Darkhouse Family/CRST – Stabwound/Redeye (Catapult)

Unlike their day-time radio pillaging counterparts, it’s unlikely that the Darkhouse Family have ever been up Ocean Drive. Or if they have, it’s been with a chisel and a huge speaker system. The latter are from Barry and Cardiff in South Wales and deal in bass music which arrives forearms out and teeth wet, snarling for dancefloor blood. It’s the sort of untamed, electronic sound which should (if they’re even still at it) send the Lighthouse Family jettisoning their instruments and heading for the hills.

This new release on the newly forged Catapult imprint, in celebration of Independent Record Store day, follows the ‘Family Trees’ EP on Fat City from last summer, a record which packed so much bass heat, it was in desperate need of an effective diet and a tooth brush. ‘Stay Blazed’ and ‘Mein Atari’ presented the twin ends of their aural spectrum – one perky and synthetic, the other fat with computer game bleeps coated in barbwire.

Darkhouse Family own the A-side with ‘Stabwound’, which represents a more frenetic stretch to their sound – it packs a heavy, heavy punch, but with plenty of percussive stutters set amid a blaze of hazy electronics. The flip is ruled by Welsh four-piece (and Hervé approved) CRST, a collection of producers tipped to splash water in the face of garage loving bass seekers from here to there. Theirs is a more tribal take on garage, yet one coated in chrome with the bit between its teeth – it’s a far nastier piece of dancefloor heavy business than their supreme reworking of ‘Shelter’ by the XX. Both this, the Darkhouse Family and Doc Daneeka suggests that South Wales is a fertile playground for club music. Keep your ears open…

Jim Ottewill

‘Stabwound/Redeye’ is released through Catapult on April 16th.