Owlybeats – The Dark, Vol.2
Owlybeats is a producer from Bolton who makes judgement day grime that rumbles the headphones. His latest EP – titled “The Dark, Vol.2” – is a five-track record that fits into the trap-inspired, spine-tingling grime from the same lineage as Filthy Gears, Trends, Silencer and more. Opening track “Ghost Train” features heavy percussion and an earthquake-like main riff; while “Sweaty” kicks off with skippy percussion before melting your face with a huge bassline. If you like your grime dark and heavy, this one is definitely for you.
Filthy Gears – Pure Filth, Vol.2
More super dark grime here – this time from Filthy Gears – his latest drop is the second instalment in his monthly “Pure Filth” mixtape series. Just like last month, there’s a production mix and a selection of brand new tunes. Opener “Black Shinobi” is an atmospheric cut, driven by bruising percussion lines and shadowy bass; while “The Coronation” is orchestral-driven grime turned up to fifteen, blending dramatic choir vocal snippets with a freight train bass. Elsewhere, there’s “Infinity Loop”, the instrumental for GHSTLY’s recent banger “Flex.” The track sounds great as a stand-alone instrumental, mixing loping AMS lines with massive drums. Grab “Pure Filth, Vol.2” for grime that will obliterate your headphones.
Polonis – The World Is In My Hands
Scottish grime producer Polonis returns with a new record, the three-track EP titled “The World Is In My Hands”. I premiered the title track on the blog earlier in the month – which you can check out here. ‘The World Is In My Hands’ builds steadily, slowly layering dark melodies on top of each other for a weightless grime cut. First track ‘Be My Valentine’ is built around a hypnotic riff; while JEB1 closes out the release with his take on the title track, turning the melodies inside out and adding some weight with a percussion line. Overall, “The World Is In My Hands” is a slice of minimalist grime, a style Polonis has perfected to a tee.
Oliver Twist – Kick Punch EP
Oliver Twist is a young grime producer and DJ who has released records on underground label HMRC. His latest record is a three-track grime EP, done in the classic 8Bar style from the early era of the genre. Opening track ‘Tritonia’ cuts through the speakers with moody triton runs and thick bass stabs; while ‘Kick Punch’ uses militant stabs and a hard-line clap run for maximum damage. Standout track “Kick Punch (UK Funky)” does what it says on the tin, re-purposing the original into a rhythmic territory, distorting the clap run and making it sound even more flagrant than before. Overall, “Kick Punch” nails the eight-bar style, three simple but effective grime tracks primed to mash up the dance.
Cleaverhype – Ink / Warp Riddim
Grime at faster tempos is great, the only downside being there isn’t enough of it. Luckily, Cleaverhype‘s latest release features two suped-up grime tracks at 160bpm and 154bpm. Opening track ‘Ink’ blends motion blur percussion, eastern motifs and distorted samples to create a track that takes influence from grime, juke and footwork. Emcees sound great over it as evidenced by this radio rip, and it’s a fun banger that shoots off into all sorts of directions. ‘Warp Riddim’ is slightly slower, opening up with sci-fi-like pads and apocalyptic bass lines. Overall “Ink / Warp Riddim” is a project that manages to sound futuristic without being po-faced, a win all round as far as I’m concerned.
Last Japan – Exhale (Remixes)
Last Japan released ‘Exhale‘ back in 2017 and the track featured Killa P mixing the bars with dancehall-inspired sing-jaying. This version of the record features two remixes from Sully and Escha, who each put a unique spin on the original. Sully’s remix puts a deep UKG spin on the track; while Escha’s version turns the cosmic original into a fully loaded club banger. Overall, two wicked new takes on an already great track.
Rimplton – Low Oxy
Rimplton is perhaps best known in underground circles for his work with Yamaneko, the two have made a fair bit together, this track is one of the standouts from “Pixel Wave Embrace.” His latest record is “Low Oxy”, his debut EP that has been released by new label 1000Doors. Rimplton’s influences range from Slint to Godspeed You! Black Emperor, which makes sense, because “Low Oxy” makes as much use of atmosphere as it does grime tropes. Opening track ‘Low Motion’ is teeming with dark melodies; while ‘Divisions (World Politics LSD Mix)’ is like a fever dream from start to finish. Overall, “Low Oxy” is an exploration in melody and dynamics, showing how grime inspired productions can be perfect headphone music.