Tantum Desire - Nationwide Rocker
The Tantrum Desire brand is most associated with the kind of epic productions that have seen drum and bass become a mainstay of the mainstream. True heads will know that thereâ€™s always been an undercurrent of genre-twisting experimentalism present, which came to the fore on last yearâ€™s huge album Diversified.
Nationwide Rocker opens in a dark and techy landscape. Reverberating stabs underpinned by the insistent buzz of low
end strikes suggest weâ€™re building into a display of neurofunk technique. And then weâ€™re dropped into something that
isnâ€™t quite categorisable. Itâ€™s hard, dancefloor music, built from a stripped-back rhythm sequence and a succession
of expertly-twisted basses. This is the collision of raw, visceral energy with that trademark Tantrum Desire slick
Then Airhead takes us somewhere different. With a funky techstep call and response pattern, this is an instant
dancefloor bubbler. And thereâ€™s an eighties electro sensibility woven into the stabs and synth-effects which makes this
feel like it could be a 2016 rework of a forgotten crate-dug classic. Itâ€™s minimal and focussed but, as youâ€™d expect from
Tantrum Desire, it refuses to let the temperature drop, with precision-crafted builds to keep attention gripped on the
bass-and-mid interplay right to the finish.
Next up, Anarchist appropriates the tropes of nineties hip-hop-influenced jump-up to give the sound a modernist
renaissance. Rather than using a rap sample, Rhymestar is enlisted to provide the lyrical punch. His bars roll out over
the half-time intro, and then peppered throughout as vocoded motifs to confirm that old skool vibe. Thereâ€™s nothing
old skool about the production levels, though, as the icicle-sharp drums and honey-and-lemon bassline drive the rave
You wonâ€™t be prepared for what Think About You has to offer. A bleeps-and-pads hands-in-the-air hardcore intro drops
into some triplet-time rave workout material. Weâ€™re treated to mid-range grind resolving into luxuriant sweeping
tones over a skippy 6/8 time-signature. But ravers and MCs better not get too comfortable, as a â€œSwitch it upâ€ sample
signals a slam into 4/4 time. Then the breakdown cools things off ready to go back in with the madness once again.
If you didnâ€™t know about Tantrum Desireâ€™s versatility then you should have been paying closer attention. Donâ€™t worry,
though, because this EP is a perfect representation of the serpentine rule-bending contained within the sound. Itâ€™s all
dancefloor music, but beyond that, anythingâ€™s possible.
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