Album Reviews

Subjective – The Start Of No Regret

(Three Six Zero/Sony) UK release date: 20 May 2022

Goldie takes a breezy trip through various avenues of electronic music with this real goodie bag of an album that’s focused, well-produced, and great fun

Subjective - The Start Of No Regret One of the interesting aspects of drum ’n’ bass pioneer Goldie is that, in a genre so dominated by gadgets and tech, he’s more of an ideas guy. Engineers have been on hand to convert his vision into tangible music, most famously Moving Shadow’s Rob Playford in the ’90s, and thus James Davidson fills this role today under the Subjective moniker. The Start Of No Regret is a breezy trip through various avenues of electronic music, a real goodie bag of an album.

Lost kicks things off with lush chords and mid-tempo breakbeat, rather like a more moody version of Way Out West’s The Gift, and Frida Touray’s soulful vocals take it to another level. Crazy brings irresistible house vibes, blending impassioned lyrics with a chunky syncopated bassline (“where are we now / in a world of crazy / maddening crowds / the walls are tumbling down”), while Dark is a clinking, thudding, ominous rap track with brilliant verses from Greentea Peng (it’s alright, all is forgiven).

The link between past and present becomes more obvious on the DNB tracks, particularly Sunlight which seems to sample a break from Goldie’s epic Timeless suite, layering jazzy piano chords over it for a novel effect. For fans of that earlier work Dollis Hill Rufige will also go down a treat, with woozy pitch-shifted pads and heavy wobbling bass hits, skittering rhythms and effects flying around the mix.

Breakout with LaMeduza is perhaps the catchiest song on the record, as rave piano stabs and a bloopy synths underscore irrepressibly chirpy lyrics about true love and the metaphorical sun coming out, a perfect vibe for the brighter days ahead. Though Goldie has frequently been prone to indulgence, The Start Of No Regret does not have any of those symptoms – it’s focused, well-produced, and great fun.

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Subjective – The Start Of No Regret