The wonderful thing about DLR’s Couch Sound imprint and its A&R is that, identical to DLR himself, there’s at all times a way of enjoyable and funk constructed into each observe. From the discharge artwork to the sound design to even the deepest, heaviest tracks nonetheless being a little bit of a bop, there’s a playfulness there that offers Couch its mass attraction whereas nonetheless being technically spot-on. With their new collab EP Recent Cutz due out tomorrow, January 25, Iris and Sweetpea have greater than embraced that enjoyable aspect to beatmaking with a group of quick, funky rollers.
Most US heads will know Iris from her work with Quadrant. Collectively they’ve been one of many few US acts to trapse the hazardous atlantic connection and earn prime billing with UK labels, releasing on the likes of Delta9, C4C, CIA Dispatch, Shogun and lots of extra over their lengthy tenure within the scene. Iris has additionally executed her justifiable share of solo work however appears to be actually going for it within the final couple years, with one of many first branch-out tracks, appropriately sufficient, being with Sweetpea on DLR’s Couch King Sick Chapter 3 compilation.
Sweetpea is one other D&B lifer who’s been making tracks since 2016 and has shortly grow to be a mainstay of Couch Sound and Bcee’s Spearhead Information whereas additionally releasing tracks on Dispatch, Hospital and Addictive Behaviour. She’s additionally a part of the highly effective London girls’s collective, EQ50, who work to provide equal alternative to all artists in drum & bass. Recognized to neuro with the grimiest of them but additionally in a position to make a killer vocal observe, for those who’re a stateside head who hasn’t heard Sweetpea’s discography but, it’s time to get to Googling.
Iris, Sweetpea and DLR have chosen a cool format for Recent Cutz: there are two true collab observe the place each the artists labored on them and two the place it’s simply Iris or Sweetpea. That is enjoyable for the tech heads as a result of audiences can actually hear every artist’s particular person fashion proper alongside their fused work. It makes for an fascinating research in how collabs are made. The collab tracks are the title observe, a jumpy throwback of a deep curler that’s as quick as is it minimal on sound design and final week’s teaser observe, “DFS.” “DFS” has an identical snare-focused, fast-moving beat construction however lands extra on the darkish than the deep aspect, particularly when the tempo adjustments to a quick model of dubstep on the break.
EP opener “Not Even a Huge Up” is Iris’s observe. Persevering with the rolling drum motif, this observe nonetheless has the throwback cachet each she and Sweetpea love, however Iris have her observe an additional, oh-so-subtle injection of rave within the sound design. It’s only a trace of musicality and some mid-90s samples, however it makes a distinction and carves out Iris’s personal fashion whereas staying true to the theme of the EP.
Equally, Sweetpea’s “Duck Funk,” our YEDM premiere in the present day, is fast and tom-forward in its rolling drums a’la the remainder of the EP however it’s bought a great deal of spooky, virtually ominous sound design. A canned, low-reg synth does loads of the work on this observe: it carries the music whereas connecting to the drums, after which drops again within the break to the background, the place it turns into much more canned and echoey.
This break bit might technically be probably the most fascinating a part of the observe as a result of that synth by no means leaves and is rarely actually within the background. The shape it takes within the afore-mentioned break makes it sound prefer it’s being performed at a membership behind closed doorways. It grows fainter, however you by no means cease listening to it. It comes again in by way of a swooping sinewave that brings the listener into the rave with it. The magic of rave is encapsulated in that second; we’ve all felt it, however it’s unattainable to explain. Fortunately, Sweetpea caught it in a mixdown for us.
It’s clear that Sweetpea and Iris have a shared imaginative and prescient for his or her work, and in Fresh Cutz it intersects at rolling drums, minimal sound design, deep synths and, in fact, rave. Convey within the enjoyable and funky aspect with Couch Sound, and this EP is as really contemporary as it’s timeless.
Recent Cutz drops tomorrow, January 25 on Couch Sound. Click on right here to pre-order or pre-save.