#ROTW: Kenny Ken & Beat Merchants (Ft. Ezy Star) – Riddim Up

The second edition of KMAG’s “Release Of The Week” (or #ROTW for short) – selected every Friday, by the Site Editor.

It’s not every day that you hear a track with a rolling bassline that stands out as much as this particular release from V Recordings’ appropriately named ‘Chronic Rollers’. Especially as how nowadays ‘Rollers’ is arguably one of the most popular and widely released sub-genres of Drum & Bass. Some could say that because of how saturated the market is – it’s hard to distinguish and keep up to date with everything that comes out.

This track first gained my attention when Kenny played it during his Formations Records Black History Month Stream on D&BTV – which was without a doubt, one of my top Live-stream sets of 2020. A fast-paced and high-intensity ragga-roller infused 45 minutes, which is topped off by the visual aspect of seeing Kenny sing along to pretty much every track. A joy to watch.

The first 40 seconds depict an easy-going, smooth Reggae/Dub track with the flowing vocals from the one and only Ezy Star. The opening even starts with a classic reggae drum-roll. This relaxing start to the piece is met at the first drop by the sonic equivalent to the big-bang, yet somehow it doesn’t feel unexpected or misplaced. Think of the consistent rolling basslines in tracks such as Saxxon – Here To Play (V Recordings) or Bungle – Cocooned (31 Recordings).

It seems as Kenny Ken & Beat Merchants have represented the roots of Jungle Drum & Bass eloquently and completely organically. While also creating a piece with one of the most powerful basslines I’ve heard in recent months.

Riddim Up is available to stream/buy now on all major platforms. 


(Every #ROTW is added to the ‘Editor’s Mix playlist on Spotify)