Chrizpy Chriz might be up there on the list of hardest working artist in bass music given how quickly he’s releasing this year. He’s certainly one of the most creative, with twisted basslines and experimental synths, Chrizpy exists just on the cusp of dubstep and something completely unstructured but he’s become popular with fans of almost all bass music genres.
Since his breakout Retrieving Light EP on Vale just a few months ago, Chrizpy’s stuff has become even more twisted and experimental. His new Unstable EP out today on MethLab sees him go almost completely off-book but it’s still most definitely for the bassheads. The only way in which Unstable is anything like his other releases is that it’s completely different from previous works.
Operating mostly on a tempo that’s dubstep or slightly slower, the way the beats are put together on Unstable makes them often sound more like halftime or Ivy Lab-style trap. In some cases listeners will be hard pressed to find structure at all. Closing track “Nyralothetep” is one of those seemingly unstructured tracks; it does have a measurable beat at some points but with lots of switchbacks, at least two changes to syncopation and a heavy, industrial feel, it’s almost as if Chrizpy is challenging DJs to try to mix this beast. It’s not unmixable but beware the cranial scramble on this one.
The rest of the tracks on Unstable are more consistent beat-wise but no less mad with their synths and sound design. In opener “Ugly”, a chunky beat is established but the scrambled synths get even scramblier and the surprisingly groovy beat is only there to anchor them. “Brain Reset” is probably the closest to a dubstep track, with a little riddim detection after the break. Here sound design reigns supreme, with lots of sounds which normally would be relegated to the background come to the forefront and make up the bulk of the track rather than the very sparse synths.
Finally “Alien Language” and the title track lay down some solid halftime vibes but that’s where the similarities end. Where “Alien Language” is funky and bouncy with a fun yet eerie melody and lots of high-register flourishes, “Unstable” is rooted in sub bass and focuses on the beat by backing off any consistent synth melody.
Unstable certainly gives of the vibes connoted by its title but it’s still one of the most fun and interesting EPs to release this months. Despite the dark synths and mind-melting sound design, there’s a sense of play that runs through this EP. It might not always be danceable but to the true basshead, it’s irresistible.
Unstable released today, November 14 on MethLab and can be streamed or purchased on the label’s Bandcamp page.