The Best Beat Tapes on Bandcamp: February 2018
best beat tapes
There’s an astounding number of beat tapes available on Bandcamp, each one vastly different from the next. No matter the project, one thing is clear: there’s a thriving community of like-minded artists and listeners on this site, an insatiable crowd of people moved by the rhythms of beat-centric compilations.
Of course, sorting through the deluge of tapes can seem like a near-Sisyphean endeavor. This column, the aptly titled “Best Beat Tapes on Bandcamp,” is an attempt to assuage those anxieties and highlight the best releases from each month.
To that end, the definition of “beat tape” is especially broad. Releases comprised of disparate albeit exemplary beats receive the same attention as those releases that hew closer to a cohesive album. Additionally, this column does not privilege one style or sound over another. Beats comprised of drum breaks and samples from dust-kissed vinyl sit next to those that incorporate elements from electronic music and everywhere else. Without further adieu, here’s the first roundup of Bandcamp’s essential beat tapes. Scroll, listen, read, and nod your head.
One’s Hidden Agony [URBNET]
Tokyo’s EYTREG (8-reg) is clearly a devoted soul and R&B scholar. On One’s Hidden Agony, he effortlessly incorporates the vocals of one heartsick ballad after another into his bouncing yet tender beats. On “eex,” for example, he samples both Toni Braxton and Bryson Tiller, chopping the vocals of the latter until they practically become percussive. Elsewhere, EYTREG pulls from genres as disparate as samba (see “aprilfll,” which flips a well-known Pharcyde sample) and rap (“tha drgn”). While EYTREG’s beats are firmly rooted in hip-hop, the poignant closing track “ralfca” affirms that his greatest strength lies in compressing as much emotion as possible into a few infectious bars.-Max Bell
Teppei Sano, or EYTREG (8-reg), as he is better known by in the music world, is a Japanese beat maker, born and raised in Niigata, Japan. He currently resides in Toyko, and has actively been releasing music since 2015, including a 28-track retrospective compilation with Inner Ocean Records, and as part of Fuzzy Scope’s “Earwax Shelf Life” project. EYTREG’s music is an extraction of jazz, soul, RnB, and trap music, with inspiration and cues from legendary hip-hop predecessors. His unique method of restructuring these genres and sounds results in the innovative creation of something that is his very own.
EYTREG’s latest full-length record, One’s Hidden Agony, is set for release on February 16th, 2018, via URBNET. The album features 20 tracks and is available for pre-order through the URBNET shop, in digital format and as a limited-edition cassette.
released February 16, 2018
Artwork design by Vasilis Lolos