Review: Sub-liminal Recordings are a regular presence on these pages, their music is precise and damaging and they're back this week with a single from Agro. Timbuk 4 is a two-tracker that relies on its wavey concoctions of low-frequency movement to impress, with hard percussive knocks resting nicely underneath. 'Fair Trade' is the B-side and probably our favourite, with Chats MC doing some serious work over a very creative back end. Lovely stuff.
Too Greezey - "Fled The Scene" (feat Thunda Banton) - (4:26) 58 BPM
Agro - "Shot To Bits" - (4:16) 180 BPM
Too Greezey - "Time Traveller" - (4:28) 175 BPM
Agro - "Dumpers" - (4:38) 179 BPM
Too Greezey - "The Chant" - (4:28) 58 BPM
Agro - "Simple" - (3:39) 175 BPM
Review: Representing the vibes and history of reggae culture except with a uniquely British urban twist, Agro & Too Greezey drop a five-track testament to his ability as producer here. We've featured his music in the past and every time we do it's a devilish concoction of force and finesse, an amalgamation of ability and acumen. 'Fled The Scene' is as big as it gets, both in terms of its steppy percussion and driving bassline; 'Shot To Bits' reminds of Kings of the Rollers with a bassline that roars out the stops; title tune 'Time Traveller' combines reggae atmospherics with a rolling finesse. Sick EP.
Review: Guzi is landing on Sub-Liminal Recordings once again this week with a sophisticated and incredibly fun release, one which, if you hear out live, is certain to get you moving. There's a carelessness and a freedom to these tracks and it creates a tangible sense of kinetic movement. The title track kicks things off in style and it's 'Area 51' that really takes the cake, a winding, subby track that flips between roughshod amen junglist work and a more rolling, stripped back tip, including powerful, punchy basses all the way. It's a wicked track and definitely the highlight of the release. 'I Can't' feat. Zoner is another absolute banger but one that's deep and wispy in all the right ways, as stuttering drum lines perforate over monochromatic bassline injections. Sick!
Review: To catch a thief you need to think like a thief. And there's no better thief than an invisible one. Ones like Mentah, one of Sub-Liminal's most consistent and bad-assed artists. He scopes everything from the unseen shadows, he knows everything about you and he knows exactly what type of dark funk hitters you need in your set. Hitters like the pranged-out grunter "What's The Catch", the graveyard bare-knuckle fight with a turbine engine that is "A Strange Presence" and the spooky charm and tense build and sheet metal slaps of "I Don't Feel Well." And that's just the half of it. Heavyweight material.
Review: Mentah goes back to last years Time Space & Matter album and picks one of the track ripest for remixing. To be fair, the whole release was ripe but he's picked the rolling, grunting thunder jam "No Disrespect". We respect that decision, especially when the remixes are as good as these... Donny Jaydan gets brutal with his drums and perks up the bassline while the mysterious Lash Lams dusts off the breaks for more of a junglised slap-about. Both the original and remixes absolutely kill it. And we mean this in all due respect.
Review: Give us a big fat smile and show some teef! Nick The Lot hits our playlists once again with another hefty packet of tracks and he smashes it once again. "Over The Moon" sets the tone; groaning, trippy and full of strange samples and sounds, it's the Brighton badboy on his A-game. So is the rest of the EP from the stuttering, star-gazing twangs of "Gunshot" to the guttural bass and savage breaks of the finale "Break Out". Elsewhere things go mental on "Double Drop", "Away" bends mind with its warped bass and "Back Up" is a lesson in heavy subs and choppy drums. We guarantee you'll be on these before you can say 'petty pilfering'.
Review: Prestige is definitely one of the more talented producers out there, with previous releases on a host of other labels and his aggressive sound is back with a vengeance here. Packed with harsh, barking tones and a stripped-back, industrial aesthetic, Prestige doesn't waste any time in laying out the rules: there are none. 'A Ghost' is one of the heavier cuts, with a punching back end and an obstinate feel of solidness that reflects down all the way onto the rest of the tune. 'Magnificent' is the title tune and you can see why, with a KoTR-esque approach to drawn out basslines and tough sonics, all of which come together to round out a sick release from the Sub-liminal crew.
Review: One of the most popular labels we feature is Sub-Liminal, a wicked little imprint that puts out a diverse sound ranging from techy rollers to jump-up steppers and even liquidy numbers. This week they've arrived with an EP from RV who, across five tracks, spans various tones and styles, all of them rooted in a sense of dancefloor aggressiveness and all of them top-notch. 'Grey Matter' is a highlight, its rolling percussive line isn't the paciest but is loping and satisfying, whilst a gargling bass and sweeping reeces sit just above and inject all the force. Top stuff.
Review: Forget your daft screechy dubstep variant of the same name, Sub-liminal deal strictly in proper riddims. Wobbly riddims, fat riddims, stinking riddims, gully riddims. They have done for almost five years now, and this new Riddim Return collection is a reminder of just how much ground they cover, how many super talented darksmiths they work with and how much skin of yours their releases will melt. Highlights on this 50 track strong collection (yes, 50!) come from every angle but you'd be mad not to lick a shot from Agro & Raz on their melted bass weird-out "Ah Like It", do air trumpet to Warhead's "Cop Killa" or get wonked the heck out by Leaf's concrete steps on "Hold Up". Dig hard and take a deep breath... You're in riddim country.
Review: Warhead: Because it's always stinker-o-clock somewhere in the world. "Overdue" is one of his most accomplished EPs so far. Featuring collabs galore but running a consistent heads-down rolling sound throughout the whole release, every track is fire for the floor. Highlights include the pulverising warping bass on "Higher", the seductive vocal and equally sexy bassline on "Swerve" and the pure ugliness of the title track. Respect for Warhead is long overdue...
Review: Warhead returns to Sub-Liminal and once again it's like a riot in both your speakers, your streets and your pants. Trouble, drama, tension and pure ugliness all abound as he hurls us through the darkest corners of his psyche. Lead track "Exploritorium" is an all-out trippy groaner topped with warnings of the woes of finance from outspoken woke MC Mr Traumatik. Elsewhere "Cranked" takes us into snake-like techy roller territory, "Huh" is a harmonic riddle with a hypnotic see-saw riff, "Mucked" is pure tear-up material, all rattly and high voltage and finally "Volume" shuts the EP down with some of the gnarliest moany groany basses he's ever sculpted. Just plain naughty; get exploring.