Dubstep never 'went away', it never 'died', it's always been there bubbling under the surface, seeping out through the cracks. These monthly 140BPM Bass-weight articles will be focusing on all aspects of deep dubstep, old and new, bringing you various flavors from across the globe.
1. Peverelist - Roll with Punches. – Bristol based producer ‘Peverelist’ makes self proclaimed psychedelic sound system music. His approach to production is very forward thinking, he doesn’t get tied into just one genre of music like some producers do. ‘Roll with punches’ has been a song that I’ve always held in very high esteem, after hearing it for the first time at Outlook Festival in 2011, its stuck with me ever since. It’s very deep and atmospheric, more of a dub inspired track, and features a soft flute playing throughout the first half of the song. The drop is subtle, but also weighty and bouncy, it runs smoothly alongside the flute until mid way, when the bouncing bass changes into a deep rolling sub-bass. If you head over to redeyerecords website you can purchase a vinyl copy of ‘Roll with Punches’ which was released as DRUNK005 on his own record label Punch Drunk Records. I’m really looking forward to hearing more music like this from ‘Peverelist’ in the next year as I really rate his atmospheric approach to production.
2. L-Wiz – Strength – ‘L-Wiz’ is a partnership between Claes Rosen and Ola Naslund from Sweden. They started making Dubstep in the early 2000s and after a few years linked up with Caspa and secured their first release on Dub Police. ‘Strength’ is a proper old school dubstep riddim and was released in 2006 on the Dub Police label. It starts off with a very minimalistic drumbeat that lasts nearly a full minute, then before the drop, the word ‘strength’ is spoken with a kind of distortional echo to it. If I’m being honest the drop has an almost grimey feel to it, the bass is low, sub heavy and wouldn’t feel out of place in todays UK grime scene. I vibe with this old style of deep dubstep so much, its got a very grainy sound to it. I really hope the duo release more music along the same lines as this in the future. You can check out their soundcloud and any forthcoming music they might have here.
3. Jamakabi - Hot it up (Kahn and Neek Remix) – Coming out of Bristol and having grown up surrounded by the city’s well known culture of sound systems, reggae and hip hop. ‘Kahn & Neek’ have cemented themselves at the forefront of underground music. They both have a very different and diverse sound to their production, but bring them together and the mixture of their relationship, skill and overall knowledge of music results in something quite special being created. They’ve formulated very organic relationships with a concoction of different artists during their time creating music and it shows in their productions, (Commodo, Rider Shafique, Flowdan) just to name a very small selection.
Now ‘Jamakabi’ in my opinion is one of the most underrated MC’s in grime. His whole style of MCing is so authentic and dark, "Dont let me draw for da belt buckle". His lyrics are always on point and I really hope he does more collaborations and solo work in 2017. 'Hot it up' begins with ‘Kahn and Neeks’ famous adlip ‘Yesiyah’’ and ‘Jamakabi’s’ lyrics ‘Hot it up’ repeated a few times, alongside these samples there is a dark sub heavy bass instrument slowly building up to the drop. Half way through the intro ‘Jamakabi’s’ lyrics start up very quietly and softly until the drop. This is why I respect ‘Kahn and Neek’ so much, they have a very unconventional way of producing sometimes. For instance when the drop comes through in ‘Hot it up’ its like the song has been cleaned up and cleared of the sub bass and in its place is a crisp sounding high-end instrument, almost like chimes, at the exact same time as the drop ‘Jamakabi’s’ lyrics burst through with absolute clarity. I really rate this tune and the artists in general. You should definitely go and buy ‘Kahn and Neeks’ fabriclive that was released recently, its filled with an amazing amount of eclectic underground tracks, and if you want to find out more about the artist ‘Jamakabi’ then click here.
4. Sound Control – Electrocution Dub – This creation is a vinyl release only, ‘Sound Control’ is one of the alias's for the bossman of the big bad LIONCHARGERECORDS. He creates deep, soulful dubstep that is specially crafted for real, authentic soundsystems. It starts off with one of the most haunting intros to a song I have ever heard. Then from the dark depths comes a gruesome bass noise drawing you into the drop. It incorporates various reggae-influenced sounds during the intro such as sirens, high hats and the use of a Rastafarian vocal sample just before the drop. Nothing can really prepare you for the moment it drops though. It rips through you with such ferocity and weight. It is too this day one of the heaviest dubstep tunes I have ever heard. Guaranteed to mash-up any dancefloor. Be sure too check out the VIP version of the tune that has also been released too. ‘Electrocution Dub’ is now out on ‘J-Kenzos’ notorious Lion Charge label as LIONCHG005. Go out and purchase it now, support the movement.
5. V.I.V.E.K – The Big Bang – V.I.V.E.K has been curating and crafting the sound of deep dubstep for about 15 years now and is a massive vinyl pusher. He runs an all vinyl night in London called ‘SYSTEM’ and as you can tell by the name, they don’t lack on the frequencies. ‘The Big Bang’ is a very clever piece of music. The intro includes a varied selection of instruments, that in a way, give off the feeling of space and time. Then momentarily a male vocal sample starts, talking about ‘the big bang theory’ and how it exploded into existence... ‘The universe was born’, at that very moment it drops with such impact. I really respect the way ‘V.I.V.E.K’. has represented the scientific theory of ‘the big bang’ in musical terms, he has definitely created a song that will go down as a classic Dubstep track. Look out for more forthcoming music from ‘V.I.V.E.K’ in the coming months and be sure to check his night ‘SYSTEM:sound’ on Facebook.
6. Flowdan – HorrorshowStyle (Dubdiggerz Remix) – With a career that's been going from strength to strength for nearly two decades, ‘Flowdan’ is one of the most well known grime artists in the scene. He was a prolific member of the grime crew ‘Roll Deep’ and since then has created music in both the Grime and Dubstep world. Laying down vocals for various Dubstep producers such as Truth, Kaiju, The Bug and many more. He brings a sense of authority to songs with his deep, low voice and I love to hear him on 140 bassweight. 'Dubdiggerz’ are a duo made up of Mark and Daniel from Slovenia, they produce a wide range of music genres but take a common interest in sub heavy music. This remix is exactly that. The intro is very spooky, with just ‘Flowdans’ vocals and a few atmospheric instruments here and there. Then out of no where the most vicious of bass instruments drops along side ‘Flowdans’ lyrics, almost as if its being squeezed out of the speakers with tremendous force. With this remix it just gets darker with every drop. I really appreciate the sound that ‘Dubdiggerz’ create and having only heard about them in the last year, I cant wait to hear what other releases they have up their sleeve. Now I could say I am excited for them to release this remix, however at the moment it is a strict dubplate, last time I spoke to them only they and ‘Joe Nice’ had it so I highly doubt it will get a release/be released, therefore you probably wont have it in your record bag anytime soon, (one can wish tho).
7. Sepia – Stutter – ‘Sepia’ has a distinctive sound to his music. Quality is key here and you can tell with his minimalistic approach to production, The kicks, snares and bass instruments are all so crisp and vibrant, his production really ticks all the right boxes for me. Hailing from Bristol, England, Sepia is rising quickly through the ranks of the 140bpm world having just secured a debut show at Fabric alongside some absolute bass-weight specialists (N-Type & Caspa). ‘Stutter’ starts off with the tap of a high hat and some wonky sounding bass instrument lurking in the intro, teasing you before the drop. Once that first sound of the kick comes through on the drop though, you just know its a proper steppah’s tune made for a real heavy weight soundsystem. Radar Radio have just recently invited him on to do a guest mix on the Sicaria Sound show and it went off. Be sure to give it a listen and don’t forget to check his soundcloud out. Look out for his forthcoming release in April.
8. EVA808 – Childhood – EVA808 is from Stockholm/Reykjavík in Sweden. She is one of the producers at the moment that really impresses me with regards to authenticity in her music. Her whole style of production is mesmerizing. From the instruments she uses within her songs, to the samples she’s obtained from creating and crafting her music. It all fits perfectly together. She’s had a number of tunes, released and unreleased, getting spun on radio stations such as Rinse FM and Radar Radio with a lot of very positive reactions. ‘Childhood’ is incredibly emotive, with the crackle of vinyl running through the intro and some very soft strings teasing you into the drop. After the intro a drum loop kicks in with an almost vibrated sound to it. The drop in my eyes can only be described as a wobbler, sub-bass rolls from side to side thrusting you back and fourth, and with the atmospheric percussion still running along side the sub-bass it all complements each other perfectly. Some people sleep on second drops in tunes but not me, during the main middle breakdown the song becomes calm again then just before the drop the sample ‘I got no strings to hold me down’ took from the famous children’s cartoon, ‘Pinnochio’, is uttered in a chilling, echoed way and it gives off a kinf od scary feeling. I'm super excited to hear more music from ‘EVA808’ and I honestly think with her diverse production ability this woman is going to go very far. Be sure to check out her forthcoming releases on soundcloud here.
9. Egoless – Bubble Beat – ‘Egoless’ hailing from the Balkans, creates all forms of bass heavy dubstep. He is one of the most forward-thinking operators in deep bassweight production. He’s had a large number producers and DJs spin his tunes, the likes of Youngsta and Sir Spyro (Rinse FM), Jack Dat (Radar Radio) to name just a few. With Von D on the flip of this vinyl the comparison between both riddims is really refreshing. The pace of ‘Bubble Beat’ is slow but the energy and bassweight is undisputable as the croaky sounding sub bass moans under the pressure of it all. Now this is serious sound system music and I only wish I could hear it through a real system. Its got that timeless feel to it that just doesn’t go out of fashion with 140bpm. Its just been released on the Scotch Bonnet Label as a vinyl release only, you can listen to it here. Really excited for what else ‘Egoless’ has got to bring to the musical table for 2017.
10. Distance feat Killa P - Badman – If there’s one MC that’s been making serious movements during 2016 its been ‘Killa P’. He’s had a very big year shelling down various radio sets, shutting down ridiculous shows, and releasing some of the hardest Grime and Dubstep tunes of the year (Leng, Topper Top etc). His work rate has been unbelievable and you can see through various ‘live’ posts on his facebook that the artist is always on the road, going to shows and making his sound. Being a solidified legend in the grime world is a given for ‘Killa P’, however he’s now started to delve into the deeper sound of 140bpm, lending his vocal ability out to various artists in the business. Recently he was invited down to do a set on ‘Youngsta’s’ Deep Dubstep show for Rinse FM and it was very very special.
‘Distance’ is one of the pioneers of the dark side of dubstep. He’s been creating music for over 15 years and is a pioneer of the underground scene. Badman starts off in a fragmented way, then on the intro ‘Killa P’ fills the void with some yardie speech. It drops with a subtle yet grizzly bass-line, however this is a kind of fake drop, fooling the listener into thinking its already dropped. Then on the chorus, an even harder, darker bassline drops, surprising the listener. The result? An epic track, which mixes both ‘Killa P’s' yardie vocal ability and ‘Distances’ dark production perfectly. Go out and buy this track as you need it in your record bag. Also be sure to check both ‘Distance’ and ‘Killa P’s’ soundcloud's for any forthcoming music they might have.
Make sure you check for more article's by me on grime, dubstep and anything surrounding 140bpm. I have a an interview coming out very soon with Nomine and Macabre Unit about their forthcoming grime vinyl E.P. they're releasing at the end of January, it was inspirational to say the least so keep your eyes peeled for that. Peace.