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Audacity - Oleg Zubkov - Ego Shot Recordings

There's a continuing fascination for progressive breakbeat sounds in eastern Europe that almost — but not quite — feeds into the current trend towards deeper flavours in the UK. Unfortunately, Ukraine's Oleg Zubkov does not seem to have quite got the message. 'Audacity' has atmospheric washes and heady progressive effects in spades, but seems to be harking back towards that awful era when every breakbeat producer tried to shoehorn in distorted dubstep b-lines for no other reason than Skrillex seemed to be doing rather well for himself. It even has a completely pointless half-time breakdown. Psy-tech infused remixes from Dre Hectic and Slugware don't do a whole lot to improve matters, though the latter is different enough to make it worth a listen. 

Kanaka (East Cafe Remix) - Omar El Gamal - Particles

Some classic lush, progressive sounds here with this remix from East Cafe that just builds and builds in lush detail and melody, adding texture upon delicate texture until it peaks with a breakdown that pushes it into the realm of deep trance. Gorgeous stuff.

BLNK006 - Mirror - Blank Mind

The product of a collaboration between a label boss (in this case Blank Mind kingpin, Sam Purcell) and one of its artists (in this case Dro Carey) should, in theory, yield results that epitomise the stylistic tilt of that label. And in the case of Mirror, it totally does with the four tracks full of industrial tones and driving percussion coursing a danceable flex that seems powered by machines that are on the cusp of retirement. 

Showtime - Advanced Dealer feat MC Axis - Traxxtorm

One of the hottest rising talents in the hardcore scene, hailing from Italy, Advanced Dealer eases off the gas (relatively speaking, of course) for a bouncy triplet, super euphoric anthem. The happy melody reminds me of some of the early Art of Fighters work from the turn of the millennium with its erratic intensity. This track even seems to break the golden hardcore rule, and pitches the kick to follow the melody when it drops. A production technique used in hardstyle, but usually frowned upon in the rougher hardcore sound. But the support this track has had on the scene shows to break the mould and make a hit, you have to throw the rulebook away.