Terror Danjah, the main attraction of the world of post-grime, returns to Hyperdub on a new four-tracker with young gun Champion, a producer increasingly deserving of attention. The product, the Sons of Anarchy joint EP showcases exactly how grime can remain fresh and exciting: boldly sidestepping generic formulae while exploring some of the genre’s less-travelled territories.
Terror Danjah’s trademark sound signatures are all over EP opener Glide. It’s a busy piece, where the constantly mounting energy levels are occasionally interrupted by beautiful ambient themes, calming the basslines with a rush of pleasure. On Stone Island the pair join forces, putting the snares front and centre by varying the rhythmic soundscape, providing a dynamic sound that belies its mid-tempo pace.
The duo’s collaborative mind proves yet more spectacular on Explode, where tribal drums and ragga vocals are plucked from grime’s normal concrete, late-night sound and dropped in the relatively exotic locale of broad daylight. The result appears both considered and spontaneous, shown nowhere more clearly than in the creative decision to alternate broken and straight beat patterns.
Each artist further provides a digital bonus for the release. Champion’s Friday 13th recalls UK Funky’s final years with its jumpy atmosphere and pulsing snares, undermining the listener’s typical expectations of the genre. Meanwhile Danjah’s Sam Cro is a hidden gem, where distorted digital pianos sound like experiments with traditional African sounds, recalling the kalimbas used by Konono Nº1.