Drum and bass mavens return to RAM Records with sophomore LP
Five years after their debut album, Anatomy, and with signs of a drum and bass revival in full swing, Calyx & TeeBee return with All or Nothing (RAM Records), a 12-track long-player that aims to bring DnB in from the cold. The album ranges from trim, elegant rollers to dystopian techstep flashbacks, with echoes of Photek, Source Direct, and even early Amon Tobin in its carefully sculpted breaks and gelatinous low end, while collaborations with Foreign Beggars & Craze, Kemo, and Beardyman make overtures to hip-hop. In many ways, it's a statement of the subgenre's core principles, but "Strung Out," one of the album's standout cuts, shows how far they're willing to stray from convention, with Calyx's vocals floating over watery keys and flickering rhythmic flourishes. The tempo slots into a standard drum and bass template, but they've flipped the music's tropes into something more universal, with a future-soul vibe that spans the whole bass-music spectrum.