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The Upbeats - Primitive Technique Album Review

21 Apr 2013 // A review by Alistar3000

Wellington drum and bass duo The Upbeats have forged a reputation over the past 9 years for their hard hitting, dance inducing tracks and they’ve kept to that winning formula on their latest release, Primitive Technique.

It’s packed full of 14 huge tracks, ranging from the jaunty One Step, to the almost menacing opening track Beyond Reality, with a few mellower tracks thrown in for good measure. It’s those mellower tracks that actually made the album for me – with Again, featuring U.S. MC Armanni Reign, and Alone with Tasha Baxter on vocal duties, providing a nice counter point to the heavier and more club-driven songs; both are slower and a little mellower, particularly Alone, which comes across almost as a ballad.

While the other tracks are well produced, and have that distinctive Upbeats sound, they left me thinking that they’d be better heard in a club, through a big sound system, not through a home stereo. That’s really where the Upbeats skills lie, and a recording doesn’t necessarily do their music justice.

It was still an enjoyable, uplifting and energetic album, with enough to keep it interesting after repeated listens. Fans of drum and bass should definitely check it out; fans of the Upbeats should be lining up to buy it.

Primitive Technique
View Track Listing

About The Upbeats

In today’s heady climate of bass-fuelled dance music it could easily be argued that producer-DJs are the new rock stars. Climbing into that mould with a pair of schoolboy grins on their faces, The Upbeats have already been playing that role for years. Their anything-goes live performances are renowned for mosh pits, topless dancers (sometimes women) and crowd surfing, while their approach to writing hard-hitting, unique-sounding drum & bass is lauded across the globe.

Nicknamed Terror Snake and Downie Wolf respectively, Jeremy and Dylan are not your average, boring producers. Meeting at school through mutual interests in surfing, skating and ‘being gangly teenagers’ Jeremy had to work hard to pull Dylan into the world of drum & bass. But, armed with a stack of Mickey Finn & Aphrodite mixtapes and an unrelenting attitude, the snake soon overcame the wolf’s natural propensity for rock music and, fortunately for us all, a love of fast breakbeats and low-slung basslines soon followed.

This love soon grew into a passion for creating their own music and by 2001 the pair were balls deep writing their own D&B. Fuelled by New Zealand’s isolation from the rest of the world and its staggering natural beauty, The Upbeats’ unique take on 170bpm+ bass music has seen the duo work alongside scene stalwarts such as Ed Rush & Optical, Bad Company, Hive, Gridlock, Bulletproof, TREi, State of Mind and Noisia while releasing tracks across a plethora of the D&B scene’s most respected record labels.

Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for The Upbeats

Releases

SSXUB
Year: 2014
Type: EP
Primitive Technique
Year: 2013
Type: Album
Big Skeleton
Year: 2009
Type: Album
Nobody's Out There
Year: 2007
Type: Album
The Upbeats
Year: 2004
Type: Album

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