Donation Dubs 012: September 2020

We're back again with another instalment of Donation Dubs, sharing some of our favourite tracks found while digging online each month.
As per usual, there are two sections: one with free or pay-what-you-choose downloads and the other for releases that have a fixed price but that are an absolute bargain.
You can also check out our Donation Dubs 012 mix on SoundCloud, exclusively featuring tracks from this list, at the bottom of the page.

Have a scroll, have a listen, and support the artists who catch your ear!

Fixed Price Bargains:

Crafty 893 – Induction EP 

Excelling as an MC, producer, sound engineer and more, Crafty 893 is a one-man army when it comes to his music. His new Induction EP tells you all you need to know about the criminally underrated artist. The title track lays out exactly who Crafty is, determined to win and refusing to let anyone get between him and his goals. “Luv Me” demonstrates the manipulation and rough reality of life on road, “Get It Back” ramps up the tempo for the spat and sung vocals of Ramzey and PJ Anthony, and “Numb” showcases Crafty’s pure production skills. Plus, the tracks come with accapella and instrumental versions as well as the originals.

TIME94 – Nethertoxin EP

As one of the founders of Crystal Orca, a wave and experimental grime label based in Athens, TIME94 is at the forefront of pushing the subgenre to wider international audiences. His new Nerthertoxin EP, out on the formidable Plasma Abuse imprint, is a whirling storm of drifting melodies and interwoven textures. “Whispers” creates an enthralling atmosphere with its filtered and edited human vocal samples, “Haunted” switches between a soft and simple build and a piercing glitched-out lead on the drop, and both “Nerthertoxin” and “Regression” have centres of rich, sweeping bass to end the collection of space-age electronic sounds.

Tintz x J Beatz – Skank

J Beatz and Tintz have linked up for Skank, a single released on J Beatz’ own Crown Jules label. Featuring the muckiest of basslines to perfectly match Tintz’ deep, dark tone, “Skank” is a call to the dancefloor that can’t be ignored. Alongside, J Beatz includes “Innovation” - and the combative instrumental which Tintz rides has its own colossal impact, with or without an MC.

T5UMUT5UMU – Tsushima

T5UMUT5UMU draws together grime, breakbeat and drill in a Japanese context with his 2-track Tsushima release, featuring alternate breaks and drill versions of the tune. Both grow gradually with dramatic dialogue and simple organic instruments, before opening into clattering metallic rhythms in one case and stern bass on the other.

P Money – While We Wait EP 

P Money is indisputably one of the coldest and most reliable figures in grime, carrying serious weight as an MC for over a decade. Filling time before his next big release, he’s dropped the While We Wait EP. Distilling his versatility on mic into 3 tracks, P reveals a vivid and emotionally impactful journey on “Is Someone There?” as he shows his vulnerability, a stone-cold teller of uncomfortable truths on “Pagans Everywhere”, and a hyped ready-for-the-war spitter alongside Mez on the dancehall-influenced production of “Bumbaclart Riddem”. While We Wait also comes with 10-minute visual that strings one track into the next in a single video, which you can check out below.

E-H – Lockdown 

Freeing up some creations from the last few months, E-H varies his style across the short Lockdown collection. “Footsoldier”, “Spyware” and “Song of Liberty” are all examples of chopped and twisted orchestral grime done right and “Blackcot Road” is packed full of nostaligic garage energy, while “Southside” and his “Hot Heads” bootleg are straight attention-grabbing, in-your-face beats.


GYRO! – The Frozen King’s Mucktion 8 Bar

Close to 10 years on, the verses from the slew of MCs on J Beatz’ “8 Bar Mucktion” are still just as sick. Swapping out the powerhouse production for something a few degrees colder, GYRO!’s refix lets the vocals from 9 Milli Major, Big H, Kwam, Big Narstie, Sharky Major, Blay, M.I.K, Typah, Dimples, Jammin, Rival and Tre Mission remain the focus, supported by his bright yet understated production. If you aren’t familiar with GYRO!’s unique and boundary-breaking approach to the grime sound, then this is a good introduction before you dive into his more experimental projects.

Baked Louis – K Cider 

Before UK Bass producer Plus had settled on a new name, he was known as Baked Louis. Plus is now uploading his unreleased back catalogue of Baked Louis tunes, including “K Cider” to SoundCloud. With sparse dubsteppy drum patterns, rich and rough bass sweeps and high chanting choral accents, this beat is as potent as the drink it’s named after.

Princess Giant – Ringtones Vol. 1

Ringtones Vol. 1 packages short, punchy segments of production into one strange but ear-catching project. Unpredictable, undefinable, and, at points, almost overwhelming and impenetrable, Princess Giant’s sequences seep into the realms of grime, wave, garage, acid house, techno, breakbeat and RnB. Listening is a mind-bend experience, but the weirdness is more than worth it for tracks like “Every Time”, “Lady Eboshi”, “U Wot” and that 8 Bit mix of “Eskigirl”.

K-Rahn – Sheer Fire EP

Ipswich-based DJ and producer K-Rahn released his debut “Sheer Fire” instrumental alongside 3 versions from 3 different MCs: fellow Ipswich residents SA and Rinsa and Nottingham native JD. Sheer Fire brings grime back to its basic elements and nails them as the vocalists showcase their lyrics and flows over a stomping, brass-heavy beat. SA boasts of his superiority while tearing down lacking opponents, Rinsa comes through with shifting flows to tell the harsh truths of making money on road, and JD lets us know he’s done caring about what others think of him in his rapid-fire bursts of bars.

Burning Lake – Warning

Burning Lake’s “Warning” is simple but very effective, building its 8-bar structure from snapping percussion, smooth string chords, gliding synth melodies and intermittently staggering, off-beat rhythms. The B-side, a remix of Earthsurfaceopen’s “Tribute”, adds a harder dancehall edge to the original’s already infectious funky energy.

Dizzee Rascal – I Luv U (Aranha 160 Refix) 

Taking one of the most recognisable grime tracks of all time, Aranha remoulds Dizzee Rascal’s incredible “I Luv U” instrumental from Boy In Da Corner into a relentless barrage of sound. With this 160bpm refix, the already weighty kick-and-clap combo of the original becomes a flurry of rebounding percussion and splattering sub-bass.

Check out the Donation Dubs 012 mix on Once Upon A Grime's SoundCloud below: