A tune that still finds its way into my rotation, Judda’s Pressure Plate is an undeniable slice of quality that pulls me in every time. Gritty bass and clean percussion effortlessly coalesce to form this 2010 gem released on Modulations, Critical Music’s innovative, yet sadly short-lived, sub-label. Pressure Plate is just as fresh sounding as the day it came out – a tightly grooving stomper for those of a dirty yet refined taste.
As I was putting this write-up together, I happened to find that Judda has just released a freebie tune – a Drum & Bass rework of one of his early house tracks. I know I’ll be keeping an eye out for more developments on what might be Judda’s return to Drum & Bass…
Critical sister-label Modulations continues it’s fine tradition of putting out the less conventional end of the 170BPM sphere with it’s latest release from Bristol’s Sam Binga. AYO kicks things off with an MC-led halfstepper featuring the vocal talents of Redders over a distinctly trap-influenced beat that brings to mind Fracture’s half-time explorations in terms of drum structure, but moves off into synthier territory for the lead and bassline. The influence of EPROM and the glitchy LA hip-hop sound shines through here to give the tune real character, not to mention a healthy swagger.
Freezy keeps things bouncy and half-time but ups the syncopation, drawing on classic jungle breaks and some ghetto-tech/footwork style vocal cuts for an effortless blend of slow and fast. a hypnotic lead line and some tasty old-skool rave stabs fade in and out of the mix for extra sizzle. Lastly for the digital buyers 8 Barr ups the glitchyness with a tune that’s sure to have crowds raising a gun finger or two for the deadly subs.
Check out the tunes below and watch out for the release from October 7th on vinyl and digital.
The ever versatile Stray steps up for Critical sub-label Modulations to deliver a pair of cut-up jungle smashers! Ginseng Smash combines ’94 era jungle breaks with some heavy sub stabs and a vocal that is as weird as it is infectious, while Akina takes a few notes from Fracture’s book of production, cutting up the breaks and another odd vocal to create a seriously hyperactive juke-infused belter. Syncopation ADHD! Look out for these dropping on vinyl and Digital May 20th.
Xtrah‘s latest release for Critical sub-label Modulations is serious business from a producer who’s been making waves on labels like Subtitles over the past year or so. Set The Levels with Codebreaker on vocal duties is all grime and viciousness, with the sort of bass throbs that you can feel in your chest when you hear the song on a club system. Regain Control on the flip doesn’t disappoint either, delivering moving bass synths and a shifting, skittering beat that brings to mind some of Break‘s best work.