Sach O is not looking forward to Winter.

Hate it or love it, Dubstep’s sonic arc makes perfect sense in evolutionary terms. Born out of the UKG hangover into an era of skunk-fueled paranoia and empty clubs, its initial minimalism was custom made for the early days of the War on Terror. Gone are the empty rooms however and along with them the minimalism: as the world falls apart one disaster at a time, paranoid has become the new normal and the kids just want to dance; preferably to the harshest, most synthetic frequencies ever-processed through a soft-synth and beamed directly at the brain’s drug-addled pleasure centers. It makes about as much sense to make a a twitchy, sub-low tune today as it did to attempt a champagne-swilling Garage anthem in the wake of 9/11.

Thankfully, politics aren’t the only source of musical inspiration – there’s also the weather. I can’t say for certain that’s true for Finnish producer Teeth, but as a fellow inhabitant of Northern climes – game recognize game. There’s a brittle fragility to Teeth’s tracks that can only be born of long dark winters, frigid days and near arctic nights and an environment that just shuts down for a few months every year because it’s not worth it to go outside: all ideal factors for making excellent OG Dubstep. If his tunes feature forward heft instead of half-step torpor, I suspect it’s because moving is the only thing that’ll keep your warm in Helsinki, but that might be stretching the theory a bit thin.

In any case, after a stunning debut for 502 Recordings and a quick follow-up on Noppa, Teeth’s latest release for RAMP is his most complete work yet, stretching out and telling a story as fit for home-listening as it is for a club set. Gone are Shawty’s Beyonce samples and much of the Juke influence, instead the 24 minute release slowly shifts through a series of 808 driven Garage movements, morphing from the darkness to (comparative) light. It’s heady stuff, reminiscent of DMZ at their most uncompromising and Skream at his most ruthless while still making use of subsequent advances in Bass music, though thankfully ignoring the wishy-washy House tempos and retro-tendencies bogging down the movement. In short, it’s simultaneously of its time and a total anomaly, a glitch in the matrix in a genre born years ago as a glitch in the matrix. Fans of dark beats: we eat good tonight but dinner might be a bit cold.

RAMP046 / Teeth – Swarm/Shift/Sequence/Spawn by RAMP Recordings / PTN

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