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Review: Melé - Dark EP

Review: Melé – Dark EP
Alex Rennie

Review Overview



Simply put, Krissy Peers – aka Melé – has an uncanny knack for crafting records and playing sets that can whip up the most reserved of crowds into frenzy. After a prolific year both on the tour circuit and in the studio, Melé’s stamina seems to show no bounds, with his recent collaboration with Kano and reworking Disclosure’s “Tenderly” with aplomb, validating his cachet within the scene.

Following a slew of high-octane releases on Grizzly, Mixpak and Digital Soundboy, his latest output, the three-track Dark EP on Ninja Tune imprint Girls Music also manages to live up to that hype.

The title track, featuring established Birmingham bassline MC Slick Don, opens with a flagrant tempo that immediately commands respect, as Melé fully exhibits the potent combination of rolling bass and splintering drums that make his productions so engaging. He makes good use of Slick’s pedigree, whose unfaltering pace and unique tone compliment the track’s urgency and when it swiftly breaks, the chorus injects a more ominous urban texture into the track, making it all the more captivating.

“The Boogaloo” is another hallmark Melé riddim, its aggressive style assaulting you from the off with a salvo of frenetic percussion and impeccably timed vocal cuts, leaving you feeling like a well leathered aural punch bag. Pugilistic connotations aside, Melé artfully sutures together a hard hitting grime beat with some catchy tribal samples that wouldn’t be out of place on an early 90’s rave record. The end result is an unreservedly belligerent tune that will convert any party into a hyped-up throng of bouncing heads, shuffling feet and pointed fingers.

After establishing itself as a wonderfully bolshie release in just over eight minutes, “I Like It” feels a bit like an afterword that doesn’t really compliment the rude boy swagger the EP’s first two rhythms deftly convey. On lyrical duties are Tweeter-cum-MC-cum-journo Boya Dee and rapper Peigh, but even though Melé’s beats are tidy once again, the vocalists detract somewhat from the overall feel, trivialising the track with their at times elementary bars. Nevertheless, it’s very hard to find any further fault with this EP, which cements Melé’s status as a bright, exciting young producer whose meteoric rise shows no sign of slowing.

The Dark EP is out today on Girls Music.