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What Are The Best Drum And Bass Albums?

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What are the best drum and bass albums? A question that many internet forums & Reddit posts have strived to answer over the years. Our team have been brainstorming and we’ve done our best to compile a list of drum and bass albums that may well lay claim to being some of the genres all time greatest.

What Makes A Good D&B Album?

In order to select our best drum and bass albums we’ve laid down a set of criteria to help narrow down the choice.

For this selection we are focusing on artist albums, meaning that compilations are off the cards (maybe we’ll save that list for another day?)

Chase & Status fabric Live Stream
Chase & Status

Next up, it has to be a proper album, one that you can listen to & enjoy from start to finish. A good album should be a journey, showcasing an artists skill set as a music maker. There are a lot of albums that are just a collection of bangers, great for the club, but that’s not what we’re after today.

Finally we want to find those drum and bass albums that caught the zeitgeist of the time they were released, the ones that pushed boundaries, introduced new audiences to the genre & helped our scene grow. Many great D&B albums have been produced over the years, but we wanted to uncover the best of the best.

Netsky
Netsky

The Best Drum & Bass Albums

Now you know the method to our madness, let’s get into the nitty gritty of presenting you with our top 10 drum and bass albums of all time…

Goldie – Timeless

  • Label: FFRR
  • Year: 1995

Of course this album made it onto our list! Recently getting a celebratory 25 year remaster & re-release, ‘Timeless’ was Goldie’s first long player which launched the golden ones career onto the worldwide stage. ‘Timeless’ for many years was the bench for what a drum and bass album could / should be. A quarter of a century after its original release this album is living up to its name sounding as fresh today as it did on first listening back in 1995.


Roni Size & Reprazent – New Forms

  • Label: Talkin’ Loud
  • Year: 1997

‘New Forms’ picked up where ‘Timeless’ left off, pushing drum and bass to mass audiences without compromising the integrity of the sound. Reprazent were the first Drum & Bass supergroup, consisting of Roni Size, Krust, DJ Die & Suv, all of whom already had successful solo careers releasing on V Recordings & Full Cycle. ‘New Forms’ won both the prestigious Mercury Music Prize & a MOBO Award and saw Roni Size & Reprazent go on to tour the world.


4Hero – Two Pages

  • Label: Talkin’ Loud
  • Year: 1998
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A ground breaking drum and bass album from some true pioneers of the scene. Two Pages, the 3rd album from 4Hero has been described as “mature, palatable, and melodic”. Dego and Marc Mac were inspirations to some of the legends of our scene with their Reinforced Records label, in this album you can clearly hear their inspirations came from a previous generation of music makers such as Roy Ayers, Lonnie Liston-Smith & drummer Clyde Stubblefield.


Ed Rush & Optical – Wormhole

  • Label: Virus Recordings
  • Year: 1998

Following a run of groundbreaking releases on trend setting labels such as Prototype, V Recordings & Ram Records, Ed Rush & Optical unleashed their debut artist album ‘Wormhole’ on their own Virus label. Ed Rush & Optical’s sound on this album was swaying to the tech side of D&B, but what made it stand out was that is was funky as hell!


Grooverider – Mysteries Of Funk

  • Label: Sony
  • Year: 1998

Back in 1998 one of the originators of the drum and bass scene dropped this masterpiece of an album, for which he was awarded a coveted MOBO Award. As always Grooverider came with his own unique style giving ‘Mysteries Of Funk’ a unique flavour that has stood the test of time.


Pendulum – Hold Your Colour

  • Label: Breakbeat Kaos
  • Year: 2005

The huge debut album from Pendulum. The antipodean trio exploded onto the scene with ‘The Vault’, a track released on Doc Scott’s infamous 31 Records label. DJ Fresh & Adam F presented ‘Hold Your Colour’ on their Breakbeat Kaos imprint. Their epic intros & rock tinged take on Drum n Bass caught the attention of a whole new audience across the globe.


Netsky – Netsky

  • Label: Hospital Records
  • Year: 2010

When Belgian producer Netsky debuted his inaugural self titled drum and bass album on Hospital Records we knew he was going to be a big star! His smooth D&B style, peppered with some incredibly catchy riffs transferred well to the long player format & catapulted him into the sights of the wider music industry.


Dillinja – Cybotron

  • Label: FFRR
  • Year: 2001

Dillinja was a force of nature in the early jungle days. He pushed boundaries & had a phenomenal work rate. The ‘Cybotron’ album was highly anticipated and delivered what people wanted… Heavy weight bass, crisp breaks & those trademark haunting strings that you’d expect from Dillinja. While squarely aimed at the dance floor this album is still a very enjoyable listen from start to finish.


London Elektricity – Syncopated City

  • Label: Hospital Records
  • Year: 2008

This could be a controversial entry in this list as some may think LE’s earlier work is more iconic. By the time ‘Syncopated City’ came out London Elektricity already had a couple of good albums under his belt, but for us this feels like his most accomplished piece of work. The flow of ‘Syncopated City’ sounds so natural, the production is on point, there’s some incredible vocal arrangements on show & the album has such a powerful live feel to it. Play this to a drum & bass sceptic and they’re sure to come away with a new found appreciation of the genre.


Chase & Status – More Than Alot

  • Label: Ram Records
  • Year: 2008

This is the first album from Chase & Status and we love it! ‘More Than Alot’ is a snapshot of the energy of UK electronic music at the time, featuring the likes of Kano, Plan B & Takura. Tracks such as ‘Against All Odds’, ‘Take Me Away’ & ‘Eastern Jam’ let the world know just what Chase & Status were capable of and set them on a path to work with some world class artists!


Summary

We know we’ve missed out a lot of great drum and bass albums, but for us these are the creme de la creme! Notable exceptions we’ve not been able to shoehorn into this top 10 are from the artists such as Boymerang, Photek, Logistics, Jenna G, Matrix & Futurebound, Wilkinson, LTJ Bukem, Hugh Hardie, Krust, S.P.Y, and Urbandawn.

Ultimately of course this list is completely subjective and can only really be based on people’s individual tastes and preferences. Think we missed something? Let us know by tagging @welovethatbass on social media.

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