August 9, 2013

Son Raw seen it like 27 inch Zenith – believe it.

I called it two years ago: instrumental Grime is having a moment. While Big Room House continues to make inroads into the UK pop charts, the underground is erupting with new talent finding inspiration in the twisted synths and broken drum patterns perfected by Wiley and Co. – reconfiguring those ideas into new shapes. Along with Royal-T’s amped up Garage and Swindle’s funk-fusion over in the Butterz Camp, Night Slugs co-founder Bok Bok deserves credit for seeing the vision first, incorporating Grime’s future-shock into his music while keeping things club-friendly and feminine.

This live set with singer Kerala is a shining example of how to push the sound forward. Resurrecting Terror Danjah’s short lived R&G movement, the mix opts for a singer’s smooth tones instead of an emcee’s aggression, keeping things dark and sensual but retaining an off the cuff spontaneity. Considering R&B’s increasing reliance on vocal manipulation, it’s a thrill to hear a single nail these tracks in a live setting, her voice balancing out the tracks’ digital madness. Selection wise, Bok Bok is typically on point, leaning on 02-06 classics that re-imagined Swizz Beats, Timbaland and the Heatmakerz for a generation that grew up on Jungle and Garage. The result is Grime…but also something undeniably 2013, finding compatibility with the club/R&B fusions happening over in the US and the greater Bass Music world’s love for all things Garage. Essential weekend listening.


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