Dusk and Blackdown’s always reliable Keysound Recordings imprint release a genre-switching slice of afrobeats and bass experimentalism. The Gated EP from OKZharp and Samrai on vinyl 12” moves between garage rhythms, glorious synths and dense melodies. It doesn’t sound like the final product should be so effective on the dancefloor, but somehow it is.
8/10 Laurie Staff review, 20 April 2016
Some bouncy business here. Keysound are always good at supplying melodic, hazy offshoots of reputable bass-heavy styles of dance - sideways garage, leftfield jungle, and righthedge grime. This time round, the Bonnie and Clyde of garage beats fuse their sounds to form a colourful and energetic 12". The first side seems to be three variations on the same track, each with a different vocal and structure to support it. It begins with some warm, bright synth chords (strangely daytime for nighttime sounds), before some percs lay the foundations for a fat, 4x4 garage groove with a mild afrobeat undertone. So much bounce.
I have to say that Jamaican MC Shokryme's take (A1) has to be my top one here, his words coming out with some real force that complements the bonkers beat. One thing I'm still trying to figure out is how the first and second sides are different. It's a really good track, but is it really here five times?
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- Gated EP by OKZharp and Samrai
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