Battery: NoNo/ Air (Feat Rumour)/ Hornsey Dub/ Drop

This recent four-tracker from Metalheadz finds drum'n'bass associates Joshua C. James and Doug McAvoy pooling their talents under a new alias, Battery an apt choice for a sound so hard-hitting. In opening the EP with the blistering stepper “NoNo,” the two waste no time at all making their case for the project. There's more than a little heat on display once the bass throb kicks in a minute into the piece and the frenetic pulse quickens. It's classic, take-no-prisoners Metalheadz for sure, even if a mid-track breakdown does expose Battery's delicate side for a moment or two.

Having earlier appeared on Jubei's True Form EP, Rumour (R.J. Cricher) contributes a soulful vocal performance to “Air,” an ambitious shape-shifter that progresses through multiple stages during its seven-minute run. Cricher's exuberant presence helps make the track stand out from the instrumentals surrounding it. To go along with the vocal, James and McAvoy fashion a rabid, light-speed background that's as much jungle as drum'n'bass, and the two even sneak in a smattering of dub flavour, too. “Hornsey Dub” reinstates the lethal vibe of “NoNo” whilst also working a heady dub vibe into its frothy, breakbeats-powered framework, after which the EP's biggest change-up occurs when “Drop” threads heavy rock drumming and cage-rattling bass into its brain-addling assault. Describing it as raw hardly does the track justice.

March 2016