Noisia’s Invisible imprint has one more deep, dark release for the drum and bass world before 2018 comes to a close in the form of their third installment of the Outlines series. This one features deep, dark, grinding and pulsing tracks from Hybris, Arclight, The Outsiders, Rizzle, Ground and Subtension. The last name on that list is the subject of our exclusive on release day with a track called “Left to Decay,” and it is certainly a highlight.
While all the tracks on Outlines 3 follow the Invisible model of deep and dark, most of them are also an homage to darkstep or have a lot of techy vibes. Subtension’s “Left to Decay,” however, shows that deep and dark tracks don’t necessarily have to follow the same techy or snaresy vibes. It’s the loosest definition of drum and bass, in fact, with lots of experimental elements and a melodic vibe.
“Left to Decay” opens with a somewhat standard-sounding techy sinewave structure and an airplane sample. The intro builds into the beat and organ-like synths which create the main melody, but there isn’t really much of a discernable drop. There’s a second melody which is made up of a guitar sound and is the only thing left at the break.
The second drop is more obvious but as the end section begins the other thing that’s obvious is that the beat has been flipped on its end. Listening to this track one might say it’s even possible that Subtension simply flipped the whole track backwards and made a break to connect them. A DnB palindrome, if you will. It plays the same backwards as it does forwards. Either way it’s pretty, interesting and definitely challenges the notion of what it means to be a deep drum and bass track.
All the tracks on Outlines 3 are worth the Invisible name and definitely worth a listen. Hyrbis’s track “Unpleasant Pheasant” coming off the back of Not Bug is just as wacky and vibesy as the EP, while “Swindle” by Ground is a sparsely-rhythmed, pseudo-techy track with a lot of amped up synths. “Dialtones” by The Outsiders is weird, melodic and borders on a deep liquid track while Arclight and Rizzle give serious dark and techstep fusion vibes on their respective “Incarnation” and “Murderous” tracks. So, despite Outlines being focused on deep drum and bass, there is still something for every type of basshead on this EP. More than worth a listen and a cop.
Outlines 3 is out today, December 21 on Invisible and can be streamed or purchased on multiple platforms here.