• Distance - My Demons

    Reviewed by Subba-Culcha

    <b> Distance </b> - My Demons

    When the single Traffic, from dubsteppers Distance, hit the UK, it was a call to arms for all fans of the genre. A demonic, growling bass line grinded the echoing rave synths and punchy, dubstep break. All eyes were then on how Planet Mu’s Bromley dub connection would follow this up in album form. My Demons, Distance’s debut release, follows in the footsteps of the mammoth 2006 dubstep album, Hyperdub by Burial and whilst it exudes similar quality and depth to that album, it never truly reaches the same level. Traffic still packs a punch, likewise for the killer Ska, with its hefty bass and beat crunches which slice and dice the ears. It’s somewhat bizarre, but this album just doesn’t seem to make the impact that many of us wish it had. It doesn’t blow your mind in the same way that Burial did, nor does it offer the sheer bass intensity as work by Vex’d or Croydon’s grime boy-wonder, Skream. This is not to directly attack My Demons, rather, you always look for the extra special in music and it just doesn’t seem to be present on this album.

    Regardless, there are some quality tracks on this album. The other single, Cyclops, offers a clicking, rattling beat and grumbling bass line which ranges to a crackling growl in parts. Earlier, Night Vision opens with a grim view of a night time scene, echoing, eerie chimes ring out as a metallic, rumbling bass bodes bad news with ringing vocal samples, heavy. Title track, My Demons, swings its beat like a pendulum in a low tempo dub with the squelched bass grinding out. Tuning offers a more funked up rhythm, edgy club bass stutters the tempo and vocal samples add an extra layer on top. Finally, Delight closes the album in a lighter mood with an almost celestial melody sitting over warm sound beds and crunched waves of bass. It’s the track to tuck you up into bed after a night of raising hell. Essentially, Distance have taken what could be considered the true essence of dub in slow, ponderous and melodic grooves, which is fine, but potentially some of the dubstep impact has been lost in the process. Overall, My Demons is a well built, well thought out debut which maybe doesn’t follow up completely on the singles intensity but certainly doesn’t displease either.

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