The Hive – June 2020

The Hive returns with some of my favourites of the month that haven’t been covered elsewhere on the blog. With yet another ‘Bandcamp Day‘ earlier this month, many of my selections stem from there, and many of which are independently released by a few of my favourite producers!

Zygos – Whatchu Talkin’ Bout Us EP

Of course Zygos is no stranger to the blog. Having grown to become one of my favourite producers, it’s not just signed records that have impressed recently, but his very own self released EPs. His latest, ‘Whatchu Talkin’ Bout Us‘ EP features another three gems from the Belgian. Where the opening title track involves some of his more recognisable sounds, Zygos branches out to the vibey chops of ‘Niet’ and finishes with the dynamic, nostalgic break beats of ‘Admire‘.

Sepia – Towards The Sky LP

Future dubstep hall of famer Sepia took the opportunity to introduce an entire body of work to the masses this month, one that has clearly been a long time in the making with a lot of patience involved. There’s a lot going on throughout the thirteen tracks for it to be summed up in one short paragraph, but as you delve deeper into ‘Towards The Sky‘, so many of Sepia‘s wide ranging influences are there to be identified, all wrapped up in one big cosy blanket of his versatile and fully developed sounds. From the deep and dark, to the more energetic dance floor focused tracks, there’s something for every bass head. For me, I’m a sucker for emotional and wavy soundscapes, so ‘Bout You‘ and ‘Lonely‘ have been my go to tracks as Sepia absolutely nails the soulful, melancholic ambience.

Karnage & Rider Shafique – Facing Inner Struggle (VSD004)

You don’t have to be a hardcore dubstep fan to recognise Vomitspit‘s rise in popularity this year. Following releases from Saraphin, SBK. and label head honcho Dayzero, fellow label head Karnage teamed up with the legendary voice and wisdom of Rider Shafique for an extended EP, ‘Facing Inner Struggle‘. Throughout seven tracks, the two creatives bounce off each other flawlessly and even more so when Dayzero gets involved for a couple of tracks. Karnage‘s characteristically harsh and heavy style fits perfectly with the usual laid back, effortless vocals of Rider to near perfection. With the EP’s title track ‘Facing Inner Struggle‘ making an instant impact on the record, it’s the finale ‘Hardened Hearts’ that I’ve continued to return to, where Rider Shafique‘s timely and poignant lyricism moves perfectly over the deep dark Karnage creation.

Albion Collective Remixes (ALBIONRMX001)

Albion Collective decided to give the heads what they wanted with a release of two highly sought after remixes of original Albion released material. The Belgian label finally let loose Zygos‘ unmistakable remix of Glume‘s iconic ‘Thug‘ (ALBION004) alongside Lord Jabu‘s incredibly colourful and energetic take on Cartridge‘s ‘Cashmere‘ (ALBION011). A must grab duo.

Sabab – Fittest Of The Fittest EP (ARTKL049)

J:Kenzo and the Artikal Music gang have been linking up with Irish heavyweight Sabab for a minute now, culminating in a couple of unmissable releases. However his third appearance on the Artikal imprint ‘Fittest Of The Fittest‘, certainly set my ears alight this month. After hearing Kenzo spin the EP’s opener ‘System Skank’ on Rinse FM, I knew I had to check out the rest and I was certainly not disappointed. Whilst ‘System Skank’ still remains a favourite, the rough and tough title track ‘Fittest Of The Fittest‘ isn’t to be overlooked either.

Here’s some other releases I’ve been feeling this month…

Surreal – DUPLOC036

Continuing as one of the most active labels around, DUPLOC welcomed Surreal to their rapidly growing catalogue. The UK producer brought two radiant, shoulder swaying tracks to DUPLOC036. Whilst the piercing melodies of ‘Indian Flute‘ is worthy of a reload, it’s sister track ‘Pique‘ may well go down as one of my favourite tracks of the year with it’s unique and addictive flow.

Mesck – Digital Dust 003

Similar to the earlier Albion Collective instalment, Mesck took the opportunity to unleash two of his own shut down remixes. Whilst there is no doubt that I and many others appreciate the release of his remix of Content‘s ‘Origin‘, the power and the chaos of the highly sought after ‘Run & Hide‘ remix cannot be overlooked. The original architects Darkraqqen and Mani originally created something with serious danger but Mesck manages to mutate it into a whole different beast. And if you’ve got yourself a copy, send proof to Darkraqqen on Instagram and he’ll hook you up with the original!

Unkey – OD5/Listen (U001)

The amount of producers I’ve discovered thanks to these Bandcamp fee free days is no one’s business. Although Bristol’s Unkey has been about for a minute now, particularly with close affiliation with Durkle Disco, his latest tunes have finally caught my attention. Better late than never! For his first self released effort, Unkey hits all the fundamentals required for a couple of super deep and dark productions. So much so, I played both tunes during this month’s podcast!

Tinky – Digital Soundbwoy EP (SUBAD018)

Tinky has been on my radar for some time now, particularly thanks to his ‘Clan Of Empty Sevens‘ EP on Instigate Recordings late last year. However his latest record ‘Digital Soundbwoy‘ on Sub Audio this month matched those high standards with four tracks of his signature murky, moody sound including a great collab with Gnischrew.

If you haven’t already, I highly recommend that you check out the Weekly Buzzes that featured throughout June.
Denver’s experimental prodigy Sectra brought some of my favourites of his to Circle Vision for ‘Scheming Symmetry‘, check that out here.
I took a week to put together a list of my favourite newcomers and new discoveries for a ‘Dub Buzz’ special.
Fiend came through with yet more heavyweight material with a debut on Infernal Sounds. Check out ‘Emeralds‘ EP here.
Another flourishing Bristol producer Phossa, made a solo debut on White Peach Records with ‘Touch‘ EP. A perfect encapsulation of Phossa‘s polished sound. Find out more here.

More HNYBSS Premieres landed on the Soundcloud feed which you can check out here.

Big shouts to all the artists and labels featured on this edition of The Hive and especially to you for taking the time to check out my recommendations! Stay safe, stay at home and enjoy the tunes.

– Tom