A legendary figurehead within drum & bass, Grooverider set up his genre defining Prototype Recordings label in 1993 and since then it’s remained one of the genre’s pillars. Remaining a definitive imprint and trendsetter from the beginning, Prototype has been responsible for an array of spearheading releases, maintaining their timelessness throughout the years and delivering cut after cut of undiluted talent. It was their combination of dancefloor accessibility and production finesse which made their discography stand out. From Ed Rush & Optical, Bad Company, to Dillinja and Photek, their output has pedestalled some of the scene’s biggest players.
Over a decade on from their last release, they’re here to prove Prototype is still a contender, enlisting the help of Drumsound & Bassline Smith for a cutting-edge offering which continues their bass weight domination. For the last two years, ‘The Odyssey VIP’ has remained an elusive dubplate, in high demand across the community. Alongside Prototype’s return, ‘The Odyssey VIP’ is set to spark anticipation throughout cyberspace, a track which will not only reaffirm the label’s title weight claim, but also Drumsound & Bassline Smith’s ingeniously manufactured sound design.
Exorcizing the same ferocity as its original, ‘The Odyssey VIP’ conjures a nostalgia which is pushed forward by crackling reese and heavily peddled bass. With stabbing, euphoric synths cutting their way through the mix, the breakdown takes you through a different hook, one which powerfully snares you with its crunching LFO. Stringent drum loops pay homage to its predecessors, although it platforms more contemporary production standards, demonstrating not just the extensive development of Drumsound & Bassline Smith, but also Prototype’s tastes and A&R work.
On the flipside, comes ‘The Illiad’. Prototype has always been heralded as a label which can be used to track drum & basses progress and ‘The Illiad’ helps to express that. With melodic vocals moving their way into metallic kick and a fluctuating bassline, the producers come thick and fast with a pumping, stocky record channelling the same knife-edge technological mastering as ‘The Odyssey VIP’. For a comeback single, both ‘The Odyssey VIP’ and ‘The Illiad’ do Prototype justice; a return which has been long awaited by drum & bass fans everywhere.
Beatport Exc: 26th May