Published Aug 10, 2016After two less than memorable efforts, it's pleasing to report that the final entry in Djrum's EP trilogy for 2nd Drop Records is a cut above its predecessors. If you enjoyed those previous exercises in tasteful and inoffensive drum and bass-flavoured electronica, you'll find little to dislike on the Space Race EP, which offers more of the same across two satisfying tracks.
B-side "Sometimes I Share" is the standout here, a classy, vocal-driven track that's perhaps the most tuneful entry in the entire project. Like much of the trilogy, it pairs ethereal, often sample-laced backdrops with well-crafted but often generic drum and bass rhythms. Things may remain a bit generic here, but the formula is undeniably more potent this time around. It eventually builds to the requisite cinematic-breakdown-featuring-cryptic-sample moment, a technique Djrum may be in danger of overusing, but which is pretty effective here, closing out the track alongside some delicate and beautiful instrumentation. The title track, while perhaps less essential, is arguably stronger than much of the work on the previous two EPs.
For some, the proficient but bland rhythm sections of Djrum's work will remain a sticking point. This is drum and bass without the rough edges, stripped of the urgency and raw energy that made the genre so exciting in its heyday. Then again, it seems unfair to criticize Djrum for failing to achieve a goal he wasn't aiming for — it just might be interesting to hear him unite his striking backdrops with beats that are a little more robust. (2nd Drop)