Review: Hailing from the furthest reaches of Khazakstan, Command Strange provides us with part one of the 45th release on Fokuz. "Pushed" is a super slick stepper with light percussion, tremulous bassline and delicate murmuring vox, executed with a military precision that pushes it along for the duration. Heavy1 takes over for the next cut, bringing in MC Flava for vocal duties in "Surprise". Here, it's all about the atmospheric builds and tripping breaks, punctuated by furtive Kemo-esque lyrics and warping bassline. Fans of Survival, Lynx and the Critical camp stand up.
Review: It's quite hard to make it to a liquid D&B gig without at some point seeing MC Fava. On the lighter side of the spectrum the man is ubiquitous and rightly so, his voice lending itself perfectly to tones which pull on your heartstrings. With only his second full-length EP now arriving on Spearhead, he's teamed up with Logistics, Nymfo, L.A.O.S, Klute and Seba to bring you vocal spice a plenty. 'Transatlantic' featuring Logistics is airy and spacious, a breath of fresh air with its swirling pads and pitched-up bassline. 'We Lose' featuring Nymfo is equally top-notch, stripped-back in all the right places and with a deft sense of instrumentation, it rolls out splendidly. This is a sick EP from a top MC on big label. Doesn't get much better.
Review: Spearhead are coming out with a huge compilation that seeks to be a statement of intent for 2020, combining a load of new tracks with some of the choicest cuts from the Spearhead back catalogue. There is old school talent like Need For Mirrors, Bcee, Carlito & Addiction & Saikon, as well as recruits from the new school like Whiney, Black Barrel, Monrroe and Walk:r, all of whom have done a wicked job walking the Spearhead stylistic line between hard and soft. Need For Mirrors' 'Zxana' is the ideal example; it's stripped back and minimalist in its percussion but expansive in the low-frequencies, with a hypnotic feeling of movement and a seriously solid piece of sound design. The rest of the LP is typically epic as well, so shout out to the Norwich crew.
Review: We probably don't need to convince you of the quality of this LP, since Horizons have been calmly showing everyone how things should be done with their Dreamthief series since 2008. Pitching together to create one mindblowing collection of tunes, the likes of Gremlinz, Nitri & Release, Need For Mirrors, NickBee and Utopia Music's own Mako bring the vibes in strong. Need we go on? Not really. Should you buy this album? Almost definitely.