak, thin or otherwise not suitable for the dancefloor. This EP courtesy of Jeopardize & Exile is a testament to that, both cuts do some serious damage and the release overall is certainly on the sharper end of the spectrum. 'Cypher' 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. Exile's remix of 'Cuntroll' is a close second and its incredibly unique concoction of swirling basses and gargling pulsars adds a wicked futuristic element. Top EP from the Dub Damage crew.
Review: It's time for us now to dive into some heavyweight drums action as Kre & Ingenuity join forces for a top notch two track selection, courtesy of Dub Damage UK Recordings, who here celebrate release #38. The pair join forces on the first track 'On Point', which is gnarly roller, packed with some sizzling electronic synthesizer extensions and sharp drum chops. This is definitely one to set the dance alight. We are also treated to a heavyweight Saxxon rework of Inguenuity's 'Higher' original, reworking the twisted bass tones and lively drum designs into a tasty box of goodness. Excellent work as per from the Dub Damage crew!
Review: BANG: Kre and his mates are back and it's more of the same absolute filth we've come to expect from the young UK bass flexor. "Shutdown" sees him teaming up with Multi-Function affiliate Freek for a crucial tech-edged riff that swathes through the mix like a samurai. Unadulterated chaos. "Toronto Blues" sees him teaming up with longstanding collaborator Basshoven for more of a groove-based funk-up that's laced with the twisted, menacing undertones the pair have excelled in previously in the past. Watch out for the breakdown as well... It'll leave you black and blue.
Review: It's been a powerful year for drum & bass across the board, with the genre showcasing its ability to remain consistent across its entirety. This latest jump up goodie back from the Dub Damage Recordings team is a fabulous way to round off the year, as Master Error first provides us with some machine gun synthesizers on the heavyweight composition of 'Come Again'. Following this, we face more behemoth bass work as the monstrous synth slaps and lively drum shuffles of 'Untold' provide us with a tidy contrast between A & B.
Review: Destination Newcastle: northern newcomers Nectax and Skantia pair up to take a side each on their Dub Damage debut. Nectax takes the lead with "Cypher", a sense-blurring groaner that tips a wry nod at the late 2000s Ram style with its width and gusto. Skantia follows with a rather trippy take on the Belgian jump up sound. Clipped and trimmed lasers cutting like razors and just the right amount of leftfield off-grid looseness to the groove, "Lazer Defence" lives up to its name in the most brutal way possible. Damagement.
Review: Here come the remixes: Dub Damage look back to last year's four-year birthday album with two barn-burning twist-ups. Annix get their paws mucky on Blackmarket and Chapo's already-stunning "USS Enterprise" by switching out the classic Urban Takeover sub rolls for something altogether eviler and sharper. Meanwhile Harvest takes T>I's stripped back stepper "Grudge Fcuk" and injects it with jet engine reese that's so wide and overwhelming you might have to have a sit down after hearing it. No messing around at all on this one.
Review: We haven't even begun to recover from his "Sonic Boom" and Syndax returns to Dub Damage with two more vitamin-enriched hurters. "Savage" lives up to its name with a strange textural twist to the heavy riffing bassline and a creepy graveyard feel to the breakdown. "Angry Man" leaves you under no illusion, either. Rasping, wheezing and screaming with aggression, it packs nothing but pure vitriol. Venom session!
Review: The Montpellier monster returns! Following his debut on High Bass Audio, he makes his debut on Dub Damage with two stinking tear-outs. "Sonic Boom" hits with an Original Sin level of energy and a bombardment of electrified drama while "Playground" nods towards the Benny L / KOTR style of bass with a bassline that drones on and on like your least favourite relative... But twice as ugly. Ready to play?
Review: He's back! Upfront returns with his somewhat aptly titled EP "The Return". Four tracks deep, for the first time in quite a long time the Scottish widow-maker is guns us down with bullets of pure gully. "Dead Night" is all about the drama with its tense riff and thundering roll, "Sc-Fi" adds a little symphonic spring to the swaggering groove and guttural bass tones while "The Return" gets all gnarly, springy and savage with its crucial alien laser bass. Last but definitely least "Going Under" concludes affairs on a deep dreamy tip that's not dissimilar to Ed:It or a young SpectraSoul. Welcome back Upfront.
Review: This is a big release, both literally and metaphorically. Sitting at 58 tracks, it's clear that the Dub Damage crew wanted to pack as many of their best moments as they possible could into the album. If you're a jump-up fan, think of this as a bit like the holy grail of jump-up and the inclusion of remixes and originals from dons like Original Sin, Annix, Turno and Sub Zero cement that fact. Aside from those legends, DJ Alpha comes through with 'The Man With The Golden Gun', a riotous blend of punched out bass synths, whilst Kre & Basshoven low-key steal the show with 'Toronto Blue'. A fat album this, and a lesson in how to do compilations right.
Review: Time for some savage lazer bass as Belgian Woodz gets his collabo on with two kindred ruffneck spirits. Teaming up with London's Yeti for "Anger", the tune lives up to its title with every rasping, angular strike. Elsewhere longstanding muck-flinger Trafalgar joins Woodz for another fittingly titled slammer "Uncontrollable" where a gnarly stab-stab bassline suddenly drops into momentary synth bliss. Vicious, furious and just a little left-of-centre, these are keepers right here.