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LHF – Keepers Of The Light review

While the attention around them grows ever stronger, the LHF collective drop their debut album with a minimum of fuss, and in something of a bold move give everyone a whopping 26 tracks to digest. If anything it’ll silence all those speculating and analysing while they just try to catch up and process this incredible body of work. As the name of the album and the singles that preceded this long player ably demonstrate, the combined forces of Amen Ra, Double Helix, Low Density Matter and No Fixed Abode (whoever they might be) are carrying the torch for the original principles of dubstep, and in turn UK rave music as a whole. This is no more evident than in the irreverence with which they use samples. Nothing is off limits, from Kill Bill and The Matrix through to Happy Mondays and 808 State, in a world where everything can be sampled and obscurity is king, it’s this wry innocence which informs the rest of the music, but the real joy is that it doesn’t hamper the sheer brilliance of the production.

Moving between grim, dark steppers such as Double Helix’s “Chamber of Light” and the colourful breeziness of Amen Ra’s “Low Maintenance”, there’s no concern for stylistic continuity throughout, instead allowing complete freedom for each track to do its own thing. It’s the maturity of composition that knocks you sideways with the LHF material. The beats fall hard and just beg to be heard on a loud rig, but they’re backed up in equal measure by complex, accomplished detail in the synths, the samples, the bass lines, everything. Take a track like No Fixed Abode’s “Indian Street Slang”, which mines gorgeous Indian sources and arranges them with both delicacy and flair for an edgy main groove and then a sweet, sunkissed break. Both innately listenable and club ready in equal measure, there’s nothing more thrilling than hearing music this full of vitality for a sound which is losing many of its most interesting protagonists to the lure of 4/4.

Oli Warwick


Tracklisting:

CD1
1. Secret Lagoon
2. Steelz
3. Candy Rain
4. Sunset (Mumbai Slum Edition)
5. Essence Investigation
6. Supreme Architecture
7. LDN
8. Rush
9. Questions
10. Blue Steel
11. Simple Things
12. Low Maintenance

CD2
1. Strangelands
2. From Whence We Came
3. Broken Glass
4. Indian Street Slang
5. Fairytales
6. Akashic Visions
7. Hidden Life Force 2
8. No Worries
9. Bass 2 Dark
10. Chamber Of Light
11. Inferno
12. Deep Life
13. Voyages
14. One Toke Wonder