Saturday, 29 June 2013


It was Kid Smpl's 2011 stunning remix of Trim's 'I Am' that first made me aware of just how unique a talent 22 year-old Joey Butler is. Based in Seattle, he has built a reputation for his near beat-less, hugely evocative soundscapes, each of which tends to revolve around finely-tuned, dampened atmospherics full of depth and purpose. Having recently had him remix Arctic's  grimy roller 'Shook' for Coyote too, there is the sense that Butler can turn his magic to any genre and create something entirely different, dynamic and new. His latest EP for Hush Hush, the stateside imprint with whom he's worked closely since early last year, serves as a continued testament to just how utterly unique his sound really is.

The five-track 'Armour' EP is for the most part typically melancholy but such is Butler's dexterity on the buttons, each track explores something completely different to the next. The thoughtful calm of 'Why Did I Breathe' contrasts beautifully with the quiet joy of 'Breathing in Space' (look out for sporadic eski synth lines), whilst title-track 'Armour' looks to softer rhythms for it's kicks and 'Necklace' is the only to employ any sort of rolling drum beat, be it subdued and gentle.

On a more general note, It's difficult to find the words that do Kid Smpl releases justice, partly because whoever listens to his music will get something entirely unique from it. His sound lands in that hyperbolic grey area, the sonic wilderness if you like, and it is here that Butler has set up camp and truly excelled. Another brilliant offering.

Kid Smpl's 'Armour' EP will be out on July 22nd via Hush Hush Records - as yet, there are no previews available. 


01. Why Did I Breathe (feat. DJAO)
02. Promist
03. Armour
04. Necklace
05. Breathing In Space

Wednesday, 26 June 2013


Tumble Audio have enjoyed a fast-paced start to life as a label, quickly establishing themselves as a hub for bold, forward-thinking club productions with an added emphasis on traditional sound-system culture. This outlook has unearthed no-frills, club bangers from Majora, label stalwarts Sergic and Lyka and the latest from label head Killjoy that again looks to the floor for inspiration. 

A 3-tracker featuring remixes of title-track 'Memories' from both Caski and Formula Records protege Notion, it is an EP that muddies the waters between funky, grime and bassline in bold fashion, with every track seemingly a potential party starter. Memories kicks things off, building slowly before erupting at pace with chopped vocals and searing, Swamp-esque bass stabs combining to storming effect, whilst second track 'Tangle Riddim' is a totally different prospect altogether. Raucous, brash in parts but extremely heavy-hitting, it works punishing, bass-crushing loops in merciless fashion, almost as if it were challenging you to make it through the track in it's entirety without giving in to it's sheer brutality. 'Inaudible Badness' is the last of the lot and in my opinion, the best track on offer here - working funky classic funky rhythms and tribal drums, undercut by a great deal of sub, it's an absolute stomper. On the remix front, Caski's plunges Memories into dark and murky tech territory with  subtle aplomb whilst Notion looks to grime for inspiration, confidently working a sound that lends in part to last year's breakthrough 'Digits' EP. 

All in all, another bold effort from Tumble who continue to push new sounds and ideas in their own, refreshingly different way. Out July 8th.

Tuesday, 18 June 2013


In that latest edition of Life At 140, I took a look at grime in May and picked out my top 5 tracks of the month. Look out for some incredible new music from Bloom and Breen in particular, as well as Merky Ace's debut LP with No Hats No Hoods.

Read in full over at Clash Music here:

Sunday, 16 June 2013


In my latest review piece for Hyponik, I took a look at Rabit's stunning debut record for Glacial Sound - grime on a whole new level. His 'Double Dragon' EP, complete with remixes from Logos and Epoch, will be available from Monday June 17th on 12'' vinyl and digital.

Monday, 10 June 2013


Fresh new imprint Crystal Culture have enjoyed a busy start to life as a label, hosting a series of raucous parties and releasing the debut EP from Bristol based producer Stuff back in March. Their latest shindig, to be held at the intimate Hoxton Arches (complete with Funktion One system and cheap drinks), sees them join forces with sought after label MadTech this coming Friday. Expect sets on the night from MadTech duo Az & Tor, Crystal Culture label head Pedro 123, Chesslo Junior, Semedo, BNRY and Unit 7. Guaranteed vibes.

Saturday, 8 June 2013


With a back catalogue now spanning seven releases and boasting the debut 12'' from hotly-tipped grime prodigy Pedro 123, famed London party starters Get Some are starting to really establish themselves as an imprint too. Their latest offering again looks to emerging talent for inspiration, with Lancaster-based Llesca stepping up to deliver 'Sharks', a single backed by four hefty remixes.

As keen exponents of the garage/grime hybrid since their inception, Get Some have always harnessed new sounds with a real sense of purpose and Llesca's debut reaffirms my belief that they remain one of London's key sonic whistleblowers. 'Sharks' itself is a full on 140 assault, a grimy barrage of samples, claps and cutting eski synths all punctuated by searing basslines in frenzied, raucous style - it's a bit mad, but it works. Pedro 123 is first to step up on remix duty and does so with typical swagger, chopping and changing at will - look out for one hell of a bassline too. Liminal Sounds label-head Elsewhere is next up, working a more percussive approach with storming 'Pulse' style bass kicks, whilst bassline soundboy Checan goes all 4x4 in what is the stand-out remix of the four. Neana, himself a rising star, completes proceedings with a classy, bass-led rework that gives some insight as to his undoubted potential on the buttons. Club bangers galore.

The verdict? On point, super fresh and one hell of a debut - I really enjoyed listening to this.

Llesca - Sharks is released digitally on June 17th.

Friday, 7 June 2013


Ahead of June's Clash launch at the Supperclub tonight, I briefly caught up with headliner Roska and grabbed an exclusive gym-themed playlist to boot.