Nasty Rips and Shifting Peaks vol. 3

Trailblazing, electronic music gravy-train Shifting Peaks have released the third instalment of their ‘Nasty Rips and Shifting Peaks’ series.

A myriad of sonic endeavours, this collection of carefully selected cuts from across the spectrum of bass-orientated, musical tastes delivers a potent payload and features a quality cast of new and more established acts.

The guys at SP explained to us the industry factors that have shaped vol. 3 of the series. “With singles not getting any easier to sell, and the flow of compelling, inventive bass-related music not letting up, an annual compilation mixing up released/unreleased, semi established/unknown, 4×4/non-4×4 has become a natural way to start the year.”

The LP is crammed with deeper house vibes from Canada’s Reagan Grey, Applebottom and Odessa and grimier sounds from the likes of Russia’s tsar of dub and DnB Nphonix and CLNBRK. The album is a calculated mishmash of mismatched genres and is probably pound-for-pound, track-for-track, among the strongest releases we’ve covered to date.

Always looking to stay ahead of the game, the SP team continued. “If we’re to look for the path of least resistance, then a load of decent house/garage would again no doubt be a good bet for 2014.” The album will also serve as an introduction to Reagan Grey who we at TNG predict will be making waves this year. SP say “a debut EP from Reagan – mixing up her tight, garage grooves with washes of sumptuous R&B vocals, alongside the more strident Detroit inflections of ‘Not Afraid’, is due in the spring.”

Other highlights on the compilation include Nphonix’s super-dubby ‘Reach Out’ – an 808-infused 135bpm banger – Applebottom’s feel-good remix of ‘Valentine’ by De$ignated and a HNNY remix of Sly One’s ‘Come to Me’. SP also had big things to say about Pixelord and Mo Laudi, with their “hypno-grime opus” ‘Drinky’ and remixes thereof, due soon.

Apparently, “a vocal version of Smokefade’s epic ‘Ironarm’ is in the offing,” as well as an EP of “Muscovite neo-hardcore from our other brother in the East NPhonix, which is a lot less gnarly than it sounds on paper, but packs a fair old punch, still.” SP are anticipating an Eastern European takeover of London’s club scene.

Nphonix was an unknown to us but he in particular caught our attention. On his remix of Jessel’s ‘Los Ministros D’ La Habana’, he said Shifting Peaks offered him the chance to remix the Cuban reggaeton tune last year as he “thought it sounded like an interesting challenge.” The result was obviously a success. He describes it as “this eclectic thing that contains references to the original track and its reggaeton vibes, as well as trap music, juke/footwork, and even jungle.” Not only was he happy with the end product himself, he claims the track has “worked great on the floor!”

The revolutionary Russian isn’t stopping there though and has big things planned for 2014. Brace yourself for a “raw techno EP” on Balance, “a softer yet dancefloor oriented EP” to be released on Audio Culture and a juke tune to be released on a Loose Squares compilation. But wait, there’s more! Also look out for an EP for the Russian Hyperboloid imprint and a couple of 12″s for 2nd Drop and NiteshadeINC. “That’s about it for January!” he casually claims.

Another standout on the album is Reagan Grey. Between this and her imminent releases under the alias of Agent Libre, we fully expect her to become a (deep) household name over the next 12 months. According to Reagan, both tracks on the Shifting Peaks album embody her current musical focus, “a sound shaped by garage house, the high-tech soul of early Detroit techno, and the raw beats of Chicago’s Trax label.” She somehow manages to take all of that and fuse it with “darker synth and bass-heavy elements of modern underground club music.” On remixing vocal house tracks she says she’s “naturally drawn to the R&B revival popping up in newer UK house,” and tells us her upcoming projects also include a crossover “dance-pop/R&B” group, Girls on Synths.

Shifting Peaks and Nasty Rips is out on the 3rd of February and is well worth the outlay. Like a tapas platter of electronic music, the compilation is a rundown of the big sounds coming out of the world of dance in 2014.

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