Stratton returns to Of Paradise for the label’s 20th release. Chalking up a hat-trick of EP’s on the imprint, with the impeccably effective ‘Never Bettered Always Battered’. Arguably his most accomplished and significant release to date, this 4-tracker effortlessly showcases the London-based producers expertly distilled and patented style of evocative and headstrong UK hardcore.
The A-side launches with the anthemic ‘Badboy’, a true floor melter, loaded with tunnelling drums, an electric bassline and a criminally infectious chopped vocal. Following that is ‘Double Happiness (Bludclot Mix)’, a lethal dose of no nonsense proto-rave goods, emanating from the streets of North London. The product of a truly skilled operator who trades in no-nonsense tunes built specifically for the dancefloor.
‘Bless’ kicks off the flip side with effortless momentum. The impetus clearly focused on rupturing bassbins and rewiring brains, with its growling bassline, lethal Amen break, euphoric melody and rabid hoover. Closing out the release is ‘Vapour Trail Hurricane’ another system-rushing slice of hardcore mastery that pulls no punches in its pursuit of dancefloor dominance. Fuelled by a hammering kick, sharp sirens and swirling acid lines, these are the final moments before imminent self destruction.
This is true peak-time pressure from one of the UK’s most exciting and inimitable talents.