Nightrider / E-Sassin ‎– Nightrider / The Enemy

Sound Sphere Recordings ‎– SSR002
Vinyl, 12"

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A Nightrider Nightrider
Written-By, Producer – Nightrider
AA E-Sassin The Enemy
Written-By, Producer – E-Sassin




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November 27, 2006
edited over 12 years ago

Simply put, 'The Enemy' is the track that put the West Coast jungle scene on the map. E-sassin's masterpiece became such an anthem in California that it was hard to find drum & bass mixtape there in 1997 that didn't have 'The Enemy' on it (or 'Unofficial Ghost', or 'Peace, Love, & Unity'. Some of you know exactly what I'm talking about.)

Upon first hearing either side, one will notice that the drums are a little too quiet, especially on 'Nightrider' as they are uncompressed. But it becomes apparent that 'Nightrider' relies on multiple tracks of overdriven bass and synth more than the drums. 'The Enemy' doesn't suffer as much, as it layers amen breaks over a minimal techstep beat, providing a nice solid beat amidst chaotic flourishes.

'The Enemy' starts off with dark, moody strings that slowly crescendo until cutting out with the drums at the first breakdown. Here the sample "The light is the enemy, now lie with the darkness. There is nowhere to run, there is no ESCAPE!" repeats twice until the reece bass is suddenly overdriven and amen drums let loose. The intro is much like Ed Rush's 'The Raven' but with more distortion. Before long the bass begins to slowly shift and modulate as it does in 'Mutant Revisited' by DJ Trace.

Despite all the similarities to these and other popular records of the era, and despite how formulaic my description makes it sound, 'The Enemy' distinguishes itself by tweaking the more typical drum and bass samples just enough to sound fresh, and more importantly, to fit the dark/evil mood of the whole song. This makes it one of those rare techstep records that has a very 'organic' sound, instead of the usual cold and machine-like feel. It's accessible to almost anyone, even people who aren't into electronic music whatsoever.