Etherwood getting Annie Mac Exclusive shows you how far he’s come. Not only is he one of the best in the world in liquid, but his composition & piano work continues to soar as he takes Europe by storm. This track has a little bit of a Rudimental vibe to it, but considering how much I love the two of them, I certainly ain’t complaining. This is definitely the bread & butter of the liquid drum & bass world. Fast but soft, potent, yet, seemingly light, Etherwood executes perfectly as always Zara Kershaw comes in to add soul to the mix to great effect. It’s definitely a must listen while you’re at the gym, grinding through work, driving, or even just jamming out in your underwear. Med School & Etherwood deliver as always.
I almost fell down when I heard this was happening. A real, live, actual Hospitality night here in NYC, and at a club that doesn’t make me cry. That’s right ladies & gentlemen, Slake is hosting three of my favorite Hospital Records DJs first Friday of March. The talent assembled here is simply stunning, but before I dive into the stupendousness that is the three of them, I wanted to shout out Slake for making this event happen. It seems they’re the one of the only clubs taking risks on talent these days, bringing in stuff other than craplectro, big room & VIP house. I hope they’re keeping the lights on with this, because it’s one of the things you hope make them the cash they need to stay open & keep doing it. But, onto what you’re still reading for:
This is a set of previews from Nu:Tone’s latest album, from Nov. 2014. It’s the drum & bass you used to write home about to your best girl while you were fighting in the struggle. The lightness that Nu:Tone is able to issue forth doesn’t sacrifice any of the dope jungle, liquid or soulful roots you need in a proper D&B album. This may seem like surface stuff, but put the whole album into your world, and you’ll find a surprising amount of depth and throwback themes & vibes to turn your head while you groove.
Metrik dropped an album about 5 months ago, but it contained one of my absolute favorite tracks of 2014, Make The Floor Burn. The album is rapturous joy, a sonic journey that most producers should spend a semester studying. The progressions, chords & bass are unmatched, except by other members of the Hospital Records stable. When London Elektricity says he’d take a bullet for the record, you know it’s not something to ignore.
Bringing up the rear is the irreplaceable Etherwood. Etherwood creates drum & bass that I can only describe as crushingly beautiful. I would go on about his attention to detail, deep understanding, or perfectionist production skills, but really, that would just be more time you spend reading this and not listening to his album preview. So, go listen to that. When you’re done, here’s some icing for your drum & bass cake.
DJ Dali is one my hometown favorites that ensures parties like this actually happen. He & Nicky Twist going B2B on some d&b will be a sight to behold, and my Konkrete alumni know what I’m talking about. Cameron Kush holds the record for the weirdest set I’ve heard at Slake that maintained a full dance floor, so I’m always interested in hearing what he’s got cooked up for us. Tickets can be purchased here & the event info is right here.
Update! Dali & Alex English have dropped another D&B mix to get you hype for Saturday night. Respect!
Mistabishi really can do great work when he puts his mind to it. This track from a while ago, really encapsulates what the genre of drum & bass can be. The Matrix remix of From Memory and the music video created for Hospital Records is equally good. Watching the creativity of a human drain away from them while they work their lives away have become one of the central stories of the Western world in the modern age. This video is no exception, and frankly, especially at this point, I think we need to be reminded to do it more. Especially when there are no guarantees of job security even if you play by all the rules. The idea that his mixer & system are in a box labeled “old stuff” and he’s still rocking an old CRT monitor really give the video a little bit more authentic resonance than you’d expect. The vibe here is almost hopeful, which is shocking for a UK release, I know.
This is the kind of remix we need to see more of. Submotion Orchestra does some stunning work that you need to check out, right after you listen to this song of course. S.P.Y. is another one of the drum & bass knights at the round table that is Hospital Records. He’s got this preternatural sense of how to build the low end while keeping you grooving with his mastery of the vocal remix. A bustling track, this kind of sound is what make the genre one of my favorite. Get at this guy and don’t forget, Hospitality is coming to this side of the planet!
This is news that brings a tear to my eye. Keeno, in a heartfelt post on Facebook page, declared that he’s going to leave school to pursue music creation full time. In his own words:
Devoting my life to writing and performing music is the only thing I’ve ever wanted to do. I feel immensely fortunate to be able to make it my job as well as my passion and I have all of you to thank in helping that become a reality.
This is what it’s about ladies & gentlemen. This kid has a tremendous career ahead of him, I’m so glad he’s been embraced by Hospital Records & Med School. They’ve provided him with a great foundation and I think more artists (outside the USA, because here, it’s a fucking nightmare just trying to survive) should give this a try. He’s got a gorgeous debut album & 3 EPs out, so I wanted to take this time to feature some of my favorite tracks from his burgeoning discography. First, from his debut album:First up, off the Life Cycle LP, Nocturne & Innocence. These two tracks are great examples of what can be done in the modern drum & bass soundscape, by someone clever with the right resources. The smoothness of the beats, vocals, harmonies, every second of both tracks could not be done better. If you’re into this sound, take Keeno & study him. The silence, the gaps, the shimmering chords, all of it.Just in case you thought he was a dope original composer, these remixes prove he can hang in that game as well. These two show a gigantic range, especially when you remember that both London Grammar & James Bond are UK media forces that couldn’t be more different. The London Grammar remix, much like the ANDY C one, shows that the more melancholy end of the D&B spectrum can still power you through. And the Skyfall remix is a personal favorite, just because I feel that theme needed a serious amount of bass added to it. And finally, his most recent single, released less than 48hrs ago, for the Hospital 2015 compilation. This track, done with one of his favorite partners in crime, Whiney, continues the lofty, signature sound that I adore. This classical approach to the D&B bpm is amazing & I hope more artists copy it after Keeno gets his just desserts for it. His 2015 is going to be so incredible, I’m already jealous of people who live in the UK and can see him live with the rest of the Hospital/Med School crews. I am so glad to be able to bring this to you, my readers. People do follow their dreams, and sometimes, we’re all better for it. Congratulations Keeno, can’t wait to hear what comes next.
I don’t know how I missed this. London Elektricity turned me onto this track on his XmasCast so, I’m going to bring you the best bits over the coming week. This one is on the heavier end of D&B, but there’s a smoothness to the vibe while still being an exquisite & driving production. The build into the punchy, vintage sound works flawlessly, and you find yourself solidly in the realm of the camouflage pants & hoodie wearing bassheads. With a dreamy interlude and an even more impressive build, we only get a taste of the 2nd drop before the tune taps out. This is definitely one of the best D&B tunes of 2014 and Royalston, from down under, is not be watched. All they need is a dope remix or a slot at a Hospital Records show, and you’ll be hearing about them. I guarantee it. This Hospital/Med School Records group is going to get in your face soon.
I got bored and decided to piece together a little pack of Drum & Bass tunes that you may not have heard before. If you haven’t, you’re definitely in for a treat, because these liquid, melodic & deep dnb anthems are exactly what you need to get you through the week.
First up, Etherwood reworking a Jakwob piece. Both UK producers & maestros, the smooth, almost Eastern vibe pushes into your awareness slowly. Debuted first on Annie Mac, this silky ethereal vibe
Fred V & Grafix do stellar work out of Hospital Records, but this remix of my favorite Netsky track from 2014 is an absolute gem. Running Low ft. Beath Ditto is a crucial track for any of the distressed party people we all know, with Fred V & Grafix bringing a symphonic feel to the original that I bet even Netsky didn’t see coming.
If you’ve not heard this before, or the words “Strife II” don’t ring a bell, stop what you’re doing and listen to this. Right now. It’s got some of the most powerful composition & production I’ve ever heard from a producer. This kid needs a label to discover him and it needs to happen yesterday. This track is a frisson-inducing tear jerker that would reduce dancefloors to quivering piles of feels. I would pay good money to see this live and I hope it happens
This was on my October 2014 Soundcloud playlist and if you missed it, change that. The heaviness is powerful, but it keeps the energy up surprisingly well.
Keeno is the crown prince of Hospital Records, and with tracks like this, it’s easy to see why. The effortlessness that seeps into every aspect of his production is readily apparent in this track. It’s got the vocal pop that it needs to hopefully even get some radio play in places that actually play drum & bass on the radio. This American is going to go sulk now.