Zeds Dead's Ultra Music Release The Living Dead Highlights Omar LinX's Rhymes and the Duo's Mastery of Their Craft

Zeds Dead's Ultra Music Release The Living Dead Highlights Omar LinX's Rhymes and the Duo's Mastery of Their Craft
Daniel De Las Casas

Canadian dubstep duo Zeds Dead played a noticeably well-attended and rapturously received show at Revolution a couple of weeks ago. It was part of an epic 70 date tour of North America to support their new release The Living Dead EP on Ultra Music. The production team of DC and Hooks first came to public attention a couple of years ago, following the word-of-mouth buzz generated by their first official single, the Diplo-endorsed track "Rude Boy." Constructed around a deep stuttering bass drop and natural hip-hop swagger, it's the sort of highly recognizable live track that has become a staple at EDM events around the country.

They have gone on to release notable tracks on Mad Decent, Dim Mak, San

City High, and Basshead, while steadily developing their profile with continual touring. If nothing else, the Revolution show

illustrated they have reached a certain level of live popularity. And

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while not quite yet within the same profile strata of dubstep

big-hitters such as Skrillex, Borgore, or Flux Pavilion, with

appearances at Lollapalooza, Shambhala, and Electric Zoo this summer one

senses that 2012 seems destined by be a watershed year for the duo.

The four-track EP features the vocal contribution of frequent

collaborator Omar LinX. The Toronto-based rapper now

tours with the duo and this release seems to cement his intrinsic role

within Zeds Dead. Opening track "Crank" illustrates immediately the

sense of genuine personality he brings to the music, opening with the immortal lines,

"I feel like King Kong, snorting cocaine, can't fuck with me, this is

foreplay..." Within the studio driven world of EDM, his distinctive

idiosyncrasies seem both rare and refreshing and provide an ideal foil

for the high-pitched synth bass drops that dominate the track.

 

"Take A Chance" further extends this with his prominently featured rhymes.The somewhat hip-hop track starts hypnotically with LinX's verses tightly

ingrained within the tech-infused rhythm. It's an intensely focused cut,

constructed around dark atmospherics and building into glazed twisted

psychedelic synth drops that are reminiscent of British purple dubstep

pioneer Joker. The EP title-track follows. It feels far more

structurally defined. The track moves between a bass heavy

electro-house workout, intense deep house, and moody hip-hop rhymes

within distinct sections.

Finally, "Cowboy" opens with bucolic strummed guitars and Omar LinX's

most melodic rhymes yet. The rootsy vibe feels like a complete

departure, until a subtle electro rise reaches the familiar epic

sounding bass drops. Integrating intense bass, rock-tinged harmonies, and

hip-hop verse feels somewhat new and it's the sense of production

expertise and control that ensures it all coalesces. This is very

much how the release and perhaps Zeds Dead themselves feel as an

artistic entity -- it may only be just over 18 minutes of music, but such

is the composed sonic mastery and dedicated efficiency, it rarely feels

like there's a second wasted.




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