So you think you’ve got a good ear for decent drum and bass right? The other day, when faced with this line of questioning, I was all too hasty to clarify, no. Definitely and without a doubt, no. However, I do believe that what makes good drum and bass - truly squirmy, shivery, face wrestling drum and bass - is always a case of individual’s choice. Any picks I make for this chart are a mash of repeat playlist offenders, those causing a volume dial crank on my piddly PC speakers or, more than likely, the tunes that make me do that OOOF sound in the privacy of my own room.
Don’t look away, you know the sound.
To get D&B deep on you, what makes you go OOOF on the dance floor (jungle, jungle, jungle) may be completely different to what induces OOOF when battling the tube at 7am (Hospital podcasts prevent murder). So let’s all respect the outburst of the OOOF (that’s 3 O’s, not 2) which is truly the most expressive and honest sound effect in drum and bass. I hope even just one of the tracks below result in OOOF for you this week…and if not, I hope this paragraph has covered my ass effectively as a disclaimer for personal taste.
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1. Mind Vortex
Take a deep breath and plunge in with this new offering from Mind Vortex. I could have babbled on about the good vibe of 'Colours’ (also from their new EP) but screw it, I’m feeling a face melter.
2. Mob Tactics
Gasp for Breath
Packed with energy, heaving drums and a T-rexxy bassline, Gasp for Breath is true to its namesake. This track comes at you from Mob Tactic’s second EP and was premiered by Friction on BBC Radio 1. If you don’t trust me, for god’s sake, put your faith in Friction - this is a tune.
3. Jubei ft. DBridge
These Things (VIP mix)
For the unsure, a VIP mix basically means the original artist has reworked their own track. These Things hails as my pick of the week; the vocal reeks of Shapeshifter and I am gearing up to head back home and burn on the beach to this style of sound...so downbeat chilled and so good.
4. Mefjus & Misanthrop
Just the right amount of dark trickles from this track which represents on the forthcoming Emulation LP. Stutter overlaps rapid, aggressive drum beats with chunky sounds of the tech persuasion resulting in what I think, but don't have the authoritative balls to claim, is probably neurofunk D&B.
Searching (VIP mix)
The original Searching is one of the best things to have ever occurred in music (willing to go to bat over that statement) so this VIP was approached with some trepidation…however with some extra piano and a bit of snare action, Kove has killed it with another vouch for the success of a good VIP.
6. Fred V & Grafix
Better Times Are Coming (Keeno Remix)
In true Keeno style, he lifts this already brilliant track next level with a slightly punchier, more instrument heavy touch. This is but one of the amazing re-imaginings from Unrecognisable, the entirely reworked version of the Fred V & Grafix debut album, Recognise (see what they did there).
Ragga Bomb (Teddy Killerz Remix)
Before you start throwing shade at me for big upping the brostep, take a jam on this remix by RAM’s latest signing, Teddy Killerz. An absolutely sick mix from the Russian collaborative.
8. Culture Shock
Whether it was Radio1 DJ Annie Mac busting ‘World Exclusive!’ down the microphone or the absolutely epic tune…or a deadly combo of the both - I shit you not, this produced actual chills. Drum and bass high, it’s a beautiful thing. Raindrops is coming out mid-December but you can get wet in advance at the link below...
Step Three (Hamilton Remix)
Never Say Die Records
Bass that tries to drive you off a cliff and an anxiety fuelled backbeat, all interspersed with the sound of unsheathing a meat cleaver. Sound shit? That’s probably my fault. Lay off the espresso and listen to this a few times instead– you won’t sleep for a week but nor will you regret it.
Bees Knees (feat. Malibu)
Thick and infectious, Bees Knees is a musical STI – a good thing (in this format) I assure you! Where are you? is Lynx’s first EP release with Hospital and with a trademark style described as rhythmic and anthemic, you can guarantee there are many more positive yet inappropriately worded reviews to come.
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