Embracing both footwork and slow, juddering hip-hop patterns, Lil Jabba’s return to Local Action proves a rather emphatic one. Following in the heavy footsteps of his 'Gully EP' for True Panther, '47' properly presents Jabba’s menagerie of slightly oddball, detuned bell work and footwork-influenced rhythm programming, with ‘Tea’ and ‘Skates’ being the perfect example of him taking the lush melancholy of Mr Mitch’s music and meshing it with more hi-hat-driven percussion.
The triumphant number that was chosen to close out ‘Balance Presents Kölsch’ delivers on a number of levels. To start with, the sad melancholy of that vocal would have to be one of the year’s best. And like a lot of the other ‘nu-progressive’ we’ve heard from Kompakt as well as Innervisions and Life & Death this year, there’s a plodding deepness to it that’s counterbalanced by some absurdly dramatic peaks; the synth crescendo that it climbs towards is something very special indeed. And in terms of showcasing Joris Voorn’s talents in the studio, it manages to even trump everything on his recent studio album. Perfection.
Nothing to do with Harold Faltemeyer, Axel F is the nom-de-plume of J. Rocc of Beat Junkies & MED aka Medaphoar. Their soon-dropping 'Theme Music' album is phenomenal and probably won't get picked up by any cognoscenti until 2015. Get in early on this astonishing track — nowt but a wobbly, disturbing slab of bass slammed down over progressively more tense and turbid beats. Guilty Simpson's verse only adds to the dread and chaos. If you say you were into this now you're gonna be the hippest motherfucker on the block come next year. Get in and get in early.
Acid-flecked vocal monster in a Prodigy stylee from London-based MC Punkture. A brace of house/garage mixes from Paleface tone down the grimy noisenik tendencies of the original to complete the package.