“Imagine a land, bereft of hate, with only love…”

That’s what I aim to bring with this blog, in a small way, if that’s not too grand a claim.

Hope you’re all OK out there, especially all my UK crew, who are labouring under a small amount of snow at the moment. As I sit here in the lab, having left my day job early after the snow effected our working day, I can’t see anything which isn’t covered in a think layer of snow. Now, to my Russian brothers and sisters, or the Finnish crew (or anyone who lives in a country where they have snow, and are able to deal with it on a day-to-day basis), that may not be too much to deal with, but for us UK-ers, it’s quite something. So I hope you are holding tight and snuggled up. Let’s just say, the buses and trains better be bloody runnin next week, that’sallI’msayin!

Anyway, on with a few videos, eh?

First up:

Loadstar – Link To The Past

Now, this is a massive, massive tune that has been big in the clubs for a few months now, I wanted to include it as an example of both the epic scale, and forward thinking of modern progressive drum & bass. Lomax and Xample, as they were formerly known, create a world inside five minutes here, as they link the pounding of a bassline with a tightly configured drum pattern. I wouldn’t say there’s that much going on here, but there doesn’t need to be, as you can just tell that each and every element has been finely tuned and mixed to near-perfection. What we do get is a rollercoaster of future sound from start to end. Others have commented on this tune to death, so I don’t need to add much, except to say, enjoy. Ram Records

Original Sin & Taxman – Penumena

And the very same can be said of this one. Cained on promo for what seems like a whole year, this is a monumental piece from the brothers Tindill. I’ll admit, Dom and Adam are usually a little too ruff for my delicate ears, but what is not to like with this one? Playaz, Ganja headz and all round drum and bass fans can find something here to like, as OS and Tman roll through some industrial strength drums topped with long-forgotten-one-time-world’s-fastest-rapper Daddy Freddy samples. Outstanding artists in their own rights, once-of-Newcastle-now-of-Canada older brother Original Sin and younger Taxman have teamed up here to devastating effect. Big ups to Hype for this one.

Hyperlogic – Only Me – Ham remix

Now, this is an interesting one. A stone cold, old skool (class of ’95) classic. A hardcore/hard dance DJ successfully branching out into d&b on the remix. Will it work? Only you can decide, but for me, it’s a resounding yes. Hell yes. DJ Ham/Hamilton sure knows what he is doing, so who better? Nice easy start, into the familiar piano section, the vocal build, and you are away. What follows is a great example of a sympathetic remix. Add to, sure, reform, but don’t take away the essence of the track. A rolling, sinewing ode to the original, this 2010 rubdown hits all the buttons. Check the original, I beg you, but get your groove on to the remix as well.

I have to do this. You know when you have to do something? Well, I have to do this. I have to play you the following two tracks. And you have to listen to them.

Unquote

Lubov Moya

‘Beautiful’ is not enough. ‘Sublime’ is not enough. I don’t really have to words to describe how ‘My Love’ moves you through music. But let me try. Imagine a cold, bleak scene, one which on the surface gives you nothing, but on closer digging, reveals love on an unparalled scale. I think Russian d&b does this. It does it to me. Seva Unquote is at the vanguard of the new Moscow/St P scene, along with Bop, Molecular Structures, Mr Sizef and a few others. They bring a new something to d&b, part of which they call ‘Microfunk’, a mimimal, stripped-bare approach to the sequencing of the outboard or the software. And it blows me away. This and the next one are two sides of a 12 on MedSchoolMusic, offshoot of the mighty Hospital. It’s out now guys, cop it. I beg you.

Unquote

Hide Your Tears Because We Are In Heaven

Heaven.

And another one, in a similar vein, that is heartstoppingly good.

Blu Mar Ten – If I Could Tell You – Stray remix.

Purveyors of the finest chilled, half-step, and generally rather lovely d&b Blu Mar Ten, get the remix treatment from one-time Med School wunderkind Stray here, and its all a bit too much for me. Engineering can be many things to many people, but for me, here, it is epic. So much thought has gone into extracting every.last.inch, every.last.millisecond of emotion from BMT’s music, that surely no one can see this as “just” a collection of sounds, samples and beats. Music and sound are not the same thing, music is composed of sound, and sound goes up to make music, and each element results in emotion. Stray wrings emotion from every angle of this BMT epic.

And one more to finish off, to show that d&b can be about partying and having a good time as well 🙂

Danny Byrd – We Can Have It All – Sigma remix.

Danny Byrd, what are we going to do with you? Posh-talking, chart-bothering, overly-simple-and-not-musically-complex-hit maker, DByrd has been a Hospital mainstay for a good while now, and has long favoured the ‘straight ahead’ school of producing, but I really like this cut from the ‘Rave Digger’ LP. Given a tickle by up-and-comers Sigma, this one floats along well whilst still having its feet on the floor. I can see this one at a snowboarding festival, or a countryside throwback event, but you’ll have to make your own minds up as to where it fits for you. I hope that this update of FI has once again shown the many flavours of the drum and the bass, and has inspired you to check some of these artists out, and take you to places you didn’t know you could go. Thanks for checking me out, it means a lot. A lot of love from me to you.

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