The LP format is not one usually associated with the dubstep genre, or most club music for that matter. While there is usually a preference for the EP/single formats; lately there seems to be a resurgence in the dubstep LP, with the likes of Kaiju and Bukez Finest setting the trend. One can only hope the trend sticks around – because while the EP format is necessary in a scene ran by DJs – the album gives an artist the opportunity to really express themselves to the fullest. Instigate Recordings and DTR team up here to do just that on their tenth release.
The Taiwan based producer brings us nine dubwise cuts in Vibes Machine, featuring a collaboration with rising star Khanum and a remix from Killa Sound signee Bukkha. With tempos ranging from 120 to 170BPM, the album holds a solid balance of diversity and coherence.
While the heavily dub influenced step sound might be a little bit tired these days with everyone and their mother jumping on the dubwise bandwagon; Vibes Machine is a bit of an exception here in the sense that it feels almost like a homage to the originators. There’s a whimsical sense of melody in pretty much every track, and a true roots feeling to the instrumentation. Virtually all the tracks on the album feature little vocal snippets sampled right from the mouths of the pioneers of dub, and it gives the LP a feeling of tribute rather than derivation.
Tracks like Creator Dub (the collab with Khanum) and Inner Strength really give you that meditative, chilled out, burning a zoot at 3AM vibe, with fanciful melodies and soothing pads. Then there are cuts like Sword of Solomon and Crackle – while more dance-floor orientated – they’re still suitable for home listening and feature much of the same classic, organic dub instrumentation that appears all the way through the LP.
Overall, the album is consistent to listen to as a whole, and dare I say it, is possibly better suited for a stoned listen through from start to finish than it is to be used as a bloated DJ tool. There’s a real air of roots reggae and dub wafting through the airwaves from this release, and while it may not be the most original album ever produced, it pays an honest tribute to the people who started everything.
The LP is out on 18/08/16 in most digital shops.