- Boxed, the London party and DJ crew, has had an immeasurable impact on the instrumental grime scene. They've helped pushed the genre out of its comfort zone and into more adventurous, occasionally abstract realms. As a label, Boxed has been slow on the draw, only launching a vinyl arm late last year and taking six months to drop a second release. On their second record, an EP compilation, Boxed show a more approachable side than we've seen before, dialling down the weirdness in favour of lean, mean grime.
Logos' "Marked 4 Death Gunman" is a great example of this. It's far from a smooth ride, but it's also not one of the UK producer's weightless experiences. Instead, "Marked" is an assemblage of familiar grime elements, from its shouted vocals to its cocked gunshots and barbed-wire bassline. It's all delivered with the producer's usual deftness and an enormous (and satisfying) weight.
If you heard Iglew's recent Truants mix, you'll know what to expect from him. "Lullaby" has a romantic lilt and a delicate touch, which turns the hard-edged bass uplifting and makes the track the EP's highlight. On the flipside, Spooky & Boylan provide the rock solid, if traditional, "Peckham To Hackney." Its wailing sirens and ominous horns would be catnip for a packed dance floor, but it's nothing we haven't heard before. Taking cues from Boxed boss Slackk, Jawside turns in the Eastern-tinged "Blurred Rain," full of string instruments and flowing melodies. Again, it's a fine enough imitation, but you'll find the real magic of this 12-inch on the A-side.
A1 Logos - Marked 4 Death Gunman
A2 Iglew - Lullaby
A3 Spooky & Boylan - Peckham To Hackney
A4 Jawside - Blurred Rain