Critical Music just can’t stop with the constant stream of high-quality drum and bass. Always the purveyor of music that pushes the envelope, the label released this past Friday a tactical nuke of an EP from the Dutch legend himself, Buunshin. With a slew of releases from the past few months, we get a look at his newest release in which he pushes the sound of drum and bass to new heights with the Abrasion EP.
Now with we talk a lot about drum AND bass, but with Sterven, it is most definitely about the drums. The intro of this track solidifies this with a thriller movie build-up; with gong-like symbols crashing in an echoing cavern with an almost tribal bass-filled kick thundering below, the high hats continuing to build. The meat of the track can only be described as heavy, with the drums taking the forefront of the track for pristine clarity while an earth-shattering bass fills the low end. Only the roar of a reese bass and twisted white noise intrudes on this duo and it is a welcomed intrusion.
Now if Sterven was about the drums, then Abrasion is about the bass. With muted drums, the intro lulls you in with the rise of serine synths that quickly shift to the main focus of the track: big fat low-end bass. With a minimal tribal break, the track is enveloped with a pulsing bass that modulates ever so slightly, punctuated with beautiful vocals that soar with the serine string synths. But if you want to still get your blood pumping the latter half of the tracks kick things up with a stepwise kick that breaths new life into this ethereal tune.
But hear you, “But I want a slammer to play in my sets too”. Well don’t worry, Buunshin is always here to please and he does it well with No Match. If there is one thing Buunshine is good for, it’s for getting a solid punch to the face, and you can feel it coming on from the gong singling the beginning of a fight. With the sounds of kung-fu jabs and building drums that explode with a reese bass, you know what you’ve gotten yourself into. Simplicity at its finest, this track is everything to love about drum and bass: fast punchy drums, blistering resse bass, and samples of kung-fu movies that give it that cheeky shine to get your feet moving for sure.
But this is Buunshine we are talking about, the producer that knows how to pull all of these elements together into a beautiful painting. As you start the final track of the EP, you know you have Decended into that realm. Starting with ethereal chimes and a building drumline, it shifts to an overwhelming bass that fills the speakers before building into a silent moment before the descent begins. Solid drum and powerful reese bass that lays the framework for the haunting vocals to make this track embed this track deep into your mind, make sure you never will forget.
Buunshin pushes the envelope forwards with creative sounds and solid production work. This is one EP that will diversify your catalog in a perfect manner.