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Release after release, Soul Trader Records uphold their longstanding record for unleashing only the most technically adept, deeply melodic cuts available to them from their expanding roster. They began from humble beginnings, an independent London imprint who favoured artist integrity over the spotlight, although this favouring has ensured their pride of place within the scene’s underground. And with every fresh track they drop onto an unsuspecting drum & bass crowd, they become even more entrenched within the genre’s fabric, their name growing steadily. From tastemakers like London Electrikity to DJ Marky, through to large-scale channels such as UKF and Drum & Bass Arena, they’ve received a plethora of support from all the right platforms. And this will continue into the summer, with a stunning three-part EP from liquid stalwart Centrik.
‘Beloved’ is up first, with a slowly meandering bassline which pitches between each rolling drum loop. Floating female vocals sift through the mix like a spectre, before piano notes add a heart-felt melody which nods to the vibe prevalent throughout each one of the artist’s productions. You’re instantly made aware of why Soul Trader Records brought Centrik on board; he fit perfectly within their refined sound, with an empathetic, beautifully constructed record that plucks at the heart strings.
‘Flourish’ features a manufacturing line of skittering drums and moodily distorted bass which raises its head moodily throughout the track’s composition, giving it a sharper tone than its predecessor. Nevertheless, ‘Flourish’ is a soul-soothing, expertly created late-night starter which demonstrates Centrik’s ability to switch up his softer productions Each twist of bass is as unexpected at the last, proving that despite his harmonious undertones he’s still able to shake a crowd.
Finally, ‘Perceive’ moves through rising synth patterns and ethereal voice overtures delicately moving amongst the record. The vocals mix amongst cascading drums and scuttling percussion to provide a euphoric edge, a skill which Centrik capitalises on from the EP’s beginning to end. It’s an example of how he’s given an introspective look into his studio talent. As a relative newcomer to the drum & bass world, the ‘Beloved EP’ will certainly stand out as a milestone for his career.