If this ain't where to put this let me know...hopefully this won't be annoying to anyone... D&B Nero “Ragga Puffin/Torture” on Reformed The A-Side comes in on a spacy almost War of the Worlds ( Original ) string arrangement. A big Ragga sample sets it up. The rest plain sets it off. Nero really does jump up properly. If you can’t do it this well then , give up you c@nt. Top tune, filthy bass. “Torture” comes in on a big filmscore tip before exploding into pure dancefloor mayhem. Warmly distorted basslines get the filter and LFO trickery. Infectious. Benny Page “Dub Room” Cutterz Choice A gentle synth atmosphere builds up into a warm sax. A classic dub vocal drops in. “You are no good, you are no good”. Very catching, and down with the dub sound of the moment. A wobbling sub invites you to get on down. Some crisp little edits make this a good choice for the record box. Watch out for more fresh tracks from Cutterz Choice in this vein soon…. EZ Rollers “Believe/Rolled Into 1” ( Remixes) Moving Shadow Ever since I heard these about a year ago, I have had my ear to the ground for them. “Believe” is one of my all time favourites, and Marky and XRS have really kept the original vibe. They have in fact enhanced it. It’s a wikkid tune, and this is a superb remix. If that wasn’t good enough the Rollers have really gone to town on “Rolled into 1” a nice short intro lapses into a far heavier version. Excellent work. The Remix EP on Technical Itch This is one of the most extreme EP’s ever. Evol Intent’s retake on “The Legend” melds gabba acid techno with nosebleed Drum and Bass. It is a devastating blend. Infiltrata and Hochi turn their digits to “Critical Switch”. The original was psychotically dark. Yet they have managed to make the bass darker, the beats are very cleanly processed. B-Key gets his claws on “Heavy Metal”. Very smooth chopping and arranging of the Amen break makes this sound like the drummer always did it like that. The rest of the track is insane. Again this blurs the boundaries between music and noise. SPL’s mix of “Elevation” is my favourite thing in this EP. Deep strings and a twisted old skool vibe instantly appeal. An EP of Military strength Drum and Bass! Teebee “Snake Funk/?” On Subtitles Two stand up tracks from Teebee. After that excellent album, we expect a lot. Teebee delivers. “Snake Funk” is a deep dark roller. Its hard enough to satisfy the heads, yet there is enough melody to allow it to fit into most mixes. The other side is a personal favorite, in fact it could well be the title track, cos it is certainly funky in a twisted tech funk sorta way. Blinder. Vital elements “The Future” rmx on Knowledge and Wisdom This was one of the Hardcore classics, and Vital Elements have breathed new life into it. Crystal beats, warm clear synths and sub, its heavy. A favourite of mine. Terry T brings “Jungle Land” on the flip. Looped reggae horns make this distinctive, building up for a huge amen workout. Counterstrike “Bodybag/Mutilation” Obscene A moody prequel uses an” I am the darkness” sample. Equally mardy atmospherics build up the aggro. A running sub and tight beats enhance the aggressive feel. Spiky stuff! More solid beats in the form of “Mutilation”. Nice filtered breaks add to the solid kick and snare as this gets seriously medevil. Serious pressure from the Obscene crew. Jenna G “Woe/Silent Wonder” on Bingo A teaser from the forthcoming album, this lady has been busy. These two collaborations sound absolutely fat, thanks to D-Kay and D Bridge. D-Kay is on the buttons on “Woe” which features on Friction’s Valve compilation. Accomplished vocal talets sound all the better for that LFO’d midrange growler of a bassline. “Silent Wonder” sees Jenna showing her more soulful side, whilst D-Bridge provides a sophisticated arrangement. John B “Remember Tonight/Falling 2005 ( DBA vs John B) Beta Recordings Never scared to be different, this anthemic a-side, sees John bravely giving up his own vocals. His love of 80’s music, and trance shine through in the breakdown. Spanish guitars and big synths meet up with the aforementioned vocals. It’s a bigtime 2-stepper, with enough melody to keep it distinctive. “Falling 2005” sounds fat, dirty subs are dirtier, and the whole thing sounds big. Getting some great reactions on the dancefloor. Craggz & Parallel Forces “Love Insane/Keep Me Real” on Valve One of my favourite production teams graces the mighty Valve again. Their talent for mixing uplifting hooks and pure grime is undiminished in this pair of pure rollaz. “Love Insane” uses a big piano, string and vocal build up to get the mood just right. A clean but seriously overweight bassline is propelled out the speakers with a little help from those crisp drums. “Keep Me Real” uses sexy female vocals and salsa guitar licks to flavour the serious pressure rolling underneath. Boom. Martyn “Nxt 2 U/Deepwood” Play:Musik This new label has been the brainchild of 1Xtra’s Flight and label partner Paula. Showcasing a rising talent from Holland. “Nxt 2 U” is a class bit of Tech Step. A looped “Next to you” sample and tense strings roll this nicely. A big DX3 synth bassline and a scorpio break add to the jungle vibe about this track. “Deepwood” is a minimalist rumbler. Its very hard to get tracks like this to sound good, but this one sounds great. Watch out for “Black Lies” on Revoler, which is a top track too, just ran outa space! Prodigy D&B Remixes on XL Records A couple of the Prodigy’s biggest numbers get back inna inna jungle. Pendulum gives up one of the biggest remixes of the year. Trust. “Voodoo People” stays close to the original melodies, but the beats and beats are reworked into a more drum and bass style. Wikkid. The Subfocus remix on the flip of “Smack my Bitch Up” is firing too, on a par. Essential. ALBUMS Ed Rush & Optical “The Virus Vaults” on Virus After what seems like a long time without a release, Virus are teasing us with a selection of unreleased works from the last decade. This isn’t just the ones that didn’t make it, and even if they are, you won’t be able to tell. Including some every interesting collaborations, there is plenty of Virus gold in the Vaults. A huge variety of styles are showcased, from the 1989 house tinged “Big Slick” ( Ed Rush & Optical) to funky jazz on tunes like “Headhunters” (Optical & Ryme Tyme). “Zoner” is a filthy bit of twisted Optical magic. From the entrancing intro, you’ll be sucked right in. There are a few rare moments too, “Flutes” with Nathan Lee sees the duo exploring new avenues. Darkly funked flute riffs are melded into a heavy soundtrack. Film samples get a bit philosophical, before tearing up the dancefloor. This LP picks out some of the sickest unreleased basslines and twisted soundscapes the Virus crew have kept to themselves up to now. The CD Edition also has a mix from the lads, featuring unreleased cuts and past triumphs. It’s an essential bit of Drum and Bass listening. No Doubt.