For those who don't know their D&B history, Black Sun Empire were one of the first acts to break through the barrier put up by UK artists surrounding the genre. Ever since the days of jungle, drum & bass had been considered British property and woe betide any producer from outside who dared to try and muscle in.
However, with determination and an undeniable weight of talent behind them, the Utrecht-based threesome broke through the ranks. Initially getting picked up by DJ Trace for his infamous DSCi4 imprint at the turn of the millennium it wasn't long before Black Sun Empire were rubbing shoulders with the scene's elite who lapped up their uncompromising, techno-influenced sound.
These days of course it's all very normal to have artists from all corners of the globe representing whatever genre they feel like. And anyone who's got a keen eye for detail will have already noticed that Black Sun Empire have travelled a decade's worth of their drum & bass journey, with three incredible studio albums under their belt already.
Those with an even keener eye will know that it's been three years since the release of 'Endangered Species', the last Black Sun Empire album. In that time the trio enlisted Telemetrik to drop an amazing LP (D&B Album of the Month, Mixmag) on their own label while they took some time to flex their musical muscles in the build up to their latest project, 'Lights And Wires'.
Encompassing that unmistakable BSE sound throughout, 'Lights And Wires' is an accomplished piece of work that simultaneously brings together ten years of drum & bass production while exploring new musical ground. Tracks like 'Extraction' and 'Kempi' (ft. Nymfo) are vintage Black Sun Empire. Rough, rugged and raw, fans of intense D&B will not be disappointed. But it's the experiments into other tempos that display a maturity that only gifted artists can achieve.
'The 405' is an intense journey into a techno-edged dubstep nightmare, a horror movie at 140bpm that is both new ground, yet entirely Black Sun Empire. 'Dirty Friday' juxtaposes wide-open synths with cavernous bass to devastating effect, while tracks like 'Black River Bay' slide effortlessly into blissed-out electronica.
'Lights And Wires' will satisfy any fan of Black Sun Empire's previous work, while opening up a path to new sounds and moods without compromising anything along the way. This is without doubt an album packed with integrity.
BSELP005 - BLACK SUN EMPIRE - LIGHTS AND WIRES - DOUBLE CD
01: Black Sun Empire - The 405
02: Black Sun Empire - Chaingang
03: Black Sun Empire - Fuzzball
04: Black Sun Empire & Jade - Deadhouse
05: Black Sun Empire - Black River Bay
06: Black Sun Empire - Extraction
07: Black Sun Empire - Brommer
08: Black Sun Empire - Transmission
09: Black Sun Empire & SPL - Wasteland
10: Black Sun Empire - Inpeak
11: Black Sun Empire - Spork
12: Black Sun Empire & Nymfo - Kempi
13: Black Sun Empire - Dirty Friday
14: Black Sun Empire - Fever
15: Black Sun Empire - Mindslide
16: Black Sun Empire - Eraser
+ DNB mix CD
Full release on the 15th of November
available on CD/Download
Distributed by: Nu Urban Music