Optical - "What's The Difference?" - (6:56) 56 BPM
Ed Rush - "Medicine" (Matrix remix) - (6:10) 169 BPM
Review: What's the difference between a killer and one of us? We'll tell you; killers produce genre-defining weapons that are still in demand over 20 years later. Rated as one of Optical's best long lost dubs, "What's The Difference?" has such a perfect balance of shades and textures; at once disarmingly deep and brutally heavy it remains in a league of its own. Matrix's timeless remix of another chapter-galvanising era tune follows suit with a brand new remaster. Still as iced-out and pranged as it was in 98, this is a straight up history lesson of the future... And always will be.
Review: 20 years deep and still way ahead of their time; Optical's "To Shape The Future" was a perfectly fitting title. Alien, unnerving and uncompromised; if you were lost in space, this would be the soundtrack. "Raging Calm" follows with its concrete breaks and spooky jazz textures that nod heavily at the foundations of Detroit in both sound and atmosphere. Finally we have Optical's brother Matrix with beautiful ambient composition "Undersea Flight". All remastered, all relevant, all reminders of where we were heading when the very idea of 2017 seemed like a bizarre, far-away concept.
Review: Yes: Ed Rush & Optical are still at it, almost twenty years on. The drum and bass vanguards still have it too, executing their darkside futurism and bass science on the underground. The sick laboratory experiments are documented in all their perverse glory on No Cure, their sixth album on their very own Virus Recordings imprint. The title track (featuring the rhyming talents of longstanding collaborator Rhymetyme) comes tearing out of the speakers like a dark horse galloping through the dark. The jittery "Falling Down Stairs" trips all over itself but with such grace; its breakbeat finding itself and locking together again with the bass eventually. But if you ask us, it's all about tracks "Angry Birds" and "Nemesis", true steppers which nail that classic Virus sound that still sounds as fresh as ever. Ed Rush & Optical: accept no substitute.
Review: This V recording re-release is more than a little bit special. "Funktion" has been a sonic benchmark for D&B producers since the days of pirate radio and cassettes; totally encapsulating the sound of a specific moment in time and yet somehow managing to still sound fresh and s exciting as it ever was, Ed Rush & Optical's classic roller is a must-own for any self-respecting producer, bedroom DJ or casual drum and bass fan. Created at a time when their Virus sound was still being honed, as they went on to transform D&B, they proved conclusively to be two of the most important people in the genre. This release isn't optional - it's essential.
Review: A banger from 2003, this classic gets a huge rerub from London producer Prolix on Ed & Optical's Virus label. Already on top form after his Scourge EP, his take on "Get Ill" is just what the doctor ordered - a huge and hectic killer that adds gliding synths by the bucket load to make it an absolute destroyer. Backed up by the Dyke and the Blazers-sampling "40 Channels of Funk", this is yet another essential slice of Virus.