The Toronto-based Stranjah drops in with a heavy-duty four-track EP for Jungle Syndicate that takes it back to the OG warehouse days. Wobbling basslines compete with dark and heavy beats, blistering breakbeat edits, and an ominous, brooding sense of cinematic atmospheres that make for an exciting and fresh glimpse into the darker, heavier side of things still bubbling beneath the surface.
Old-school heads familiar with that dark minimalism that led to Stranjah releasing on legendary imprints like Metalheadz, 31 Records, Renegade Hardware and Hospital are in for a treat, as the EP manages to remains true to the roots while still pushing forward and drawing influences from all corners of the scene.
The title track, “Wolfman,” is the perfect example as Stranjah takes new-school jump-up influences and genetically splices them with a hard amen break, unleashing a proper growling beast that sets the tone for the rest of the EP. Grimm joins the cause on “Reign Supreme” as the pair finally releases this gnarly head-driller that’s been doing the rounds on the dubplate circuit for nearly eight years. Influenced by and an homage to Tech Itch’s “Stack 2,” the tune sits nicely alongside the “End of Days” VIP re-lick that twists up those No U-Turn and DJ Trace vibes into a half-time reese-driven thriller.
Still, it’s bits like “Phantasma” that seem to be pointing the way towards the future as a wobbling jump-up bassline goes head-to-head with old-school beats for a proper rinseout that bridges the gap between the old school and the new. This one dropped yesterday so wheel it up and lock yours in here.