This Monday saw the first EP of the year from Barely Alive, and whoa boy, it’s a doozy. Four originals and a remix from none other than Habstrakt make the Fiber Optic EP a must-have for your libraries.
This release, while still containing that characteristic Barely Alive “sound,” is an exercise in diversity for the duo. The opening track “Zombie Hunter” is an incredible riddim/trench whatever-you-want-to-call it piece that blends the new/old sound with the bassline stylings that made Barely Alive so popular. It bounces around from the extreme-Skrillex end of the spectrum to heavier artists like Dubloadz or even Badklaat. It’s a wonderfully diverse tune in its own right, but it doesn’t stop there. “Boston Shit,” must have come to them in some acid-fueled dream, because not only is it completely out of character, it’s wacky as f*ck. The air horns, the drums, the synthwave intro, it’s all just really, really odd – still dope though. Then the drop is this absurdly unique trap anthem replete with “What, what!” samples and bells. This is like your typical trap tune, turned on its head, and put through a wood chipper – and then someone attempted to put it back together again, and came out with this.
“Lasers Up” is a massive moombah tune (those of you who said moombah was making a comeback in 2015, ready your “I told you so”s) that hits hard and rides even harder. The second half goes back to some heavy trap sh*t too. Finally, for the originals, we have “Work It,” another ’80s inspired tune with some self-motivated work-out-video vocal samples and an even heavier moombahcore drop. Obviously, the boys at Barely Alive feel like branching out a bit and I really admire their ability to do so whilst staying within their “prescribed” style.
Last but not least, we have the Habstrakt remix of “Lasers Up”, which is … some kind of future moombah. I’m shooting myself in the head for even calling it that, but just listen to the track, and you can see the clear parallels between moombah and something resembling bass house. It might be easier to not even classify this in any way, but I need to be able to search by genre in my library, so that’s what I’m going with. Regardless, this remix too has a dash of the ’80s vibe, and though it isn’t as prevalent in “Work It,” its presence does not go unnoticed.
The Fiber Optic EP, when it was released on Monday, shot straight to the #1 spot on Beatport, so you know it’s good.
All of this can be yours, too, just by visiting iTunes or Beatport. The links are below.
P.S. The Soundcloud link also includes Barely Alive’s Disciple Mix #24, and that’s free!!