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various / keysound - Keysound Recordings Present… This Is How We Roll
Where a lot of labels that came up around the same time (no need to name names) have lost sight of their roots in pursuit of bigger sales and fees, Keysound has remained admirably pure-hearted and steadfast, keeping one eye firmly on road and the other deep underground; Martin Clark's track record for unearthing new talent has been, and continues to be, spotless. Even in its regular forays into new territories - house tempo, the album format, etc - the imprint has remained valiantly true to the UKG/grime/dubstep bloodline that birthed it in the first place. 'This Is How We Roll' is a timely and completely unf**kwithable compilation of lathe-fresh dubs from the label's new wave - in fact 'New Wave' is the name of the opening track, an exhilarating three-way between Visionist, Beneath and Wen. These producers represent a young sub-sect of the 'nuum that has watched producers just two or three years older dull their music's pirate edge as their profiles have grown, and they have absolutely no intention of making the same mistake themselves. Highlights? Visionist's 'Dangerous' is a punchy, percussive dark garage killer, coming over like stripped-down and souped-up Horsepower circa To The Rescue, and Wen's 'Commotion VIP' is a superior edit of the track from his recent name-making 12". Epoch's 'The Steppenwolf' is absolute class, shimmying effortlessly from jagged-stringed Eski abstraction to reinforced halfstep swagger, and Gremino's 'Monster 130 VIP' is, well, a monster. Rabit, Moleskin, E.m.m.a., Mumdance & Logos, Fresh Paul, Double Helix, Dusk, Blackdown and Farrah are the other contributors to this bracing, blistering comp - one that proves UK soundsystem music is in rude health, if you know where to look.