Portsmouth producer Kusp is someone we’ve had an eye on for a while. Through a slow trickle of releases for Authentic, Context and now Lynx’s Detail Recordings imprint, he’s slowly been carving a rep as a versatile producer capable of slinging traditional 2-step rollers and bassy halftime growlers alike. As he gears up for his debut album on Detail, we asked Kusp to give us the rundown of his top 5 halftime cuts. Check it out…
For whatever reason D&B supergroups seem to be making a bit of a comeback at the moment; whether through coincidence or design in recent times we’ve seen the emergence or re-emergence of The Levels, Bad Company, The Binary Collective and now Module Eight. It’s probably not a coincidence that dBridge is at the centre of so many of these collectives new and old either; being one of the scene’s primary innovators for a couple of decades gives you ideas that are worth sharing, one assumes.
Module Eight sees dBridge teaming up with fellow Exit contributors Loxy, Resound, Kid Drama and Skeptical for thirteen tracks collaborated on entirely online (presumably due to busy schedules and Resound’s location in Finland rather than London), and the results are impressive. If the old adage “too many cooks spoil the broth” has any relevance to D&B, apparently five cooks still isn’t too many!
Legacy feels surprisingly consistent for an album with so many producers behind the console; while there are certainly little hints here and there of each producer’s individual style, you’d struggle to put your finger on any one personality dominating any of the compositions. Guessing where one musical mind ends and another begins might prove amusing for the heads, though we’d challenge anyone to come up with any particularly solid conclusions.
Thematically the album is dark and complex, but in the refined way we’ve come to expect from Exit rather than the ADHD hyper-complexity of some of the more dancefloor oriented D&B business. Flickers of the autonomic sound shine through in places, though in general more in rhythm than tone; the lush futuristic synths of tracks like Seems Like are largely absent in favour of creepier, colder soundscapes which evoke urban grit more than future soul. There’s also more than a passing nod to the classic techstep sounds that both Loxy and dBridge helped to develop, particularly on Ghost and Legacy.
With a solid mix of dancefloor appeal and deeper sound design and texture, it’s difficult to fault Legacy, and the more discerning crowd will definitely lap this up. Check out the clips below and hit up the Exit Bandcamp to pre-order a copy ahead of the release this Friday.
We normally find it pretty tough to find space to cover free tracks here at the Dojo but we make exceptions when those free tracks are from the mighty dBridge! The Exit Records boss has apparently been in a generous mood over the last day, slapping no fewer than nine tracks from various periods up on his Soundcloud for all to download and enjoy.
The tracks include end of Bad Company/start of Exit Records-era techstep, Autonomic style cuts and two jungle tinged rollers written specially for the recent Exit vs Headz clash in London. Can’t say fairer than that can you? Check out the tracks below and hit up Soundcloud for the downloads.
Today’s classic selection comes from Riya and dBridge in the form of Seems Like. The second release in the short but perfectly formed (and massively influential) Autonomic series combines Riya’s knack for a melancholy vocal with dBridge’s synth driven explorations in 85/170BPM envelope pushing, and still sounds as rich and fresh as it did nearly five years ago. Deeper beats…
Those with their fingers on the pulse will already be aware of this, but for anyone who missed it the first lineup announcement for Outlook 2015 is out! D&B fans certainly won’t be disappointed with the selection; Noisia, Goldie, dBridge, Om Unit, The Upbeats, Enei. Skeptical, Rockwell, Mefjus, Kasta, Ivy Lab & Emperor are already on the bill alongside some of the best names in Dubstep, Grime and Hip-hop with plenty more yet to be announced.
As usual tickets are flying off the shelves so check out the official lineup announcement video below and head over here to pick up tickets while you still can!
dBridge & Kid Drama (aka Jon Convex) return with the second of their Heart Drive mixes, coyly titled Empathy Reboot. Unlike previous installment Aut0mated L0ve, this time the tracklist is kept entirely secret…we’re guessing the tunes will surface over the coming months, but who can tell? As you’d expect the mix is full of cutting edge experimental beats, ranging from dark and growling to deep and soulful. Check it out below and grab yourself a free download!
Sun & Bass continue their tradition from last year and release another stellar compilation featuring cuts from the festival’s regular DJs, with a host of big names on board. The first half of the compilation leans heavily in the deep liquid direction, with a collection of rollers and steppers from Triad, Fracture & Mark System, Seba, Alite & Arp XP and more. Tokyo Prose steal the show for me with the sublime, twinkling piano and crisp breaks of Goodbye Hands…truly a tune you could lose yourself in.
The second half of the selection sees the heat turned up with harder beats from Klute, Chris SU and Nymfo, Dom & Roland and more. Ulterior Motive turn in a strong, squelchy stepper with Fragola Invisible and Audio Habitat collaborates with Mad Vibes for a good old fashioned dirty roller. The LP closes up with a few more soulful numbers from dBridge, Code 3 and Zero T for good measure.
Check out all the beats below and watch out for the release dropping on digital from December 16th. Don’t forget you can also pick up the sublime Calibre/Paradox remix 12″ from Surus now!
To celebrate yet another epic Star Warz event as the Exit Records crew touch down in Belgium, Fracture has compiled a promo mix packed full of tunes from the likes of dBridge, Commix, Om Unit and more. Fans of the deeper side of 170 will definitely enjoy this one – check it out below and grab a free download.
The recent release of a Kid Drama remix on the flip of a Jon Convex release gave me hope that the ex-Instra:mental collaborator might be returning to Autonomic sound that revolutionized 170BPM music several years ago and then vanished as Convex and cohort Bodika went on to pursue solo careers in the realms of House and Techno.
Low and behold a few days ago a tidy new mix appeared online featuring tracks from dBridge, Kid Drama and a new collaboration between the two named Heart Drive. The spirit of Autonomic is audible throughout the mix, and it’s fantastic to hear it once more. Check out the mix below and expect big things from this collaboration.
After too many years of staring at the lineups and wishing I was there, 2013 was finally the year for a pilgrimage to Sun & Bass. Held in San Teodoro on the beautiful island of Sardinia, the festival offers eight nights of the best D&B DJs in the world. If you don’t believe it, have a gander at the lineup. Given the length of the event, this review will be split up into separate posts. Read on for part one…