It’s been a while since we last updated you on what’s weighing our shoulders down and, as ever, the steady pull of wax on our wallets shows know signs of slowing down. In both d&b and hip hop, there’s been plenty of top quality releases to keep us on our toes, so here’s the recent bits we’re really feeling.
Dabs- Skull & Bones (Ft. MC Kwality)/Hourglass (Ft. Mortem) (d&b)
Italian man of the moment Dabs is steadily going from strength to strength in the deeper spectrum of d&b and this twelve shows the variety and quality that underpins his discography. Skull & Bones on the A side features the gully, ragga tinged vocals of MC Kwality for a sound system killer. Tribal drums and eastern melodies kick things off before Kwality’s vocals fully drop, joined slightly later by a powerful, stepping break. On the flip, my personal favourite Hourglass is an atmospheric and brooding piece of liquid where cow bells meet sharp, menacing bass stabs underneath Mortems haunting vocals for a track that’s effortlessly captivating.
Facing Jinx- Remixes (d&b)
London based producer Facing Jinx has just released a remix package, which sees three of his strongest tracks reworked by his contemporaries on Peer Pressure Records. Wreckless takes on the 2011 track Sleep in Heaven, reworking it into an emotive minimal sound that uses the beautiful vocals, pianos and pads to introduce itself before juxtaposing them with a serrated bass line and punching drums for my stand out track. Meanwhile, Hyrogliphics bends Consumed into an amen led roller while Philth adds his take on Hungry, making excellent use of it’s melodies over skittering hi hats before launching all out bassline warfare.
Break/Detail & Tulu- Steamtrain/Days Go By (d&b)
Break continues to deliver his brand of techy dancefloor smashers with Symmetry’s 13th release, defining the name Steamtrain with his A side piece of synth science for a track that can’t help but bring out the screw face in you. My personal reason for the inclusion of this release however, is Detail’s stunning soundscape for Tulu’s sublime vocals on the flip track Days Go By. Understated, his beat is simple and sparse while creating a perfect tapestry for the vocals as contorting basslines take center stage alongside stripped back melodies.
Villem & Mcleod- Another Star/Keeper of the Sun (d&b)
Villem’s output has been top notch over the past year or so, and his latest release sees his 2012 partnership with Mcleod (they released a track called Hush together) continue for two tracks on Samurai Red Seal that are no exception to the rule. Another Star keeps things light and airy with a steady, quick break under succulent pads that slowly rise into female vocal snatches and a rolling bassline for a summer banger that will be just as much at home at the bbq’s as it will in the clubs. Keeper of the Sun stays on a similair vibe as slick melodies from pianos, strings and synths float in and out of each other before eventually stripping back and dropping back in again with another vocal snatch that adds the cherry on the cake.
Res & Datkid- Drugs, Booze & Dental Issues (hip hop)Bristol lyricists Res & Datkid, of the Split Prophets crew, show why they’re so highly tipped in Uk Hip Hop right now with their latest album Drugs Booze & Dental Issues. Over Badhabitz, Bailey’s Brown and Leaf Dog production they go in with their own brand of fast paced, rawkus flows, accompanied by some choice MC features for a raw, up front Uk Hip Hop album that will leave your neck aching. This has just come up for pre-order for 22nd July shipping and is limited to 300 copies, so head over to Suspect Packages to cop it.
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