DBA1002, 04/12/2020

Don’t Be Afraid return with the second chapter in a double compilation celebrating ten years at the cutting edge of electronic music in the UK and beyond. Following contributions from rRoxymore, Karen Gwyer and Mr. Beatnick, DBA 10.02 delves deeper still into a fertile underground, furthering connecting the sense of musical curiosity and willingness to experiment that’s been implicit in DBA’s namesake for over a decade.

Underscoring the label’s overarching reverence to the city of Detroit, the compilation opens with a cut from Scott Ferguson, one of the Motor City’s unsung heroes and founder of Ferrispark Records. The raw and self-explanatory ‘This Is What I Love To Do’ provides a sentiment that could apply to any of the artists featuring on DBA 10.02, continuing with the analogue funk of Raven Cru’s ‘Saffron Bun’ and a return to the label for recent signing The Room Below, who’s ‘Bassika’ is a masterclass in warm, swinging percussion.

Needing little introduction, one of the UK scene’s original soundboys Mr. G comes on strong with the celebratory, steppin’ release of ‘Birthday Jam’. DBA’s founding father Semtek meanwhile links with Bristol’s own Jay L for the suitably wavy ‘Drunken Style’, before Chilean-born Detroit producer Pablo R. Ruiz speaks with a different energy on ‘ El Sol Se Acerca’, connecting his punk and electronic backgrounds with raw ease.

This DIY spirit continues on Halvtrak’s lucid and off-kilter deep house transmission from post-industrial Finland, ‘For U’, and a fresh cut from DBA favourite Wheelman, ‘Nighshift’, a simmering dose of fluid, nocturnal electro. Founder of cult London party ‘atone’, Hollie introduces her own productions and an already distinct groove with ‘In Limbo’, a playful spiral of minimalist electronics.

One of the more recent introductions to the DBA community, Minos returns with ‘Laminar Flow’, a brooding, nocturnal track driven by the most subdued jack. Semtek returns to polish off DBA 10.02 alongside iona, collaborating as Midnight Snacc on ‘Snacc Attacc’, a lethargic yet lively trip of tough drums and piano stabs, the concluding sound of a decade’s worth of dancefloors fed back through a dream.


1 Scott Ferguson – This Is What I Love To Do

2 Raven Cru – Saffron Bun

3 The Room Below – Bassika

4 Mr. G – Birthday Jam

5 Jay L & Semtek – Drunken Style

6 Pablo R. Ruiz – El Sol Se Acerca

7 Halvtrak – For U

8 Minos – Laminar Flow

9 Wheelman – Nightshift

10 Hollie – In Limbo

11 Midnight Snacc – Snacc Attacc