Release: Phaze: One
Record Label: Tempa
A most revered and praised gatekeeper of Dubstep is Benga for no greater reason than his dark presence at its aural inception, aside from the sheer immensity of that which he produces. A cognitive glance into an unset future is what he appears to subliminally incite with his numerically named Phaze: One, subtly inviting speculation over a forthcoming series, whilst accommodating his own machinations. Lord of his sound he may be, but a demon for intrigue he most certainly is.
Throughout the release, there is an inherent theme that is adhered to, which is becoming distinctly prevalent in Benga’s pieces; that of the Baltimore Club. The eponymous Baltimore Clap exhibits both this point and his infatuation with the sound as it is saturated with sharp claps and energetically deft drum-strikes in a fashion that is boldly characteristic of the style. These brash attributes are manipulated to seminal effect in Mini Moto Cross as they take the form of a smoothly skittish drum pattern, barked at by manically discordant bass – a sublimely chaotic scenario, to say the least.
For as much good as can be noted, a description of Phaze: One as being thoroughly satisfying would not be true. ‘Why?’, you may ponder. Simply put, No Bra, No Panties. This track, in its originality, gained the unshakable affection and interest of the masses. The version that met release, however, lacked one fundamental element; a kick drum. As minuscule a thing as it may seem, this mere drum is what drives the dance and is arguably from whence many, if not all, modern pieces of music draw potency. Alas, No Bra, No Panties is but one chink in an armoury of remarkable pieces.
The calibre of Phaze: One need not be screamed about for it is apparent, but is the flaw of a single track a grave breach of its integrity? I should think not. To those that agree, I write no more. To those who think otherwise, I implore you to wait upon the second phaze.
Buy it here: http://boomkat.com/vinyl/288717-benga-phaze-one