DJ Muggs is most famous for his work as the backbone of Cypress Hill, responsible for two arguably classic LP’s from the crew, not to mention a more-or-less strong catalog, despite a few missteps along the way. His solo career has been largely defined by his Soul Assassins series of hip-hop compilations, which found him producing tracks for all of your favorite emcees, not to mention a brief dabbling in trip-hop, with his 2003 LP, Dust. So along with a few mash-up projects on the side, it’s not entirely uncommon for Muggs to adapt to changing trends in the world of DJ-based music, making it no surprise that his new album for Ultra Records, Bass For Your Face, meddles in trap and dubstep.
While these genres have been labeled as fads, a seasoned producer like Muggs is almost showing off on Bass For Your Face, by making his attempt at producing them look effortless, enlisting a few def emcees in the process. The album opens with the brooding “Trapp Assassin”, a perfect backdrop for Freddie Gibbs, which morphs from a slow-rolling, drive-by beat into an unapologetic trap breakdown. This follows right into the excellent “Soundclash Business”, which plays like a six act trap manifesto, constantly changing up when you least expect it. He goes from dub to dubstep “Deep Purple” and “Shotta”, latter featuring Rahzel doing his best soundbwoy burial, and channels Public Enemy’s “Countdown To Armageddon” on “Come On London”.
“Safe”, a dubstep opera featuring Belle Humble is a bit reminiscent of Deadmau5′s “Raise Your Weapon”, clashing breathy vocals with unabashed dubstep wobble, and it works. This style creeps up later again on “Unknown” with Romy Harmony.
What separates Muggs from the rest of the dubstep/trap set are his years of production experience. While these genres have been largely associated with younger producers, Muggs seasoned expertise shines through on Bass For Your Face, as does his influence, effortlessly able to enlist everyone from Chuck D to Dizzee Rascal for collaborations. Those expecting this to sound like another Soul Assassins LP will surely be disappointed, but put up against everything else in the dubstep/trap genres, it definitely holds up.
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