Archive for the Review Category

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!

Untitled! May Edition Review

Posted in Review on May 11, 2010 by joeki2000

The 2nd edition of the Untitled! dubstep one-nighter took place yet again last weekend. It seems each time the line-up is getting more impressive. Ticket prices have rise each time the line-ups get bigger, but for 15€ you get a night’s worth of the biggest UK names, a good venue and solid organisation. For me this remains the main dubstep event in Belgium.

We arrived at the venue later than expected. Police had the neighbourhood on lockdown and I was stopped twice for substance check. Fortunately, I’m a responsible driver . The place seemed less packed than last time around which was actually a good thing. A full house but there was still some skanking space available.
I arrived in the main hall just as Starkey (US) was laying down his first beats. His set was everything I had expected : very varied with a lot of attention to funky and hiphop inspired dub.  Him rinsing out his own big tunes (Rain City, Stars & Fidelio amongst others) was of course a big plus. All in all, a good set to start off the evening : not too aggressive and enough attention to proper mixing. It has to be said Starkey is also quite the podium presence : very energetic to say the least.

One of dubstep’s godfathers, Kromestar, was up next. I was really looking forward to seeing him at work for the first time. The man who gave us dubstep classics such as Coca-Cola, Kalawanji and many more, constituted a complete change in style from the previous DJ. Slow, heavy and murky tunes made up the first part of the set. The first skanking highlights were set. The second half of the set upped the tempo and aggression level a bit.  Indeed, the build-up and tune selection was quite ok. But the man clearly had a few too many drinks.  Perhaps I overlooked some technical difficulties, but in my opinion the mixing was quite poor at some times. Also, not playing earlier mentioned classics was a bit of a let down. The pace and tone for the rest of the night was set though.

Bristol’s main purple man Joker was probably the biggest name of the bill this time around.  He also lived up to the expectations. The typical Bristol style was present throughout the set, with a few London sound escapades (tunes by skream amongst others). The place went off during Tron and Purple City. Joker was also on the game with mixing, double dropping bombs everywhere. Great experience and a flawless performance. I’ve also rarely seen the crowd this active at events (probably the best atmosphere since the party moved venue to this bigger place).

It’s almost unbelievable, but N-Type upped the levels even still. It was big anthem time and the mixing was at hyper  speed whilst still almost flawless. I had trouble breathing at times because one big tune followed up the next at an unbelievable pace. N-Type is clearly one of the best DJ’s out there (evidenced by his mixing of Dubstep Allstars Y and Rinse 9).  Anthems released this year (Gravity, Seerious VIP, Sweet Shop VIP etc.) were followed by mad dubplates. One of the best performances I’ve seen in the past years (along with Skream and Mala to name a few).  For me N-Type was the highlight of the night. Kromestar didn’t seem to bother as he wandered around the stage drunk out of his mind occasionally mumbling something through the mike. He can be forgiven because he is a badman after all.

Trolley Snatcha was the big surprise for me. I had expected a filthy chainsaw dub set. Sure, some of that was present, but again some near flawless mixing and a good selection of other tunes really made up for that. And of course, tunes such as The Future, Cirkle K and We Rock The Forest do bring the crowd alive, which was still very much alive and kicking at 5 am. Pleasantly surprised by this man!

The good line-up, which lived up to expectations, and the good crowd response made this for me one if not the best editions in the new venue. Some flaws have become apparent though : the venue is much too light. Big lighting set-ups are impressive for d&b or other genre’s. But when it comes to dub, a little darkness once in a while doesn’t hurt. But that’s my only remark really to a very good night out.
See you next edition!

Also : here is a compilation movie I made from the night :
It includes tunes performances from Kromestar, N-Type and Joker and has tunes and dubplates from Joker, Doctor P, The Others, Kromestar amongst others, enjoy!

Untitled! Compilation Video by myself!

Dubstep : March Full Album Reviews

Posted in Review on March 23, 2010 by joeki2000

It’s been a busy few months concerning dubstep. Here is a little update to keep you informed on what’s been moving about in bass country.

Full Albums :
A few essential full albums, a format that is  clearly gaining in popularity within the ‘scene’, have been unleashed ‘pon the masses already. Here are the ones you should keep your eyes peeled for :

Breakage – Foundation (digital soundboy)
Breakage is one of the hottest artists in dubstep right now. 2009 was a very constructive year for him with a few album teasers, regular twelve’s and remixes released on various labels including his own Digital Soundboy Recordings. But with this full album he really has come forward and nestled himself at the forefront of the dubstep massive.
A few of the dance floor classics released in 2009 ( Hard feat. David Rodigan & Newham Generals, Higher, Run ‘Em Out feat. Roots Manueva etc.) reappear on this full length. But it doesn’t stop there. Foundation and Olds Skool Ting see Breakage reconnect with his drum & bass roots in an enjoyable fashion.
A few more wonderful collaborations ( Vial feat. Burial, Speechless feat. Donnae’o and Over feat. Zarif) make this a very complete and essential full length. My secret favourite though, is the intro track Open Up which is trademark Breakage stuff and will fit in almost any kind of set. The man has also proved he can handle the pressure of performing live and I thoroughly enjoyed him at Untitled! February edition (browse site for event review).

F – Energy Distortion (7even)
F has been a steady value within the techno/cross-over spectrum of dub for the last two years. But this first full length is surprisingly more uplifting than his previous releases. Indeed some tracks even edge towards ‘funky’. A healthy dose of teched out dubstep remains the main ingredient though.
The main pieces on the album are also the stand-out tracks. Energy Distortion was released earlier as a teaser (with an amazing Untold remix on the flip) and Spacewalker was also available on vinyl earlier this year. Hidden gem on the release is the funked out and spacey Shift which merges the styles of artists like Scuba, SYNKRO and  Hyetal. Another interesting and new take on F‘s sound is the track 0907, arguably the darkest track on the album with heavy hints to artists such as Martyn or 2562. Another essential album if you ask me.

Scuba – Triangulation (hotflush)
Scuba is another artist working in the techno/dubstep cross-over field. He is also a guarantee for quality (see his previous full-length, A Mutual Antipathy, 2008). The heavy and obvious synths and melodies of the previous full-length have gradually made way for a more subtle approach. The beat section is both clinical and complex.
Three Sided Shape
and Glance merge solid beats with subtle melodies ever so effortlessly. Lights Out takes a slower approach but the complexity of the soundscapes is staggering. Minerals is the exact opposite as the rhythm of this track works in a hypnotizing fashion. Finally, there is still room for experimentation on this album, as So You Think You’re Special touches drum & bass ethics with female vocals added to the mix. Not a single weak point on this album and yet again an essential purchase for 2010.

Various Artists – Deep Medi Releases Vol. 1 (deep medi musik)
This is the first collector CD for the deep medi musik label (run by Mala of course).  Volume 2 to follow later this year. For anyone who’s been into dubstep for more than a few years, none of these tunes will be new. Most of them are out of print classics so this is the perfect occasion to finally get your mitts on some dubstep legend. Disoc Rekah, Kalawanji and Changes need to be in everyone’s discography. Long forgotten classics such as Dally and Babylon timewarp by Skream‘s brother Hijak also make an appearance. And finally, Goth-Trad‘s first two releases for the label are also included. I can’t wait for volume two featuring my favourite Deep Medi release : Geddeon/ Face Melt by Tunnidge. Deep.

Vex’d – Cloud Seed (planet mu)
Three or four years in the making but finally it is here : the follow-up to 2005’s Degenerate. It’s better to let this beast of an album just speak for itself. If you aren’t familiar with Vex’d, get on them now. Essential piece of dubstep history. The bass and epic soundscapes will not be for the faint of hearted though. Perhaps this new album though, is just a little bit more accessible than its predicates.
Take Time Out feat. Warrior Queen is a shaky start to the album in my opinion, but after this it’s all goodness.
Slug Trawl Depths brings the intricate and trademark Vex’d onslaught. The soundscapes of Oceans teleport me into far and unknown realms. Out of the Hills is a sober yet perfect blend of all the influences that have shaped this duo’s sound over the years. Dispositions feat. Jest even merges hip-hop successfully  into the mix. There’s also a new version of the classic track Killing Floor to be enjoyed.
Other than the aformentioned highlights, there’s still plenty more : a collab with Anneka ( who herself is quickly rising through the dubstep ranks) for one is a very interesting undertaking.
The album really is a journey into the crushing depths and epic peaks of dubstep’s history. Again, essential purchase.

Out, hope you enjoy it.

Untitled! February Edition Review

Posted in Review on February 21, 2010 by joeki2000

Another edition of Belgium’s finest dubstep one-nighter is again behind us. This time the Untitled! crew had set-up a varied night with a major headliner to top it off : Caspa. Indeed, it was the first time the event had sold out at the doors (or at least the first time I can remember and I’ve been to a lot of them). The stage was set for another raging night of dubstep.

We entered the venue when resident Hijak was setting himself up to play. Last time around, he had treated us to a nice set filled with beats and breaks in true jungle/2 step style. This time he stuck with plain good old-fashioned dubstep. It was a very consistent set : hard and dark with the an anthem or two, three creeping in to make sure the crowd kept their fullest attention. Indeed, crowd appreciation was there and personal favourites of his set included Skream’s – What did he say? and Doctor P’s – Sweet Shop (which was rewinded only once, I will explain below why I mention this now…).  Hijak always plays a very decent supporting set and today was no different. Kept my fullet attention.

Breakage was the man I came to see. His new full length, due next month, is shaping up to be the album of the year. His 2K9 productions and remixes too were some of the best around. In a sentence : Breakage is the man of the moment and untitled’s booking of this guy was just perfect timing. Breakage did pack the big tunes for this event. Sometimes the flow disappeared a little from his set as he experimented with genre’s a bit (which was to be expected from a top-tier DJ, keeping to strictly 140 tunes can get boring). I’m not a big favourite of ‘Riverside’ or some of the other earlier rave songs he selected.
His mix of Nero – Innocence into Giant – Drumstick had to be one of the moments of the night for sure though. He also unleashed plenty of his own dark low to mid level steppers onto the crowd (‘higher’, ‘hard’, ‘together’) and he got some deeper tunes in there as well (‘over’ & ‘someone’ remix were personal favourites).  Great set and great vibe.

Caspa up next then. Not a big fan here, but some of his harder tunes can even get me going. Indeed, some of the dark mid-range squelchers he churned out were well worth it. But overall, the mixing was poor. The amount of rewinds was rediculous and generally there was very little flow in his set. Most of the crowd seemed to love it though, I guess I know who they came to see. Not me though. If I consider all untitled! events I’ve been to, or just big dubstep nights in general, I was perhaps least impressed to date with this performance by such a ‘big’ name. Oh yeah : the triple rewind of ‘Sweet Shop’ (vip?) almost made me go home in frustration.

Fortunately, Tes La Rok more than made up for these flaws. This was a dubstep set right up my alley. I was afraid Tes would play too much Jamaican-influenced dub but I was very wrong. A straight-forward, hood-on-head skank fest unfolded before me. And without a single re-wind. Great flow, great tune selection, great set. I was truly impressed by him (or maybe it was because Caspa was dissapointing?)

Brussels main crew, The Grimelock, finished off the evening for me. Great stage presence, some good tunes were rinsed and the lads were genuinely having fun on stage. Grimelock crew, much like Hijak, is always good decent dubstep.

After that we, the HD-Alliance (check us out on facebook haha) called it a night. A bit disappointed with Caspa to be honest, but I really enjoyed Tes La Rok’s set (burned a lot of calories during this one hehe) and Breakage had some amazing tunes. I will be seeing him again in April along with Mala (yes!), N-Type, and Kryptic Minds (double yes!). Oh, the next line-up looks daunting again : Joker, Kromestar, Trolley Snatcha just to name a few.

Out! Recorded video’s on my youtube account as usual

http://www.youtube.com/user/jeroenvanloo

Dubstep 2010 : January Reviews

Posted in Review on January 25, 2010 by joeki2000

We are still only in the first month of the new decade, but already some established names and labels have released some interesting releases. A quick review of some of the early 2010 releases.

Hyetal & Shortstuff – Don’t Sleep / Ice Cream
Martyn – Hear Me / Seventy Four (remixes)
Starkey – Rain City / Beatingz
VA – Sub:Stance mixed by Scuba

Hyetal & Shortstuff – Don’t Sleep / Ice Cream (Punch Drunk)
Hyetal was one of the best new artists to emerge in 2009. Several of his releases received attention on this blog too. For Punch Drunk it was a big year as well with several big twelves and two full albums. Shortstuff had a slew of releases out last year as well on Ramp recordings and sorts. The three combine for a festive and funky kick-start to the new year. The A side, Don’t Sleep, is not one of my favourite tracks. It’s synthy riff like structure has Shortstuff written all over it. Indeed, the melodic quality of the tune is not my problem. It’s the rhythm that’s not up my alley. At 130 bpm’s it doesn’t quite persuades me into invading the dance floor. The AA side, Ice Cream is what it’s really about on this one.  The synths in this track are ridiculously infectious and the rhythm edges more towards traditional dub. Deep house subbass emerges in the background as well. This track clearly carries Hyetal’s stamp which becomes more apparent as the song evolves.  Funky and indeed a new direction for Punch Drunk.

Martyn – Hear Me ( Zomby rmx ) / Seventy four ( Redshape rmx ) (3024)
The original  Hear Me featured on Martyn’s 2K9 full length (see review on this blog). It was one of the strongest tracks on that album.  A remix of a strong track is always a risky undertaking. Indeed Zomby’s remix is not without its flaws. The track starts very recognisable with crunky sounds in the background. Trademark Zomby style.  But when the rhythm section cuts in, Zomby’s earlier rave style comes through. At first this mid pace rhythm comes off as a little awkward to me but as the song progresses I appreciated it more. An interesting remix but it doesn’t top the original for me. Redshape provides a minimal techno remix of  Seventy Four on the flip side. Some nice attention to melody here.  Both tracks handle the vocal bits of the original tracks very well.  All in All, the AA side is the more successful undertaking, if you’re into (minimal) techno that is.

Starkey – Rain City / Beatingz (rwina)
Starkey has the first major tune of the year under his belt with Rain City. It sounds like a dub and electro cross-over to me. Normally I loath electro as it is bland, cheaply produced and too repetitive. But coupled with Starkey’s melodic and glitchy approach to dub, this becomes a very solid tune. Great melody and rhythm and probably one of the better tracks of the year already. Beatingz has a trademark Starkey vibe through it with more wonky and glitchy vibes backed up by a solid bass. The only thing about this release that bothered me is the opening minute to this track which is a bit skipable.

Sub:Stance Mixed by Scuba ( Ost Gutton )
Scuba had another decent year in 2K9 with some solid releases on his own hotflush label and a remix here and there. But a lack of real standout tracks was a bit disappointing (except for maybe the Aesaunic EP). He returns early in 2K10 with this splendid mix CD on German label Ost Gutton.  The mixing is as good as it gets and the track list is excellent. It mostly consists of what I call borderline dub. With contributions from Sigha, Pangaea, Joy Orbison,  Untold and Scuba himself, he has managed to insert some highlight tracks into the mix that thus also becomes genre defying. The feel of the mix  constantly shifts  from dub techno, to house to garage and back again. In the latte part of the mix there is a little more room for anthem-style dub (the wonky goodness of Joker or the rhythmic masterpieces of Mala) but don’t expect any straight forward dub in this mix. Recommended if you want to explore the fringes of dubstep and stay away from the more straight forward dance floor wobble.

Cheerz, see you next time.

November Dubstep Update : Full Albums

Posted in Review on November 18, 2009 by joeki2000

After a little break, I decided to return to writing with a little dubstep update. I’ve decided to zoom in on some of the full albums that have been dropping in the recent months. 2009 really has been the year of full albums I suppose as more artists than ever have chosen this medium over the more traditional single and EP formats. And with good reason. Full albums might not be the appropriate format for mixing and DJ’ing, it is the appropriate format to answer to the rising demand of dubstep. As usually, quality and variation sprout from this process. Here is a look at some of the full albums that have coloured the year so far. With only one month left in 2K9, this will also serve as an introduction to my upcoming ‘End of Year’ feature which will have an elaborate section devoted to dubstep of course.

2562 – Unbalance (tectonic)
Dave Huismans’ (aka 2562) debut full length album, Aerial, was a perfect synthesis of Bristol inspired dub/garage and (minimal) techno. It was a very accomplished album that also had a few big tunes on it (Techno Dread). I was less pleased with this sophomore album. It has more swirly rhythms and has less of a direct dubstep sound to it. The techno elements have also been reduced and it feels just that little bit abstract. It is no surprise that the single, Love in Outer Space (out on tectonic), is probably the best thing this album has to offer. It still is about 50% two-step and 50% techno/house so it keeps a middle ground that will appeal to a bigger audience than the rest of the album does.

Boxcutter – Arecibo Message (Planet Mu)
You will find plenty of Mu releases in this list. Boxcutter’s effort, though in my opinion one of the weaker ones out on Mu, still deserves mentioning here as it is a daring and experimental effort at retracing the history of dub into one single album. Analogue synths, guitar pedals and delays herald a new direction for Barry Lynn on this album. Loads of rave influences, two-step and even deep house shows the variety of this album, but it just lacks that little craftmanship to set it apart from many other releases.

Cloaks – Versus Grain (3by3)
You can find the review of this album on this blog (browse the archive section or use the search function) so I will not go into details about this album here.

Clubroot – Clubroot (Lo-Dubs)
What an amazing debut album this is. It’s not very renewing indeed. All influences are easily recognisable. There’s a big chunk of Burial in there (or garage in general). Sections influenced by drum & bass dj’s like Ed Rush & Optical make an appearance as well. Dark dubstep bass, present on earlier releases by iTAL tEK etc. form another key ingredient. But all this is brought into a perfect mix suitable for home listening. Don’t expect dance floor crackers on this album. But it’s a very ambient and moody listening experience. One of my favourite albums of the year.

DFRNT – Metafiction (lo-dubs)
DFRNT’s debut full length is a nice mixture of dubstep rhythms, ambient features and typical dub techno harmonics much in the vein of  artists like G.R.I.T., Quantec (who also contributes a remix on disc two). It’s not dance floor dub, but it’s surely an amazing listening experience and the opening track Wake Up is a true gem. Not all content on the double CD is of equal standard, but overall it will be worth your money. Some big names contributing remixes as well (SYNKRO, iTAL tEK,…).

Falty DL – Love is a Liability (Planet Mu)
One of the years early releases, this one has stood the test of time. The opening track Human Meadow should be enough reason to acquire this. The rest of the album doesn’t quite reach that quality (except for maybe Winter Sole or Dyonysis). It’s atypical dubstep with a lot of garage, deep house and even electro mixed into it to form a unique mixture. He’s also one of the most essential non-UK producers of the year in my opinion. (check his 12″ on Ramp Records!).

Kryptic Minds – One of Us (Swamp 81)
One of the contenders for full album of the year. Broody, dark and atmospheric dubstep, sounding quite old school (no compromise on the bass). In fact, Kryptic Minds are one of the artists of the year as far as I’m concerned, and this killer album is probably their best piece yet. The quality is not just in the singles (Six Degrees) but every track has some section or part that is worthwhile. And the entire cd is just such a cohesive final product. Can easily listen to all of this in one go. Great album.

Legion of Two – Riffs (Planet Mu)
More action from Planet Mu. LoT are duo from Ireland who have made the switch from heavier industrial productions (like Scorn) to the dubstep playing field. It’s a decent and very dark work, unfortunately the single featured on Marry Ann Hobbes’ Wild Angels (And Now We Wait) is probably the most impressive track.

Martyn – Great Lengths (3024)
Review featured on this weblog, use the search function or click on the ‘review archive’ to find it.

RSD – Good Energy (A Singles Collection) (Punch Drunk)
This isn’t exactly new material. It contains all the singles from RSD on one disk. Which still makes it an essential buy (not just for Punch Drunk Records fans like me). It has all the big tunes from the past years (Jah Way, Speeka Box, Pretty Bright Light, King Fisher…) and adds the 2009 12″ + a few bonus tracks. RSD combines heavy bass perfectly with Jamaican riddims and even techno. One of my favourite producers.

These are the full albums that have coloured my year so far. Yes I’m aware I’ve missed out on Silkie – City Limits and a few others, but that particular album will see a seperate review soon, as for me it is the best dubstep album from 2009. In the next edition I will make some room for Mixed releases and releases by Various Artists (for example, 5 Years of Hyperdub, Dubstep Allstars vol. 7, Wild Angels,…).
See you then .

Untitled! 3 year Anniversary Review

Posted in Review on November 9, 2009 by joeki2000

Yes, another edition of untitled! was held this past weekend. 3 years of Untitled! parties were celebrated on friday night with an impressive line-up, the likes of which Belgium has rarely seen.

Digital Mystikz (Mala & Coki) are arguably the most influential artists in the scene with their DMZ label and parties in London.  Pinch has his own renowned label (Tectonic) with some of the strongest releases out this year and is known for his darker and epic sets. Noah D has the party anthem of the year under his belt (seriousss!) and untitled! was the first stop on his European tour.  Headhunter performed a live set (only the second time in Belgium I believe) with visuals. On top of that, we had residents Hijak & Dice & Kastor providing the resident beats. Science are a new up and coming talent from Belgium and were given a shot at closing the event.

Due to an appearance at the local DJ contest (which was won by the way by our local D&B/dubstep heroes Triple C crew (myspace.com/tripleccrew)  we arrived a bit late so apologies to the resident dj’s for missing them. We were just in time to hear Headhunter’s opening beats.
I had seen his life act before (I believe in February when supporting The Bug) and was very impressed with that set. Not long before that, his Nomad LP had dropped on tempa records so the set was filled with stuff from that great LP and some darker tunes (for example from the recent Kryptic Minds Album).  On this occasion though, there was a lot more emphasis on techno influenced dub. Maybe there were some technical difficulties in the beginning of his set but he messed up his opening two mixes I believe. But I’m not one to judge, especially if it’s a live set. After that things smoothed out. Personally, I enjoyed his set. All credit to the man, but I quite enjoy this style as a warm up for the nastier stuff.  ‘Prototypes’ remains one of my favourite dub tunes out there.  The visuals were cool but not essential.  Also, they work a lot better in a very small enviroment of course (which was the case last time I saw him.)

I was very much looking forward to seeing Pinch. Some of his early releases on Planet Mu are what made me fall in love with heavy bass music. There were no real surprises for me as to the quality of the set and the tune selection. Murky and heavy on the sub bass.  Opening with a VIP (?) version of my favourite dubstep tune of all time (‘Rolling with the Punches’) instantly grabbed my fullest attention.  After this I slipped into the party zone for the next several hours.  My only regret is that he didn’t rinse out some of his own tunes. ‘The Punisher’ (another one the best tunes ever) was probably hoping for a bit too much but I did have my heart set on ‘Attack of the Giant Robot Spiders’. Better luck next time! Great performance.

Digital Mystikz are legend. Everyone knows this.  Their records, sets and parties are all essential. It was with much regret that I quickly realised that it was going to be a Mala solo performance.  We had some of the crew dressed up in Spongebob t-shirts and everything (the plan was the bring a large spongebob doll to the party and hand it to Sgt. Pokes, good thing we didn’t bring it in the end.) But Mala just flat-out nailed it.  It was hard, intense and the tune selection was monsters. Loads of dubplates that sounded absolutely bonkers. VIP version of  ‘Changes’ too. It was so intense that I only recorded a single movie during the entire set (look for the link below).  I am not sure yet, but perhaps for me this was the best set I have heard all year (and I’ve heared quite alot this year believe you me).

Hijak was up next providing an intermezzo with jungle tunes from yesteryear. Great break after such an intense set and great time to show off the old dancing moves. Loads of things going on in the venue too with flying balls (this was probably during Mala’s set I don’t really remember). and exploding ribbons and free stuff. Great vibe in there and to everyone who left : Your Loss!
On a side note : people : you’re supposed to knock the balls backwards into the rest of the crowd and not slap it straight back  onto the decks…or atleast that’s how I perceived it.

As much as I enjoyed that break, I couldn’t wait for Noah D to get on stage.  It was worth the wait because Noah D too hit all the right buttons.  VIP version of Serious! and the Untitled! anthem from The Others (forgot the name…) set the room on fire. That thunderous Skream! dubplate also does it time and time again.  The crowd response was great during Noah D. See the movie below.  That’s all I can say really.

I was ready to leave after Noah D , but then Science went on and opened with I think was a VIP version of Breakage – ‘Higher’ , a tune I also always put in my mixes and this convinced me to stay. At first, the mixing was on the slow side but It felt like they speeded it up as the set went along. Great tune selection (am I right when I say they were the only ones that actually played ‘When I look at you’?). And so again we stayed untill the very end. I think we can expect much from these youngsters in the future.

Coki not showing up, it has to be said, was a big disappointment. But after that set from Mala, I can’t say that I’m feeling disappointed right now. The set probably wouldn’t have been much different with Coki anyway (it couldn’t have been much better either). Noah D was a great addition the line-up and I hope the rest of his tour goes as well as the opening party. With Pinch I got what I expected and Headhunter (though not all of the crew agreed with me here) was a great starting act for the evening.
The only real bad thing is, that the next untitled! won’t be until February. But already looking forward to it.
Great night out.

Links to movies :
Mala at Untitled!  Link

Noah D at Untitled!  Link

I still have a movie from Pinch too and a lot of stuff from some of the previous editions (and some d&b stuff too) which I Haven’t got round to uploading yet. I’ll do it as soon as I can anyway.