Friday, 4 April 2014

D'Cruze - Lonely

D'Cruze - Lonely (Suburban Base, 1994)

Here's the second part of our feature on Suburban Base classics: part one is here if you missed it. You can also read my break down of DJ Hype's 'Dreams' over at DnB Blog.

Although D'Cruze's 'Lonely' came out the same year as The Dream Team's 'Stamina' it couldn't be further away from that track's exuberance. It was also quite a departure for D'Cruze who'd previously produced energy packed hardcore and dark jungle tunes such as 'Bass Go Boom' and 'Watch Out'. 'Lonely' is based around a vocal sample from Regina Belle's 'Good Lovin', a track that was also sampled on DJ Taktix's 'The Way VIP':

"I could never never be lonely."

While the Regina Belle tune is heartfelt and tender, here by isolating one line and slowing it down D'Cruze imbues the vocal with a feeling of heartache and loss. The sombre mood is enhanced by forlorn strings and keys along with 808 kick drum hits that rise and fall from deep bass to ear piercing treble. The track is completed by the introduction of a subtle, moody bassline and sublime rolling breakbeats, while the vocals and strings come and go throughout. During an interview with Martin Clark back in 2006 none other than Burial named the track as one of his favourites, commenting:

"I'm not a big r&b fan but I love the way my favourite jungle and UK garage records use samples. Instead of having a girl sing all the way through, they just used one line and kept on circling it around. I love the way whatever it said in the vocal – that’s the name of the tune. Chuck them on some drums: that’s the sound I love, the sound I hear on pirate radio."

The mournful sound, rolling breaks and treatment of vocals on 'Lonely' are a clear influence on Burial's haunting productions. Tracks such as 'Distant Lights' and 'Archangel' connect the present with an era that although passed still resonates with many people, lending them an increased emotional impact and providing further evidence, if it was ever needed, for the theory of the hardcore continuum.

'Lonely' is available to download from iTunes and Juno. It also appears on the superb Suburban Base: A History Of Hardcore, Jungle, Drum & Bass 1991-1997 compilation which has just been awarded 9/10 by DJ Mag.

Discogs link