Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Srillex EP Review: BANGARANG

Keeping with tradition Ladies and Gents. I'm back with a review of the latest Skrillex EP: BANGARANG.

Right, before we talk about the music in and of itself. It's worth noting that Sonny Moore aka Skrillex has enjoyed an incredible amount of success over the previous year. He's been out on tour and Media's gone all out viral, calling him the next-generation face of Dubstep. The 'old school' masses however haven't all been as kind. The old boys hate seeing their Oh-so precious Dubstep reach a larger, commercial demographic. It's not cool any more "brov", or was it ever?. The friction's given in the way of a fresh new meme, the internet's calling 'Bro-step'. Despite mixed reactions, Skrillex is here, now and hot.

The new EP consists of 7 new tunes. Collaborations include: Sirah, Wolfgang Gartner, Kill the Noise, 12th Planet, Ellie Goulding and musical legends The Doors on a very interesting track that was featured on the Documentary - Re-Generation (Watch it).
Listen to this EP Preview.

The title track 'Bangarang' featuring Sirah starts on a catchy little melody and some good ole' Signature Sonny Moore vocal play. A turntable pitch shift and scratch, transition you straight into a heavy double set augmented bass hook. You'll be smiling, take it from me. The song immediately capitalises on the energy and introduces you to a break beat drop you never saw coming. The tune stays varied enough to make you want it not to stop. Every single breakdown almost always comes away in a screeching, screaming bass line cleverly plotted within a BPM shift. I can see old school Dub'heads mistaking this track for yet another generic collage of heavy bass and vocal nips. If you know what you're in for with Skrillex, this is just what you wanted more of. Not a bad start, not a bad start at all. 

'Right In' is the soundtrack to what caffeinated drinks do to you. It's very aggressive and stays 'no holds barred' from start to tail end. The track might sound very repetitive at a glance but gives way to an interesting bit of Dubstep chorus you'll hear a few times over the course of this 3 minute audio storm. You'll just have to listen deeper if you are to make anything of the underlying melody.

This next record is among my personal favourites off the EP. It features The Doors, Yup! you heard it right, THE DOORS!. The record was initially conceptualised for the documentary film Re-Generation. See the paradox?. Hmmm... Watch this video

'Breakin' A Sweat' features bits of dialogue from the film in a blatant but unconventionally refreshing way almost serving a palette cleanser. What else must you know apart from the collaboration sounding like the result of a drug and alcohol infused night at the pub?. Well, the tune is very good. Actually, it's brilliant. It's got everything from catchy bass, clever beats, breakdowns and trance inducing riffs. This could've easily ended up being the result of certain ideas that should just never see the light of day. But it'll blow your mind in a way, only such a ludicrous concept ever could.

'Summit' introduces you to an artist who's been the friend of very many dubstep artists. Maybe it's her synthesizer friendly voice. Ellie Goulding doesn't really do much for this song. In fact, she can be likened to the cemetery in Michael Jackson's Thriller video. For all I care, it could've been Sonny Moore's neighbour or his cat OD'd on Amphetamine. Here's what I'm trying to say, there's not much of her on the track quite honestly but hey, she'll sell the record for him. Still, I'm gonna take a step in the opposite direction and tell you "You'll love this tune". It's very catchy, features impressive breakdown sections and is probably the most radio friendly tune off the record.

Enter, 12th Planet, Kill the Noise. 'Right on Time' is the tune I never imagined I'd hear on this EP. I can almost say it sits much more comfortably in the hands of Post Reggae DnB and Trance variations. The tune instantly tucks into a 2-step Reggaeton-ish drum hook complimented by a glitchy vocal note that you'll hear throughout the song. 1 minute 35 seconds in, you're not listening to Dubstep any more. Instead it's a hybrid mix of a briliant variation of the previous beat accented heavily with modulated bass jitters. It's genius, if you ask me. The song progresses on a subtler tone there on.

Now we'll get the final two tracks off the EP. These tracks made it straight into my book of all time Dubstep favourites and are so much more closely related to Legacy Skrillex music you may have heard in previous years. They also happen to be the two heavier Dub anthems on the record. Maybe I'm being a little too feeble with nostalgia. That aside, you MUST know, the following tunes I'm going to talk about are nothing short of Dubstep bliss.

'Kyoto' featuring Sirah explodes into a vocally altered work of brilliance. Following suit, straight into traditional modulated bass lines and synths. Now, you'll meet a bit of lyric that makes no apparent sense but it'll resound within the corridors of your inner mind, hours on end. It goes something like "Bass makes the bi@ch come". I know it's rude, apologies. It's a moment, metaphorically and ironically. Genius. Not to mention, you'll want to get a lovely pair of trainers on and hit the town soon afterwards. If you like Dubstep, you'll love this track. 

The next track "The Devil's Den" incidentally is what I assume Hell ought to sound like. It's aggressive, it's filthy in a way, only a Dub lover could and would understand. Oh! did I mention, it features Wolfgang Gartner. SOLD. If someone ever asks you what Core Dubstep might evolve to sound like in 2050. This is it, right here, right now. I won't tell you any more. Go! listen to it.

To sum it all up, The EP does exactly what you'd expect it to do. I'd have liked a litttle more variation, maybe a little more experimentation. Still, it doesn't fail to impress. If you've been a fan of Skrillex or you've only just discovered Sonny Moore. You're in safe hands. If you're an avid fan of Dubstep and you've gotten here looking for relationship advice, let me tell you this. This is right up your alley. 

The EP released exclusively on Beatport and is also available on CD.
Buy it here http://www.beatport.com/release/bangarang-ep/851105

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