The Chestplate family continues to maintain it’s position as integral in the dubstep scene. With Distance’s two-part (Part 1/Part 2) ‘Outer Limits’ EP concluding mid-March, District takes the lead with 031 and puts forth three cerebral productions, each complimenting that signature Chestplate sound. ‘Roy’s Theme’ is an immediate hook with the contemplative synthery (<— made up word) that guides your ears through a tip of the hat to Bladerunner, and what could easily serve as scoring for the 80’s sci-fi film. A calm and gradual mood progression prevails through means of minimalist percussion and hypnotizing sub-bass notes, both resting beneath a sea of brooding pads that dish a pensive grasp on open ears. ‘Aftermath’ follows suit with respect to the deep space vibe – sirens and ray/laser guns drenched with delay and reverb – while adding more percussive energy with the deployment of more pronounced hats and a far more acute and aggressive snare. District’s masterful ability to warp and twist bass sounds from scratch makes subtle but potent appearances throughout the track. ‘Tempest’ is my persy off the release. The most powerful and energetic of the seemingly patterned progression observed in this release, District takes a neuro/techno approach with a clean and fluid bass construction that resembles early acid influences. Again, the desolate and dissonant synth leads carve a soundscape that evoke vivid imagery of fictional battlefronts and despondent victories.
One last thing to mention that I know will brighten some of your days up – as it did mine when I heard the news. Many of you were disheartened to hear that Chestplate was discontinuing the cutting of vinyl for their releases. Rest easy, as I have solid word that this is no longer true and while being more selective, the release of Chestplate sound on our cherished (for some of us) medium will continue. Be on the look for the CHST032 from Los Angeles based producer, Mesck, signaling the first signing of a US artist to Chestplate and Mesck’s first release that will see a vinyl.
I hope all is well with the fam’. I wanted to take some time to highlight the most recent chapter from Mindstep Music, coming from Belgian producer, Digid. Already maintaining a healthy release catalog with imprints like Warriorz and New World Audio, Digid follows up on Trashbat’s ‘Hanako’ EP in a strict dub vein. It’s really nice to see labels like Mindstep pushing an eclectic spectrum of sound rather than isolating their reach within the bounds of a particular offshoot/sub-genre – something that I strongly believe will provide an upper-hand for Mindstep’s longevity in today’s market.
The ‘Dub 2 Bablyon’ EP features seven tracks, three of which are ‘Dub’ edits of the EP’s primary tunes ‘Positive Vibration’, ‘March 2 Babylon’, and ‘Righteous Soldier’. Halfstep rhythms, horns, and a lush array of delay compliment the hefty degree of sub-weight that Digid has put forth in this superb collection of digi-dub. Have a listen below and enjoy the soundboy elevation, compliments of Digid and Mindstep. Available exclusively through Juno until the 10th of March, at which point it will hit all major digital retailers. Also, make sure you snag the whole album to receive the ‘Dub’ edits, as they’re not available individually.
The next installment for the TUBA gang comes from Manchunian, Compa. Still fresh off his debut release with the formative Deep Medi imprint, Will returns stateside for the release of his next three beats (2 Vinyl + Digital, 1 Digital Exclusive), marking his second appearance with TUBA (his remix of Prism’s ‘Future Samba’ featured on 006). 007 is yet another testament to Compa’s intricate sound design and plunging sonic explorations. Each of the three tracks radiates with a dark and meditative vein, harboring feelings of somber splendor through means of ominous atmospheres and warm sub-work. Have a listen below and mark your calendars.
With its recent campaign of #bridgethegap and communications with the FatKidOnFire collective, it will be very interesting to see what label boss Ric has in store for TUBA in 2014 with regard to release schedule and other extraneous endeavors. Anywho, that’s it for today – I’ll catch you soon.
The signing of this release has been doing jumping-jacks through the underground for the past couple of months (maybe only a month, I have no concept of time anymore). After each of the tunes were first aired with Mikael’s TRUSIK feature a couple of months back, there has been an uproar of anticipation among deep-paletted listeners across the globe. This statement is bolstered by the marking of Innamind’s first 12″ 180 gram plate, and the pre-orders on Innamind’s Surus store selling out twice already. Granted, there was a very limited number placed for pre-order, but still, that says a lot about the release! While I’ve been following LAS for some years now (2010 I believe is the first I heard from him w/Desto on Black Box), Mikael I had never heard of prior to TRUSIK featuring him. I’m not sure how the two crossed paths, but if I believed in any nonsensical ideas of “fate” I would say these two were meant to make music together. Their styles on an independent basis are strikingly impressive, but more notable is the seamlessness in which their sounds compliment each other, culminating as one of the most refreshing output’s I can recall since the over-saturation of dungeon plagued dubstep. Quick note: I say “plagued” not because I am displeased with the cavernous and dark aesthetic of that particular offshoot, but because lets face it, there were way too many songs coming out sounding formulaic and there was lull in innovation. Obviously these thoughts can’t be blanketed for the scene in its entirety because there were always innovators, but as a general whole that is how I feel/saw things. Now, back to LAS & Mikael. The warmth in their productions is what immediately hooked me. Their production resonates on more of a human level with me than much of the electronic music coming out of recent. While modern engineering has paved avenue for the biggest, deepest, crispiest, and flawless sounds to date, it at times has neglected the feeling of slight imperfections and nuances often only experienced as a result of the human touch/experience. The nostalgia when listening to music that evokes these associations is something I cherish nowadays so I find solace in the music of those who are able to replicate it.
Have a listen below to the previews and make sure to be quick on Monday if you want to purchase this 12″ – I suspect it will fly off the shelves very quickly.