Review: Arkwright – Retaliate EP [IMP003]

Something I have honed in on lately is the attention to detail backing so many productions amidst the underground dubstep community. The percussion in a lot of the music being created these days emulates an almost ritualistic tribal presence. As if tribes-people were to be ceremoniously drumming and dancing, these complex rhythmic arrangements symbolize the shift back into more ethnic, spiritual, and organic musical composition.

Coming deep inside from the mind of Arkwright, the “Retaliate” EP on Imperial Audio showcases three original productions, as well as a remix of “Retaliate” by DT. On the original production “Retaliate”, furious tribal licks permeate into the ears of the listener. A strong initial presence is drawn together from deep, atmospheric synths, and well-reverberated drum hits. The cry of an aboriginal’s song further details the vibe of this tune. Following the drop, rolling kicks and grainy mid range accentuate one another. This one is a surefire dance floor destroyer; where as the remix by DT draws from the ancestral vibes of the original. DT’s remix creates a more spatial atmosphere, moving back to a more half-step feel. The remix features solid re-working of the mid ranges, with the vocal sampling oscillating in and out across the track. Overall a great re-work, bringing together a far more meditative and cerebral vibe than the original.

“New World Order” harnesses some seriously sinister vibes from the first phrase. Solid deep bass patches and particularly eerie mid ranges instill a strong dark presence. Arkwright is quick to draw for the tribal drums, alongside brilliant high hats and hits to create movement. Lots of space on this beat, and the drops almost deceive the listener for a moment, as the ominous bass line has a subtle delay, before kicking through the subwoofer with intent. The name brings a sense of immanent danger, as we seemingly draw close to a proposed new world order.

“Subdefuse” is the final track on the EP. This one carries forward a deep, dark attitude. Arkwright maintains thick atmosphere across the majority of his tunes. Stretched out reverb on the snares and other drum elements further this huge atmosphere. The omnipresent vibes create suspense, accentuating the deep drive of the bass line through the entire production. “Subdefuse” is a definite choice for the deep, dark minimalist.

IMP003 is released March 25th and is available from Juno Download.

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