Master of space in more ways than one, dub cadet J:Kenzo takes us to the stars and back on his long-awaited sophomore album...'Taygeta Code'.
Now fully immersed in both jungle and 140 worlds, with a sound much less bounded with any one genre, it's much less of a follow up to his self-titled 2012 debut LP and much more of a completely new trip.
One moment we're swimming in the oceanic emotions with Lelijveld on
"Broken Dreams", the next we're being bounced between the bleeps on the brutal sci-fi funk of "Deadbull". Elsewhere Navigator joins the fray on the bulldozing, grunt-bass stomper "Narky", "Token Image" gets fizzy on the percussion with a great sense of layered momentum while "Starseed 47" brings us back home with the deep dub J:Kenzo first properly made his name with.
Roomy, often gloomy, always heavy and full surprises. Follow the code.
On the 11-track LP, 'Taygeta Code' J:Kenzo's second album after his debut in 2012 for Tempa - he avoids to ease us in, instead aiming straight for the chestplate on the heavyweight opener 'Desired State'.
It sets precedent for a record that emboldens itself via precision in sound, not any thematic motif, as the brooding, enchanted 'Broken Dreams' testifies.
An evil VIP mix of lead single 'Like A Hawk' featuring Flowdan lights up the album too, while the acid-y pulse of curveball jam 'Hoodwinked' and the swaying off-kilter percussive dynamic of 'Blind Summit' again spotlight technical flair.
Our tip is the rolling, breezy late-summer crooner 'All In', but as with anything J:Kenzo seems to turn his hand to, there's gold to be found around every corner.
MIXMAG - Tomas Fraser
Dubstep and drum & bass have long histories of their respective producers dipping a toe in the other genre, more often than not resulting in something that makes you wonder why they bothered.
J:Kenzo has always straddled both worlds successfully, however, his offerings for Tempa sitting on par with those for Cosmic Bridge or 31 Recordings.
‘Taygeta Code’ is a fine example of J:Kenzo’s super-tight production style. Particular highlights are the acid-spitting ‘Hoodwinked’, the junglist low-end and kinky garage swing of ‘Blind Summit’, and ‘Narky (Body Dem)’, which does exactly what it says on the tin
DJ MAG - Ben Hindle