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Reviews: Bass


Review: Various Artists Elevator Music: Vol. 1

Label: Fabric

2-step, grime, dubstep, bassline, funky... the family tree of UK garage never stops sprouting new branches. The latest mutation to sprout up—an intriguing combination of classic house, atmospheric dubstep, and percussion-led funky—doesn't even have a proper name, so Fabric has assembled this cheekily titled compilation. Read more » 

Review: Robot Koch Death Star Droid

Just a bit darker and more deconstructed than the sounds of Read more » 

Review: Chef/Ramadanman Dubstep Allstars: Vol. 7

Label: Tempa

This double mix CD sorts out the differences—some glaring, others more subtle—of dubstep's multidirectional past, present and future. Disc One finds South London DJ Chef juggling what might be called the scene's "foundation" sound based around clear-cut D&B, jungle, and UK garage influences, leading to a 34-track hardcore maelstrom full of crunch-time wobblers by Benga, Cyrus, Distance, and D1. Read more » 

Review: Kelpe Cambio Wechsel

Label: DC

English producer Kelpe (a.k.a. Kel McKeown) works in the potentially conservative field of downtempo funk, but in his clever hands, the funk is anything but conventional. Although music that springs from hip-hop-centric techniques can fall prey to predictability as much as any other style, Kelpe repeatedly finds fresh ways to tamper with funk's templates on his third full-length, Cambio Wechsel. Read more » 

Review: The Clonious Between the Dots

Label: Ubiquity

In addition to doling out wings on a daily basis, Red Bull is gaining quite the reputation with its esteemed Music Academy becoming an official launch pad for young, innovative, left-of-center artists from around the globe. Austrian producer Paul Movahedi (a.k.a. The Clonious) is no exception. The soul-jazz combo feel of “Agenda” juxtaposed with the angular glitch beats of “Dataflow” exemplifies Movahedi’s full range of musical motion. Read more » 

Review: Various Artists Tectonic Plates, Vol. 2

Label: Tectonic

Dubstep will remain alive and well in the early '10s if the Tectonic label's latest compilation is any indication. Pinch and Moving Ninja's "False Flag" is a death march of bloody-knuckled beats and synth washes that stain the sky, while RSD's "Forward Youth" dives into roots dub's darkest depths and trawls up soot-blackened bass and toasters' voices from the grave. Read more » 

Review: Caspa Everybody's Talking, Nobody's Listening

Label: Fabric

Every micro-genre of UK dance music seems to require a producer either bold or foolish enough to step out of the madly 12”-driven scene with an LP—just think how many copies of New Forms sit forgotten on our shelves? Read more » 

Review: Shir Khan Exploited

Label: Exploited

There's a harsh truth about label best-of compilations—there's no excuse for filler. Unfortunately, at least half of this two-disc set feels like just that. Shir Khan draws from the Exploited catalog, including unreleased cuts, focusing heavily on electro-house and baile funk. Read more » 

Review: Various Artists Dødpop Vol. 1

Label: Dødpop

Skweee is still strange to many ears, but that’s a shame given all the attention wonky and Flying Lotus are getting, given that the ideas are similar—only skwee turns the synthesizer knob up to 11. Dødpop is the newest label on the Scandinavian “Conflict R&B” scene, and its output is pure genius. Label stalwarts Beatbully and Sprutbass turn in an impressive myriad of jerky beats and crazy filtered synths, all bathed in a hip-hop feel. Read more » 

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