TRENCH Radio: 10 Of The Best Mixes This Week

Photography: Lewis Crone

Another week closer to oblivion, but at least the music’s good. We’ve scoured the internet once again to bring you the latest and greatest DJ mixes and radio shows (providing they meet the criteria). As ever, we’ve gone through a range of sounds and styles, including rap, jungle, grime, house music, Jersey Club, Amapiano, gqom, bassline, Afro-tech, acid, and beyond, it’ll just be more inclusive from now on. This week’s highlights include a head-to-head between old school garage and NUKG, an immersive tribute to one of Detroit’s finest exports, and a high-intensity LDN-NY link-up.

So, without further ado, here are this week’s best mixes.

Eddie Otchere

This month marks 16 years since we lost J Dilla, so expect to hear tributes and retrospectives celebrating the life and works of the master producer and turntablist. Commemorating his way, rap and D&B photographer and chronicler Eddie Otchere stepped into the Kindred shop to raise a glass to Jay Dee’s life with this perfectly balanced hour of playful, soulful, soothing, invigorating session. Dilla’s legacy is almost taken for granted sometimes, so it’s always worth remembering just how much of ‘90s hip-hop was personally sculpted by him—from Tribe to Pharcyde, and of course his own mercurial inventions.

Sef Kombo B2B Kitty Amor

After years of tireless grind—over a decade, in fact—Sef Kombo and Kitty Amor are finally getting their dues. They’ve been proponents of Afro-house for the longest time and now that the sound is finally starting to break out of the underground, Sef and Kitty are the perfect tour guides for the uninitiated. Exploring the sound’s deepest grooves and bass-heavy potential, this one’s as smooth as it gets. Best of all, they’ve just announced they’ve got a new Motherland party in the works, this time at Grow in Hackney on February 26 where they’ll be joined by amapiano standard-bearer Ade Smilez.

Rukus w/ Emily Dust

Photography: Gina Jeanz

Everything’s opening back up and it’s tempting to feel just a little optimistic. Bristol sound system veteran Nicodemus is back in full swing with a new TunUp! party in Bristol tomorrow, Feb 19, and for the latest edition of his Rukus show on SWU, he invited Baile LDN and Soho Radio selector Emily Dust (who’s also on the line-up) for a guest mix. Nico bookends the show with dancehall scorchers and sizzlers from Bounty Killer, Spice, Busy Signal and the like. Then, at the 40-minute mark, Emily steps in to switch gears with a mix spanning UK, SA and beyond, including cuts from Roska, Style G, DJ Lag, and the great Moonchild Sanelly. On top of that, Baile LDN returns next month when Emily will be DJing along with DJ Kwamzy, TrYB, and DJ Mango Park.

Sicaria Sound

Photography: Ynez

Late last year, the disheartening and slightly ominous announcement that aside from outstanding releases and existing commitments, dubstep duo Sicaria Sound, aka Imbratura and Ndeko, would be calling it a day due to “health and wellbeing factors”. Thankfully, the pair seem to have regrouped and this week saw them smash one set at XOYO and then another with Lockt and his 1Forty family at Wire in Leeds. It looks like a busy year ahead for the pair as well, with at least three festivals already booked in for the summer. Starting the year as they mean to go on, Sicaria Sound whipped up this session focused on the more energetic end of their sound. It’s mostly in the 140 ballpark, a lot of dubstep, some grime, and a good chunk of jungle near the end

Smokey Bubblin’ B w/ Daffy

Image via Instagram

It feels like just yesterday that Smokey Bubblin’ B debuted on Rinse, but apparently, it’s actually been two years. Joining him for the on-air celebrations was another hero of the new gen, Daffy, who chipped in a belting guest mix to toast the occasion. Between them, they whipped up two hours of garage, tech house, speed garage, bassline, a few breakbeats here and there, and a nice, jumpy garage flip of Dizzee’s “Stand Up Tall”.

Kobe JT

Image via Instagram

This time last week, Kobe JT was dropping off his brand new EP, the latest volume in Shall Not Fade sub-label The Time Is Now’s white label series, and judging by his latest Balamii show it looks as if 2022 could bring us just as many new releases as last year when he dropped something new pretty much every other month. Alongside those new and unreleased productions, which will hopefully see the light of day, look out for remixes and originals from Sully, Notion, Arfa and many more—he even chucks in a little speed garage.

Camberwell Jack B2B Badger

Camberwell Jack’s been working a mile a minute recently, making regular appearances on stations like Reprezent, Rinse, Kiss, and Flex, and in the past year or so he’s upped is YouTube game significantly. His latest live set sees him buddy up with Brighton-hailing, Bristol-based DJ and producer Badger for a one-and-a-half-hour session. Kicking off with a choppy remix of Missy’s “One Man Minute Man”, we zip through old school garage and NUKG, putting recent ones from Sammy Virji, Oppidan, Y U QT, MoreNight, MPH, and Badger himself up against reworked smoothies from Craig David, R.I.O, and Daniel Bedingfield—not to mention a fresh take on Teebone’s classic “Fly Bi” with MC Sparks and MC Kie.

Handsome Rob

Multi-genre DJing is thankfully more prevalent now than it probably ever has been, but Prestige Pak are probably one of the best at it. They’re always cohesive, but the sounds you’ll at any of their nights run the full spectrum of BPMs, with any and every genre and subgenre accounted for. This week, they connected with Keep Hush for a night of underground club music from just about every continent. This one from Handsome Rob sticks largely to garage and a bit of breakbeat, put he packs in plenty of surprises, including two very wheelable garage reworks at the end.

OK Williams w/ Kush Jones

Photography: Guarionex Rodriguez Jr.

Next week, February 25, OK Williams and Kush Jones will be hitting up fabric for Room 2 sets with Anz and Peach, while Client_03, DJ Assault, DJ Mell G, Simo Cell, and Two Shell occupy Room 1. Ahead of that, we got a little taster of what’s in store when Williams and Jones jumped on the deck for a special NTS set together. Heavy duty club workouts abound in this high intensity rollercoaster ride through house, techno, some jungle, a little bit of footwork, some more abstract joints and so, so, so much more besides.

Naina w/ Ayesha

Image via Instagram

It’s been a hectic year for Naina already. This month alone she’s been on the cover of Vogue India with the Daytimers crew, crammed in a bag of live shows (including an appearance at her Hooversound partner Sherelle’s Phonox residency), and launched a mix series on her Apple Music show. Somewhere between all of that she found time to drop in at Noods Radio for 60 minutes of big, weighty hardcore, jungle and rave to make your jaw ache. It’s Naina on deck for the first 40 and then for the final act she’s brought in NYC-based DJ and producer Ayesha who draws the show to a close with a genre-shredding mix of dancehall, breaks, techno, and club music with an emphasis on funk and grooves.

Posted on February 18, 2022