Von D has been producing his modern take on 140 for over five years now. This is much longer than most still releasing in the genre regularly which shines through in his production quality. Positive Energy is his second full length album and is out now on Lutetia Dubz. Ever since I heard ‘Like A Bird’ years ago, I’ve been hooked on Von D’s style and this album does anything but disappoint.
‘The Land Of The Long White Cloud’ opens the album perfectly with a relaxed electro style hip hop beat, which sets the tone for the second tune, ‘Picture In Your Mind’. This combines Von D’s energetic synths with a really beautiful vocal from Riya. There is a distinct uniqueness to the way Von D makes dubstep and there always has been. His methods of morphing sounds to land perfectly between the angrier and the laid back relaxed styles from people like Quest and Silkie. Tunes on the album like ‘Try Me’, ‘Deeper’, ‘Kiss The Sun’, ‘Vibe’ and ‘Let It Go’ emphasise this point perfectly.
This album features some tunes I’ve been both waiting a long time for and others I didn’t know I was waiting for at all. ‘Show Me VIP’ is one of Von D’s most anticipated tunes. The original has been destroying dance floors for years and the VIP takes that original vibe, adds layers of jazzy sax and some slightly altered beat patterns and rebirths one of the classic dubstep tunes of the late 00’s. Another stand out highlight is the collaborations. ‘Fryst’ with Silkie really took me by surprise, bringing together Von D’s synth work and Silkie’s ability to inject pure jazz into a track makes this a musical highlight of the year.
Combining with another Deep Medi legend Mizz Beats, this album finally brings another highly anticipated track, ‘None Of Ur Business’, to the public domain. It’s been doing the rounds for the past year and its perfect match up of experimental synths and laid back organ style synths make it another huge highlight from the album.
Like many other 140 artists of late, Von D has explored some other genres in this release to break up the constant dubstep and add some variety. The title track ‘Positive Energy’ features a brilliantly catchy vocal from Javier Starks and jams comfortably at a hip hop tempo. The production quality on it is far from over shadowed by the spitting either; the two sit together perfectly. The final track explores a completely fresh style too. ‘Let Me Tell You’ is another vibe filled hip hop product from Von D featuring some really relaxing 80s style synth work and guitar work; its a pleasure to listen to in the sunny weather!
Overall this is a spectacular display of music from an artist I thought was relatively off the scene at the moment. As tunes such as ‘Like A Bird’ and other Argon Record’s classics have been dominating both my sets and casual listening in recent years, it’s a pleasure to know he still has the skills to bring both the music I know and love and new styles to the table. Hoping to see Von D out soon, so promoters hit him up!
Written By Michael Thomas