Since their inception in January this year, Principle Records have been making a name as a no nonsense drum and bass label, striving to bring unrivalled quality to the scene. Recently packing out Bristol’s Motion with their label takeover that included a headline set from heavyweight Jubei, the label is setting the bar high and has been successful in delivering to date.
Their debut release is no different, presenting minimal distinguished cuts from the darker side of the spectrum. Hosting a selection of seasoned and up and coming producers, ‘Impressions Vol 1’ floats between ethereal mechanical soundscapes filled with steppy militant breaks; to swirling cavernous basslines wrapped around sci-fi esque pads. Each individual offering is a stand out production in its own right, collectively reflecting the sound that Principle Records have been cultivating since its launch.
Bristol/Brighton based producer Grey Code kicks of this 12 track LP with ‘Horus’; a subtle onset of menacing electronic pads and echoing bass wrapped around steppy double time drums and glitch synths. ‘Leopard’ demonstrates the more creative side of Utile’s production. With tense soundscapes reminiscent of a deep wilderness, driving the listener into the folds of the track, each element is in keeping with the aptly named title and overall murky vibe of the production.
Mystic State & Third Degree have been making movements for a while now, and with the recent launch of The Chikara Project, they’re showing no signs of slowing. ‘Unseen Sources’ ups the pace with minimal techy breaks weaving between moody, pounding kicks and mechanical pulsing subs. A steppier, darker slice of drum and bass with a half-time switch on the 2nd drop; this collab is one of my personal favourites and absolutely one for the heads.
In keeping with the glitchier side of this LP, Ground presents ‘White Russian’, a hard-hitting blend of creeping pads, gliding dissonant bass and swirling FX. London based frontrunner HLZ steps up on the remix of Emphasis ‘Sphere’, injecting this already sterling production with a smattering of militant drums, rising pads and energetic synths. A steady roller, complimenting the original whose production is in keeping with Emphasis’ dark, mechanical sound.
With each individual offering so carefully cultivated and expertly selected, it’s hard to do this release justice, but its obvious why the label has been generating attention from all the right heads. ‘Impressions Vol 1’ is available on Vinyl/CD & Digital from 22nd May on Principle Records.