Eatbrain strikes again! Their latest high-powered charge into the DnB battlefield is the aptly titled Mammoth EP from rising-star duo Segment & Concept Vision.
Our genre of choice may have its roots in the UK, and it is a force of popular culture to be reckoned with across the pond, but the kings of the Neuro-sphere are definitely to be found in Eastern Europe and Russia. Eatbrain, run by famed producer Jade is based in Budapest, Hungary and the artists behind the label’s latest release are from Ekaterinburg, Russia. What makes that part of the world more susceptible to hosting the cream of the crop of technical bass wizards, you ask?
I have no idea, but I definitely want to find out and immerse myself in it…
This EP I find to be very nicely balanced in tone and texture and it is laid out like a sort of meta- or macro-song, alternating between the heavier and softer songs, commanding the listener’s attention at all times with a dynamic pacing.
It starts with a heavier, pure neurofunk number called “Charge”. Immediately I was hooked, with the producers creating a very cinematic, tension-filled atmosphere in the intro with a slight nod to the epic intro of classics like Messiah. With the tension building up they indeed “drop” a huge DROP! Very kinetic, with razor-sharp bass bursts, interspersed with a cool little vocal stab that gel into a call and response thing. The drop’s second section is reminiscent of recent Teddy Killerz’ Hyperspeed (another Russian super-trio) with it’s high-pitched synth atop the bassline.
My favorite part of the drop is the third section, where the bass and vocal stab lock into a descending melody that has a big impact because the rest of it is essentially a one note riff. The second drop is quite similar to the 1st one, although it is more minimal, eschewing the vocal stab to change the mood to a more menacing one.
The intro and breakdown in this tune have a pleasant, very smooth and enveloping filtered sound, kind of like being smooshed into a giant marshmallow. And this kind of very rich, smooth sound finds its way into this EP’s other tracks to great effect, again creating a nice, balanced dynamic in the songs, rather than just hammering out constant noise attacks in the drops. Segment & Concept Vision are also very adept at creating rich, dense, cinematic atmospheres in their intros and breakdowns, which really allow the drops to hit hard.
The intensity cools down a bit on the 2nd tune “Radiant”. It begins with a suspenseful intro with pulsing synths that build up the tension, going into a nice, very silky sounding Vangelis-esque lead sound. They intensify things with military-grade triplet drum rolls and arpeggios, and just when you expect your typical heavy neuro drop… Well you’re surprised because it is very melodic, with a trancy/EDM type lead and a lighter tone to the bass-lines. The drop eventually gets a bit heavier, with an emphasis on the modulated mid-range basses. We then take another swift turn with a bridge that envelops us with huge pads, thus bringing us once again into the giant marshmallow.
The second drop is a cool switch up with a sort of half-time/footwork drum pattern and some tiny dissonant dubby synths, interspersed with powerful bass sounds. The song then resumes back into the melodic, pad-laden arrangement. This is a very neat track, because it covers a wide variety of sounds and atmospheres in a very timely manner, and I felt I was watching an epic sci-fi story while listening to it.
We then move on to the EP’s title track, “Mammoth”, which begins with another very effective cinematic ambience, which is likely this release’s best intro. Once again the producers build up the tension like there’s no tomorrow and give way to an IMMENSE drop with a very tribal feel with off-beat accents on the drums, and huge, powerful guttural bass sounds that make you feel like you’re right next to a mammoth indeed. The drop is also crafted in a more minimal fashion with a really nice touch of tape hiss that creeps in and out to fill the void between the extremely punchy drums and basses, which is a novel way of creating space and ambience in the mix, where one would normally use reverb or delay.
After the second drop, the song resumes on a quieter note with a return to the more atmospheric vibe with a smooth pad sound and some jungle-animal-type sound effects. We then have an interlude with a haunting melody, which is in my opinion, a nice nod to Depeche Mode, who for instance did this after some of their songs like Enjoy The Silence. If you like Maztek’s ultra-techy sound, you will love this tune!
The EP concludes on a more tongue-in-cheek tone with “Heist”, a fun dancefloor tune that starts with a very catchy brassy riff continues into the drop. It’s simple, minimal and very efficient, and creates a stark contrast to the heaviness of the previous song. The overall sound of the tune is quite laid back, with softer drums and a nice filtered electro-saw bass.
The song, like its predecessor is incredibly pertinently titled, with the siren sound effects in the background and a quirky synth line, you feel like you’re watching a cool heist sequence in a film, especially with the momentum they keep building throughout the drops, like building up the suspense in a film to keep the viewer on the edge of their seat.
Overall, Segment & Concept Vision have done a wonderful job with the Mammoth EP. It is diverse, entertaining, very dynamic in its changes of tone and mood. I really liked how the songs were completely different from each other, each excellent in their own way, and they end up fitting together very well because of their pacing and the way they were sequenced. This is another must from Eatbrain and it shows that this duo has a bright future ahead of them in the scene.
Buy it here
For more information on Segment and Concept Vision:
Segment & Concept Vision on Facebook
For more information on Eatbrain:
Eatbrain on Facebook