Her EDM premiere: Killbox Again within the laboratory to conjure up ‘cups’ [RAM]
If you haven’t lived under a rock or completely ignored D&B in the past few months, you will know Killbox is on the rise again, posting a slew of singles in RAM who are gritting their teeth regardless of your system. The latest single, “Beaker,” combines that classic Neurofunk / Techstep rawness with modern, clean production and will be released on Monday unless you read this article (which you clearly are).
All the tracks so far have been teasers to Killbox’s new album Devine Profits, which is obviously going to be a blast on its own, but the guys are handing out the singles on purpose because they want the fans to really let everyone sink in. With “Beaker” you did a great job of bringing out the fast noose and a lot more. So it’s good that we have a minute to adjust. “
From the very first phrase on “Beaker”, listeners will know that they are there with an eerie sine wave synthesizer that moves back and forth as the drums, crispy mid-bass synthesizer and grinding with metallic sounds move others are stacked on top of each other. The drop is about as heavy as it is from any era, and that’s where the Weedwacker snares come in, which, interestingly, also make up the main blow. The guys built the kick into these cool circular snares and while it may be subtle, it has a huge impact on the way the track moves.
The crunchy bulk synth, a creepy ambient melody, and something we haven’t seen in Hard Drum and Bass in a while drive the track even further: the deep bass amen break. In the days of Techstep and Darkstep, it was a stable for phrase transitions and it sounds like this: An amen break that connects two phrases with a short, extremely heavy, deep bass melody made up of two or three layered chords.
That little break, though small, is one of the things that makes acts like Killbox so important: they have this library of sounds that they can pull out and apply to modern techniques at any time to reach new levels of production and bring together the best of all eras . “Beaker” will remind principals of things they forgot and missed as they continue to push the boundaries of the new era of D&B. It’s almost a perfect track for that purpose, and there’s more to come thanks to Killbox and RAM.
“Beaker” will be released in RAM on Monday, December 14th. The RAM website has links to stream and buy.