Sudbeat kick off 2015 in style with an EP from Canadian producer Navid Mehr, featuring a collaboration with Amber Long and a remix from Stas Drive.

I’ve been a fan of Navid Mehr’s previous outings on Change Audio, and his recent remix of Namatjira’s ‘Silent Silhouette’ was inspired. ‘Gathas’ proves that he’s clearly not used up all of his inspiration yet. Crisp percussion and a slinky bass kick us off and carry us to a short, atmospheric breakdown. From there ‘Gathas’ really takes off, with a relentless swaying bassline, gorgeous vocal swirls, and glorious rippling melodies, leading to a breakdown introducing Amber’s ‘We can conquer the world’ refrain. A final breakdown sees a melancholic hook come to the fore, providing a hypnotic focal point as the track springs back to life. There’s a dub included for those looking for a more instrumental trip too.

‘Elyon’ boasts rich percussion, a rumbling bassline, and eerie, twisted loops, before the track’s haunting main theme is introduced, complemented by an understated chiming melody. The main breakdown throws in acid tones that really raise the excitement levels for the track’s final throwdown.

Stas Drive has been responsible for some terrific remixes over the past few years, and his reworking of ‘Elyon’ is a particularly fine piece of work. Skipping kicks give the track immediate urgency, but it’s at the one minute mark that its bleepy, textured sound really starts to emerge, underwritten by bone-rattling bass shudders. Navid Mehr’s ideas start to make an appearance as the track powers into the breakdown, where we’re treated to light, dancing melodies and creeping basslines. ‘Elyon’’s main theme emerges as the track hits its stride again, working really well with the sound-scape Stas Drive has constructed around it. Great stuff, which manages to be even better than Navid Mehr’s original.

This is a fantastic start to the year from Sudbeat and from Navid Mehr, with ‘Gathas’ and Stas Drive’s powerful remix of ‘Elyon’ providing my personal favourites. 8.5/10

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