Anything the legendary Grooverider releases on Prototype is, at least, preview-on-sight. Groove’s been the pulse of the jungle and drum & bass scenes for ages, and when he puts on his labelhead hat, he is picking tunes that can best be described as “future”. Controlled Opposition’s new single, “Larry” b/w “Down the Well”, is that future. For drum & bass. For right now.
“Larry” is more simplistic than other release, but its a sinister number that’s been heating up dancefloors going on five(!) years. For me? “Down the Well” is the one. If you’ve not been paying attention to the material coming out on Zombie Recordings or Grid, you may not be up on the squelchy side of drum & bass. I’ve been reveling in it for the better part of quarantine, thanks in part to releases like Zombie Bass Eaters Vol. 2. Controlled Opposition falls firmly into the lane occupied by guys like Nick the Lot (more on him in the near future) with this one, and is better for it.
There isn’t much to “Down the Well”; we’re talking one main synth, hypnotizing you over a steady rhythm. Usually, it’s all about how the sounds roll into each other, or the intricate breakbeat editing that turns an idea into a banger. “Down the Well” happened upon the right mood, and decided to stick it out for four minutes. Unrelenting atmosphere, untouchable vibes.
Now about “Larry”…
Earlier, I mentioned that “Larry” had been on dubplate for five years. That isn’t a fact I pulled out of my ass—I got it from the write-up for Controlled Opposition’s “Larry” b/w “Down the Well” on Prototype’s site. To be perfectly honest, this feels like a bit of a chicken and the egg situation. So Data Transmission premiered Controlled Opposition’s “Larry”—that’s where I first read the bit about “Larry” being on dub for a bit.
Frustratingly, it’s used word-for-word on the Prototype page, which might be where this site cribbed the text from? It’s hard to say; it’d appear that DT wrote a great post to go along with the premiere, and those words were then repurposed for the Prototype website…to be then ganked by actual websites. As a person who’s spent the better part of the last ~15 years writing about drum & bass in some capacity (including write-ups for press releases and one-sheets), recycling words is lazy. Do better, or get someone else to do it.
“Larry” / “Down the Well” is available wherever good drum & bass is sold.