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Spectrasoul: Melodies/Insignia

Spectrasoul already have a back catalog to be proud of, with their bass-driven, soulful sound never failing to impress. They reached greatness, in my opinion, with the utterly essential ‘Alibi’, making a bass sound that God almighty would have been proud of, and have had a string of subsequent releases that have proven their talent. The two-piece are starting to get more wide-spread recognition from listeners within and outside of the Drum and Bass scene, and their storming DJ sets have made them pack out any venue they play in. Their latest release, on dBridge’s label Exit has shown a new and impressive side to their production, without losing the Spectrasoul sound.

The A-side, ‘Melodies’, features Mike Knight, an RnB singer from the states, who brings haunting processed vocals that feel akin to dBridge’s recent efforts. The punchy kick and snare form an unconventional beat, giving the track a slower and more ponderous feel, without losing any of its energy or momentum. The melodic synth work is light and never dominates, emphasizing the powerful, plunging bass line and vocals. ‘Melodies’ is a rare thing in this genre of music, it is a song in itself, and works as a listening track as well as on the dance-floor.

‘Insignia’ is on the flip, but I hesitate to label it the B-side, as it feels like a disservice. With the same quality of sound, and similar atmosphere, it brings a more urgent feel with sub-bass stabs and varied fills and breaks throughout. The ethereal synths and short vocal samples contrast with the otherwise bass-heavy sound to great effect, making every element count.

Spectrasoul have gone from strength to strength over the last year or two, and if they can keep putting out music of this standard I can only see them getting more successful.