Updated: Jan 23
You may have clocked the little ditty above go up on our YouTube channel earlier this week. If you didn't, well, nows the time to get to know. We were very lucky to be able to host one of the tracks from the newly formed Retribution Recordings' debut release. There are quite a few things we can discuss in terms of the release, but it would maybe help to start by introducing some of the names involved in the label and music. Retribution Recordings is the brainchild of KRSLD (who you may remember from Who's Doin' Bits a while back) and ABRAMOVIC, two guys who popped up on our radar through their shows on Noods Radio. And in terms of names and faces for the release, that's it.
RETRIBUTION0.93 is penned by the ever ephemeral 'Unknown Artist'. I have my suspicions about the brains behind the tunes, but I haven't asked and I don't plan on chasing it up. There's a good reason why the tracks hide behind a layer of anonymity and I think it works quite effectively for the release. The minimal and stripped back designs really work when it comes to anonymous releases, and I think Retribution has hit the nail in the head with the stamped design. It really reminds me of DiSKOP's WHITELOOPS/BLACKLOOPS series - two projects that are just as surrounded in mystery as Retribution's debut.
The aforementioned "good reason" behind the artist's anonymity is the heavy use of samples from French hip-hop duo Suprême NTM across all three tracks. This is one of my favourite things about the release. Personally, I think a song that you can listen and vibe to is a good track. A song that you can listen and vibe to but also opens up a personally unexplored realm of music is an excellent track. My knowledge of French Hip Hop doesn't extend much further than the soundtrack for 'La Haine', so the release has opened me up to some new experiences outside of the tracks themselves which is a rare feat amongst all the releases I've reviewed over the years. There's an interesting juxtaposition across the release. 'IV My People' (Four My People if you're bad at Latin) is a bit of 130 breaks, 'Pose Ton Gun' brings some 140 into play and 'My Benz' is a footwork/Jungle blend. Essentially, what the release does is meld the French Hip Hop roots of the tracks into the UK/Chicago hardcore continuum - blending the past and the present of the label heads into a coherent body of work. It's a strong start for the label, and I look forward to watching Retribution develop as time goes on. Interestingly, the first release starts with a 0.93 catalogue number, eschewing the standard 001 start. Part of me thinks that this may indicate that anonymous White Labels may not be the only route the l