Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Jukebox: June Miller - From Autumn To Ashes

June Miller is one of the best new drum & bass duos in recent memory. Getting onto my soapbox for a second, most new acts stay within the confines of very "safe" music, keeping within the boundaries of standard jump-up beats or brutal neurofunk growls. June Miller, a duo made up of a Brit and a Dutchman, keeps the listener on their toes. First they might release a schizophrenic, paranoid banger like "64 Thousand Dollar Habit" with uneven patterns everywhere, then they might follow that up with the huge techstep piece "Snapcase" and its ominous, guttural wobbling. Point is, they're actually exciting and inventive in an industry-standard-fulfilling DnB world, and that's a very good thing.

The duo's recent exclusive signing to industry titan RAM Records should prove to be interesting, then. The previous fresh face signed to RAM, Rene LaVice, had already strutted his stuff on the Dimensions 5 EP (on which June Miller also made an appearance), and in a prolific year of releasing he came out with a full LP and EP in the span of about 13 months, a very impressive feat. However, both of these releases were just a tad underwhelming, leaving Headlock (the song on Dimensions 5) as a song head-and-shoulders above most of his RAM tunes. It'll be interesting to see if the same happens to June Miller, and from the duo's debut RAM single, From Autumn To Ashes / Change, it's unclear as to whether it will.

The reason it's unclear is that "From Autumn To Ashes" is a very solid song. It's not quite up to par with the two aforementioned smashers, but it's good nonetheless. An excellent twanging of some Old Western-styled string instrument leads into the main section, full of cold, unrelenting groans and shrieks of the synth. The wobbles present aren't quite as interesting as those on "Snapcase," and the beats here aren't as intricate as "64 Thousand Dollar Habit," but those dings shouldn't mean much as it's difficult to match up with the excellence those two songs displayed. Plus, "From Autumn To Ashes" is still good. It's energetic, it's pounding, and it's full of the June Miller spirit DnB fans all over have come to love. The question remains, though - will the duo ever manage to release material that surpasses the caliber of their previous stuff? For that, we'll have to wait and see.


No comments:

Post a Comment