Slugabed – This is a Warning (Activia Benz)

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23 year old Greg Feldwick of Bath, England, has had a rapid ascent as producer Slugabed. Since his first release in 2010, he has come from humbler beginnings on labels like Stuffrecords and Ramp Recordings before achieving releases at Planet Mu first, and now Ninja Tunes.

Oh wait no, make that Activia Benz. Who? The label releasing This Is A Warning for free, that’s who!

This success can be linked to his very maximal – but still dead-on – production and plethora of discordant and harmonious sounds melded together in seamless fashion that shows why Slugabed is a Ninja Tunes artist.

This free EP This Is A Warning is an excursion in lands of trap, jungle and dancehall, wrought in masterful fashion. While it’s always dangerous for upper-echelon artists to take generic paths, the way they do it separates masters from the rest of the herd.

Beginning track ‘This is a Warning’ can be classified as trap, but when you listen past rolling 808s and stomping sub-bass, you hear an elegantly crafted and emotionally lit beauty of a track, rich with multi-layered melodic synths that has so much in it, but still manages to avoid being overly busy with all layers giving the track new depth.

‘Sip Up’ is neon-fantastic footwork, blitzing through hype drum patterns before breaking back to anthemic and spacious synth work. The cliche trap vocal samples would usually annoy me in such songs, but serve to punctuate and contrast rather than infuriate. ‘Bombok’ unfortunately does irritate with aforementioned voice stabs, and even all the intricate melody can’t stop irritation here along with predictable builds and drops, although it’s still a decent progressing track and it’s got heart.

Final juke-style track ‘True Born’ is a styling hoot with a barking bassline and fluorescent melody structure, but the highs hurt my ears personally as a listener and repetition ended up doing this track over for me. The track ended with a remix of ‘This is a Warning’ by Eloq which paled in comparison to the original, but remixes on original artists’ albums usually do.

This is a Warning is awesome because it’s free and fun, but I probably wouldn’t be too tempted to buy it. But yes, Slugabed + free = win. I love the album cover of coconut speakers flooding a parrot too.

7 out of a possible 10 Haarp Strings

Link: http://activiabenz.bandcamp.com/album/this-is-a-warning

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