Keaton - The Invisible Man EP - RH 49


Almost 30
VIP Junglist
Jul 26, 2002
San Francisco, CA
The Bottom Line:

In all, I think most people know what to expect from Keaton's "Invisible Man" EP. You won't get any ground-breaking beats, production, or song writing. What you will get is heavyness, Hardware style, and at least two or three tracks that you will enjoy and use regularly. The title track and the Trace Remix are the definate winners on this one, with the other two more suited as filler, b-sides at best.

Overall Rating:


Full Review:
Keaton is a hot commodity in the British Drum and Bass scene. A founding member of Usual Suspects and Universal Project, the man is known for his "no nonsense" tunes: make the breaks razor sharp and turn up the bass! This approach has led to great success on dance floors worldwide with Universal Project/Usual Suspects, and most recently with Hive in their heavy "The Plague" for Renegade Hardware. Now, Keaton takes the reigns by himself for "The Invisible Man" EP (with a little remix business thrown in by DJ Trace), Renegade Hardware, out now on promo, and available on full release in the next few weeks.
Side A - "THe Invisible Man" - The title track to the EP gets things off to a dark and foreboding start. "I'm not sick, I'm not crazy, but I am Invisible", the vox informs us, over an eerie, Godfather-esque inverted string synth and stereo atmospherics. About one minute in, the distorted, cut-up, steppy break kicks in, along with a bleepy filtered synth riff. The drop hits, with just the string synth descending into a distorted reece. The vox comes in again, then utter destruction! All the elements come together over a hard distorted bassline. Keaton keeps things changed up with plenty of drum edits, more of the "invisible" vox, an angry echoed shout, and plenty of techy bloops. The second drop comes with the full vox again, then more of the punishing dancefloor rhythms that we have come to expect from Keaton. Some Amen edits keep the outro interesting yet dj-friendly. In all, this is probably my favorite track on the two-pack. It can be used as an excellent intro or can blend in anywhere in a dj's set if the mood needs to get a little heavier.
Side B - "Betrayal (Snake Bitch)" - The trademark Keaton break, a filtered tramen as heard on "Vessel" and "The Plague", opens this one up. A mid-pitched Reece arpegio and a deep voice tell us to "beware", and some nice stereo mixing signals the drop. Things filter down to silence, until the break and reece come back in, this time accompanied by a disonant sub bassline that will pound the hell out of a good system. This one does get a little repetitive, and sounds a little samey to some of Keaton's other productions (especially "The Plague", as the main break and subs are almost identical), but Keaton does his best to keep it rolling with end-of-line edits every 16th bar or so. The bass exits this one quite early, something that I'm not too keen on as a dj. This track is for those that can't get enough of the tramen/reece/subs combo that is tearing up dance floors right now. This track would blend well with any other Hardware track around right now, or perhaps a Total Science toon to change the pace.
Side C - "The Plague (Trace Remix)" - This one is sure to mash some people up! The haunting intro synths start this one off, and a plain compressed break soon comes in, joined after by the very bright high-pass-filtered break from the original as well as the end-of-phrase tom roll. At just under two minutes in, the long first drop hits, with the recognizeable wah-wah and stab from the original drop, supplemented by the plague's angry bassline, band-passed in front of the eerie descending scream heard in the original. The beats come back in after the 32 bar drop, the orignal break joined by Trace's signature sniper/tramen beat. Trace's take on the punishing bassline of the original is perhaps even heavier, with the subs outright punching you in the gut, especially when the break slims up at about halfway through the tune. The second drop comes suddenly, as the sniper snaps back in, slowly joined by the other breaks and that familiar bassline and tom roll. The last minute or so is very reminiscent of the original, with Trace's signature sounds peeking through the mix. I like this tune, but the mix/master is somehow different than the rest of the tunes on the album, and feels a bit vacant at times. Still, Trace has done a solid job remixing this contemporary anthem, and it only adds to the strength of the two-pack.
Side D - "Once Again (feat. Usual Suspects)" - A clean break with a distorted snare opens the track, making it dj friendly, and soon after a bongo line and some stringy pads join the atmosphere. A few bleepy synths, the "once again" vox, and a falling sine (think the falling bombs from "Galaga") complete the intro. The drop is quite simple, maybe a bit too simple, as it doesn't really stand out. The bassline is a typical Keaton/Suspects affair - dubby filtered subs that rock a system. The second drop adds a filtered reece line to the atmospherics of the rest of the song that stays in the mix after the drop is over, giving the final section of the tune a harder edge than the first and second parts. This tune has a good groove to it, but it falls victim to the sameyness that plagues (no pun intended) many of Keaton's songs. This one is a good techy workout, with only a few changes to deal with. Although it might be the weak spot on the album, fans of Usual Suspects, Cause 4 Concern, and Raiden will enjoy this one.


Jul 30, 2003
Go do it now mate!!!! It certainly is one phat EP, even though i really only play the title track and the plague(baaad tune). Worth it though, cant complain at just over 8 quid on Redeye can ya?



Pure Sanelessness
VIP Junglist
Mar 18, 2003
A, A
i liked all of em!!!
mad mad mad, but yeah, id ave to say betrayal is my fave
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