I guess with summer around the corner everyone decided to drop tunes so they can get their holidays rolling. Let’s get it on…
Digital – Shaka Zulu/Archive – Ingredients – Out 5th of May
Yep, the one and only dub-lovin Digital is back with two new tunes on Ingredients records. You know his output on Metalheadz, Function, Reinforced, 31 Records, and a million other joints. He’d been keeping a low profile for a few years, but these two tunes mark his return in a big way. “Shaka Zulu” opens with biting cymbals and a digiridoo-like drone before rinsing out into the dub-inspired roller. “Archive” steps it up to a more dance-floor oriented track with a rolling amen and classic bass stabs.
DLR, Mako & Fields – Old Soul/Bridge The Gap – Utopia Music – Out 5th of May
Well, I’d love to share the individual audio I have for “Old Soul” and “Bridge The Gap” because the work that DLR, Mako, and Fields have done is impressive. Unfortunately it doesn’t look like they’ve uploaded any previews anywhere. DLR is flying solo on “Bridge The Gap” which starts out with writing synths reminiscent of an alien spacecraft leading to hard, short stabs as the kicks come in slowly and it drops with authority into a thundering dancefloor killer. “Old Soul” sees all three gents back to work with a fully homemade break, softer synth pads, but a growling bass line. The soul in the tune comes from the vocal sample and the second drop. All the big heavy hitters, Goldie, Friction, Break, Doc Scott, Bukem, are caning these tunes so it’s likely you’ve heard them on dub recently.
This month old podcast is the best I can do for audio right now. You can hear “Bridge The Gap” halfway through.
Lenzman/Phil Tanget – Integral Select Album Sampler – Integral Records – Out 19th of May
This is the sampler release for the forthcoming Integral Select compilation LP that features an Artificial Intelligence remix of Lenzman’s “Ever So Slightly” and Phil Tanget’s original work, “Clouded Judgement.” Integral is A.I. label that’s been around since 2007 and has a strong back catalog of 25 releases featuring some of drum & bass’ most resonant names. The A.I. relick of “Ever So Slightly” features their patented emotive play on the samples, a warm groove, and a drop of liquid funk to keep it rolling. Phil Tangent’s “Clouded Judgement is a driving track with a simple “ohhh baby” sample to start out and a 1/2 kick. A solid, consistent, driving bassline powers it for the duration. No due date on the full LP compilation release, but I would assume it’ll be this summer.
M-Soul & S27 – Cobweb/The Grief – E-Motion Records – Out 5th May
This might be my favorite “under the radar” release of the month from E-Motion Records, based outta Birmingham UK. First of all, anyone that puts “screw face” as a major talking in their press release gets major points. Secondly, the tunes are solidly produced darkside affairs from Belgian based producers, M-Soul and S27. “Cobwebs” creates a nice, eerie soundscape with a workman pads carrying spider-like synths in and out of the break. “The Grief” is like the tense build-up in a horror flick when things are being revealed about the killer’s past and we’re building towards that final confrontation…though we don’t quite get there and that’s okay.
Subgiant – Monsters Incorporated – Out 4th of June
Here’s a crazy ass video from electro bass trio, Subgiant to promote their forthcoming album on Skytrack Records. The video is a Pacific Rim-esque throwdown interspersed with jiggly booties and a wacky infomercial salesman goes through his sales pitch as the world’s destroyed around him. The tune itself is a big room drum & bass featuring the vocal talents of Titus D. You can hear more of their work over at SubGiant.co.uk.
and last, but most certainly NOT least…
CLS – Real Love/One Month – Spearhead Limited – Out 5th May
One of Spearhead Records best attributes is its ability to find and release consistently good music with every release. A lot of labels will have dips or low points, but Spearhead just keeps chucking along with top tunes and talent and this month is no exception. First up, on Spearhead Limited, is Polish badman CLS. “Real Love,” a track that builds slowly at a hip-hop-like pace before rolling out into a hands-in-the-air liquid funk joint. “One Month” has got some soul, funk, and depth in it before it kills the floor with a sick bassline. This is one of those tunes you’ll keep in the box and bust out for years.
Utah Jazz – January Silence/Endless feat. La Meduza – Spearhead – Out
Utah Jazz has made some classics in the past and he’s returning to Spearhead after dropping some hot work on Moodswings awhile back. Now these two tracks are hints from his forthcoming album, Portfolio, due this summer. “January Silence” has beautifully haunting keys tinkling in the background before the patented Utah Jazz liquid sound oozes into your ears. “Endless” features the siren song of La Meduza, calling you back to the floor with soft atmospherics and joyous, steppy echos.