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Artist
Low End Activist
ReleaseProduct
Hostile Utopia
Label
Sneaker Social Club
Catalogue Number
SNKRLP009
Release Date
June 17, 2022

Genres

Press Release

Casting a self-reflexive lens over his roots via the medium of crushing, future-rushing soundsystem sonics, Low End Activist returns to Sneaker Social Club with a full-length of monumental proportions.

When the Low End Activism 12” ignited on Sneaker in 2019, it paid tribute to the Blackbird Leys estate in Oxford, UK, where LEA originates from. In the shadow of social inequality and strengthened by the unity of the multi-ethnic community, Blackbird Leys still imposes a powerful influence on LEA’s work, even as he’s stepped out onto Seagrave for last year’s Game Theory album and notched up the first couple of releases on his own self-titled label.

On this new album, Hostile Utopia sums up the conflicting emotions attached to memories of home – how it’s possible to feel nostalgic for the griminess of urban and suburban Britain, its ordinary tales of bitterness and frustration, but also its intrinsic passion and solidarity. At a time when social division is actively engineered by Machiavellian forces, real conviviality at street level feels like an impossible dream.

LEA communicates these tensions through a style which is becoming his signature – dynamic bass torsion and chiseled, fractalised rhythms slugging around the 130 mark. It’s moody like a UK-themed record ought to be, but it’s not morose. There’s fierceness in every snap and rumble, as the legacies of hardcore, jungle, dubstep and grime pour into the casing prior to the gunpowder lighting.

On previous LEA releases, the MC roll call has pointed to some of the most vital voices touching the mic in the present day. Flowdan, Sikka Rymes and Trim all had something different to impart over the riddims, and now Hostile Utopia expands on that with the most extensive show of lyrical strength yet. Mez lights up the woozy, abstract grime swerve of ‘Mercenary’ in a musical style. Emz brings a ruthlessly sharp verbal steez to ‘GetGet’, Killa P gets busy toasting over ‘DFRNT STYLE’ and ‘Superhighway’ carries the dexterous hip-hop flow of Cadence Weapon.

In between those standout tracks, LEA expresses just as much in the production. Tracks brimming with stories to impart, laden with symbols masquerading as samples and draped in aural garb that firmly places Hostile Utopia in a place, a mood, that could only belong to the UK. It’s a hybrid sound just like the society it sprang from, and therein lies its power.

Digital Tracklist

  1. 1 Parity (Original Mix) Low End Activist 3:54 Buy

    Parity (Original Mix)

  2. 2 Hostile Utopia (Original Mix) Low End Activist 3:45 Buy

    Hostile Utopia (Original Mix)

  3. 3 Mercenary (Original Mix) Low End Activist feat. Mez 3:01 Buy

    Mercenary (Original Mix)

  4. 4 Sprint (Original Mix) Low End Activist 3:19 Buy

    Sprint (Original Mix)

  5. 5 Get Get (Original Mix) Low End Activist feat. Emz 4:01 Buy

    Get Get (Original Mix)

  6. 6 Exotic Possibilities (Original Mix) Low End Activist 4:51 Buy

    Exotic Possibilities (Original Mix)

  7. 7 Amphibious Centurions (Original Mix) Low End Activist 5:01 Buy

    Amphibious Centurions (Original Mix)

  8. 8 Signal To Noise (Tek Remix) Low End Activist 4:25 Buy

    Signal To Noise (Tek Remix)

  9. 9 DFRNT STYLE (Original Mix) Low End Activist feat. Killa P 2:57 Buy

    DFRNT STYLE (Original Mix)

  10. 10 Pseudopolis (Original Mix) Low End Activist 4:12 Buy

    Pseudopolis (Original Mix)

  11. 11 Superhighway (Original Mix) Low End Activist feat. Cadence Weapon 3:45 Buy

    Superhighway (Original Mix)

  12. 12 Cold (Original Mix) Low End Activist 5:07 Buy

    Cold (Original Mix)

  13. 13 Bodysnatchers (Original Mix) Low End Activist 4:33 Buy

    Bodysnatchers (Original Mix)

  14. 14 Afflicted (Original Mix) Low End Activist 4:35 Buy

    Afflicted (Original Mix)

  15. 15 Wild Roses (Original Mix) Low End Activist 2:05 Buy

    Wild Roses (Original Mix)

  • Hostile Utopia

Low End Activist

Sneaker Social Club

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