Available on: Soul Jazz CD/3×12″

Compiled by Nicole McKenzie, A&R at Soul Jazz Records and renowned friendly face at Soho’s Sounds Of The Universe record store, along with Kris Jones who runs the Deep Medi Muzik label with dubstep legend Mala, Future Bass features thirteen new tracks from some of the most sought after producers of the UK’s amorphous bass music scene, bringing them together for one of the year’s most essential compilations, and a worthy addition to the lineage left by past Soul Jazz comps Box of Dub and Steppa’s Delight.

Picking a highlight here shouldn’t be too hard; Hessle Audio’s Ramadanman delivers ‘Bass Drums’, a beautiful roller that begins with erratic drums, before descending into a soothing, deep sea of sub-bass. Deep Medi artist Harry Craze reflects on dubstep’s more soulful side on the wonderfully constructed ‘Gone’, an unexpected junglist breakdown piercing the air mid-way through the track; Craze continuing to cement his position as one of the UK’s most slept-on producers. Elswehere, Untold offers ‘Fly Girls’, a bon a fide club hit that also slays on a home system with its infectiously patterned drums and female vocals.

New names such as Randomer and Distal fit in well amongst more established counterparts, while new material from Black Chow (The Bug’s Kevin Martin and Hitomi of Dokkebi Q and King Midas Sound) is always welcome. Talk about the “future” of bass music is always cliché, but this comp provides ample evidence that its present is perhaps as strong as ever.

Zainab Jama



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