Sunday, 25 July 2010

R.I.P. Productions - 'Oh Baby'

UK Garage. In all honesty this was a genre which I had serious doubts about in terms of it's quality and credibility, believing that artists such as the laughable So Solid and The Artful Dodger were all this movement in bass music had to offer. How wrong and ignorant I was. Over the past few months I started to hear the occasional track in a mix which would stand out, containing a syncopated 4x4 rhythm with beat-skipping kick drums and wonderful shuffling hi-hats. This rhythm was perfect, and placed in tandem with the beautifully sampled vocals and harmonious features, this was a genre which I was born to listen to.

Since listening to a couple of sets by Falty DL, Deadboy and Joy Orbison over the past few months I have endeavoured to discover this style of music, which is far too time consuming for my liking with the majority of the tracks being released between the years of 95-98, and the majority of which are nearly impossible to find in MP3 format (and ridiculously expensive on 12"). I have managed to find a few lovely tracks though, most notably by artists such as R.I.P. Productions, Groove Chronicles, Nu-Birth, Todd Edwards, Smokin Beats and Zed Bias. You can listen to my favourite track to date from the genre in the video above. The shuffled stepping rhythm, diva cries of 'Oh baby, useless baby' and deep bass which is complemented brilliantly by the beautifully harmonious chords which filter their way into the track after the 1:20 mark. I guess I should have been born in a different era, although I wouldn't change the current climate of music which is nurturing innovative artists such as Joy Orbison, Mount Kimbie, James Blake et al.

I really hope we'll see a resurgence of this exact style in UK bass music in the near future, and if Falty DL's new 'Phreqaflex' EP, released tomorrow, is anything to go by, we'll be hearing fresh new garage sounds very soon. I'll be writing on this new EP over the next couple of days.

Friday, 23 July 2010

Peverelist - 'Better Ways Of Living/Fighting Without Fighting'

Tom Ford's first offering since the brilliant 'Jarvik Mindstate' LP, which was released back in November 2009, had been making quite a bit of noise in some circles before its release earlier in the week. After a couple of days of listening, this hype is more than understandable. The 'Better Ways Of Living/Fighting Without Fighting' provides two of Ford's strongest tracks to date, with his jungle influenced dubstep sounds seeming to develop maturity with each release.

The two track EP which was released on Peverelist's very own Punch Drunk label, opens with 'Better Ways Of Living'. The track opens with the main structure alone, a bustling beat that is characteristic of Peverelist's work. Over the period of early build up further understated percussive elements are added, giving the track a more developed sound with a further layering of sound. The most intriguing and successful element of the track is the wonderful contrast provided by the shuffling beat against the quite awkward sounding synth organ, which completes the wonderful arrangement when introduced after the 1:25 mark. The track goes onto develop this little combination, which works to great effect, with the beat keeping feet moving whilst the synth organ adds the harmony which provides an aura of emotion to the track.
The second track of the EP, 'Fighting Without Fighting', follows a familiar suit to that of 'Better Ways Of Living', yet it is a slightly more complicated affair in terms of its rhythm and is evidently very jungle influenced in its sound. The tracks beat is extremely jittery, and rhythmically quite unusual, heralding more to the days of old school drum and bass rather than present dubstep rhythm structures. The synth organ in this track has less of a prominence in 'Fighting Without Fighting, but it is still invaluable in the tracks structure. The dark and uncomfortable synth gives the track a darker feel, a sound which wouldn't seem out of place in a Metalheadz release back in the mid-1990's, an era of music which has evidently influenced the sound which Peverelist creates. This EP is an intriguing listen, an example of an experimental producer nearing the peak of his creative powers. You can download the EP on MP3 as well as purchase it on 12" from either Boomkat, Juno or Chemical Records. Be sure to give it a listen, I have no doubts you'll be hearing the tracks in sets from the likes of Ramadanman, Ben UFO, Joy Orbison et al.

Wednesday, 21 July 2010

Philip Browne Menswear - Website Launch

Yesterday saw the launch of the website for the leading independent menswear store in East Anglia, Philip Browne. The shop has been the benchmark for menswear fashion ever since its opening back in November 1986, and over the past couple of decade's has gained a reputation for it's great stock of established and up-coming designers within the realm of menswear fashion. Over the past few years Philip Browne has been nominated for and won prestigious awards, which include Drapers Record's Independent Retailer of the Year and FHM's Designer Retailer of the Year.

The store has for many years had an eye for spotting designer talent, stocking underground designers which haven then gone on to great success in their areas (they sold the first collections from Alexander McQueen and Jean Paul Gaultier respectively. The shop currently stocks Moncler, Liberty of London, Adidas Originals, Ma.Strum, Y-3, Vivienne Westwood, Belstaff, Barbour, Victorinox, Lyle & Scott, Fred Perry Vintage as well as a few other exciting underground designers which the guys at the shop rate highly. You can view the items they currently have available online now at, as well as visiting the store based in Norwich (q Guildhall Hill, Noriwch, NR2 1JH).

After living in Norwich for 7 years you can trust me when I say this is by far the best shop for menswear fashion in Norwich, and probably East Anglia in all honesty. If you ever find yourself in this area of the country, be sure to pay a visit, or if not make sure you visit the website link above to view some of the great products which the store stocks. The atmosphere in store is great, with the staff all being great people who know what they're talking about, and the soundtrack in store has never disappointed whenever I've been in. Be sure to visit the store or its website, you will not be disappointed.

Tuesday, 20 July 2010

Mount Kimbie - 'Would Know' Video Release

After the release of their critically acclaimed debut album 'Crooks & Lovers' on the Hotflush label yesterday, the video for Mount Kimbie's first single off the album has been released. The video is really good watch, filmed and edited together in an interesting and unique fashion by promising filmmaker and photographer Tyrone Lebon. The video is beautifully shot, managing to balance between aesthetic wonders whilst keeping a very raw and original visual style, with visual effects playing a wonderful part in the video's development. The track is the second on the 'Crooks & Lovers' tracklist, the brilliant 'Would Know'. If you are yet to hear the work of art that is the 'Crooks & Lovers' EP, make sure you give it a chance, you can buy it now at

As for Tyrone Lebon, the man is an extremely talented photographer and filmmaker. Over the past year or so he has done work for Stussy, Nike, Dr. Martens, as well as numerous shots of artists and his own individual works. You can check some of his work out by visiting his website which is It's clear he has a vision which shines through all of his work in terms of its aesthetic value, and I'm sure he will go far and that we'll be seeing a lot more of his great work in the near future. Enjoy his work.

I had planned on writing about the Mercury Award nominations, but upon seeing the release of the names this morning, I quickly averted that idea. Paul Weller (which I can accept), Dizzee Rascal (I swear at this point I may have bordered on the edge of insanity), Mumford and Sons, Laura Marling, Corinne Bailey Rae, Biffy Clyro, even the Foals to a certain extent. These artists are so poor it is beyond me as to why they have got anywhere near a nomination. Ok, The xx and Wild Beasts are deserving of their place in the line-up with two really nice albums, and to a certain extent I can accept the nomination of Foals (although I still don't quite understand it). Where's the quality, or even just the variety? Without doubt the two best album's I've heard this year are Scuba's 'Triangulation' and Mount Kimbie's 'Crooks & Lovers' (which although only recently released, should have been on the radar of the committee if they're as great as they're supposed to be), yet I can guarantee these wouldn't have even been considered. Well what did I expect, they didn't even award Burial's great 'Untrue' album of the year in 2008. At the end of the day these awards mean as much as Owen Hargreaves does to football; no more needs to be said than that in my opinion.

Sunday, 18 July 2010

Y-3 Fall/Winter 2010 Loobook

For the past few years Y-3 has been one of my favourite label's, and with the new fall-winter 2010 collection my admiration for the brand has undoubtedly been enhanced. The collaborative project between Yohji Yamamoto and Adidas has produced some wonderful lines since 2003, well known for their inventive merging of high-end fashion and sport/streetwear, with innovative designs and bright colours produced along the way. The only criticism I would ever place on the brand is that a couple of lines have maybe been slightly too similar to past collections, but this is something I cannot fault within the fall/winter 2010 collection. The line departs from the brand's classic bright colours and extravagant designs, and pursues a different vision for the most part.

As the collections preview video suggested with its still shots of dark and bleak cityscape's, this line is takes darker and more reserved style in comparison to previous collections, with smart streetwear designs created fully to suit the fall/winter months as well as less extreme colourings which reflect the colours associated with the time of year these items will be released in.

One of the highlights of this line are the quality of the jackets produced. The designs are smart, but yet causal enough for everyday wear, with original and well-fitted designs which are subtle in their branding (with the 3-stripe mark generally lacking prominence on the items). Knitwear has always been a strength of Y-3's lines, and this is something which is continued in the fall/winter collection. This is displayed particularly in the design of their sweatshirts, which are long slim-fit designs, with each featuring a specific elements (e.g. 3 green stripes on the shoulder, Y-3 logo in orange on the back of the green crewneck etc...). A new addition in this line is the notable inclusion of flannel shirts, a brilliant choice of design in my opinion. This is an item which has been prominent in many collections over the past year or so, and Y-3's inclusion of this product in the line displays its growing popularity in the world of men's fashion. I was quite tentative when considered whether or not the brand would be able to create well designed flannel shirts, but from first views it seems they have produced the shirts with great success. The shirts are created with that typical baggy, wide fit in mind, but Y-3 puts it's own stamp on the shirts with a small logo imprint on the shirt pocket as well as the well selected colour choices (green and purple checked shirt in particular stands out).

You can see the fall/winter 2010 lookbook images below. These items have not been released in stores yet, but will slowly be finding their way into specialist independent stores as well as department stores over the next couple of months. To find out more information about the collection and where exactly these good will be stocked, please visit Enjoy the collection's lookbook below.

Y-3 Fall/Winter 2010 Collection Lookbook:

Saturday, 17 July 2010

Lovebox - Friday 16th (Joy Orbison)

Joy Joy Joy. The line-up for the first day of the Lovebox festival 2010 included Dizzee Rascal, Chase & Status, Ellie Goulding, The Maccabees, Bombay Bicycle Club, Mystery Jets, Chew Lips, Sinden, Doorly etc. From my point of view, this was a bang on average line-up, and I started to question why I had paid £45 to see this. Then within a few minutes I remembered, the only reason I'm really here is to see one man, Mr. Joy Orbison (and I am more than willing to pay £45 alone to see one of his sets). Throw Cooly G and Todd Edwards into the equation and you've got a good day of music ahead of you, although nothing could touch the hour of brilliance which O'Grady provided to a slightly subdued audience in the small NYC Downlow tent, a crowd which I very much doubt fully appreciated what they were hearing in all honesty.

O'Grady once again showed his great talent for ridiculously good track selection, with a great range of track styles that fit in the 130-140 bpm range. The set moved through house/funky, old school garage (95-98 era), new and up-coming post-dubstep/future dubstep (call it what you like, just know that's it's fantastic stuff) as well as featuring a number of his own wonderful productions. It was a really well balanced set, keeping you moving with a gradually increasing tempo and continual progression through styles which kept pulses and feet moving for the full hour.

JO opened with J.Doe playing alongside the intro of Braiden's debut track 'The Alps'. As soon as I heard this little combination I knew the set would be great, and there was no looking back after this. Other tracks which featured were Breach's 'Fatherless', Nu-birth's 'Anytime', a Groove Chronicles number, 'Brkln Clln', 'The Shrew Would Have Cushioned The Blow', 'So Derobe', 'Hyph Mngo', Ramadanman's great new release 'Work Them', as well as Pangaea's future garage track 'Memories'. As well as these wonders, there were a few very nice funky/house tracks early on in the set which I hadn't had the pleasure of hearing before, with a couple of lovely dark old school garage tunes which I'm not aware of also carefully arranged into the mix (these tracks were of the same ilk as artists such as RIP Productions, Groove Chronicles and Zed Bias). This all culminated in a great set, which was spot on both in terms of track selection and the formulation of mixes. My expectations were huge, I mean this was the reason I went to Lovebox in all honesty, and it says a lot about an artist when they surpass all your expectations. Brilliant. Sweaty, but brilliant.

Whilst walking around the various places on offer before JO's set, just killing time for the main event, I was surprised to find O'Grady hanging around outside the Rizla arena, watching on at Zombie Disco Squad before his set. I was delighted to find that he is a down to earth and humble guy, who was more than happy to chat about his music and the exciting Doldrums label. It's really nice to find someone that has had such a meteoric rise and success over the past year or so keeping his feet on the ground, not getting carried away and just wanting to keep on doing what he's great at; producing fantastic tracks and djing to adoring crowds.

Joy Orbison will not be stopped, his reputation is ever growing, and deservedly so. Look out for his live dates at his myspace page by clicking here, and I will let you know when London dates pop up, he is a must see artist. I will also be keeping you informed on JO's future releases and any material produced from the Doldrums label, I have a feeling we'll be seeing a new release from JO on his very own label shortly. Thank you Joy.

Wednesday, 14 July 2010

Y-3 Fall/Winter 2010 Video Preview

Here's the video preview to Y-3's fall/winter 2010 collection. Although the video doesn't actually show you what the items in this line's collection look like, I think it is subtle and effective in representing which sort of direction the brand is taking with future releases. The use of black and white attributes a slightly dark and shady atmosphere, which is only enhanced by the still shots of concrete cityscape's and desolate landscapes. I believe the aesthetic of this video implies this season's collection will be a slight departure from previous more extravagant and colourful designs, with darker and more reserved designs being created for this winter. I expect smart and simple designs from this line, whilst still retaining some of the the sportswear aesthetics that Adidas's collaborative influence provides on each and every collection Y-3 has created.

The Y-3 fall/winter 2010 lookbook has just been released, and I will be posting on these future designs and releases very shortly.

Tuesday, 13 July 2010

Mount Kimbie - 'Crooks and Lovers' LP

Album of 2010, no arguments (sorry Scuba, but it even outdoes the great 'Triangulation' LP) . Since I was made aware of its planned release in March, I have been eagerly anticipating the debut album from Dom Maker and Kai Campos on the Hotflush label, wondering whether they would be able to adapt from the EP to LP format, something which other artists haven't quite fulfilled in previous attempts. The fact is that they are probably more suited to the LP format, with their own brand of post-dubstep taking you on a journey through their wonderful soundscapes, and experience which can probably on be matched or bettered by seeing one of the duo's live performances.

Dom and Kai met whilst at Southbank University, where they lived together in student halls. From here on in the two developed their response to dubstep, a sound which is of their own, indefinable in terms of relating to a single genre or style. The post-dubstep sound which they provided on 'Sketch On Glass', 'Maybes' and now 'Crooks & Lovers' takes you on a journey through their influences, breezing through dubstep, post-rock, ambient, hip-hop, techno and UK garage just to mention a few. This is an album of pure originality and brilliance, a work which you thank for making the clown Rusko (who had the audacity to call his album OMG!, a crime in itself even before I was exposed to the terrible so-called music) look ever more ridiculous and idiotic.

It would be easy for the album to sound confused and lost in direction with its many twist and turns as well as its number of musical influences, but Dom and Kai are always in complete control of this unique and innovative direction, and they do so in such an accomplished manner. Of course it won't be the same for all, but 'Crooks & Lovers' dreamy synths, idiosyncratic beats and hazy vocal snippets take me somewhere else, they provide a unique and wonderful feeling with their sounds which in my world can only be matched by the talents of Orbison and Blake. This downtempo, smooth and soft sounds is perfect, a mutation in dubstep/UK bass music which is constantly developing and growing with time. The album is for me as suited to chill out listening as it is on the dancefloor (many would say it isn't suited to the dancefloor, but I would love to hear 'Mayor' or 'Before I Move Off' in a DJ set).

As soon as 'Tunnelvision', the album opener, begins you know you're in for a brilliant exploration, with the tracks shuffling beat, soft percussive elements that attribute it a lazy feel and distant soulful vocals all contributing to the feeling of a hazy summers day which the track evokes. From this point on you never look back, falling straight into two of the albums highlight tracks, 'Would Know' and 'Before I Move Off'. 'Would Know' provides that typically luscious sound, with wonderfully smooth and airy percussion backed by low sub-bass and a shuffling rhythm, culminating in an uptempo riff 3/4 of the way into the track. My favourite track on the album, although each and every one is fantastic, is 'Carbonated'. The track starts with a nice harsher sounding synth, which is soon accompanied by a smooth prominent dub beat. The tracks main percussive arrangement slowly replaces the harsher sounding synth, completely taking over the track at the halfway mark to combine beautifully with the dominant beat and slightly increased sub-bass. This contributes towards the tracks lovely warm and soulful sounds, which is made complete by the incredible female vocal samples, which can't help but hypnotise you into moving to the beat. 'Field', the track most exposed from the album, probably is the best representation of what the album is all about: unworldly and puzzling. The track's intro slowly fades in a thrumming uptempo rhythmic sound, which suddenly pauses in the mid-section of the track and turns to softer sound, with a slow deep beat playing alongside an enthralling percussive arrangement and what sounds like the ambient sound of an electronic guitar.

'Crooks & Lovers' Tracklisting:

1. Tunnelvision (1:49)

2. Would Know (3:16)

3. Before I Move Off (4:11)

4. Blind Night Errand (3:22)

5. Adriatic (1:27)

6. Carbonated (4:19)

7. Ruby (4:04)

8. Ode To Bear (4:01)

9. Field (3:04)

10. Mayor (4:01)

11. Between Time (1:54)

The duo are also renowned for their live sets (they have collaborated live with the brilliant James Blake in the past), something I would highly recommend. They are currently supporting The xx on tour, and have just released a number of dates in which they will tour the US in September/October. These dates can be seen below. Check out Mount Kimbie's myspace page for more information on live dates, with more sets coming up over the coming weeks (

23rd September- Victoria, BC – Rifflandia festival

24th September – Seattle – Decibel Festival

25th September – San Francisco – club TBC

26th September – L.A. – Downtown Independent Theatre

27th September – Colorado – Fox theatre

28th September – Boston – Wonder Bar

30th September – Toronto TBC

1st October – New York – The Bunker

2nd October – Montreal – Le Belmont Sur le Boulevard

This album is a landmark, the marker of a new movement/mutation in the world of electronic music. It's difficult to define it, and in actual fact it doesn't need definition, all you need to know is that Mount Kimbie are making fantastic and experimental sounds. Hotflush are most certainly leading the way with this experimental scene, which is providing more depth and feeling with its releases, as we have seen in releases from Scuba, Joy Orbison, Sigha, Sepalcure, George FitzGerald and of course Mount Kimbie. They are releasing great records ever more frequently at present, and long may this reign continue in the future. Please do listen to this album, its an absolutely brilliant experience, one you can't miss out on. You can stream the full album now at, with its main release due for Monday 19th July. File next to Joy Orbison, James Blake and FaltyDL.

Friday, 9 July 2010

Ramadanman - 'Work Them/Fall Short'

How does David Kennedy do it? Is it his secret twin brother or Ben UFO on the side helping him through all these brilliant releases, or is he just so talented and efficient it's beyond belief? I'm going for the second option, although it would interesting to see if Ben UFO does have any secret output on the Hessle Audio label that himself and Mr. Kennedy both run. Ramadanman's latest offering comes in the form of the highly anticipated 'Work Them/Fall Short' EP which has been released on Loefah's ever growing Swamp 81 label. This is just one of a number of great releases in 2010 from Kennedy, who has also produced the 'Ramadanman' EP, 'Glut/Tempest' EP, as well as his 'Down With You/Higher' EP as Pearson Sound.

'Work Them' will no doubt be the track that gains the most attention, with its constant play on the underground scene by Joy Orbison, Ben UFO and Kode9 over the past few months leaving followers drooling over the possibility of the track's release. The tracks infectious and hypnotic vocals and snapping drum beats are perfect for the dancefloor, with the extra layer of smooth synths enhancing this relatively simple but brilliantly effective track. Place this one next to Addison Groove's 'Footcrab' in the collection, with both Swamp 81 releases sharing the similar format of driven drum beats and frenetic, looped vocals.

'Fall Short' is a cleaner and more reserved track than its previous, calling back to previous works from Ramadanman in terms of its style. Once again, as in the usual Ramadanman format, interesting drum patterns are prominent throughout, giving the track its overlaying structure, dominating the tracks foreground in the most part. Kennedy also adds extra layers over the main drum beat in track in the form of his wonderfully arranged synths, as well as the amazing distant female vocal snippets which pull at the heart, and give the track that added emotion which for me is essential. These moments of emotion complement the more concentrated breakbeat patterns, resulting in a track that is as suited to home listening as it is to being dropped at 1am in a club.

The EP is now available on 12" from Boomkat (, Chemical Records ( and also Juno. The tracks are yet to be released for MP3 download, but should be available in 2/3 time from both Boomkat and Juno in an MP3 format.

Thursday, 8 July 2010

Ice Cream Fall/Winter 2010 Lookbook

As promised earlier on in the week here are the images from the Ice Cream fall/winter 2010 lookbook, one that is quite a contrast in style from the new Billionaire Boys Club designs. Over the past 10 seasons Ice Cream has been known to be the more playful, forthcoming and experimental line in terms of colour and graphic designs, as well as creating products which fit under the description of casual/streetwear. This new 11th season line is no different, with your usual relaxed fits accompanied by bright stand-out colours and well designed graphics.

Hoodie's, crewnecks, flannel shirts, t-shirts, IC denim, flat peak caps and the great IC trainers are once again the order of the day in this wonderful line. Surprisingly, the new IC trainers turn out to be one of the highlights of the line, with the simple models and bright colours. The Converse styled trainers also have the cool feature of the Ice Cream dripping over the rubber outer sole. As per usual the hoodie and crewneck designs are excellent, with a nice relaxed fit combined with the quality of colour and graphic design combinations. The material the clothing is also fantastic, thick 100% cotton that will give you many years of wear without fading or loosing any great quality. I'm also a huge admirer of this IC line's flannel shirts, with both great quality materials used and a pleasing aesthetic design. The thick cotton model has a cool checked design with sensible and complementary use of colours (black and white, red and navy) featuring a little ice cream cone and and ice cream man on a skateboard respectively. These along with the crewnecks are items which would be well worth investing in for future years.

You can check the full lookbook out in the pictures below. These items will hit BBC flagship stores as well as specialist department and independent stores in September/October. The best places in the UK to find the items will most likely be Harvey Nichols, Selfridges and Dogfish. Enjoy the preview images of the collection below.

Ice Cream Fall/Winter 2010 Lookbook Preview:

Tuesday, 6 July 2010

Billionaire Boys Club - Fall/Winter 2010 Lookbook

This beginning of this week has seen the release of the fall/winter 2010 lookbook from the Billionaire Boys Club and Ice Cream lines. I'm going to provide images form the Billionaire Boys Club line today, and then follow up with the new Ice Cream releases in the next couple of days. This is the 11th line designed by BBC, and after looking through the images provided by the lookbook it is without doubt one of it's best lines to date. The brand seems to be evolving from line to line, with a more reserved and toned down feel to this line than we have seen in the past.

The fall/winter line features a number of different styles of clothing, with varsity jackets, knits, blazers, crewnecks, denim, trousers as well as shorts and new styles of trainers. The crewnecks/hoodies are once again well designed, featuring the classic BBC logo against bright colours on a well fitted design. One feature I was really impressed by is the new shirt designs, something which the brand now seems to have become accomplished in designing in the past couple of years. Particularly the denim shirts caught my eye, with a smart buttoned look combined with a slim fit to create some really cool pieces. I believe the selection and design of denim jeans has decidedly improved over the past few seasons, finding a better fit in this line. Past lines have seen a baggier styles which come in awkward sizes, but this line seems to present a perfect denim which is a unique fit, one that almost falls between the straight and skinny cut lines. Once again the jeans have the astronaut helmets and dollar signs on the back-pockets, a signature design of BBC denim.

You can check the full lookbook out in the pictures below. These items will hit BBC flagship stores as well as specialist department and independent stores in September/October. The best places in the UK to find the items will most likely be Harvey Nichols, Selfridges and Dogfish. I will be posting on the brilliant Ice Cream fall/winter collection over the next couple of days. Enjoy the preview of the new collection below.

Billionaire Boys Club Fall/Winter 2010 Lookbook Preview: