We love a bit of Monstercat. As far as independent labels go, they are doing a damn fine job of championing some of the world’s most exciting electronic music artists. So when we got our hands on the new compilation album, Endeavour, for a measly 10 Canadian bucks, we were pretty happy. Once again, the mood is very happy clappy and regular fans will be pleased to hear some heavyweight dubstep, chillstep, trap and drum n bass all up in the mix. For us, though, there were a few standout tracks that deserve a shoutout.
Au5 – Snowblind (feat. Tasha Baxter)
Au5 stays true to form with this thunderous dubstep beast. A piano melody kicks us off before Tasha Baxter’s vocal brings the hands-in-the-air prelude. The snares build up and roll us over to an uplifting 4/4 beat before that drops out, reforms and then smashes things up again with a more familiar dubstep pattern, killer snares and synths going berserk. A little cheesy, perhaps, so we’ll call this one a guilty pleasure. That vocal is ace.
Rootkit – Against The Sun (feat. Anna Yvette)
Another great vocal here courtesy of Anna Yvette, lending her silky smooth tones to an upbeat dubstep tune from Rootkit. This one is going to send dancefloors into fits of hugging and high-fives, no doubt, with it’s strangely gaelic undertones and trance synths combined with just the right amount of oomph to keep people dancing.
Varien – Valkyrie II: Lacuna (feat. Cassandra Kay)
The female vocalists keep on delivering. This time it’s Cassandra Kay throwing down on Varien’s emo-rock, dance music fusion of a tune here. Valkyrie II: Lacuna gives a clear nod to the likes of Evanescence, but it’s not as overbearing as the offerings of that particular rock group. Really this tune could be on the score of a videogame or a movie about vampires and werewolves. We’re not overly familiar with Cassandra Kay, but defo hope to hear more from her soon.
Sushi Killer & Kevin Villecco – Anime Bae
This one doesn’t have a vocal and the weird intro comes like something that might come out of a Sega Mega Drive, but have no fear for this is just a glimpse into the glory of this laidback hip hop beat, with shades of Nujabes about it. The chords are distinctly quirky and the name of tune, Anime Bae, sums it up really.
Pegboard Nerds – BADBOI
When you’ve got with a name like BADBOI, you can pretty much imagine what you’re gonna get. Rude bwoy samples, dark bass and trap drums. Nothing too out of the box, but it got us bopping. Top effort.
Listen: Three phat tunes from the new Dub FX album
Hold onto your butts ‘cos we’re about to get HUGE. The new Dub FX album has just dropped and it’s a barnstormer.
Melbourne born Dub FX has been an underground fan base that spans the four corners of the club. A pioneer of live looping, Dub FX fuses beat boxing, soulful vocals and lush basslines to create a raw, edgy sound that warms the cockles. Thinking Clear is Dub FX’s third album and we’ve been giving it a good listen. You need to get on it!
To whet your appetite and get you in the mood, hear are three tunes from the LP for your listening pleasure. Real party vibes pieces of music. Enjoy!
The album is brought to you by CONVOY UNLIMTED and Membran.
ROAD TO BABYON
WHERE I BELONG
Intelligent fusion: Mantis rain fire with new EP
It’s a tricky path producers of metal-influenced EDM walk. How do you keep the production values high without sounding cheesy? Thankfully that’s not a problem Mantis have to worry about because their new EP is raw as f-ck. In the span of just five tracks, the two lads from Atlanta explore the rugged side of drum n bass, dubstep and metal. The Avidity EP is a clear attempt at breaking the mould — and it pays off. We wanted to find out more so we went straight to the source to ask the lads a few questions.
The new tunes are doing damage. What made you want to put out an EP that explored so many genres?
Well to be honest, we were tired of just writing an EP that was just an assortment of songs. We wanted to do something with more substance, so we opted for the mini album structure where all the tracks flow continuously as one piece of music. Want to send a big thanks out to Crime Kitchen for letting us do our thing on this record and not nitpicking the songs!
How big a milestone is this new EP for you?
We definitely feel it is our most mature work to date, it’s got something for everyone on it. So, that being said we are very proud of it. The reception thus far has been really good!
You’ve got a show coming up in London soon (April 16). What can people expect from that?
Man, so fucking excited for that one. When we first started out, we would always see the ERGH lineups and drool. Now we get to go and headline it, it’s very surreal. People can expect a no holds barred audio assault though, per usual.
What do you say to people who say dubstep is dead?
Starting as they mean to go on: CLOAKS – Wraith
Label spiel: After remaining in the shadows for quite some time, the bass rooted duo CLOAKS is ready to enter the light as they make their debut with the heavy single “Wraith”; out now on Pantheon. in what will be the first of many, the ominous pair of Joey Fisher and Chris Curran make strong first impressions with the moniker as “Wraith” provides an old-school dubstep feel with cutting edge contemporary approaches; providing a trailblaze of a pathway to a new mantra of bass music. And with plenty in their arsenal moving forward, these two are ready for the world to be enraptured in their sound.
Our take: This tune is sweet little surprise. What we love about this one is the fusion of styles, with this kind of dreamy, trancey intro, somewhat Eric Prydz-esque, that builds up to a gargantuan, unforgiving drop. It gets a little happy clappy in the mid-section but then they pull it back with the second drop. It’s that bass and those wicked synths we wanna hear more of in future offerings. Nice job!
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