Earlier in the year I took a look at Celt Islam’s seriously good Medina EP, but Generation Bass represents something entirely different. Not only in terms of the album being rather more expansive than the EP format – featuring twelve frenetic tracks – but because it also appears to represent a move toward a much harder edge style.
Where much of Celt Islam’s past work has merged electro textures with dub and softer world music signatures, Generation Bass morphs industrial strength dubstep with high tempo EDM in a way that elevates this sound to another level of intensity altogether. It doesn’t sacrifice a commitment to global sounds – a wide variety of “world” music influences remain intact – yet it also feels quite different to past work … heavier, more urgent. In short, Generation Bass feels like progression, a genuine step forward for Celt Islam.
The album opens as it means to go on, instantly reaching for the jugular on the highly charged dubstep-infused ‘Dub Virus’, followed by the sub-rattling ‘Ghettoblaster’, which does exactly what it says on the tin. They’re clear highlights and a great choice as an opening pairing, but there’s no let up all the way through to album closer ‘Energize’. With no obvious catch-yer-breath chill out moment, this is relentless high bpm electro dub of an almost post apocalyptic nature.