View Full Version : Dark 4x4 and Breakbeat Garage

15-07-2011, 09:42 AM

This stuff just works on the dancefloor, as dated as some of it might sound, pure simplistic club music.




and about 500 more tunes

15-07-2011, 11:52 AM
love that Narrows tune - uses a great sample.

there were a few El-B and Narrows mixes on rampradio.co.uk which was all of this heavy 4x4 and jungley warp basslines but i cant find them now. there was a quality tune that used a sample of Bubbles from the Wire talking at rehab!

Bogeyman (Twisted Individual) made some great tunes which were basically his d'n'b stuff slowed down to 140.

i love all this stuff but whole sets of it can get a bit much like Niche / bassline

15-07-2011, 12:33 PM
I like this narrows tune alot, I guess sort of thing you talking about^.


Benny B
15-07-2011, 03:45 PM
Sorry, I guess that didn't work properly. Anyways heres a mix of this stuff I did a while back http://www.mixcloud.com/bennybrassic/dark-garage-mix/

15-07-2011, 07:58 PM
Here's me...


Blogariddims 8 : Mr.Bump ‘Rude Interlude’

1. [00:00] Radio: Mark Ryder and MC Vapour (Source Unknown)
2. [00:00] Zoom and DBX 'Comin Again' (Planet Phat 2000)
3. [02:20] Roll Deep Crew 'Bounce' (Wiley Kat Recordings 2002)
4. [05:30] Agent X 'Killahertz' (Heatseaker 2002)
5. [##:##] Radio: Agent X (Rinse FM - Feb. 12 2002)
6. [08:45] Dub Syndicate Productions 'I Need Your Love' Agent X Rmx (Unit Five 2001)
7. [12:20] Corrupted Cru 'G.A.R.A.G.E.' (DJ Narrows Remix #2 - 2001)
8. [12:40] Bogeyman 'Smelly' (Storming Productions 2005)
9. [13:55] Bogeyman 'Smelly' (DJ Slimzee w/ Godsgift - Rinse CD 2005)
10. [15:30] DJ Wire 'Firewire' (white label ~2001)
11. [16:40] DJ Shorty 'Listen' (Road ~2002)
12. [17:40] DJ Narrows 'Saved Soul' (Resurrection 2001)
13. [19:30] DJ Narrows 'If They Knew Wot I Know' (Ankh 2004)
14. [20:25] Menta 'Sounds of da Future' (Sounds of da Future 2002)
15. [21:45] Benny Ill & DJ Dinesh 'New York' (Vehicle 2003)
16. [23:35] DJ Wonder '8th Wonder' (Dump Valve 2003)
17. [24:30] Dexplicit 'Bullacake' (More2daFloor 2005 / edit)
18. [25:15] Skepta 'Duppy' vocal (Boy Better Know 2006)
19. [##:##] Radio: Wiley has a cold (Rinse FM - January 2005)
20. [29:05] Dexplicit feat. Gemma Fox 'Might Be' (More2daFloor 2005)
21. [31:25] Irv Gotti feat. Ashanti 'Down 4 U' DnD Conemelt Mix (Murder Inc. 2002)
22. [33:46] Jammin' 'Go DJ' (Bingo Beats 2001)
23. [36:50] Liberty X 'Wanting Me Tonight' Wookie Dub (V2 Records 2002)
24. [40:00] DJ Wire 'Believe Me' Beyonce Mix (white label ~2001)
25. [40:40] Donae'o 'My Philosophy (Bounce)' Fidgets Instr. (Social Circles 2003)
26. [41:35] Donae'o 'My Philosophy (Bounce)' Fidgets Vocal (Social Circles 2003 / edit)
27. [41:35] DJ Oddz 'Walk in the Park' (V2 Grooves 2003)
28. [43:40] Plasticman 'The Rush' (A.R.M.Y. 2004 / edit)
29. [43:50] Harry Lime 'Voodoo Magic' (white label ~2001)
30. [45:40] Blackstar 'African Beats' (DXP Recordings 2006)
31. [47:00] Dexplicit 'Ringmaster' (DXP Recordings 2006)
32. [47:55] Sirus 'Grouch' (Harry Lime 2001)
33. [48:45] DJ Charmzy 'Laugh' (Black Ops 2005 / edit)
34. [50:35] Macabre Unit 'Everyday Life' (Slimzos 2005)
35. [51:30] Radio: Slimzee w/ B Live (Rinse FM June 2004 / DarksideRiddem.com)
36. [55:40] Plasticman 'The Search' (Terrorhythm 2004)
37. [56:35] Plasticman 'White Gloves' (Soulja 2003)

Mr. Bump live @ Komodo Dubs (MTL)

[00:00] Shorty – Listen (Road)
[03:30] DJ Wire – All Alone (Real)
[06:30] KMA – Klean Kards (Locked ON)
[09:45] DJ Faz – Believe (Locked On)
[13:30] Oris Jay ft. MC E-LL – ‘Brand Nu Flava’ (Props)
[14:30] Trevor T – Mind, Body & Soul (white)
[17:20] Jason Kaye – Soundboy (Hotpoint)
[19:40] Sticky – Golly Gosh (Social Circles/edit)
[20:45] Jammin – Go DJ (Bingo/edit)
[22:20] DJ Narrows – Saved Soul (Resurrection)
[24:30] Agent X – Killahertz Alias Rmx (Heatseeker)
[26:20] Dom Perignon & Dynamite – Got Myself Together DnD Mix (DnD)
[27:45] Jameson – Urban Hero (Lifestyle)
[29:50] Dub Syndicate – I Need Your Love Agent X Mix (Unit Five)
[32:30] Corrupted Cru – G.A.R.A.G.E. Narrows Mix (white/edit)
[34:20] Wiley – Before This
[35:25] Eastwood & Oddz – You Ain’t Ready (white)
[36:45] Dizzee Ras – Hoe 3 (white)
[37:30] Plasticman – Cha (Terrorhythm)
[38:35] Donae’o – Bounce Fidgets Mix (Social Circles)
[40:00] DJ Wire – Believe Me DJ Faz Mix (white)
[41:50] Plasticman – The Rush (A.R.M.Y.)
[44:10] Geeneus – Da Journey (Dump Valve)
[47:00] Geeneus – Say It (Dump Valve)
[49:15] Dexplicit – UK Ravers (Social Circles)
[52:00] Charmzy – Dan Dana (Black Ops)
[53:25] Shackleton – Stalker Gangsta Refix (Mordant/edit)
[65:10] DJ Oddz – Bump Dis (white/edit)

Benny B
15-07-2011, 10:03 PM
definitely listen to nomos' ones and this one by grievous angel before mine, they are professionals!: http://thecurbcrawlers.com/blog/2008/12/02/4x4-hell/

A fee download of DJ Shorty & DJ Brownin's 'Friction (remix) here: http://soundcloud.com/djbrownin/dj-brownin-dj-shorty-friction-remix

This is a personal fave, I think its by Menta


continuing the badboy theme, this one by Bizzy B i think? (note the proto UK funky bongos!)


Benny B
15-07-2011, 10:38 PM
another old one where you can hear this dark sound coming through (not 4x4 or breakbeat admittedly)


this is nuts!


surprised to find this on youtube, a bootleg mashup of a few big tunes from the time, got this one on vinyl which is nice...


Benny B
15-07-2011, 10:59 PM

16-07-2011, 12:22 AM
<iframe width="425" height="349" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/uQWp9hMzoH0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

16-07-2011, 12:25 AM

b-side on this (second half of sample) is utterly mental

16-07-2011, 09:31 PM
Sirus's Grouch is an underrated gem, he was another D&B producer going incognito, think it was Special K. I'm guessing even the most lacklustre of Zinc's Bingo Beats 12 sold ten times what Grouch did.

This 2003 mix by DJ Faz has a few obscure 4 to the floor tracks on it.


Am I right in guessing that there arent many 4 to the floor tunes in this style, this sound must have lasted all of five minutes?

16-07-2011, 11:35 PM
Benny, thanks for the endorsement! Owen, thanks for Faz!

Benny B
17-07-2011, 06:39 AM
The mr bump mix is bloody brilliant, first time I'd heard any of this stuff. Not really very much of the 4x4 stuff on youtube though.


This a good breakbeat one


17-07-2011, 09:43 AM
Sirus's Grouch is an underrated gem, he was another D&B producer going incognito, think it was Special K. I'm guessing even the most lacklustre of Zinc's Bingo Beats 12 sold ten times what Grouch did.

I play that song literally every set, it's great, never tire of it. He did some similar stuff on Running:


17-07-2011, 04:05 PM
This is the tracklisting for the Faz mix:

Deuce magazine presents… DJ Faz

4Front Recordings Mixed by DJ Faz
1. DJ Faz- Right Behind You
2. Ras Kwame & Moezart- Riddim
3. Sub Collective- Sub Static (Faz n Julius remix)
4. DJ Wire- Last Chance
5. Specialist Crew- Blob
6. Associates- looking back
7. Sirus- Dynamics
8. DJ Wire- Believe Me
9. Beat Assassins- Beat Nut
10. Close Quarters- I like this groove
11. DJ Wire- Melt down
12. Close Quarters- Roller Ball
13. DJ Narrows- legacy
14. Associates- Aggie
15. Associates- Drill
16. DJ Faz- Angels Sing

The DJ Wire tune got me thinking of this good Slimzee set at Sidewinder, near the end there's a weird 4 to the floor dubplate with a Joey Beltram hoover on it, the MC's dont really know what to do with it. Plus it's got an energetic Wiley putting Viper & particularly B-Live to shame


The more I think about it this kind of music could be seen as techno for a Garage audience who dont really like techno

17-07-2011, 04:38 PM
The more I think about it this kind of music could be seen as techno for a Garage audience who dont really like techno

Yeah absolutely. I've thought that about Oddz's 'Walk in the Park' and a couple of Geeneus tunes on Dumpvalve. DJ Wire's 'Missing Mind' is fun http://www.chemical-records.co.uk/sc/servlet/Info?Track=REAL01 "It was worth than death... His brain is gone!"

17-07-2011, 04:46 PM
love that DJ wire tune nomos..

spose TNT would come under this aswell?

17-07-2011, 05:04 PM
Wire did that Livewire Devistate track which preceeded some of the other stuff, I believe wire is his real surname. You might as well add the 4 to the floor mix of 2 Good 2 B True - 'U Aint Ready' to that list, though it's not on youtube. Then there was always this Elephant Man tune


At the time it was in the shops it was listed as Horsepower productions, then others (probably rightly) claim it was DND. Whatever the case, you can be certain that Blazin Squad had no involvement whatsoever.

DJ Zinc had a weird 4/4 thing as the b-side to Go DJ


For the breakbeat side of things you should check out the Dumpvalve CD. The Cocaine track near the end fits into the 'utterly mental 4 to the floor' category perfectly, probably never released.


17-07-2011, 06:02 PM

17-07-2011, 10:02 PM
You might as well add the 4 to the floor mix of 2 Good 2 B True - 'U Aint Ready' to that list, though it's not on youtube.

this one as well

also a lot of the black ops stuff had 4x4 remixes that were sometimes better than the originals.

18-07-2011, 02:21 PM
love that one Sectionfive***, also the flip was a belter also, loved the way it started with the kick on a highpass filter, so sick that one...

got to mention TNT, Nissi, Transmission, Rush the DJ

also there was some really good dark 4x4 mixes of messy by gemma fox (big$hot i think)

alias had some really nice 4x4 bits aswell 'bouncy' was one of them

anyone have a copy of 'Do It' by bubbles from Roll Deep? Came out on a 1 sided one, was in rhythm division, i lost my copy, it's not on discogs, was such a tune, used to get beat by slimzee etc..

18-07-2011, 03:18 PM
i love this stuff

really good thread

i bought 2nd II nones road 12" a few weeks ago

the track fuse on that is just grime-techno

18-07-2011, 03:33 PM
<iframe width="425" height="349" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/wmscLBecSWc" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

"stormforce" on this is a banger, not on youtube tho. sample: http://www.juno.co.uk/ppps/products/278400-01.htm

18-07-2011, 03:47 PM

this one is quality, no youtube link, it's the one with the high pitch stabs 'da da da' 'da,da,da,da,da,da'

18-07-2011, 03:58 PM
<iframe width="425" height="349" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/C5Tat5vlo54" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

18-07-2011, 09:27 PM

this one a straight up persy

18-07-2011, 11:28 PM
Wasn't 'Saved Soul' by Narrows was the catalyst for all this? As I recall, EZ played it in every set for about 6 months and it was so incongruous amongst all the sweet vocal 2-step, yet also brilliant - there'd been moody 4x4 garage prior to it but it was the one which really took garage into the realms of being growly.

Love your mixes nomos; that's a near-definitive selection of this sound. I still love 'Golly Gosh' by Sticky, 'Grouch' (doesn't everyone?) and especially the 'G.A.R.A.G.E. (Narrows Remix)', which is incredibly peculiar.

I have a lot of stuff in this vein - I used to order the garage, breakbeat and techno vinyl (amongst others) when I worked in a record shop (1999-2005) and so ended up with all sorts of stuff from small distros that probably never made it past 20/30 test presses. None of it's on youtube, natch, but if enough of you fancy hearing it I'll try to rip it from vinyl and dropbox it, or something. (There's some Narrows, Close Quarters (which I think is also a Narrows alias?), Faz, Rossi B & Luca and a few others in there.)

I did manage to think of a few, though.


This is (I imagine) the Gemma Fox mix Alex referenced upthread. It's by Paleface, which makes sense given that he ended up making Bassline. (Though he's also in Crazy Cousinz, which probably goes to show something, I expect.)



'Ave That, indeed. Tim Wright spent about a year flirting with garage but never quite relinquishing his technoeyness. Really like the hestitant, scuttly nature of the hats on the above, plus it has a monstrous bassline. Radioactive Man's original is even more boshing - but again, the skippety hats just about allow me to classify it as dark 4/4 garage. It's great, anyway.


This one's deceptive - the intro doesn't really foretoken the bassline grunt that follows. I know MJ does harder stuff these days but this was a real departure at the time. Dark bassline, jolly organ stabs plus overblown emo breakdowns, a strange record.

Lastly, what is a 'dark 4/4 garage' thread without this? This remix coined the expression and it's still the best of its kind if you ask me. One of the few songs you can sing the bassline of:


18-07-2011, 11:32 PM
if enough of you fancy hearing it I'll try to rip it from vinyl and dropbox it, or something.

Welcome aboard.

You should be able to give you access

19-07-2011, 12:29 AM
I didn't even realize we had groups :rolleyes: Not very mod-y of me is it? I took the liberty of inviting myself. (Now how do I get a DB invite?)

Welcome Ulala. Would love to hear some of those tunes.

Benny B
19-07-2011, 05:18 AM
I'll sort out the dropbox invites in a bit, quite a lot of dark garage got posted in there a while back actually. PM me your email addresses and I'll add you up.

pete janner
19-07-2011, 07:43 AM

this track remains a masterclass in dark breakbeat garage

what about that 2nd drop

ignore the clip title, this was the A (Murderer)

19-07-2011, 08:58 AM

bringing it forward a few years, this is around 2/3 years old?? fucking quality tune

19-07-2011, 09:06 AM

that's the one I mentioned upthread

Benny B
19-07-2011, 09:14 AM
KMA were pioneers in breakbeat garage right?



Benny B
19-07-2011, 09:19 AM

19-07-2011, 12:47 PM
I always thought of dark 4x4 as some kind of end point for garage, as a chain of increasing intensification (harder, darker, faster) driven by competitiveness amongst DJs. you start with US garage, get UK and more bumpy, add more sub, it goes 2steppy then breakbeat garage (Zinc "Hello" being the pinicle of that style) and so the only level of hardness above that is dark 4x4. Narrows "Saved Soul" definitely broke that style, (named after his friend's death from a car crash inspired him to go into music and "save" is "soul").

Tracks like this Sirus one (http://www.discogs.com/Sirus-Red-and-Black/release/329273) seemed to exemplify the harder, faster mentality. as you edge up from 128 ->134 -> through to 138 you lose the skippy swing factor over the bosh, hard kick-driven techno vibe.

I remember interviewing Agent X in about 2003/4 and they were bemoaning this tempo shift (though "Turbulence" on this (http://www.discogs.com/Agent-X-Feat-MC-Ultra-Sherman-Decoy-Full-Vocal-Bashment-Remix/master/6931) was pretty hard 4x4).

So once you've got faster, darker and harder, you only really have one place to go. Angrier: hence you got grime, which these tracks were a foundation for in places like Sidewinder. I went there with Narrows once during this time, but that's another story (a not wildly interesting one)...

19-07-2011, 01:11 PM
i think this stuff is some of the best dance music ever

its dark/heavy/hard but bouncy/energetic/driving on the dancefloor

and this period seems like the most fertile almost, i mean, yeah its 'dark' (and i know you could argue garage before this was even more fertile and varied cos you had every shade in there) but it was before grime got much less floor-aimed and started to get more amateur and raw, it was sort of a middle point, but def not a 'transitional' stage cos that implies its not quite there yet, but this stuff really was fully realised

and theres just something about those sounds being used with that much propulsion/bounce and simplicity of the 4/4 pattern, its (underground) dance music perfection for me

19-07-2011, 07:19 PM
A cursory rummage thorugh my vinyl reveals 30+ 12”s of dark 4/4 garage (and garagey techno), none of which is on youtube or discogs. I will, therefore, as promised, rip them, but I have a wedding to attend this weekend so it may take me a while. Quite how I ended up with so much is beyond me, but I noticed (whilst rummaging) that much of my 2-step vinyl has been drunkenly lost (by me) or stolen (by chiefs) over the years. Perhaps nobody wanted the dark 4/4 stuff…

Which isn’t all that surprising - I clearly remember playing ‘Grouch’ to comparative air when released; though, that said, I was living in Brighton, where garage was completely eclipsed by breakbeat. It gets a much better reception when played these days, I guess in part to the rise of niche/bassline, but also due to the Luke’s Anger/Kanji Kinetic/Squire Of Gothos axis, which is pretty much this sound with a load of synths and silliness bunged in. (I won’t derail by linking to that stuff, but the parallels are pretty plain.)

More youtubery:


The quintessential breakbeat garage record? I reckon so, and the sparse beats are a clear grime antecedent as well. You could even make a fair case for this as proto-wobble, the bass is decidedly, um, wobbly. It was certainly something I’d never witnessed before (clever wording, I know. Cheers).


Give trance a chance. ‘Nightmare’ has the sort of ominous strings which became a staple of grime, and Dextrous bungs a huge wah-wah bassline under it to great effect. I found out about this by accident but instantly loved it. (Although the uploader has cropped off the last few minutes, the ninny.)


Another example of dodgy source material being remixed to stunning effect, though this bears little to no trace of Nigel (or Marvin, I expect). This is the most clattery breakbeat garage record I own, and I’m toying with saying it’s actually straight breakbeat, but: a) it’s by J Sweet, and b) it’s on Relentless.


Only an audio clip of this one, and it isn’t ‘dark’ in the same way as the others. However, it is hectic and oppressive, and that’s as good as dark in my book. My favourite HP record ever, I think. I managed to get me a copy of this on vinyl when a well-respected breakbeat DJ (who I won’t name, but he’s been on Supermarket Sweep, if that helps) brought it in to the shop I worked in, amongst a pile of promos, and I swapped the lot for a Plump DJs CD (or something equally tawdry). Naturally I snaffled this for myself and I treasure it fondly.

19-07-2011, 07:27 PM
those mixes from nomos, Benny B and Grievous Angel are fantastic. great thread.

19-07-2011, 09:01 PM
This thread contains a good percentage of my record box from around 2001-2003 :) Love this stuff and still sneak it in where I can. I play a lot of 'the Luke Sanger / Squires etc axis' stuff nowadays and as mentioned previously, its works pretty well.

Track 2 on this http://www.chemical-records.co.uk/sc/servlet/Info?Track=KARMA28T is pretty sweet

20-07-2011, 02:41 PM
Shame Big$hot hasn't had much of a mention in this thread




20-07-2011, 02:52 PM
and EZ of course