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Various Artists Synesthesia #3 Tactioception (Touch)

This is the latest release in the "Synethesia" series from Senseless records. This record label has always impressed me with its open minded take on modern bass music. Senseless records tends to supply very danceable music that is often not by the numbers and almost always has an interesting quirk to it, and this release continues in this vein.

Lenkemz comes in with an extremely grimey assault. "Hotline Riddim" is characterised by tough techy beats and a two step flavour, certainly a track for urban grime and harder breakbeat fans. "Murder Micz" features the same instrumental (riddim) overlaid by the breathless non-stop vocals of Dialect, delivering rough and grimey lyrics at top speed. It's not for the faint hearted, but I love the relentless dark style, delivering a fearless two step barrage. I generally dislike the term "urban music", but I think this track encapsulates what people are driving at when they use the term: it stands up for itself and takes no prisoners.

The three tracks by Poirier are very varied and show a really impressive artistic flexibility on his part. "Festival" is certainly one for all those soca music lovers out there and those who like bumping to bouncy four-four breaks. Poirier's other tracks are quite different. "Ladrillo Por Ladrillo" has an upbeat feel that really works with the Latino sounding lyrics of Boogat. These are quite varied and there are some silky vocal melodies laid over a pared down punching beat. It's essentially a reggaeton track at the slower end of the genre, with a surprisingly melodious feel to it-a welcome slice of Latin rhythm. "What" brings us lyrics in a ragga style from Face T. This track is much more for those dubstep and grime fans out there and has a distinctly dancehall rhythm provided by the interplay between lyrics and instrumental.

We are provided with a track from our very own Steel City by Walter Ego, who I hadn't heard of before. I wasn't disappointed as I was treated to the most inventive track on this release, laying down a crunked up style with percussion and creepy vocal samples flying from all sorts of unexpected directions, all backed by a ravey synth line. If vocals are your thing stay clear, because the only thing close to a vocal in this is a really weird pitch shifting and down right creepy sample. I hope to hear more from Walter Ego, as this track is really interesting and displays a lot of inventive potential.

I'm used to a high level of variation and artistic integrity from Senseless Records and they've certainly stuck to their guns, giving us some great dance floor tracks whilst keeping the release varied and fresh. Everything from the interesting cover art to the breadth of Bass music and fresh artists demonstrates an admirable will to keep breaking boundaries. This is an interesting release all around and a welcome look in for a Sheffield artist who shows great promise.

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