Recently celebrating 25 incredible years at the very top of the always-ascending drum & bass mountain, Hospital Records was formed in 1996 by long-term friends Tony Colman & Chris Goss, developing into one of the most iconic labels in drum & bass, and the wider electronic spectrum as a whole. World-renowned and with a mammoth cultural influence across the globe, the Hospital family spin webs of luxurious liquid gold from their homebase of South London, as well as anthemic dancefloor piledrivers and just about every other string of DnB you can think of - they really do it all, and they do it with aplomb. With one of the widest rosters in the industry that includes classic names like Netsky, Danny Byrd, High Contrast, Nu:Tone, Etherwood, Logistics, S.P.Y, Fred V, Grafix and boss London Elektricity, combined with nu-age talent Kings Of The Rollers, Whiney, Unglued, Makoto, Urbandawn, Keeno, Inja, Hugh Hardie, Degs, Metrik and many more, Hospital are home to a truly stunning array of once-in-a-lifetime talent. Put that alongside their concentration on synch, famed Hospitality festivals & club nights and their ‘Songs In The Key Of Knife’ publishing arm, and you can just begin to visualise how much of an industry giant Hospital Records really are. The scene wouldn’t be the same without them, and their success and ambition is truly unprecedented.
Review: It's a big moment for Grafix as he presents his first album since he and Fred V parted ways. As the singles such as 'Blast Out', 'Skyline', 'Feel Alive' and 'Come To Pass' have all hinted, it's a wide-armed eclectic affair as Grafix gets to show the world what he's all about from the most musical sing-along moments ('Save Me') to much deeper roll-outs ('Blast Out'). No matter what subgenre, each cut clearly has the dancefloor in mind but there's more to it than that - there's a real consistency in the arrangement of the album and the overall sound he's creating. A rarity in D&B, this is a very well considered and thoughtful album. Essential.
Review: The don Makoto returns to the big H with his seventh studio album 'Motion Of Change'. Featuring an all star cast of collaborators ranging from Degs to Singing Fats, Ruth Royall to Cleveland Watkiss, it's an all-out soul exploration laced with stacks of organic instrumentation and heavy dancefloor dynamics that flex from the deliciously jazzy trip to the early 2000s on 'Swing Drops' (with Rasmus Faber), the bright and breezy feels of 'Never Fade' (with Lauren Archer) and the wonderful finale 'The Best Is Yet To Come' with Watkiss. A fitting sentiment to end on from an artist who keeps refining and redefining what soulful drum & bass can be, Makoto is still on top of his game.
Review: The big H returns to its crystal ball and looks into the future of D&B with another fresh edition to their 'Future Symptoms' series. Dutta takes the lead and makes sure the benchmark is high with the twinkling, dreamy 'Set A Level' before a whole cast of exciting new-gen artists maintain the energy and exciting variety. Viridity continues to hone her unique and dynamic vocal on the introspective stepper 'The Open', newcomer Son goes back over the timeless jazzy liquid style while Hallow and Xia link-up for a beautiful finale that's so emotional it could make label mate Etherwood blush. The future's in safe hands.
Review: Regal material! Serum, Bladerunner & Voltage's Kings Of The Rollers project continues to rule the game. Their first fresh tracks this year, 'Overload' pushes us right into the centre of the dance with its skanking dubby bass bubbles and warm-as-toast vocals from the famous Sweetie Irie but the main event for most will be the second part we didn't even know we needed... 'Somebody Else Part 2'. Following the epicness of the of the original in 2019, Lydia Plain rejoins the gang for another thundering slab of D&B theatre. Emotional, surging, poignant - these kings aren't stepping down any time soon.