Dutch producer Inova employs a slick range of sounds in “Cruelty” spanning darker, heavier music, and enervating, uplifting melodies. The EP as a whole continues the intriguing gravitas of Inova’s music, and while it sticks well within the confines of drum & bass and future house, it does it well.
The seven track EP is a pretty solid ride, sticking to generally fast BPMs throughout. There is a mood present that conveys something deep, heavy on the horizon of great importance. “Cruelty” shines in the varied ways it delivers this message and the subsequent feels.
Take the intro track named after the EP itself. Opening with beautiful violins and bells, it builds up an atmosphere of massive energy. The choral chanting adds to this as twinkling chords give way to a massive drop.
Echoing chants continue going into Brave accented by bursts of thunder and a very addictive hook and drop. My personal favorite, Burst, is full of high energy drops and streams of futuristic synths.
One of the most interesting cuts, Lift Me Up, breaks away from the sort of darker moods and sound and flips them upside down. This is the album’s bright and bouncy track, with a speedy drum & bass drop, soothing vocals and relaxing shamisen-sounding chords.
There are moments where the songs seem to blend. Both “Grime” and “Paradise” came off to me as a bit generic, with “Paradise” being the better of the two. “Cruelty” closes out with “Dedication” which gets back to a more dance centric space, but still with heavy atmosphere and some very nice vocal chops.
Cruelty is a great listen for fans of Inova and future house/bass music with some great “pump-up” tunes, that also feel worthwhile and moving.
Two legends, DROELOE and San Holo create a masterpiece with “Lines of the Broken (Ft. Cut_)
[Future Bass:] Lines of the Broken (Ft. Cut_) – DROELOE & San Holo
When San Holo & DROELOE, two major forces in their own right, together create something epic and magical. “Lines of the Broken” with vocal blessings from Cut_ perfectly balances the soft, dreamy vocals with powerful drops and bass, accented by starry twinkling plucking synths *chefs kiss.
Check out Inova’s “Disowned” a future house jam with haunting piano chords and synths.
[Future House:] Disowned – Inova
“disowned” by Inova comes in heavy with dark, subtle vibes that make the track almost seem haunting. A melodic piano chord accompanies hard synths and dark house overtones that lead up to the first drop. The vocalist conveys equally haunting moods singing:
When I’m standing near you I can’t get my words out like I fear you Being in your shadow, how you magnetise While you’re lighting fi-i-ire
Tchami’s remix of Justin Martin’s “Stay” is the old Tchami many of us fell in love with back in 2013.
Stay (feat. Dalilah) [Tchami Remix] – Justin Martin
It’s hard not to dance to this banger of a tune from Justin Martin, remixed by Tchami. “Stay” with vocal assistance from Dalilah, just as the lyrics explain, knows what we need. This song is everything we need. This is the Tchami that I fell in love with in 2013 after hearing classics like “Go Deep”, “Promesses” and his remix of French Montana’s “Shot Caller”.
The blurred lines between future house, big room and ambient chill-out music bring back memories that I thought were locked away in my mind from almost a decade ago. I feel happy to have them return and can’t help but smile when I listen to this tune.
Bassboy’s “Thru Your Mind” hits all the right notes, jazzy, snazzy and an all-around good time.
Thru Your Mind – Bassboy [New UK Garage:]
Just the pick me up I needed for today. Bassboy delivers with the smooth as butter, snappy upbeat “Thru Your Mind”. A simple vocal hook is spliced and diced to a snazzy bassline and four on the floor beat. The result is calming and effervescent, coming off with a vibe of house chic.
Easily danceable, “Thru Your Mind” hits all the right notes and more. Be sure to check out Bassboy’s recent live set from Meister Drop-Ins and Save the Night below.
Spellbreak gets its first major update, with “Prologue” releasing today to all major platforms.
Spellbreak Prologue: The Gathering Storm
Spellbreak, the wizard based battle royale is getting its first major update, “Prologue” which will introduce the long awaited 9v9 Clash Mode. The new mode with be an arena style team deathmatch mode of sorts, perfect for players who wish to escape the battle royale format and be guaranteed time to engage in battle without fear of death from more experienced players.
The update also introduces new skins, new potions and new talents to the talent tree, as well as a host of tweaks and fixes. You can read the full patch notes here. Chapters will bring about “missions” for players, which can be completed for bonus experience points.
The update is now live on all platforms.
Spellbreak is a free-to-play battle royale game featuring arcane wizardry for all major video game consoles. Spellbreak supports cross-play, cross-party and cross-progression.
Apex Legends introduces its newest LTM, Flashpoint, as well as the beta for cross-play functionality.
Apex Legends introduced its latest event, Aftermarket, on October 6th. This brought with it, several gameplay changes and buffs, a new Limited-Time Mode (LTM), new skins and long awaited cross-play functionality for the popular Battle Royale.
The new LTM, Flashpoint, is pretty enjoyable. Flashpoint changes up the game formula by removing healing items and shields, in favor of areas where health regeneration takes place. Due to data miners the LTM isn’t a complete surprise, that’s OK though, Flashpoint is fun and delivers precious new content Apex players have been deprived of since the start of Season 6.
Apex introduces the newest LTM, Flashpoint featuring healing zones
The flashpoint zones introduce an interesting dynamic as they are the only places you can heal, yet they also become hotspots because the same is true for your enemies. The final ring is visible while still on the dropship and the ring itself closes at the slowest rate we’ve ever seen it close. This allows for plenty of looting of death boxes and skirmishes on the edges of the ring. This new method of health restoration works well and (to me anyway) recalls memories of Call of Duty or Halo. Once inside a flashpoint zone, you heal as long as you’re not actively taking damage.
Crossplay is here to stay.
Respawn also introduced the cross-play beta to Apex Legends with the latest update and so far, aside from some server congestion, it has largely worked well. Apex Legends players on Playstation 4 and Xbox One will queue into the same lobbies. PC players are still separated unless they have a console player on their team. Pending Apex Legends’ release on Nintendo Switch and Steam, those platforms will be able to play with all other platforms, as well.
As celebrated as it is, and as much excitement as I felt loading into my first match and seeing Playstation 4 players, there’s not much else to say about it. Cross-play is one of those things that feels like every game should have it, but in 2020, it is still quite rare. One bright spot, it can’t be said that cross play has made a game more unsuccessful, so it’s nice to have and hopefully more games will soon follow suit.
Microsoft and Sony brethren, tonight we fight as one!
The second match I played in the update, I said something along the lines of “my XBOX and Playstation brethren unite!!” over the mic. A woman playing Octane briefly rejoiced after asking which console I was on “XBOX,” I stated. “Ooh, I’m on Playstation,” she chimed in. She then proceeded to tell me about how she had texted her nephew, who is on XBOX, to get online and add her as they could finally play together.
Who’s cutting onions? While, I don’t have heart-warming stories about cross-play to add yet, the mere fact situations like family and friends finally being able to play together are occurring puts a smile on my face. Even if you don’t have friends on other platforms to play with, cross-play in theory should reduce queue times for all players (except sadly, PC) and should put more even skill distribution into every match.
I can’t say I’ve noticed a huge difference, but my pubs (public) matches have seemed less sweaty. I see less Champion squads with Wraiths with 24,000 kills, and almost every game I get paired with at least one PS4 player of comparable skill. Ranked mode seems about the same, although I’ve been getting into matches much faster than usual.
These are all good signs of the much needed shake up Apex Legends needs as it heads into its final month before Season 7 releases this November.