Contain Yourself



Sam L. Barker

July 3, 2022

Tracks in this feature

Tracks in this release

UK drum and bass artist THUGWIDOW takes the listener on a night tour round the dark corners of the UK on this atmospheric release

Music that brings you to a specific place and time is always something to be commended. It’s one thing for an album to succeed as a collection of songs from a moment in time, it’s another for an artist to craft its own little world for the listener to sink into. This element of electronic music, how enveloping and generative it is, is perhaps the genre’s secret weapon. Allowing it to craft ecosystems of sound for even the most budget of speakers.

THUGWIDOW’s Contain Yourself EP brings the listener to a moist UK night with its pressurised mix of drum & bass, dubstep and garage. Its tracks are considered and minimal in places, but they suck the listener into their depth. One can imagine clubs and pubs pulsing with activity under a grey sky with the synths pulsing as the track’s energy rises.Oppressively loud and always hectic, it is almost as if a retro, ‘90s camera pans slowly, capturing the entire scene.

Tracks alternate between the hot nervous twitch of the club to the cold warped air of the street. The rhythmic beats are tight and tinny, drums scattering and clattering incessantly. The bass wobbles and sprawls, wide and neon. Distorted vocal samples float above the listener’s ears giving an even more disorientating feeling, adding in flecks of unfamiliar melody. HomeTown is the album’s standout moment, with melodic pop vocals courtesy of Katon perfectly exemplifying this swoon through the haze.

The swish album artwork compliments the nostalgic feel of the music, with a crisp blue, white and red design calling to mind the CD era of the 90s and 00s. It’s an appropriate garb for a collection of tracks which balance their retro influence with fresh expression. The artist impresses on each track. THUGWIDOW has produced a quality soundtrack for a dark, hazy night walk.