Review: Following cuts on Gourmet and Trusik, Osaka's City1 makes his debut on Subaltern with three more reasons to keep him radar-locked. Hurling us into the mix with no warning, "Speak Out" takes the lead with Japanese steel licks and fire tongue truths from Rider Shafique before "Koroga" oozes its way in pursuit. All wet and wobbly, it's 2007 all over again but with a wily sense of direction that never sits still. "Zee" closes the EP in true pranged-out fashion. Off-key, warped and a grumpy bassline that harrumphs for days, if you need any more reasons to keep tabs on City1 just lift the needle and play again.
Review: Last year Burial and the Bug joined forces as Flame 1, delivering an in-demand EP on the latter's Pressure label featuring two sizable slabs of industrial strength soundsystem science. Here they return as Flame 2, once again offering up a pair of weighty dancefloor excursions. A-side "Dive" is a loud and claustrophobic affair, as the duo wraps dystopian dub bass and sparse, mutilated post-drill rhythms in layers of apocalyptic aural textures and mind-altering dub techno style processed noise. Flipside "Rain" is arguably more suitable for dancefloor plays and sees the esteemed twosome combine pulverizing sub-bass heaviness with dancehall style drums that come smothered in mind-melting effects and paranoia-inducing aural smoke.
Review: Finally. More presses of the killer 002 from Run Outs land and it's every bit as chilling as it was when they first teased us with it. "Unstable" is a meditative shimmering brew, unhurried and pace-setting while "Monolith" flips the vibe for something a little more warped and weird. Linking with mysterious producer Gisaza, they add a grumbling bassline, creepy arpeggios and sudden switches under a hazy cosmic sheen. Powerful stuff. You'd be wise to snap up on this before they Run Out again (not sorry).
Review: Uncompromised 140 magic right here as Tokyo's Helktram returns with their first full single in over two years. This time coming on Trusik, each cut flexes into a different dimension. Opening track "Suggestive Effect" hits like a pneumatic techno drill, marching militantly into your cortex with its staccato drill. "Insecure" plays the consummate foil with its glacial textures and weeping, woozy chords while "Iron Box" brings things together with a classic Coki-style pinched wobble driving the groove both back and forth in time.
Review: Having appeared on the likes of Nous Disques, Dream Eater and Collection Artaud, it was only a matter of time before London beat splicer J-Shadow's glacial, unnerving textures and sounds would find a home on Bun The Grid. With strong senses of techno and electro deep in the low-end mix, highlights include the nutty, almost breakcore style flippery of "No Gravity" the powerful technoid dirge of the title track "Embers". Loaded with remixes from none other than Etch and Danny Scrilla, once again BTG have spoilt us rotten.
Review: Chonk Mob familia Koma joins the gang at White Peach with this far-out four-piece that showcases his broadest and most considered range. "Arrival" sets the scene with big cinematic pads, arpeggiated pipes and a mood that gets deeper and darker the more you stride into it. "Missing Amsterdam", meanwhile, shows a calmer Koma as we mooch to poignant chimes in the most contemplative way. Finally, the bashy steel drum twister "Tasteful" plays the consummate pudding course as Koma and fellow Chonkster Rygby serve up the final course of this exceptional feast. Koma back soon.
Review: Last year, Dream Eater Records offered up a "versus" release boasting weighty and intoxicating cuts from both Kromestar and Ironsoul. It was something of a success, so they've decided to repeat the exercise. Kromestar handles side A, wrapping fuzzy, grime style beats and pulverizing bass in fluttering flutes, heady synth strings and dreamy chords. Ironsoul takes a totally different approach on flipside cut "Temper", an off-kilter chunk of wonky dubstep/grime fusion full of buzzing, echoing riffs, mind-altering electronics and sub-bass pressure. It's rhythmically curious, but that's undoubtedly part of the track's seductive late-night allure.
Review: Scrub A Dub dub, two men in a tub. They're called Rapture 4D and newcomer Ruda and they're making some pretty stinking noises. "Hubble Flow Dub" transmits messages to the furthest corners of the cosmic over a rumpy-pumpy bass riff while "Left Hand Path" celebrates all the southpaws of the land with an eerie theramin-led bleep mosaic. Flip for two Rapture originals as "Skylab" takes us right down under the earth's crust with its swampy, gloopy flow and textures and "Kosmos Redshift" closes us on a freaky space jazz trip. Scrub's up!