This month has flown by! Lets check out some of my favourites from April…
DPRTNDRP – Enkai / Bantu (CRUCIAL022)
We begin with two of my favourite tracks of the year so far by Italian outfit DPRTNDRP. I’ve been begging for the release of ‘Enkai‘ for some time, catching my attention in a handful of mixes and podcasts with it’s minimal yet seriously rough and tough construction. For the track to get a release on the future legendary label Crucial Recordings and to be matched with the equally neck breaking ‘Bantu‘, it was certainly a treat. CRUCIAL022 is a well deserved high profile release for the Italian crew who’ve been in possession of some of the hardest dubs around for some time.
Distinct Motive – Radar EP (DDD048)
There’s no doubt Deep Dark & Dangerous is currently the label to feature on. However I’ve found the imprint’s intense schedule to be a little overbearing recently, where their regular releases have unfortunately seemed to have gotten lost in the pile. But maybe that’s just me. With that being said however, Distinct Motive broke the trend this month with this massive four tracker ‘Radar‘ EP, the Canadian duo’s second EP on the label. They knocked it out of the park on this one with four productions that went right across the spectrum; trippy wobbles and old school vibes on ‘Radar‘, heavy mid ranges and percussion on ‘Itchy Fingers‘, teeth grinding power on the minimal ‘Loose Pimp‘ and catchy plucky melodies on ‘Crazy‘, a popular sound in the genre right now but done to perfection.
Rygby – Consignment EP (WPR040)
There seems to be no stopping Bristol badman Rygby right now. All cliches aside, following lasts months effort on DUPLOC, his latest EP ‘Consignment‘ on White Peach Records might be my favourite of his thus far. Throughout WPR040, Rygby proves he has some of the most interesting sound design and unique styles in the game. He demonstrates his love for the delicate celestial melodies he’s become known for on ‘Consignment‘ and ‘Suckerpunch‘, whereas he takes a deeper turn on ‘Non-Commital’ with a dark rumbling bassline. The concluding track ‘Esoteric‘ is certainly that, the trippiest ride and the most dynamic of dynamic tracks on the EP. It’s also worth noting his self released ‘Grime Rave Tools‘ EP that was made available this month via his Bandcamp. No rest for the wicked!
Glume – Thug VIP + Remixes (ALBION004.1)
It’s always refreshing to see a label push the boat out and do something different. For Belgian label Albion Collective, their latest instalment involved bringing Glume‘s ‘Thug‘ back to the label but this time with the VIP treatment, a track that enjoyed a huge response upon its public unveiling. On the flip, ALBION004.1 also features two equally massive remixes of ‘Thug‘ from FLO and Mr.K, plus a FLO ‘repaint’ where the Slovenian producer takes the tune into a different dimension. Try to pick a favourite, you’ll be there for a while!
Ago – Above EP (IMRV027)
Numa Crew staple member Ago returned to Innamind this month with a mammoth six track double EP ‘Above‘, loaded with some of his finest cuts to date. The Italian heavyweight brought multiple long time dubs including ‘Dragon Love‘ and my personal favourite ‘Deer Dub‘, plus some brand new finely crafted material perfect for the sound system. You can always count on Innamind to sign and put together the finest releases, but this one really went up a level in terms of putting out a well rounded, well crafted product regarding quality of productions, track listing, run time and artwork.
3WA – Black Marsh EP (FAV011)
I understand 3WA has been putting out some fine material for some time, but it’s only recently that the Portuguese mastermind has consistently appeared on my radar. His latest effort on Foundation Audio is a perfect fit with the label, producing four heavyweight tracks made for the sound system. He covers all avenues when it comes to low end designs, from the stomper ‘Protect Your Neck’ to the wonky and wobbly ‘Blackbird’ and dance floor friendly ‘Black Marsh’. He concludes the EP with ‘Glory’, a more minimal piece with interpolating throbbing subs and mystical vocals cooling the atmosphere.
Here’s some more releases I’ve been feeling this month…
Flo – Timewalk EP
Slovenian beat guru FLO put together a special self released EP ‘Timewalk‘. Six wicked tracks available from his Bandcamp including a super slick remix from Nova.
Cluekid – Mistik World / Bunn Da Sensi (IFS014)
It was certainly a welcome surprise to see the veteran that is Cluekid return with two long time dubplates on Infernal Sounds, a label that’s currently snapping up a lot of sought after dubs. And when you get two heavy weight dubs on wax, you make sure it gets the artwork it deserves to match, so big up Emily Dayson on the beautiful illustrations.
Jook – Flying Nimbus EP (S7S009)
Jook put on another masterclass this month, bridging the genres on Sector 7 Sounds with ‘Flying Nimbus’ EP. The release consists of four perfectly executed grime and dubstep cross overs. You don’t need me to tell you that the title track is one of the toughest tracks of the year.
HOST – Blaff EP (ESCAPE003)
UK multi genre producer HOST is one of my favourite recent discoveries, putting out solid productions ranging from half-time, DnB sounds to the trappier side of the spectrum with some subtle dubstep influences thrown in for good measure. His latest release on another favourite discovery, multi genre label ESC, heads down dark trappy alleyways with plenty of texture and character.
Wolf Camo – Giving Up The Ghost EP (WC001)
The dark twisted mind of Wolf Camo has been creating ferocious visceral productions for a while as a member of Calgary’s bass music collective Noctilux. However it’s only recently I’ve come to appreciate his art in full. Better late than never! For his latest self released EP ‘Giving up The Ghost‘, Wolf Camo takes you on one of his dread inducing tours of deep caverns filled with experimental sounds and frequencies, not for the faint hearted.
Various Artists – Polar Bear LP (Chord Marauders)
I’ll finish by including this gem of a compilation LP on Geode‘s label Chord Marauders, entitled ‘Polar Bear‘. The release features fourteen tunes from an array of talented producers across the spectrum, from Sub Basics, FLO and Ago, to Congi, K-LONE and Geode himself. The proceeds go to a meaningful cause also, so definitely worth copping if you haven’t already.
My free download picks this month –
Mungk – Catacombs (Anubis Audio)
Aztek – Forbidden (Dank ‘n Dirty Dubz)
OSCO – Phanotm (Siege Collective)
As always, don’t forget the Weekly Buzz!
One of my long time favourites Mesck featured on Encrypted Audio with two massive tracks on vinyl. Check out ENV020 here.
The following week, Honey & Bass regular Zygos worked his magic yet again with three haunting tracks on TRUSIK. Find out more about TRUSIK006 here.
I took the last week off this month so the final Weekly Buzz in April went to AxH & Gremlinz with their four track collaboration EP on the mighty Boka Records. Check out BOKA051 here.
In addition to all of that, I went in depth on SkintDisco‘s masterful ‘Uno Bish‘ EP on Silent Motion Records for the latest edition of ‘Spotlight’.
And finally I had the honour of premiering a track from B-Say‘s new EP ‘HUSH!’ on Badman Studios. I also wrote a few words on that. Check it out here.
Big shouts to all the artists and labels who featured on this months edition of The Hive and especially to you for taking the time to check out my recommendations this month!