Asylum – Germinate EP Review (CRUNCH014)


Crunch Recordings continues their run of astounding releases with the next instalment, direct from the mind of Asylum. With Ben Verse, MC, producer and owner of the label pushing for more dance floor destroyers to follow suit, this EP fits firmly in the line of releases. Although they have been slightly slow moving on releases, the label seems to be taking the policy of choosing quality over quantity. Ben Verse and Asylum have been working closely together over the last half year. The pair showcased a variety of their tracks on Youngsta’s Rinse FM show 22/10/12, which would soon be syphoned out through this EP or Ben Verse’s album ‘The Maze’, which is forthcoming at some point in the near future.

With Asylum, previously under the duo alias of Vicious Circle, he has been within the dubstep and drum and bass industry for many years, perfecting his style and crafting some absolute gems along the way. Under Vicious Circle, they released ‘Not Afraid/Hibernation’, on Crunch Recordings as 013 in the series, which was instantly a heavy hitter. ‘Not Afraid’ delivered a snarling bass line, riddled with moving synth work, whereas ‘Hibernation’ was more for the easy-listening, yet maintained the rigorous bass and tight highs. Subsequently, Asylum also churned out his debut release on Uprise Audio; with ‘Blindfold/Salvage’, containing all the elements of his style, to attentively form two militant stompers. With that record under his belt, it was time to stride forward and unleash this vicious EP.

The EP kicks off with ‘Bodyburn’. This track carries such a funky rhythm, layering up the tribal drums precisely to coordinate with the vigorous bass line, driving through the bars. He uses perfectly placed organic synths, combined with the subtle high, and the recognizable ‘Bodies are burnin’ vocal sample to thread the entirety of the track together. This track radiates force, causing you to burst into movement.

The second track ‘Embryo’, was one that had previously been played out by Vicious Circle, but has been revamped and fully mastered, to provide such a harrowing atmosphere. The vocal sample, taken from the Alien film series; echoes throughout the intro, combined with extensive synths directing towards the drop. The drop unleashes mass energy, surging bass laced with clasping highs, and a sharp snare. I personally love the cave based SFX used, enforcing the echoing effect to give such an eerie edge to the track. The vast amount of aggressive samples bouncing off each other helps complete this momentous track.

‘Blue Dream’ is a masterpiece, engineered by both Asylum and Ben Verse. If I had to choose from any of these tracks as my personal favourite, it would have to be this one. It seeps violence throughout the entire drop, yet flips between a sitar filled intro and breakdown. Instant ferocity can be injected into any set, and this one will certainly draw for everyone’s scrunching bass face.

‘Germinate’ is the fourth and final track to be released on the plate. This definitely doesn’t let off, taking the tribal style, displaying Asylum’s ease to bounce between ultimate darkness and the more mesmerising, lighter form of production. Again, the use of the vocal sample is a great addition, to help bring the track towards the drop, and to deliver real depth. The light tribal drums, warping SFX and thumping bass are precisely interlinked by delicate tambourine like highs.

‘Turn The Page’
is the bonus track released alongside the EP. It’s a lovely little treat to have another track straight from Asylum’s hard drive that’s just as exceptional as all the others on the EP, and provides a perfect example of a tribal stomper. Without fail, he involves another brilliant voice sample, fortified with a clattering snare, relentless bass and maintains his style with his distinctive organic synths.

For everyone who is strictly vinyl, you’d be crazy if you didn’t go and purchase this EP. It contains four of the best crafted tracks to come out so far this year, and will provide you with various directions to continue your mix. For anyone digitally, for mixing purposes or just for listening, this is a bargain for the sheer quality this EP brings. Follow the links below, and be sure to hit up Ben Verse and Asylum on Facebook and Soundcloud.

The Trusik Blog Germinate EP Promo Mix – 


FACEBOOK –!/asylum82?fref=ts




FACEBOOK –!/crunchrecs?fref=ts


Vinyl –

Digital –


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