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26 August 2012
SOMETHING TO HOOT ABOUT: 24
BASSDRUMSNAREDRUM FT BETTY STEELES - "ALL WE NEED"
Jake Ridley is an up-and-coming writer and producer based between Winchester and London who goes by the moniker of bassDrumsnareDrum. The name is all rather long and appears complicated at first but when you listen to bassDrumsnareDrum the music draws you in and stirs interest, remembering the name will naturally follow. The entrepreneurial musician has a superb work ethic having already studied music at Southampton University, worked for a major record label and remixed for pop siren Christina Aguilera. The only way is up for this producer. There is no questioning Ridley's indefatigable work attitude; professional and forward-thinking, his next step is fostering new vocal talent and implicating new artists into his current work. Something that is very bold, conscientious and above all, intelligent. His four track debut EP "Pause Rewind" was released in early August and received praise for delivering songs full of euphoric tones and tranquil beats.
Upon listening to bassDrumsnareDrum, we can safely say at Owl By Night that we have never reviewed someone with such a pristine, uncluttered and stripped-back sound. There is a compelling compositional resemblance to James Blake, Mmoths, The XX, Sigur Rós and Alpines, yet this latest release from Ridley is similar to Breton's "The Commission" in it's clarity and minimalistic craftsmanship. What strikes you initially when "All We Need" begins is the delicate pitch of Betty Steeles' vocals in the introduction. Ridley has used a fresh, untarnished Londoner with a malleable vocal range to suite contemporary electronic music as well as acoustic numbers and quirky sound arrangements. Steele's sound is a vibrant mixture of Corinne Bailey Rae, Aluna Francis and Anna Berglund of Sweden's Years Away, which in turn produces a warm soulful atmosphere free of external interference. The first full minute of "All We Need" brilliantly subverts both the vocal and lyrical conventions, lulling people to believe that this must be is just another daydream tune harking on about the difficulties of love. Wrong.
BassDrumsnareDrum coax forth a foreboding mechanical beat that transforms the song's previous guise into something more urban, more shadowy and imposing. Straying into chilled electronica meets inebriated dubstep territory is a dynamic move that converges variant sounds into a sublime cascade of mellow beats and orbital key strokes, which then saunters into a formidable chorus. Steeles' icy purrs foster a mysterious 'unknown', a quantity that appears inexplicable, almost haunting and this trait fuels the song right till the last audible sound is heard. With "All We Need" Ridley showcases his meticulous production ethos. His mesmerising landscapes of contemporary sound and clinical backdrops are virtually pioneering in the chill-out electro genre and neatly demonstrates the skill required in crafting songs of quality and seamless production. Collect a guilt-free download of "All We Need" via Soundcloud then check out the awesome music video and external links below.