Low End Lowlife: 06.06.11

Matthew Bayfield throws us another report from the lower regions...

Posted on Jun 6th, 2011 in Features and Interviews, Kromestar / By Matthew Bayfield
Kromestar Many things improve with age, it is a known fact. Whiskey, westerns, Mick Hucknall... You look back at how they were a year ago, a decade ago, even a half century ago in some cases, and you come to realise that they just don't make 'em like they used to. Avatar will never be as good as Unforgiven. WKD will never taste as fine as Jim Beam. Justin Bieber will never make middle aged women's underwear inexplicably catapult across seedy hotel rooms like Mick Hucknall could... well not unless someone finds a crafty method to crack these super injunctions, but in the meantime, let's all just act like it isn't happening (I'm into/onto you JB...)

This week has seen something of a wonderfully old school vibe in the world of bass music too, needless to say all played on vinyl through a set of musty headphones like Jim Kelly wore in Enter The Dragon. Firstly, we see evergreen label Ninjatune release a new selection of spaced out marvels on Slugabed's Moonbeam Rider EP. It features all the wonky distortion and ridiculous squelch you have probably come to expect from a man who once dropped a tune called 'The Moon Zoop Jam' and is a delirious listen from start to finish. In particular the title track, which at one point genuinely manages to sound like it has a Clanger MCeeing over it in their sweet whistle tones, and the wonderfully titled 'Nu Krak Swing' which is the perfect summer slow cruising tune to bump in your 'Caddy... If your Cadillac happens to be submerged in lemon jelly and filled with the cast of Tenko.

A man nearly as old school as Tenko (relatively speaking) known as Skream also dropped the vinyl pack of his Dysfigured Dubz EP on his label of the same name recently. Admittedly I thought the opening track was a rather dull slice of vapid house music, certainly not the most encouraging opener, but from there on out things improve rapidly. In particular the nautically named set of tracks on plate 2, 'Seasick' being a personal standout, sounding like a potential alternative soundtrack to the sinking of the Belgrano... Not sure they would have had a DJ onboard during the crisis, but if the case proved to be that there was a bass savvy Argentine onboard during the crisis they no doubt could have spun this little number much to the delight of many a drowning sailor. War is hell...

Two more gentlemen seeing releases recently with ties to the "good old days" (about 5 years ago) are Kromesta and Youngsta. Kromesta has just slung out the 'Colourful Vibrations EP' which is as varied as you'd expect from a man with a half decade of releases under his belt and well worth a look at. Meanwhile over on Rinse Youngsta takes over the torch carrying duties for their mix series, now on it's 14th incarnation (although the 13th is strangely absent) and features tracks from the likes of such veterans as Cyrus, Matt-U and Kryptic Minds. Another sound purchase.

Last, but certainly not least, in this instalment of wildy unfocused drivel is Chrissy Murderbot's Women's Studies LP on Planet Mu. A bonkers ride through more or less every form of bass music you'd care to pedantically pigeonhole, taking in dubstep, elctro, dance-hall and a whole bunch of other stuff some knob on a blog has yet to invent a obscure sub category for. Just listen to it, accept it and dance to it. Please. It's truly marvellous. It also features some marvellous cover artwork. Sod your downloads.

Alas it is once again farewell from this knob on a blog. Best go re-categorise a load of my records before someone spots I don't have a "Subterranean neondreadstep" section and tells me I don't really like Kode 9...

Honourable Mentions: Emalkay - Eclipse LP (Dub Police), Tyler The Creator - ‘Yonkers’ Lil Silva Remix (White Label), Joker - The Vision (4AD), Tiger & Woods - Gin Nation (Running Back)