Gqom and UK funky combine into vital beat science.
The Link Up is, above all, about the drums. But what those rhythms are, and what they reference, varies greatly. Gqom hangs heavily over "Three Tribes," where a haunted bassline drunkenly staggers in and out. Razzler Man is a live percussionist by trade, but rarely does a drum track feel so dense, the battling drum lines so intricately knotted that it's hard to tell where one ends and the other begins. The percussive assault is softened slightly on "12HRS," where a detuned loop patiently moves across the swing of the drums, melodic and sexy enough that it wouldn't sound out of place in a Black Coffee set.
The B-side is equally exciting. "Bullet Rice" is UK funky filtered through kuduro with a little spattering of grime in the icy drips of synth. Stuttering snare rolls and a hiccuping vocal sample give "The Problem" the toughest swagger on the record. In some respects, these tracks are sparse: drums, a bit of bass and the occasional melody. But these three producers are able to contort these building blocks into otherworldly shapes, all while wringing them dry of every ounce of sub-bass they've got.