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Radical Tracks: Introverted Bass

Bass music, leftfield bass, UK bass… Music journalists and industry professionals often have a hard time neatly fitting music on the bass-ier end of the spectrum into easily categorised boxes, and perhaps that’s a good thing? This results in a lot of today’s music, which is informed by the formerly ‘strictly’ separated genres of ‘bass music’, combining instrumentation and drum patterns that hint to the past (and are nonetheless labelled in nondescript ways). With this playlist, I, therefore, ask: Do we live in a post-genre era? Should we just quit trying? Or should I just throw another misnomer in the mix? Allow me to try with introverted bass.

These are some sounds that I have collected over the past months for this Radical Tracks playlist that have a significant low-end, emotional, eyes-down quality to them. You’ll hear an array of genres exploring the many avenues of bass, and many club-adjacent tracks containing elements of hip-hop, jazz, sound system music, club, and more. These tracks capture the softness of the rumble. From hazy grime-y pads to washed-out drums, this is music to disappear into.


Essentially, these are tracks that by nature do less and do so radically. For example, the first track on the list Take Me, is a collaboration between grime producer Impey and forward-thinking vocalist Steve Spacek, where a gentlest two-step beat is presented with soft square waves gliding over Spacek’s voice. We are then taken from wavy German trap to Packed Rich’s broken beats, to Yushh and Facta’s dream-like dancehall. But don’t be surprised when the sounds of LCY’s ethereal club music appear, after which Jim Legxacy takes us through some emo-drill before Walton drowns us in Space Water. Then after the ever-nostalgic SBTRKT’s emotional downtempo take, we get distorted by EVA808’s Icelandic bass before Commodo puts us in an Eastern European waiting room in Russian Glass. I could go on, but now it is time for you to listen for yourself! I wish you an introspective listening session. 

Words & Curation by Sebastiaan van der Schoor