Emperor’s Debut Album ‘Dispositions’ Drops On Critical Music

Posted by Ben on 20th May 2016

Last year Emperor, AKA Monuman, released his Into Black EP on Critical Music and instantly shot straight to the top of mine, and many others’, favourites list. Therefore when I caught wind of this release at the end of last year, I was understandably excited. It’s called Dispositions, it was released on the 16th of May and it neatly contains 16 tracks that have absolutely lived up to expectations, which, considering the extent of those expectations, is no easy feat.

The title track Dispositions is a departure from Emperor’s trademark techy sound, but by no means does this detract from what is an excellent atmospheric, suspenseful tune. Anyone familiar with Emperor’s releases via his Monuman alias will know that he’s no stranger to representing other sides of bass music in often spectacular fashion (Rise, anybody?), and the combination of Peta Oneir’s vocals with the moody vibes this song brings is a perfect example.

Buy: iTunes / Critical Shop

Another highlight of the LP for me is Shapeshift. Containing probably some of the most gorgeous Hi-Hats I’ve ever heard, Shapeshift is Emperor doing what he does best. A bubbly, gurgling bassline practically forces you to bop your head, contrasting superbly with the aforementioned Hi-Hats. I also really like the second drop, which makes for a great switch of atmosphere, a feature lots of producers seem to be omitting from their tunes recently.

Buy: iTunes / Critical Shop
https://soundcloud.com/thump/emperor-shapeshift-critical-music

There’s absolutely no way I could write this review without mentioning the Mindgames VIP. The original was released as part of Into Black last year and has been destroying dance floors ever since, so when I heard that this would be on the LP I was a little sceptical purely because I love the original so much. The VIP however takes an excellent song and distorts it’s once sweeping bass line into a choppy, messy but still pristine and oh so devastating version of its former self. Love it.

I unfortunately can’t do justice to the whole album, however the two collaborations on the LP are both worth mentioning. Thunder featuring MC Fats is a great, jungle infused roller, while Made of Light featuring Brightonian vocalist Solah, who certainly isn’t a stranger to drum n bass, carries the kind of subtle weight to it that you can feel, but not quite hear.

Dispositions is without a doubt an excellent album, perfect for any drum n bass head that likes their music rough and ready to go. Given the track record of both Emperor and Critical Music this isn’t a huge surprise however, and seeing as it’s only May and we’ve already heard great things from Kasra’s London imprint this year, I for one can’t wait to see what’s up next.

Tracklist:
1) Cold Snap
2) Haste
3) I Was
4) Foxholes
5) Shapeshift
6) From Ashes
7) Infrasound
8) Dispositions
9) Interstellar
10) One Foot
11) Sidestep
12) Jounce
13) Thunder feat. MC Fats
14) Made of Light feat. SOLAH
15) Control VIP
16) Mindgames VIP

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