Exclusive Premiere: Black Barrel – Lost Meaning (Metalheadz)

25 years old and Metalheadz continue to release solid records by the scenes finest while also helping less established producers get heard by a wider audience on their Platinum imprint. It’s been a wild few months with releases coming thick and fast on both labels, notable highlights being the massive “Vanta Black” by Benny L, the return of Amit to Headz with his “Naked Fuse EP” and the ominous “Black Lotus” by Gremlinz and Jesta on Metalheadz Platinum.

For this latest release in the Headz discography “The Elevate EP” sees Black Barrel make his label debut delivering four strong cuts of first-rate futurism. Of the four, “Elevate With Me” is the more instant of the tracks, aided by vocals from KSR and pads that sound like they could have been composed by Vangelis. Black Barrel has managed to take the vintage Headz sound and fuse it with his own, a perfect combination that is fresh and retrospective.

Similar to Blame and the 720 Degrees sound of the late 90s these are dense electronic soundscapes, so intricate and rich they could be taken apart and studied to uncover several layers of drum and bass history. Beats are scientific and calculated yet incredibly soulful. Chord progressions craft intergalactic mysteries that are ambiguous yet uplifting. A sedate and rewarding otherworldly experience akin to drifting among stars, most notable on the three instrumental tracks where thick cosmic dust glows with abundance.

Second to none sci-fi from Metalheadz, a jewel in their crown and another sign that while some labels from yesteryear focus on reissues and back catalogue, Headz still have their eyes firmly set on the future.

“The Elevate EP” is out now via both the Metalheadz website and Bandcamp. It can also be pre-ordered from major online retailers at the below link.

Pre-order: Link

Buy Now: Metalheadz Bandcamp

THG X Noods Cosmic Mixtape W/ Dave Sector (August 2019)

A 60-minute mix of intergalactic beats to celebrate our one year anniversary on Noods Radio. No talking, just music.

Two Hungry Ghosts – Noods Radio (August 2019)

Projekt 22 – Kaizen (One.Seventy)

I love it when producers do something different, this beatless atmospheric track is captivating and haunting setting the scene perfectly for our little journey into the cosmos. Forthcoming on the One.Seventy LP “Permissions”.

Ghost Warrior – Seven Gates (One.Seventy)

Straight-up science from Ghost Warrior, intricate and detailed edits with a nod to Mr Parkes. Also forthcoming on the “Permissions” LP.

Acid Lab – Another Radius (Guerilla Bass Records)

More “faux-tek” styles, this time from Acid Lab. Even has a cheeky nod to “One Nation”, thanks to Rafael Hermanos for sending me this one! You’re right, I did like it!

Shiken Hanzo – Kali Ma (Repertoire)

Experimental drum and bass from one of the scenes most reliable labels. Forthcoming on Repertoire, the guys continue to push boundaries with this deep, tribal and futuristic take on modern jungle.

Out Of Fuel – Fragments (Ronin Ordinance)

Featuring a pulsating groove with a techno edge, wild electronics and twisted bleeps this track is as intense as they come. Watch out for more from Out Of Fuel forthcoming on Ronin Ordinance later this year.

Unknown92 – Untitled 1 (Genso)

Unknown92 adds to the tension swiftly building a sense of unease and hostility with this track taken from his forthcoming EP on Ronin Ordinance offshoot, Genso. Boisterous, claustrophobic and untamed.

Sicknote – Emerald Estate (Stereocilia)

A perfect blend of rough and smooth. A combative kick drum is tamed by soft ghostly strings, filtered breaks and a delicate horn sample. Dub influenced thugged out science friction.

Sicknote – Coiled Miracle (???)

More unreleased Sicknote, this time built around an unconventional drum break and mystical harmonies. This really reminds me of all that was great about the music in 95/96, full of character, charm and powerful melodies.

Soul Connection – Sun Chaser (Smooth N Groove Records)

When I first heard LTJ Bukem play this I just had to track it down. Crafted around tightly looped breaks and Detroit keys this is intergalactic techno backed with a deep and vigorous bassline.

Chromatic – Blend (Tempo)

Another track supported by LTJ Bukem this featured on the Chromatic EP released on Tempo earlier this year. Jazz style keys and atmospheric chords help to create a perfect liquid influenced roller with just the right amount of funk.

Black Barrel – Lost Meaning (Metalheadz)

Taken from the forthcoming “Elevate EP” on Metalheadz this is an impeccable alchemy of classic 720 and cutting edge Headz. A regression session to when Blame was pushing the “intelligent” sound but taking it intergalactic rather than the aquatic dolphin and wave samples of Good Looking.

Lynch Kingsley – Astral Pulse (Foxy Jangle)

We close with a new track on Foxy Jangle, commonly known for amen rinse outs and 90’s influenced dancefloor releases this is drum and bass at its most atmospheric. The beats are soulful and layers of samples are full of beauty and elegance. A landmark release for the label and a gorgeous way to end the mix.

Broadcast on Noods Radio 15/08/19 between 14:00-15:00.

Exclusive Premiere: Soundbwoy Killah – Heartbeats (Sneaker Social Club)

On an album highly influenced by UK club and rave culture “Heartbeats” pays tribute to the atmospheric style of drum and bass championed by LTJ Bukem and his Good Looking label.

Pushing for a more cosmic sound, at its peak, the music was both mysterious and innovative. Tracks contained breakdowns soaked with emotion and intricate beats arranged with scientific precision.

Amen rollers were often the highlight of a Bukem set and tracks like “Atlantis (I Need You)” plus countless releases by Rupert Parkes still evoke an emotional reaction today and work in the club twenty five plus years later.

Soundbwoy Killah drew influence from this golden era when creating “Heartbeats”. Poignant strings open the track offering rest bite on a crowded dancefloor swiftly followed by tightly chopped amens. The track then progresses to a mystical breakdown for a chance to reflect on the mysteries of the world.

“Halcyon Daze” features elements of UK Garage, US House, Acid and Jazzy Jungle. It’s released on 23rd August by Sneaker Social Club and will be available on double vinyl as well as digital download.

Buy: Bandcamp

Under The Counter (Volume Six)

Reviews of new releases and fresh promo’s.

Marenn Sukie & Drummotiv – Had Enough Rain / 77 Astro Black (Next Phase Records)

Next Phase Records presents two tranquil yet powerful excursions into the leftfield world of 125-130 BPM electronica.

“Had Enough Rain” by Marenn Sukie fuses jazz and soul samples with a propulsive drum pattern. Reflective vocals and soft horns unite with techno stabs and spaced out chords to craft a captivating and hypnotic soundscape. Layers of FX build as the beat drives on with individual elements melting into one unstoppable energy.

“77 Astro Black” by Drummotive is a rich blend of old and new. An opulent synthesis of 1970s jazz fusion and modern-day unconventional house. Serene strings and delicate keys bind together creating an elegant beauty full of freedom, space and texture as the steady drum rhythm provides direction and structure.

Marenn Sukie has had previous releases on Apollo Records (R&S sister label) and Bannofee Pies (Bristol, UK). Drummotive is a Next Phase regular and has also recently appeared on the well-respected Drum and Bass label Subtle Audio Recordings.
Continue reading “Under The Counter (Volume Six)”

Two Hungry Ghosts Chart (August 2019)

Two Hungry Ghosts Chart (August 2019)

Black Barrel – Elevate EP (Forthcoming Metalheadz)
Mahakala – The Realms (Mahakala)
Rainforest – Perhaps (Mettāsonic)
Lynch Kingsley – Astral Pulse/Capricorn (Forthcoming Foxy Jangle)
Sonar’s Ghost – No 1 [Feel It]/For Real (Forthcoming Amenology)
DYL – Interwind World Gate 1/2 (Forthcoming Literature Records)
Stunna – Last September (Forthcoming Mettāsonic)
Necrotype And Tim Reaper – Exclusive To Bandcamp E.P (7th Storey Projects)
Sicknote – Coiled Miracle (???)
Martyn – B.C. 2 (Ostgut Ton)

Bonus Ten (Non DnB)

Merking 9 To 5 – Lost In The 90s (Unofficial)
Drummotive – 77 Astro Black (Next Phase Records)
Same Speed Edits – Volume 3 (Same Speed Edits)
Marenn Sukie – Had Enough Rain (Next Phase Records)
Beringei – The People, The Place (WotNot Music)
Ana Mazzotti – Ana Mazzotti (Far Out Recordings)
Abro Featuring KerenDun – Honey Bee (Raw Tapes)
Various Artists – Snail’s Pace (Futurepast Zine)
Strange U – DVSCTR Edits (Unofficial)
Special Request – Bedroom Tapes (Houndstooth)

Compiled by Dave Sector