Various Artists - Rinse:02, mixed by Skream
Mon 18th Feb, 2008 Music Reviewsin
Even before you’ve had a chance to catch your breath from the first instalment of the Rinse mix series there’s a second compilation to burn holes in your carpet, back pocket and any tenuous relations you may have with your neighbours. The initial strike on the mix album market from Rinse came from station stalwart Geeneus, but this assault comes with greater strike power in mixing and selection. Though Geeneus has been with the station since its foundation Skream has a stronger profile after the with the success of Midnight Request Line with its floating alien melody, digital snares and gun toting clicks and shots.
Skream’s compilation is a tighter affair than its predecessor with the dubstep producer contributing half of the twenty-four tracks, as well as remixing three of the remaining cuts. Skream begins his journey with the echoing brass, cracking percussion and Jamaican roots of Culture’s Steppin’ Outta Babylon. But after this classic piece of dub, Skream dives into the depths accompanied by an entourage of sinister bass and wobbling electronic phases and filters. Wobble That Gut drops underwater bass and siren calls before Film flickers by with a racing dancehall vocal riding Skream’s increasingly aggressive bass intrusions.
Another prophet of the dubstep scene also surfaces as Kode9, the founder of the Hyperdub label that’s delivered missives from the ever elusive Burial, chips in with a remix of the self explanatory Den Of Drumz. The Drumz are followed by the slightly less truthfully named 26 Basslines with its elastic bass holding in a sly shuffle of programmed beats. Another highlight comes at the halfway mark with the Skream and Palstician remix of the Black Ghosts’ Some Way Through This. The Ghosts are former Simian member Simon Lord – he left before the Mobile Disco addition to the name – and ex Wiseguys DJ Theo Keating and their slow burn lament is as captivating as the Junior Boys’ finest.
While some early Skream efforts in the mix are slightly malnourished – such as the reedy horns on Sinisterize – he shows off his production with the slightly indulgent final third of the set. With a run of eight tracks bearing his name in the credits, Skream runs an impressive gauntlet of drum and bass, baile funk, dancehall and IDM electronica. Crash is a frantic collision of whiplash percussion fighting off a honking saxophone, before clearing the path for the deep rasp of toasting vocals on Murderer. A return to murkier, deeply claustrophobic dub follows before the uncredited presence of the Klaxons version of It’s Not Over Yet signs off on the string of Skream productions.
Like the first Rinse mix it all washes out into some fairly clean house tunes at the close, drifting away to the sound of distant horns and gentle beats. The Rinse series is sure to become a mix dynasty to rival the Fabric releases and with their 24/7 roster of DJs spinning grime, dubstep, garage and house they’ve already got a plethora of talent to launch to the world beyond East London.