Funkystepz, Fuller/Hurricane Riddim

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With the initial buzz surrounding UK funky gently dwindling over the past year or so, it’s now the imperative of a scene producer to evade the shadow of the looming incubus of “the novelty song” (most recognizable these days through the “skank” suffix) and deliver creative, well-crafted output. While many are seeking to emulate the mainstream crossover success enjoyed by the likes of Katy B and Donae’o via the tried and tested catchy vocals route, there are still a healthy number of producers who choose to operate in the instrumental realm, some of the most promising being the North London collective Funkystepz.

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Enjoying a modestly bright 2010 — with tracks featuring on a variety of mixes including Ministry of Sound and Rinse outings, as well as the release of two EPs on Forever Live Young — they were snapped up by Kode9 and to deliver their first Hyperdub 12″ in the form of Fuller/Hurricane Riddim. A-side “Fuller” is as good an example of instrumental UK funky as you’ll find, deploying a quivering, robotically acidic pattern across a well structured track complete with subtly calculated crescendos and break-downs, continually punctuated by the alluring swagger of the trademark “Funkystepz!” vocal imprint. Flipping the record over reveals the slightly more withdrawn “Hurricane Riddim,” looping orchestral stabs over the steady whir and rattle of the bass and drums to create a less infectious but still tightly produced cut. While a UK funky resurgence may not be fully in the offing just yet, releases like this provide reassurance that, at least in these quarters, standards aren’t slipping either.

Patrick  on February 26, 2011 at 12:24 PM

You have to try harder when you release music under a name that sounds like a cardio kickboxing class.

Dex  on February 27, 2011 at 2:21 PM

Its a nice track, but i hope “less infectious” wasn’t a goal of the track, i prefer more deeper releases on hyperdub. but funky is a great producer. definitely will look out for more

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