Welcome to the gabber revival.
Album art courtesy of the label.
Casual Gabberz is a Parisian collective of musicians leading the charge for a new, international gabber scene. Founded in 2013, the group releases hybrid club tracks that weave in gabber and rave, updating that screeching, no-fucks-given hardcore sound, as they put it in a press release, "for the internet age." In 2014, the collective also organized GABBER EXPO in Paris, the first international exhibition about gabber culture (and the only music conference I could see myself having a good time at). Similar to collectives like Gabber Eleganza in Italy, KUNQ in New York, and Wixapol SA in Poland, Casual Gabberz also throws their own gabber-fueled parties, inviting old-school hardcore DJs like Rotterdam Terror Corps and Bass D to play alongside newer-gen acts like Teki Latex, Krampf, and Feadz.
On February 17, Casual Gabberz is releasing a blockbuster compilation called Inutile de Fuir (the title, according to my shoddy knowledge of French, roughly translates to "It's Useless to Run Away"). Available as a double CD, free digital download (YAS!), and special boxset, these 40+ tracks also serve as Casual Gabberz' musical manifesto, showing off the hybrid new gabber sound that they've been incubating over the past four years. Artists like Kilbourne, Panteros666, Canblaster, and Voiron were tasked with creating original tracks inspired by "hard" genres like hardcore, gabber, doom, trance, hardstyle, and jumpstyle—and judging from the number of plays I've clocked up in the last few weeks, it bangs.
Below, we're premiering "Planet 50/50" by Club Cheval member Panteros666, who pairs trance's saccharine synths with pitched-up baby vocals straight out of a happy hardcore track and kick-in-your-face drums. He creates a jittery "post-hardstyle" club banger that wouldn't be out of place on a GHE20G0TH1K dancefloor.
"Panteros666 has been one of our first supporters and became through the years a great friend. He played at our parties many times and took us for a legendary trip to his hometown at the border of France and Belgium and brought us to a party at Le Cap'tain, a club where the gabber culture is still vibrant/vibing," the Casual Gabberz collective told THUMP in a statement.
As for Panteros666, he remarked, "Gabber is definitely something I want people to discover. The energy, pace and production technique is very refreshing. There are so many subgenres in gabber, the room for sonic and exploration is limitless. So here's one of my post hardstyle hybrids. The track has a quirky organic groove in a meta technological environment, it's my tribute to Manu Kenton, a hardstyle pioneer from my Euroregion. It goes up and down, grows dark and rises again, in that exhilarating hardstyle roller-coaster ride type of club structure." Check it out below.
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