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Boomkat Product Review:
Planet Mu’s tireless devotion to footwork continues with this brand new plate from precocious Chicago kid Young Smoke, who follows up the hype garnered from his Bangs and Works appearance and DatPiff tape with the woozy ‘Space Zone’. Somehow more developed than plenty others in the genre, it makes sense that he’s a part of fellow Mu alum DJ Diamond’s Flight Muzik crew, and ‘Space Zone’ does a good job of showing Smoke’s production breadth over fifteen shin-pummeling tracks. Giving nods to drum ‘n bass (‘Korrupted Star’) and druggy electronic psychedelia (‘Traps in Space’) as well as the usual rap/r+b axis, Smoke has fashioned a pretty unique voice here. The most obvious comparison would be to Traxman (and his stunning ‘Da Mind of Traxman’ LP) but Smoke rarely allows his fondness for melody and experimentation to overshadow the latent foot-twitching power of the tracks. This is a raw, hard-edged record from beginning to end, and while ‘Destroy Him My Robots’ and ‘Liquid Drug’ might nudge towards more Drexciyan depths than we’ve heard before in the genre it never loses the hoarse croak of the footwork scene itself. Brave, unpredictable and with enough rumble to keep even the most demanding bass heads on-side, ‘Space Zone’ is an early step from a producer who we have a feeling you'll be hearing a lot about.