Archive for September, 2010

Dubstep 2010 : the Update

Posted in Review on September 28, 2010 by joeki2000

So 2010 is again nearing its closing stages. With only the fall and winter releases left, I figured it was time for another update on the essential releases of 2010 so far.
I’m only going to focus (briefly) on some of the big plates out there. There is a lot more music that needs to be discussed but I’ll recap that in two or three months time elaborately in the end of year feature. So here we go for now focusing on the bare essential (in alphabetical order!)

Addison Groove ( aka Headhunter ) released an essential plate on the new big label Swamp 81 (run by Loefah). His juke (a chicago-based 160 bpm electronic music genre) inspired dubstep on the Footcrab / Dumbshit 12 inch conquered many hearts. It’s not hard or dark, but extremely danceable and is a welcome breeze within the dubstep sound.

Burial also has a new essential track out. It was created some time ago though. I’m talking about the Commix – Be Tru (Burial remix) of course.  It appears on cd format on the Re:call to mind CD (along with remixes from D-Bridge, Instra:Mental, Pangaea and many more). The single sided plate is available separately on twelve-inch though. One of Burial’s most ambient works to date.

No list is complete without mention of Digital Mystikz of course. Mala provided the first double LP (with another announced featuring Coki later this year). All six tracks are solid old school atmospheric dubstep with a fat sub underneath. Indeed Return II Space is essential material. My personal favourite on this one is Living Different with its melancholic touches and intricate sub bass rhythms.

For the dark half-step lovers, there was plenty of action on Distance ‘s Chestplate label. It featured some of his excellent own productions ( Beyond and No Warning stand out). But Tunnidge was also added to the roster and his twelve ( 7 breaths / fear ) is as good as half-step dubstep is ever going to get.

Icicle is a new player on the 140 bpm thing. He has made a flawless transition to this new genre though. His twelve on the Shogun Audio label ( Xylophobia / Minimal Dub )was no small feat. But he delivered his best performance on the Tempa Allstars Volume 6 compilation with Anything being the standout track on there.

For the melodic / Deep heads, there was much rejoicing as well. Late ‘s new two-part EP called The Phantom Papers brought out the best in ambient and UK Garage influences and merges those with the heavy subs of dubstep.

Pinch proved he still runs things (his Tectonic label also saw a slew of good releases) with the eagerly awaited release of The Boxer. The flip side contains a very tasty Darqwan remix as well.

Experimental heads will find a lot of comfort in Stringray313 ‘s debut release for Irish label [Naked Lunch]. Originally a house/techno oriented producer, these influences shine through in the Sphere of Influence / Sentiment plate. But there’s also beautiful ambient melodies and drum & bass rhythm’s present. Varied release indeed.

A new label in town is Boxclever. Its debut release featured the return of Synkro Reservoir is a very dark track that hits several levels, while the flip side ( Just Say ) features more traditional garage infested dub in true synkro style.

I will review some of the full-albums in the near future!