Kryptic Minds: Namaste EP – ep review
Bass heavy minimalists Kryptic Minds add to what’s already been a great year for 140 BPM releases with their latest & most eagerly awaited release, Namaste EP. Louder Than War’s Favio db Overclock’s our man on the beat.
Late March truly was a peak time for heavyweight underground Dubstep releases with the likes of V.I.V.E.K, Truth and Amit delivering the goods. Super solid though their respective releases were, it was the Kryptic Minds release which was the most highly anticipated with their Namaste EP.
They may say “Don’t believe the hype” but frankly do we have a choice with this one?
Long time veterans from the D ‘n’ B scene, the duo converted to 140 BPM around 2008 while keeping intact their sinister vibe. They have also been running their own label, Osiris Music, since 2006 with quite successful releases from Biome, Killawatt, District and Kryptic Minds themselves. Lately they’ve experimented with sounds reminiscent of Techno and Minimal as heard in tracks such as ‘The Divide’ released in November. Namaste seems to take these influences and give them yet another twist.
The psychologically menacing opener, ‘Nebula’, is marked by its complete absence of snare drum. This one’s all about a low-end kick drum, ticking hi-hats and syncopated bass stabs. Its discreet three-note melody, present from the very first bar, acts as the keynote in what could be a theme for dreadful visions and sleep terrors. We do not recommend taking this dangerous and hallucinatory trip alone.
Second track ‘To Feel’ was already featured in the mix that Kryptic Minds put together for the Dub Police night at Fabric back in February, though the track list was not revealed at the time. With enough sub bass weight to crush your ribcage it could easily one of the highlights on this EP, but its lineal structure, with the occasional break and vocal sample pattern, might leave some craving for a more dynamic approach. I can see this one becoming a sick floor destroyer if the boys ever give it their VIP rework.
And speaking about VIPs… Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you already know that for two years Badman VIP has probably been the most sought-after dubplate in the scene. It all began in June 2011, when Youngsta and N-Type played a back-to-back set at Paradiso Club in Amsterdam with Toast MC on the mic. Rinse FM’s Youngsta unleashed this beast of a tune for the first time that night, though it was never meant for an official release.
Almost two years later, the full ‘Namaste’ track list was revealed a couple of weeks before its release; ‘Badman VIP’ found its way into the EP, thus making it possible for anyone to play the once-so-exclusive track. “What’s so special about this variant in production?”, I hear you say. Well, basically it’s way fiercer than the 2010 original released on Swamp81. When you hear that warping bass on top of a modified beat and then suddenly feel like the Grim Reaper itself is knocking on your door, you know how much fiercer this is.
After such a flawless tune one might think it’s not possible to maintain the levels but the title track just proves us wrong. Namaste (above) serves as a brilliant closing for the release, as its dark sci-fi vibes pretty much sum up all the elements found in the previous tracks; the stripped-back business of Nebula and To Feel with the more aggressive experience of Badman VIP.
Osiris Music released this EP on digital download and limited edition heavyweight vinyl, but if you don’t have your vinyl copy by now you most likely missed out as it sold out within a week even with a strict one-per-costumer policy.