Klute The Emperor's New Clothes

I don’t know what happened to drum & bass. I remember going to raves and record stores on a weekly basis and slowly hearing hardcore evolve into jungle and eventually into d&b. The progression was magical and magnificent and happened between 1992 and some time in the mid-’90s. At some point there seemed to be a peak of perfection, with producers cutting highly technical rhythms with a really groovy edge, making very original music. There was a short time when the beats were chopped to a fine dust and snorted up like crazy on the dance floor. These days, drum & bass seems to be recycling the same ideas, rhythms and sounds (insert grinding, distorted mid-bass sound here), to the point that it’s gotten stale to all but the deepest of insiders. Tom Withers’ (aka Klute) latest album is no exception; it’s a boring interpretation of the drum & bass formula that’s a bit on the "cerebral” end, which essentially means d&b with some floating pad sounds, simple melodies and some acid sounds. There are a few down-tempo tracks to round out the collection but unless you’re already into contemporary d&b, this album is shite. (Commercial Suicide)