10+ years on and 200 Ear & Drum Sessions later here we are.
It took me a long time to figure out what I was going to do for the 200th installment of the Ear & Drum Sessions. Finally I hit upon taking it back to the beginning of the Ear & Drum and look at the much maligned 2000-2010 era of D&B. Talk to most headz and they’ll tell you this decade was the low point in D&B history, but like all sweeping statements this isn’t necessarily true.
As someone who has loved D&B since the beginning and never taken a break in over 25 years, I have always found tunes that have that special something to make me smile. This stands true even for D&B from the turn of the century. Artists like DKay, Klute, Marcus Intalex and Calibre made their names during this era churning out hit after hit and keeping it mighty real.
What you’re about to hear are the first two parts of a four part series looking back at the tunes I was playing during the noughties. Parts one and two look at 2000-05, with Part 1 one being the more melodic side of D&B at the time and Part 2 being the heavy hitters of the time.
Thanks to all of you who have supported me down the years and let me inflict my music taste on you. I hope you like this anniversary celebration and stick around for the next 200 mixes. Enjoy!
PFM – Cruising Detroit Blame – Overhead Projections Nasty Habits – Liquid Fingers The Roots – You Got Me (Blu Mar Ten Remix) D.Kay – Balearic Dream Nu:Tone – Millie’s Theme M.I.S.T., DJ Marky & XRS – Sunshine (Touch Me) Calibre – It’s… M.I.S.T. 7 High Contrast – 3am DJ Marky & XRS – Closer Everything But the Girl – Mirrorball (DJ Jazzy Jeff Sole Full Remix) Jonny L – 2 of Us (Photek Remix) Marcus Intalex & ST Flies – How You Make Me Feel M.I.S.T. – Lover Tomahawk – Until Dawn 4 Hero – 9 by 9 (M.I.S.T. Full Vocal Mix) Klute – Part of Me Logistics – Together
Capone – Tudor Rose Ed Rush & Optical – Rock Tha House Jonny L – Trouble Elementz of Noize – Guided by Lights Photek – Baltimore Influx UK – My Name is Universe Sunchase – Next Rhythm Seba & Paradox – Last Goodbye DJ Kalm – Violet Klute – Phone Call (Matrix Remix) Amit – Roots Teebee – The Force Seba – Piemo for B Influx UK – The Siren Kiko – Passport
It might be cold up north, but here in the southern hemisphere we’re in the middle of Summer and so I’ve thrown together a mix of tunes perfect for warm nights and even hotter days.
From Tokyo Prose, Alix Perez and BCee through to Calibre, Redeyes and Duoscience this is a good representation of who’s hot in the Liquid D&B scene right now. Special shout to Netsky for his take on the classic Everybody Love the Sunshine.
Machinedrum feat. Jesse Boykins III – Wait 4 U Hiraeth – Greatest Day DRS & Kid Drama – So High Rowpieces & Monaco GZA feat. La Yee – Don’t You Never Go Away (Has Tempo Recall) Shodan – Just You & Me Goldie feat. Jose James – Truth (Zero T Remix) Tokyo Prose – Jacknife Alix Perez & Workforce – Distant Figures Atlantic Connection – Refix (Instrumental) Tokyo Prose – Gossamer Acid_Lab – Distant Lights BCee & Charlotte Haining feat. DRS – Love for the Fallen Redicall – Transform Monumental Banks – Loop Thinking Mystific – The Sun (Mystical Sound Remix) Duoscience – Bethesda Alix Perez – Wondering at Loss Calibre – Falls to You VIP Redeyes – Delicate (Club Mix) Redeyes – Slow Pace (Club Mix) Atlantic Connection – Threshold Physics – Crucify Oat – What We Could Be Duoscience – Emmaus Alix Perez feat. Liam Bailey – Lost & Proud Netsky, Daddy Waku & Chantal Kashala – Everybody Love the Sunshine
First mix of 2021 is is the final in my 2-Step / Tech Step series looking back at 90s D&B Steppers. This one focuses on Jazz Step from the mid to late 90s featuring some amazing tunes from the likes of T.Power, B.L.I.M. and of course Photek.
Jazz Step was an avant-garde take on the 2-step sound, featuring a lot of live instrument samples such as sax, percussion and double-bass. Starting with Alex Reece’s – Pulp Fiction and closing out with Roni Size’s – Brown Paper bag, the style didn’t really survive the turn of the millennium. But that didn’t stop Jazz Step from having some of the most forward thinking and innovative tunes of the 90s.
The final in the silly season mixes is all about tough beats and booming b-lines. Rough D&B never really goes out of style, but it does eveolve and this year saw artists like Dom & Roland, Conrad Subs and Bungle bring back an original jungle vibe with a heaping serve of heaviness.
Metalheadz had a stellar 2020 with so many great LPs dropping it felt like every month there was something worth dropping from Goldie’s stable of production talent. But they weren’t alone with Dom & Roland’s self titled label, Doc Scott’s 31 Recordings and a whole host of other bringing the absolute heat.
Goldie – The Mirrored River (Grey Code Remix) Goldie – Prism (Dom & Roland Remix) Heitor Leal Farnese – E näo foi à lápis (Thermal’s Black Dog Remix) T95 & DRS – On Site Soul Intent & Acid Lab – Clash of Headz High Contrast – If We Ever VIP Conrad Sub – Bump & Grind Conrad Subs – Love Me Tender Goldie feat. José James – Truth (Zero T VIP) Hyroglifics – God Given Bungle – Runaway Polaris – Eternal Conflicts DJ Marky & Pola & Bryson – Run the Streets Myth – Long Time Muffler – Super Heavy DJ Marky – Parlet Total Science – Lightweight (Break Remix) Goldie – I Think of You (Digital & Spirit Remix)
Part two of the holiday mixes focuses on the deeper side of D&B with new tunes from Fixate, T>I, Serum, Om Unit and Conrad Subs. While Minimal seems to have faded a little in 2020, a new more rolling take on the stripped back D&B sound has taken it place which I am totally there for.
Perfect for a late night couch session, this mix might go well with a drop of something stronger and a smoke.
H20 – Dusted Fixate – Focus Oat – IntoTheSun FX909 – Meltdown (Peyo Remix) Degs feat. Pola & Bryson – Sleepless (Bladerunner Version) Goldie – I Think of You (Digital & Spirit Remix) H20 – Parasite DJ Marky & Pola & Bryson – Run the Streets Mistrust – Dreamer T>I & Zombie Cats – Sidestep Airglo & Stash the Groove Bug – Boom Daniel Power – Upstream Colour Hyroglifics – God Given Russell Small – It Is What It Is (Bad Ass Disco) (Carl Cox DnB Remix) Breakage – Valhalla T95 & DRS – On Site T>I & D*Minds – Pulling Teef Serum & Kasra – Fade Out Waeys – Ephemeral Acuna – Back to the Brainstorm Philip K Dick – Drips Bop & Subway – Higher Dimension Om Unit – Joyspark Mystic State – Expectations Shinbu – Sacrifice Conrad Subs – Beyond This
This is the first of three mixes I’m dropping for a little holiday therapy. Whether you’re having a whale of a time with family and friends or spending the holidays isolating solo, the one thing that will always get you through is good music. So hopefully these mixes will go some ways to helping you have a good break and get you through to 2021.
To kick us of we have a Liquid mix that sums up what strong year it has been for melodic and vocal driven D&B. Artists such as Alix Perez, Tokyo Prose, The Vanguard Project have had a massive year pushing the smooth soulful sound of D&B to ever greater heights. Even older artists such as High Contrast and Netsky who left the liquid sound behind for other sounds are coming back in with tunes reflecting their original sounds.
2020 may have been a tough year for most, but for Liquid D&B it was smooth sailing.
Machinedrum feat. Sub Focus – 1000 Miles Smote – Light of My Life Netsky & Becky Hill – Hold On Tokyo Prose – Dust Nuvertal – The Earth Forgives Substance & Charlie Brix – Break the Habit Alix Perez – Someone Else Goldie – The Mirrored River (Artificial Intelligence Remix) Monumental Breaks – Tidy Mind Champagne – Tangible Leads (Physics Remix) T:Base – Universe Impression & Markem – Mystic Times High Contrast – Calling My Name Acid_Lab – Mr. Evans T:Base – Power Cnof – Never Know VIP The Vanguard Project & Fred V feat. Riya – No Words Netsky – I Choose You
Heading deep into the Jungle with this mix of old classics, sneaky remixes and new takes. Earl Grey & Dead Man’s Chest, Circa 96, Dwarde and Tim Reaper look after the new school tunes, while the older tracks are a veritable who’s who of Jungle with DJ Rap, Adam F, Foul Play, Nasty Habits and Aprodite. And that’s just for starters.
If you like your beats OG this mix will more than fit the bill.
DJ Monk – Dance Hall Style ST Files – St Files Part 1.1 (Remix) Aston – The Sign (Remix) Earl Grey & Dead Man’s Chest – Fugitive Version The Committee – Final Conflict (Tango Remix) M.A.2. – Hearing is Believing (Remix) DJ Rap – Rumble (Flapjack Remix) Adam F – Lighter Style Harmony – What a House Foul Play – A.I. (The Last Ronin Remix) Harmony – Just a Game Nasty Habits – Technology Lemon D – Jah Love (VIP Mix) Aphrodite – Bass Lights (VIP Mix) Dwarde & Time Reaper – So Strange Harmony & Xtreme – Let Me In Circa96 – Fantasy (Tim Reaper Remix)
We’re living in interesting times, and sometimes you need a little something to take your mind off things and just be.
That was the aim with this mix of soulful tunes full of catchy vocals and sweet melodies. It still rolls like a train, but it’s a smooth ride all the way to the station and easy to just stare out the window and enjoy the world passing by.
DRS, Dynamite MC & Etherwood Villem & Leo Wood – We Had a Song Redeyes – Changes.Illusions (Club Mix) BCee & Charlotte Haining – The Hills Duoscience – Lose the Touch Low:r feat. Sixar – Social Mania Duoscience – Attempts PFM – Living Without You BCee & Charlotte Haining feat. DRS – Love for the Fallen DRS, Dynamite MC & DJ Marky – A Song for You Artificial Intelligence feat. Satl – No Choice Askel & Elere – Shy Duoscience – Ironic Patience – Ocean View Redeyes feat [ K S R ] – A Thousand Times Artificial Intelligence – Good Times Phaction & Leo Wood – I Have You (Ill Truth Remix) Duoscience – Sparta Motiv – The Woman The Got Away DRS, Dynamite MC & LSB – Adoration Motiv – The Woman The Got Away (Tease)
The Bristol / Manchester sound is like nothing else in D&B. Full of ragga style vocals, dance hall style beats and vibes and yet quintessentially English. Sam Binga, Chimpo and to a lesser degree Om Unit exemplify the low-fi, down and dirty sound.
With its street style worn proudly on its sleeve, it one of those sounds that once you get into it you just want more.
Chimpo – 1996 (Illegal Remix) Chimpo – Big Ed (Generation X Mix) Sam Binga & Redders – Vandilero Sam Binga & Rider Shafique feat. Tiffanie Malvo – Proud (Enei Remix) Dub Phizix vs. Fixate – Babalugats Chimpo – Good Love DRS, Dynamic MC & DJ Zinc – Get Down Dub Phizix & Strategy – Deh Madcap – B-Boy Sam Binga & Rider Shafique – Organic Sam Binga & Halogenix – I’m an Adult QZB feat. Rider Shafique – City On The Lock Shy FX feat. Sinead Harnett – Too Shy (Breakage Remix) Soul Intent & Ms Tempz – 2 Bad Workforce – Your Moves
With Jungle being a hot property in D&B again, it’s easy to forget that Atmospheric D&B has been flying the Amen flag this whole time. With producers like Seba’s Secret Operations label and Eshaton’s Omni Music keeping the sound alive, Atmospheric D&B is better than ever. So much so we’re starting to see older producers like J Majik and ASC who moved away from the sound returning to their roots.
Backed up by established producers such as Bop, Duoscience and Greekboy the sound of rinsing Amens, lush pads and melodies and deep sub-bass is one that never seems to get tired.
Blade – Unreleased Anile – Earth & Mars Seba – Nostalgia Jrumhand – Intuition ASC – Clear Skies Rainforest – Villalongin Bop – Memories Seba – This is Our House Circa96 – Cave Dweller J Majik – Serenity ASC – Moment of Truth Eschaton & Future Engineers – Ascension AwakenFM – Atlantis Antony G – Getting Lost in Prague Focus 2 – Nova Era (Alex DB Nu Old Skool Age Version) Duoscience – Good to Be With (Recap) Greekboy & Okee – Lands of the Unknown