Tag Archives: Hip-Hop

Top 5: Lewis James

Lewis James returns with another exceptional EP this month for no less than Exit Records, and he’s notched up some superb collaborations on the record; dBridge, Alia Fresco and Lorn all feature among the five tracks on show. To celebrate, we tracked Lewis down and asked him for his Top 5 collaborations. Check it out…

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Premiere: Werkflow – Inertia (Imran Graffiti Remix)

Toronto imprint Inner City Dance bring the fiya on today’s exclusive with Imran Graffiti remixing his own Werkflow alias and flipping the jam into a luscious halftime cut that’s absolutely dripping with funk. Proper head nodder vibes…this one drops Sep 16th at all fine digital vendors.

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Premiere: Severity – Hyperghetto

Severity is back on Unchained with his second release for the label, and we’ve got the premiere today of lead track Hyperghetto! Blending footwork sensibilities into the D&B template, this one is a rapid-fire head-nodder with a hip-hop edge; maximum swagger. Release coming Aug 30th at all the best digital emporiums…

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Premiere: Detroit’s Filthiest – Funky Sperm

Something a bit unusual in the Dojo spotlight today as we present a seriously funky slice of 160 business from Detroit’s Filthiest. Merging hip-hop and funk with smooth breakbeat riddims, we just can’t get enough of this; so infectious! Look for Funky Sperm alongside three other tracks coming on Defrostatica October 19th…

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Classic Album: Roni Size & Reprazent – New Forms

When it comes to genre-defining albums, it doesn’t get much more legendary than New Forms. Propelling underground D&B into the mainstream musical limelight and snatching the Mercury Music Prize for good measure, the album delighted heads and newcomers alike, blending rapid drum programming with influences from jazz and hip-hop to form the perfect fusion of organic and electronic. Despite not setting out to make a crossover, Roni and the Reprazent gang certainly ended up with one.

Twenty years on, the album is getting a four disc deluxe reissue this month with the full original LP remastered, the full set of “Re Forms” remixes and most tantalisingly of all, a fresh disc featuring a live hardware mix of unreleased edits of the best tracks on the album. So how does it stand up after two decades? Pretty damn well it turns out.

The two discs of the original album have been given a fresh lick of mastering paint and are sounding just as exciting as they did in 1997, full of funky drum programming, enticing synths and classic hooks. Anyone who doesn’t get a shiver from hearing the guitar line on Brown Paper Bag just has no soul! The remixes don’t hold up as well to my ears (with a handful of exceptions) but they always felt like messing with perfection given the sheer quality of the original album.

The live hardware mix meanwhile is an absolute joy from start to finish; all of the album’s iconic tracks are there including some of the lower tempo beats and a number have been re-engineered to mash up originals and remixes, often to great effect. The new edit of Share The Fall featuring elements of Grooverider’s Jeep Style Mix proved a personal highlight amongst a thoroughly enjoyable bonus disc.

If you’re looking for the definitive version of an absolutely essential album then this is unquestionably it. Check out the first disc via Youtube below and hit up your favourite store to grab the deluxe package right now.

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DNB Dojo Mix Series 55: D’TCH

We’re exceptionally pleased to welcome Sweetbox / Diffrent Music signing and all-round talented bass-slinger D’TCH to the Dojo decks for our latest exclusive mix! No tracklist on this one but expect to hear the man’s own unusual productions alongside plenty of future jungle, wonky halftime and even a handful of good old fashioned 2-step rollers. Serious selections!

As always you can check out the mix via Soundcloud below or head to Youtube or iTunes to stream. You can also grab a download from Google Drive.

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DNB Dojo Mix Series 50: InDifferent

The Dojo Mix Series reaches its 50th instalment this month as we welcome Kiwi producer InDifferent to the decks! Featuring beats from his brand new Hip-hop Will Incarnate EP for Free Love Digi alongside a host of other D&B, Paul’s mix takes the listener on a journey through future jungle, halftime steppers, deep riddims and finishing up on an old school roller tip. Beats from the likes of Greazus, Thomas B, Crypticz, War, Bladerunner & Total Science inside…check it!

You can check out the mix via Soundcloud below or head to Youtube or iTunes to stream. You can also grab a download from Google Drive.

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Premiere: HomeSick – Mass Appeal

Genre-bending vibes on today’s exclusive as we present a cut from Defrostatica’s brand new Rogue Style EP from HomeSick! Celebrating the crossover between hip-hop, footwork and D&B, Mass Appeal lurches along to a fantastic swung beat as chops, slaps and snares rain down around soft, bleepy melodies. Futuristic and retro all at once, this is that crossover sound at it’s best; look for this alongside new beats from Sinistarr, Kiat and Kabuki from May 19th.

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Premiere: Tephra & Arkoze – Ascertain

Tephra & Arkoze land on Dispatch LTD with a brand new EP this month and we’ve got the exclusive on title track Ascertain. Featuring the vocals of the ever dependable MC Fokus, the track combines playful hip-hop lyricism with swung beats and some grin-inducing bassline grime for a tidy workout that keeps the energy high while avoiding the usual rolling 2-step patterns. Sick one! Hit up the Dispatch store to grab the Ascertain EP right now, with full release at all good digital outlets from Mar 24th.

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Sense MC – The Elephant In The Room [Diffrent Music]

When it comes to D&B MCs, you can count those worth hearing outside the rave on one hand (and even those worth hearing inside the rave on a few hands more…). The jump from host in the club to the true lyricism required to spit bars on record isn’t one that all wannabe microphone fiends have the talent for, but thankfully Sense has more than proven himself worthy of the task.

Many years in the making, The Elephant In The Room sees the self-described “illegitimate offspring of a scouse and a cockney” land on Diffrent Music accompanied by some of the best producers in the scene, with a plethora of material spanning D&B and hip-hop, dark and light, hype and chill. There are plenty of highlights in the uptempo region, from the coy and playful rhymes of Lynx-produced Disconnected to the aggy lyrical duel of After Dark, where Sense is joined by longtime friend and equally talented MC Codebreaker.

The lower tempo beats tend towards beauty and introspection, such as album opener Love Is… which muses on romance against an eclectic beat from Frank & Furter that brings to mind Frederick Robinson’s work. Two Planets brings in jazzy influences and rhymes on an intergalactic tip, while Just A Ride closes the album with thoughts on the meaning of life.

Descriptions struggle to do the work here justice; the important point is that The Elephant In The Room is a polished selection of songs with depth beyond the usual hype-man lyricism or catchy verses found on MC-led tracks. We’ve no doubt this is only gonna get better on repeat listens too. Check out some of the tracks below and hit up the Diffrent Store to grab a copy on digital, CD or vinyl…as they’ve been telling us for weeks, #BuyTheAlbum.

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