Premiere: SPKTRM – Down

SPKTRM returns to AGN7 Audio this month with a wicked new EP, and we’re hyped to have the exclusive on breakbeat damager Down! Starting off with an eerie hip-hop-esque intro before dropping into punchy jungle rhythms, this one has all sorts of hidden depths and tons of detail. Look out for it as part of The Numinous EP, out Feb 24th at all good stores.

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AGN7 Audio – Mantra / Vignette

Today we’ve got a brand new production / label project for your listening pleasure in the form of AGN7 Audio (that’s pronounced ‘Agent Audio’ if you were wondering; perhaps a sly nod to Trace’s DSCI4?). Coming at you from the US, AGN7 is the new brainchild of established producers SPKTRM and Ronin Selecta, and their press release sets out the bold aim of “adventurous” drum and bass.

While the first single perhaps isn’t defining any new sub-genres quite yet, it’s certainly ignoring current trends in both US and worldwide D&B; a cynical attempt to top the Beatport charts this is not. Mantra brings to mind 2005-era hard, break driven techstep with a deep, ominous build-up giving way to harsh chopped up drums and massive bass hits. Over on the flip Vignette takes the foot off the gas a little, easing back on the bassline heft to focus on cleaner break manipulation set to creepy atmospherics. This one brings to mind darker material from the back catalogues of Seba, Paradox or Blocks and Escher, and it’s totally up there in terms of quality too.

Overall this is a solid statement of intent from a duo we’re looking forward to hearing more from! Check out the clips below and hit up Beatport to grab the release now, with other stores following in two weeks time.

Versus Volume One [Lossless]

Soul Intent brings another quality release to his Lossless Music imprint and this one sees four producers facing off against one another in the first volume of the label’s Versus series.

US producer SPKTRM makes an appearance with a slice of his atmospheric, crunchy halftime; the combination of gnarly bassline scuzz and ethereal pad work really makes this one stand out from the wealth of fairly generic “dark” halftime to be found in the scene these days.

Acid Lab delivers a tough, break focussed roller on Tundra, while Chromatic turn in a stripped back stepper with a killer bass hook on The Machine. Last but not least, Soul Intent closes the EP with a Photek-esque slice of old school break chopping tech business. Quality vibes!

As always you can pick this up on vinyl or digital direct from the source via the Lossless bandcamp; check out the clips below and go grab yourself some genuine underground D&B while the getting is good.

Gridlok – American Dream [Project 51]

While drum & bass is well known for it’s dark side, it’s still unusual to hear of tracks inspired by real-life tragedy. Gridlok‘s latest release for his own Project 51 imprint came about via a rooftop suicide heard from his studio; doesn’t get much darker than that.

Gridlok’s original delivers a melancholy roller which is well worthy of your attention, but the remixes are even better, with the best coming from Sinistarr who delivers a chopped up jungle-esque edit, SPKTRM who brings out the industrial half-step darkness and Mesck who drops the tempo for a warped, gritty dubstep refix. You can even pick up the SPKTRM remix as a free download.

Check out the previews below and grab the release from your favourite digital outlet.