Souped Up is a London-based drum & bass label that drips with some of the fattest rollers and wobblers around. Led by D&B badmen Serum and Benny V, Souped Up have been carving their instantly recognisable bass face sound since it burst onto the scene in 2017. The forward-thinking label has so far churned out tunes from the likes of: Voltage, Bou, Dutta, T>I, Need For Mirrors, Mozey, Current Value, Levela, Ego Trippin and more. Rave favourites include Serum’s ‘Chop House’, Bou’s ‘Veteran (VIP)’ (feat. Trigga) and Bou, Simula and Bassman’s weapon, ‘Heavy & Dark’. Souped Up has a clear, colourful and unpretentious aesthetic and each release cover features a statement cartoon character. Reflecting their good humour, the label is also home to steroided-up soup can cartoon mascot, Vinny.
Review: Consummate sportsman Mozey kicks down the doors of Souped Up HQ and cries 'new balls please' as loudly and threateningly as he can while brandishing a broken tennis racket... And who are we to argue? He's rolling with the likes of Rusko and Killa P and his tunes are such high calibre they could win an open without even playing a match. Highlights include the twisted dancehall and high frequencies of 'Hands In The Air' and the dreamy-but-deadly charms of 'Disco'. You cannot be serious.
Review: Northern giant Original Sin kicks the Souped Up doors down and makes himself at home with his pals Eksman and Trigga. Summoning up all the powers of Greyskull, 'Masters Of The Universe' goes all in with a big high freq wobbly bassline while Eksman calls 999 and warns them of a new pandemic on 'Drum N Bass Fever'. Further into this hectic collection we ride to find Trigga doing the damn thing on 'Chronic' before old Sinny closes the EP with the curmudgeonly slap-about 'The Other Side'. We have the power.
Review: Souped Up continue to smash us to pieces as we skank into 2022 as they welcome Enta to the label with three absolutely explosive pieces of late night action. Everything you need to know can be felt from the moment you press play on the title track - cheeky samples, skippy breaks and a drop so booming you are pretty much guaranteed to lose all your body hair while listening to it. Elsewhere the Noisia support 'L8 Nights' is a fat bassline worm wriggling around waiting to be chopped up into smaller worms while 'Them Special Effects' frazzles your mind with textures and pummels your feet with high voltage bass. What an EP.
Review: We choo-choo-choose this! Teddy Killerz return to Serum & Benny V's Souped Up for two filthy diesel-powered rave shunters. 'Night Train' gets everyone all aboard with its full-on 4x4 dancefloor charge and rolling buffet of FX and crazy textures. 'Vibrate' follows with another vast contrast of sounds that flexes from full-on and jumpy to beautiful pianos. Teddy Killerz at their absolute finest, full steam ahead!
Review: Now rolling solo, Jam Thieves continues to hurl bassline muck around the place, this time on Serum & Benny V's Souped Up. 'Bogota' is a stripped back vocal piece with an unyielding tech-teased bassline that belongs in a high security space weapons stockade while 'Don't Kill' takes us even deeper into the jam pot with very sleek and contemporary futurist paranoia. Darker than usual Souped Up flavours but still a perfect ingredient for any sets where the wobs are heavy on the gaf.
Review: Rusko gets his gaf on the wob AND tells us to pipe down in the process... This is life in late-stage capitalist 2021 - strange, off-kilter and straight-for-the-jugular. 'Shut Ya Mouth' takes the lead with some expertly controlled wobbles and an unrelenting break, 'Real Badman' strips back the drums and brings in a little Clipz style gruffness to the bass tones while 'Your Time's Up' carries a whole sledge of old movie samples and bassline so low-slung it's enough to scuff knuckles at 50 paces. Speak now or forever shut it.
Review: Gear them now! D*Minds return to Souped Up with more fruity ruffage. 'Charlie's Sheen' takes the spicy Hollywood actor to gully new levels with a stern Hazard-esque barking bassline and a sense of tension running throughout while 'Riddem' goes full-on barrel business with an expertly rattling snare and ballistic style bass scuds flying all over the place. Classic D*Minds carnage.
Review: Tik-Tok terrorist, shampoo advert superstar and all-round donnie Mozey returns to Souped Up with four more outstanding slap-abouts. 'Shrugs' takes the lead with its hornets nest bassline and skippy drums before 'Night Buzz' gets busy over a rattling snare and big bulbous sub plunges. Elsewhere we see him link arms with bossman Serum and stroll to the chemist for some foot ointment on the early 2000s Zinc style roll-out 'Trench Foot' before 'Waiting Room' sends us all off to purgatory on a big bag of nutty harmonic basslines with no ETA on when we'll be let out. Party on.
Review: Would you like to play a game? Rohaan would, and he's waiting for you in the Souped Up mansion games room with an array of outstanding pursuits and pastimes. 'Let's Play' reads the rules clearly with its hurricane synth stabs and sudden beat switches, 'Laser' then rips up those rules with its spiralling euphoric cascades and sudden drop into Armageddon while 'Stuck In A Memory' goes all stampy and throws the board off the table in a fit of drama and poignancy. 23rd century gamesmanship.
Review: Two of the most exciting acts around right now have collaborated on this single, as Bristol's The Sauce make their first appearance on Souped Up alongside label founder Serum. The drums are tight and head-nodding, and the basslines are expansive, choppy and full of the not-serious mentality that makes this such a great label. It's the b-side, 'A Truck Load', which really stands out from the pair, as a relentless yet subtly composed bassline barrels through the middle of the track with a feeling of pure inevitability; of course these two acts will make something this good, and of course it will blow your socks off. They wouldn't have it any other way.
Review: Man like Dutta returns to Souped Up with four delicious servings. We kick off with the title track 'Tokyo Drift', a sprightly, shimmering number where the bassline too's and fro's beneath Bone Slim's stylistic bars. It's backed by three more dreamboat jams; 'Explode' hits with a divine house-style piano hook, 'Bag Drop' gets a little murky for the sticky fingered massive while 'Middleman' closes the EP on an introspective jazzy flex. Drift away...
Review: Original Sin - the man, the myth, the machine. Few artists have attained his pedigree and weight in jump-up and here he is reminding us why. Two collabos, two solos: 'Shaolin Fist', with Serum, punches with both artists' weight as their basslines almost fight each other for our attention while 'Headshot' goes right back to the G Dub days with its rasping bassline but with added fire from the one and only Eksman. Meanwhile on the solos, 'Automaton' takes a deeper, darker tearing approach with a series of wobbles echoing out over the distorted bassline and 'King Kong Style' is just pure marching-to-war music. Buckle up bub.
Review: Lynx isn't a name that we would immediately associate with Serum & Benny V's Souped Up label, but the long-time producer and owner of Detail Recordings has used his experience and diversity of sound to come out with an absolute corker of a single. 'Rap Dude' has been produced in tandem with fellow Detail artist Kusp, and the pair have come out with a frantic number that wraps a wallowing bassline around a catchy sample, a tried and tested formulae for clubland euphoria that works incredibly well here. The flip is a Lynx-only production with one of the sickest beat patterns we've heard in a long, long time; a stomping percussive display of pure force that grabs you by the scruff of the neck and doesn't let go. Serum and Benny have flipped the script once more.
Review: Souped Up are always innovating around their tried and tested formula, and this EP is from a young artist the team have been pushing hard: Mozey. He's got four tracks here and all of them are wonderful balances of funky, synth-wave patterns and jagged dancefloor destruction, with Serum, Carasel and Current Value injecting that little extra into the mix. 'Simmer' with Carasel is a proper stomper, with a stepping percussive structure beneath a call-and-response format of shuddering stabs and shimmering, shivering synthetic screams. We love the bright, analogue funk on the introduction to 'Flirt', which creates an atmosphere of approachability far removed from its bassline's tendency towards spasmodic barks and gruff shouts. 'Lady Petrol' is a straight jump-up banger, and its position as the title tracks gives away the mission here: dancefloor pressure. Oh yes.
Review: Dutta is back, using his force to compel you to pull ugly bassfaces and throw your drink with an EP that doesn't hold back. Its not the kindest on the ears but then again it's not supposed to be, it's a monograph in hard-hitting sonics and dastardly tones. 'The Box' feat. MC Bassman is undergirded by a booming snare drum and percussive clarity, but the action happens in the steadily melodic but still raucous bassline, a pitched-up monstrosity of dancefloor proportions. The others feature more big sounds, with emphasis instead on forward movement and gruff, no nonsense textures. Another sick EP from the Mancunian on one of the scene's the best labels.
Review: Just when dnb was beginning to look a little less of a sausage fest, along come Ego Trippin with a whole can of wiener whoop-ass. Frankfurter by name, Frank Butcher by nature, 'Hot Dog' doesn't suffer fools gladly with its brusque breaks and a high freq harmonic riff that'll slap you down if you start taking liberties. 'Dub Plate', of course, pays homage to the crockery that all superstar DJs eat their meals off when they've hit the top league. You haven't been sent yours? Better start cutting more mustard then mate...
Review: When Bassman and Serum invite you to 'The Terrordome' you don't RSVP on nice frilly paper, you don't say 'yeah defo mate' but actually think 'I'll see what else is going on before I decide', you don't ask 'who else is coming?', you don't have to get your mum's permission. You just go there and you soak up whatever hell and tarnation the two monsters are cooking for you. It might make you screw up your face, it might make you shout a rude word or two, it might make you lose your trousers but that's life in the Terrordome and you are most definitely invited. Comes complete with the equally savage tear-up 'You're Coming With Us' with Ego Trippin where Bassman reveals what theologians and philosophers have wondered for centuries... What happens when we die?
Review: Tina Turner had steamy windows. Jilly Cooper writes steamy novels. T>I makes 'Steamy Rollers'... And he wants you to get all hot and sweaty by them, too. Coming at us courtesy of the steamy soundboys at Souped Up, each cut hits so hard you'll lose your undergarments within seconds... Those early Die style slinky bass hums on 'Jungle', those sultry guitar twangs and horrendously murky bassline on 'Paper Clipz', the twisted funk and slow burning build of 'Front End' and the riotous finale 'Steptrolasis'... All designed to get you so hot under the collar you'll disown clothing for the rest of your life. Body heat crew - this one you!
Review: Put some money in their hands! Bou and Trigga's already massive 'Veteran' gets the VIP treatment and it's finally ready for us mere mortals. Classic Bou roughhouse bassline funk, signature story telling from a true Manchester OG, delivered on one of the most on-point labels in the game right now; there's a reason 'Veteran' hit the spot so succinctly in the first place. This VIP makes sure the spot remains hit for a long time to come. Start with your lyrics, sing for your song.