DR – Epoch EP
Words by Mat Taylor
With the Epoch E.P, DR has gone beyond the realms of traditional bass music genres and in to the experimental realms of soundscaping and ambient noise. Don’t run away muttering and shaking your head just yet, this works; perfectly. The straight up drum and bass tracks are exceptional. Deep, rich arrangements of sound that has been so well manipulated, it creates the impression of a sparse, minimal track, despite the forboding presence of that enormous bass weight and the ghostly apperition of those expertly mastered synths and fx.
My personal favourite is the bewildering and hypnotic wall of sound that is “Afterglow.” There are no beats to speak of here, not in the traditional sense, anyway. The huge, chest crushing bass and utterly bizzare, rubbery sounding synth dominate the track. Sonically, this feels like a fully electronic version of something the sinister, hooded men from SunnO))) might create. The sheer force of that bassline feels amplified and exaggerated due to the absence of any breaks or drum hits. At first, I thought I’d classify this tune as one for home listening. Definitely not something for the dancefloor or to be played out. Imagining how this monster must sound and more importanly, feel on a big sound system makes me reconsider, though.
Production like this belongs on multimillion dollar film soundtracks, it’s in a league of it’s own. The attention to detail here will astound everybody, especially producers and those with an attentive ear. DR, or Dean Rodell, to give him his full name, is already a well loved producer of both Techno and Drum and Bass but this E.P will no doubt win him a lot of new fans from both genres. From the paranoid, hollow thrum of Proximity, complete with it’s aural nods to Jeff Wayne’s War of the Worlds musical, to the otherwordly drift of Shallow Pit, this release marks the beginning of a glorious new era for this style of drum and bass.