MAGIC MIX

Bass Music . Future Beats . Nu Garage

WEEK STARTING 29 Sep

Genre pick of the week Cover of Chimes by Hudson Mohawke.
Hud'Mo returns with the ultimate trap banger! You might recognise ‘Chimes’ as it's used on the latest MacBook Pro advert, which premiered in the UK on primetime Saturday night television. The perfect spot for it, obviously, as it's become the most Shazamed advert in the world since its international roll out. ‘Chimes’ features raindrop-like synth chimes, who-let-the-dogs-out style gruff man barks, a trumpet fanfare and heavyweight trap-hop riddim that will be shaking a set of car boot subs near you soon. 'Brainwave' sets the choral vocal presets to ethereal and anthemic, getting the little grey cells aquiver with some frenzied prog synth work on top. Keeping things in the rock arena, 'King Kong Beaver' is another surefire stadium monster, dropping ELP-like keyboard bombast over crunching breaks. Closing the EP DJ Gammer gives 'Chimes' a hardstyle makover.


Midland's non stop assault on sweatsoaked basements, mainrooms and radio playlists continues unabated with this latest stormer on Aus, which picks up right where the Graded boss left on the recent Autonomous Africa release. "Duster" kicks the EP off in style with its balanced combination of shuffling percussion (dusty hats included) and warm analogue bassline ensuring the floor's packed long before the string led breakdown. "Reflex" offers a seismic mix of bass led house and African rhythms, carefully decorated with blasts of static and a trembling lead line. The EP closes on a moodier vibe with the detuned synths and dubby rumble of "Pitch Shift", a late night bass weapon which is already a favourite for Benji B. With Jamie XX playing ‘Reflex’ on both his recent Boiler Room and BBC Radio 1 Guest mix, this release is sure to be an ever present on discerning dancefloors this Autumn.


Swamp81 launch their new sub label 81 with this four track EP from Swamp dweller Mickey Pearce. 'Jam 01' combines a chest-rattling kick with machine gun snare rat-a-tats and a harsh 808 snaps for a perfect dubstep / trap intersect. 'Instructions' has loose, almost jazz-like cymbals flying over a double punch dubstep rhythm which evoloves with the nastiest, most insistent synth line. 'Loop For D' sounds like a recording of an augmented Victorian automaton - steam punk future (retro) beats anyone? Lastly 'Jersey' throws down the funk, rolling out a swinging break, rubberised, elastic bassline underpinning eerie synth wash atmospherics and slurred vocals.


Having gone overground with his self-titled debut long player back in 2011, all went quiet on the SBTRKT release front soon after, leaving us waiting three years for new original material. His recent interim release of three instrumental ‘Transitions’ EPs joined the creative dots between the first and second albums, giving us pointers on what to expect next.

'Wonder Where We Land' traverses the current landscape of electronic post-dubstep / bass music, taking in the upbeat and downbeat, with minimal piano soul, house, synth-pop and hip hop used as points of reference along the way. Longtime collaborator Sampha continues his journey as main vocalist here, with Jessie Ware also reappearing alongside a wider spectrum of guests that includes Caroline Polachek (Chairlift), MCs Raury and A$AP Ferg, Vampire Weekend's Ezra Koenig, Koreless and newcomer Denai Moore.

Opening with some experimental Wurlitzer weirdness, the bass drops into the subtle atmospherics of pianotronic ballad  'Wonder Where We Land' featuring Sampha, who also lays his fragility on 'Temporary View' and 'If It Happens'. One of a smattering of instros, 'Lantern' rides the arpeggiated synth-heavy Purple wave. 'Higher' offers a minimal trap groove while Raury speeds through his rap, taking a breath to sing the massive chorus hook. 'Look Away' is a fractured glitch-pop number complete with Autotuned vox by Caroline Polachek. The acoustic piano meets machine music theme continues on 'Problem (Solved)', which has Jessie Ware sounding sublime, and jittery Denai Moore-sung 'The Light'. Coming across like a Chemical Brothers future festival anthem 'New Dorp. New York' has Ezra Koenig icing the cake. The album closes with Ferg from the A$AP Mob freeforming over bombastic synth-fest 'Voices In My Head'.


Having gone overground with his self-titled debut long player back in 2011, all went quiet on the SBTRKT release front soon after, leaving us waiting three years for new original material. His recent interim release of three instrumental ‘Transitions’ EPs joined the creative dots between the first and second albums, giving us pointers on what to expect next.

'Wonder Where We Land' traverses the current landscape of electronic post-dubstep / bass music, taking in the upbeat and downbeat, with minimal piano soul, house synth-pop and hip hop used as points of reference along the way. Longtime collaborator Sampha continues his journey as main vocalist here, with Jessie Ware also reappearing alongside a wider spectrum of guests that includes Caroline Polachek (Chairlift), MCs Raury and A$AP Ferg, Vampire Weekend's Ezra Koenig, Koreless and newcomer Denai Moore.

Opening with some experimental Wurlitzer weirdness, the bass drops into the subtle atmospherics of pianotronic ballad  'Wonder Where We Land' featuring Sampha, who also lays his fragility on 'Temporary View' and 'If It Happens'. One of a smattering of instros, 'Lantern' rides the arpeggiated synth-heavy Purple wave. 'Higher' offers a minimal trap groove while Raury speeds through his rap, taking a breath to sing the massive chorus hook. 'Look Away' is a fractured glitch-pop number complete with Autotuned vox by Caroline Polachek. The acoustic piano meets machine music theme continues on 'Problem (Solved)', which has Jessie Ware sounding sublime, and jittery Denai Moore-sung 'The Light'. Coming across like a Chemical Brothers future festival anthem 'New Dorp. New York' has Ezra Koenig icing the cake. The album closes with Ferg from the A$AP Mob freeforming over bombastic synth-fest 'Voices In My Head'.

FORMAT INFORMATION

2xLtd CD Info: Deluxe 2xCD edition in gatefold sleeve. Includes 6 bonus tracks.

2xLtd LP Info: Deluxe 2xLP edition in gatefold sleeve. Includes zoetrope picture disc (plus zoetrope card insert) with 7 bonus tracks.

T returns after a mini hiatus, his latest offering "Shake That" is a tasty four tracker enlisting help from Shadow Child and J Bevin. It's T riding solo on the title track though, "Shake That". This is a funky as f**k UKF / bassline number with lashings of swing and groove which should find it achieving massive crossover potential through the genres. A catchy hip-house style rap comes present and correct and all in all this is sure fire club dynamite! "Bahia Repluse" is another solo effort, straight up 4/4 with grime inflections on the instrumentation and drums, especially the eski-esque gliding bassline. Williams is joined by Shadow child on "Want You To", one of those tension-release tribal numbers that pairs long drum sections with big, spine-tingling breakdowns before dropping right back into the pocket. Cleverly, splicing a piece of classic club history into the mix while doing so. "Dreaming ReRuff" concludes the set (featuring J Bevin), a high grade soundsystem banger resplendent with luminescent keys, fat-ass bass and looped up vox; with a drop bigger than the Grand Canyon. Presha!

‘Decadubs 4’ is a vinyl-only companion-piece to ‘Hyperdub 10.3’, the latest CD in Hyperdub’s ongoing series of birthday-marking collections. Following on from the label’s first two 10th anniversary compilations, the third act represented in ‘10.3’ transects and extrapolates forward the Hyperdub catalogue from yet another angle, this time following the melancholy vapour trail drafted by Burial's numerous atmospheric beatless moments. This EP tunes in to those 11 new moments of downcast ambience that comprise half of the CD’s complete content, resulting in over 40 minutes of hitherto-unknown audio which squarely shoulder their “Extended Play” billing. Formed tangentially to Hyperdub's main agenda of basstrax for the floor, these mini-soundtracks for films-to-come reinterpret the idea of dubtraction. Instead of merely reducing a vocal melody to echoed or reverbed vestiges, here is trace-music reduced to gaseous residuum, free of drums and often basslines, leaving only synthesised, sampled or looped textures that might hang fume-like, or rotate frictionless as mini cyclones, travelling from warped, hi-def interludes to citric synth jams, from hazy devil mixes to fleeting, blue sax solos, terminating at an eight minute modular flatline. No pulse, No heartbeat.


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