My latest Dummy essay returns to the UK dance underground (click here to read it) looking for fresh new developments since my piece on Texas last autumn. It's been described as exhaustive and encyclopedic, but it's not quite supposed to be a run-down of everything that's happening - only the weird new stuff and less famous labels that are beginning to shine. Featuring Sophie, Rustie, Hudson Mohawke, Numbers, Redinho, Lockah, Donky Pitch, Hyetal, E.m.m.a., Night Slugs, Jam City, Helix, Hysterics, L-Vis 1990, Keysound, Visionist, Wen, Beneath, the Grime 2.0 compilation.
Bipp might be the first underground dance hit to have evolved an endoskeleton. There are almost no perpendicular lines in time or timbre space – sounds curve upward, glide downward, slide off another or withdraw swiftly into the membranes they came from, leaving silence.
In March, this Keysound salvo was topped off by, as Angus Finlayson noted, a full-on “statement of intent”: the manifesto-like 14-track compilation tellingly called ‘This Is How We Roll’. An essential listen in every sense, it opens with the provocatively titled New Wave, a track by Visionist, Beneath and Wen together that crystallises this dread, shimmering, rolling, heavily syncopated sound both musically and in its vocal sample, which announces “the new wave, coming through.”