Regular readers should know we’re big fans of the vinyl format here at Dojo HQ; in an age where music has become increasingly disposable, a well produced and curated slab of wax stands as something slightly more tangible than the ever increasing slew of digital releases. Of course it sounds cracking too!
Enter Swiss label Demand and their new vinyl EP series, Requisites. To quote their own press release, “every release symbolises one particular requisite that you’d evidently need to rock the so called black gold”, starting with the obvious; headphones. It’s clear that the Demand crew hold vinyl in as much esteem as we do, and everything about this release from the artwork to the tracks themselves suggest this is a labour of love.
On to the music, and we’re treated to a diverse array of tracks from artists mostly familiar from the label’s back catalogue. Phil Tangent and Phase both turn in respectable deep but edgy rollers that are well worthy of your attention, but the limelight falls elsewhere for us. EastColors and Tiiu team up for a super deep and moody outing on Naked Skin, synths stalking through the track as Tiiu’s delicate vocals shimmer above a sparse beat.
Perhaps the best of all though comes from the super team of Big Bud, RoyGreen, Protone and Dual, who join forces to deliver blissfully laid back vibes on Gospodi. Taking a few notes from the Calibre playbook without resorting to cheap imitation, this one just grows on us more and more with every listen. Hypnotic stuff. Check out the clips below and hit up the Demand Store to grab a copy right now.
Russian producer Andrey Burtaev has been making his mark on the D&B scene as Electrosoul System for a decade now, honing his craft with releases for Fokuz, Subtitles, Spearhead and more. His latest venture sees him turning in his second full length LP for Med School, and it’s a bit of a treat.
The first thing that struck me upon listening to the album was the detail and depth of the tracks; despite all being firmly drum & bass material and all being relatively DJ friendly in structure, there’s no laziness in the production, with every bar imbued with the minor variations that elevate a track from club fodder into something worthy of repeat home listening.
There’s also a variety in the album which somehow doesn’t spoil its cohesion as a body of work; every track sounds related to the last, but the influences and styles that went into the melting pot are wonderfully diverse. Picking favourites on such a strong record is tough, but the frenetic FX chopping of 8th Dimension and the serene, rolling breaks and jazzy licks of Past Time Cruiser stand out in particular.
Overall this is another strong contender for album of the year in a 7 month period that has already seen incredible full lengths from a number of artists both big and small. Check out the clips below and hit up the Hospital Store to grab a copy on CD, vinyl or digital; the album drops Jun 29th.
RoyGreen & Protone touch down on Demand Records with a new EP showcasing varied sounds within the 170BPM spectrum. Lead track Warman blends together ragga vocals and a tough half-time drum rhythm for something a bit tougher than the duos usual stylings; this one is sure to get a few rewinds in the dance.
Homeground proves to be a nice little roller straddling the territory between tech and liquid; melodic samples sit side by side with a warm, crunchy bassline providing a nice contrast. Last but not least Navarro ticks all the warm liquid boxes to close out the EP with a soulful jam. This one’s out today – hit up the Demand Store to grab a copy on vinyl or digital.
The latest EP from Fokuz features another fine selection of melodic liquid rollers, with tracks from BCee, RoyGreen & Protone and Rowpieces all gracing the release. The Spearhead boss gets the A side, with his customarily rich sound in full effect on the smooth, laid back Breath In.
Over on the flip RoyGreen & Protone bring us a jazzy ode to precipitation, while Rowpieces showcases his finest break chopping skills on Jungle Ballad; no prizes for guessing the influence he might be drawing on for this one. Last but not least, digital buyers are treated to a nice bonus in the form of Renaisance, with RoyGreen and Protone going slightly off piste with a selection of unusual FX and atmospheres set to another crisp, rolling beat.
All in all another fine Fokuz release! Check out the clips below and grab this on vinyl or digital from your favourite store now!
Vandal bring us the 3rd release on their “Ltd” imprint with a varied selection of D&B from four up and coming production outfits. Soul:motion delivers deep liquid vibrations and minimal melancholy on Reminisce, while Joakuim heads for gritty roller territory with ominous pads, rolling beats and some tasty but not overplayed bass growl.
Over in the back half of the EP Tim Reaper explores the old school sound with classic breaks and IDM-esque melodies layered with a big slab of sub bass. Last up, Roygreen and Protone veer off into experimental territory with Laser Cats, a mellow tune with an unusual percussive groove that brings to mind the Autonomic sound, though with a touch of the jazz that we’re used to from the duo.
Check out the clips below and look for this at your favourite digital outlet from July 7th.