Zany & Mental Theo
I have to admit the fanboy excitement inside me when I saw these two Dutch legends of the harder styles collaborating on this track. Effective simplicity is at its core: a beautiful, dreamy female vocal progresses through the break and crescendoes, before the track drops to an ear worm of a melody. Its magic is that it never becomes too repetitive. From here, the track drops to a clean stompy kick drum with plenty of space for everything in the mix to breathe. In a scene of incredibly complex productions, the emphasis on fewer timeless elements and classic clean production here shines through.
Dany is a machine in the studio right now, knocking out hit after hit. This latest offering takes influences from the psy trance scene and injects a healthy dose of hard dance. Rapid fire rolling basslines and beats will keep the dancefloor moving, while the atmospheric breakdown affords people a short breather before blasting back to the action.
This Northern Irish hard dance duo have been on my radar for some time now, making appearances at many of the leading events across the UK over the past several years. After supporting many of their bootlegs and mashups, their latest original track 'Drive' has become a firm favourite in my sets. The first drop is pounding, with rolling psy bass building in to the second breakdown, plus cool and techy elements. It builds once more, before dropping to a traditional hardstyle section. A great track that leaves me excited to hear more as Faze2's style and production evolve.
Angerfist & System Overload
Masters Of Hardcore
From these names alone, I’m sure you know what to expect: extreme BPMs and brutal beats. With a sinister theme running throughout, spine-chilling operatic vocals contrast with hardcore hip-hop vocals — then all hell is unleashed. Ear blistering kicks and screeches modulate and evolve throughout the track to keep things dynamic. Certainly not one for the faint of heart, but if you can handle your beats fast, this is a winner.
Gammer & Whizzkid
'Love You Every Day (Alexander Norman Remix)'
This genre-busting remix of the hardcore hit from Gammer & Whizzkid somehow manages to be a nostalgic reflection of the rave scene of yesteryear, yet also a much-needed punt forward in the sound, aligning it with more mainstream dance music trends. As expected, the tempo is upbeat, with four-to-the-floor kick drum sections along with rapid fire snare fuelled breakbeats, uplifting melodies and nostalgic vocals.
'Neo Rave Hysteria'
My pick of the bunch from this Japanese hardcore producer's latest artist album. This one is a super old school influenced throw-back, with chopped breakbeats, classic Juno hoovers and electronic rave pianos. Add in some one-shot MC vocals, and you have an ear-pleasing piece of history wrapped up in a fresh package for 2018. Also be sure to check out the full album 'Vortex'— I was pleasantly surprised by the range of styles covered.
'No Time 2 Waste (DJ Norman & Billy The Kit 2018 Remix)'
Wow, here’s a blast from the past — an official remix of the Dutch Eurodance hit from the '90s. Obviously this won't be to everyone's tastes, but as a fan of this era of music, I was elated to hear it. Norman and Billy have done a great job of keeping this one fun and bouncy, maintaining the vibe of the original but bringing it up to date and making it relevant to the hard scene.
Alex Prospect X Jakka-B
'Snakebite' is a collaboration between two of the hottest rising hardcore producers in the UK scene. Both have made a big impact in recent years with their solo productions, but this latest clash of styles could be their best effort yet. With a distinct theme, bouncy beats and basslines, this track, while not working the euphoric angle, is something guaranteed to get the dancefloors moving.
Skyron, Yoji Biomehanika & MC Stretch
Hardstyle anthem alert! Skyron teams up with one of the most legendary figures in dance music from Japan, Yoji Biomehanika, and another legend, the UK MC Stretch who, if you don’t know him by name, I can guarantee you would recognise from many dance music anthems across all styles. Together they have produced an epic, hands-in-the-air, peak time hardstyle gem that I’m sure will be played as far and wide as the span of the producers who made it.