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Dexter’s Beat Laboratory is a weekly collection of songs from DA managing editor Robyn Dexter. With a taste that can only be described as eclectic — to say nothing of a name that lends itself to punnery — DA is happy to present a selection of tracks personally curated by Dexter for your listening pleasure.
Listen in playlist format here.
After a massive collaboration with Netsky in December, 1991 returns with an original of his own, “Guiding Light.” The London producer asserts his energetic style of drum & bass in this emotive number. “Guiding Light” contains an impeccable balance of vocals and instrumentals, with the lyrics guiding the verses and the beats driving the chorus. While 1991 was relatively quiet in 2018, one can only hope that this early-2019 release will be the first of many this year. He’s off to a great start.
It takes a special touch to modernize and revamp a 23-year-old song for today’s dance music scene. Oliver Nelson and Tobtok are up to the task, though, as they bring Judge Jules & John Kelly’s Stix ‘N’ Stoned 1996 club anthem “Outrageous” into 2019. This sizzling house heater is ready for dance floors of any decade with its groovy beat and thumping bass. The producers ramp up the energy in the first half, dipping the tempo in the middle for a brief intermission, before building momentum back up again to finish their “Outrageous” rendition off.
After being propelled into the EDM limelight via two REZZ collaborations, 13 is having what is hopefully an extremely lengthy solo moment with a daunting original of his own. “Uppercut,” out via Mad Decent, shows the artist flexing his glitched-out production skills in full form. It’s a shadowy release right from the start, introducing filtered vocals that lead up to a bass-heavy drop, pounding listeners’ ears with the distorted sounds 13’s become known for.
Both halves of The M Machine have built captivating solo projects. Luttrell‘s made a name for himself with a unique strand of melodic techno, gaining notoriety through a variety of Anjunadeep releases over the past few years. His most recent release is a six-plus-minute adventure into the depths of Tycho‘s “Epoch,” which stemmed from their meeting at Burning Man. “It was an honor to share the stage with him that night and even more of an honor to recently be asked to remix his wonderful track, ‘Epoch,’” Luttrell said of the remix. “When I play this one out at shows recently, I always feel transported back to the playa – feeling the warmth of the sunrise over the Black Rock Desert.”
Draper has been making music since late 2010, shifting his sound from dubstep to house to drum & bass to glitch hop and everything in between over the years. He’s shown incredible versatility throughout his career, putting his Draper stamp on anything he’s making with ease. His latest, an EP called Pâro, kicks off with a serene soundscape titled “Her.” Its intro is simply beautiful, painting a vivid picture of two people in love. While the choruses are lighthearted and full of energy, it’s the spaces in between that truly make this track breathtaking.