That one signature release that catapults an artist to the next stage of their career.
Ask any of the greats, they all have one. The release that changed the trajectory of their career.
For UK Bass enthusiasts, Sammy Virji is already a known, and beloved, commodity. You get the impression from listening to Spice Up My Life, his debut LP, that this will be the record that takes him to that next level.
Sammy Virji first caught the attention with the Chips N Gravy EP – a bouncy bassline offering. The next four years saw him drop the coverted R.I.P EP, Find My Way Home, Never Let You Go, Shapes, Show Me (VIP), Whippet and Shakira Shakira.
As news broke that Sammy Virji was about to release his first LP project there was a sense of intrigue as to what direction he will go. Will we see more of the same, heavyweight Bassline and skippy Garage riddims or something with more of a crossover appeal?
We got neither. We got something better.
What Sammy Virji demonstrates in Spice Up My Life is true versatility. The LP includes an array of different sounds from the UKG spectrum. In this 13-track release there’s something for all types of UKG lovers.
Spice Up My Life features the impressive Paige Eliza on vocals, evoking 2-step vibes. The more ‘traditional’ sounding records compliment the title track: Forever, Time Travel, Curiosity, Somebody Else and Until Tomorrow.
In contrast, Basic, Call His Name and Be Careful – featuring producer-to-watch Hans Glader – bring the House N Garage flavours. The records bring the 95′ sound into 2020.
Dance Flaw and The Streets are more aggressive, raw Bassline riddims – two tracks with a sound more synonymous with Sammy Virji’s early releases. Elephant is a Funky and Bassline hybrid which would tear up any rave. Oh raving, how we miss you.
One of the biggest take-aways from Spice Up My Life? How Sammy Virji’s music can cater to a wide universal crowd. It’s no surprise he was DJ’ing around the world before COVID-19 hit.
The tracks wouldn’t be out of place on an Annie Mac Radio 1 show or Madam X NTS mix. You can see these riddims being dropped at the likes of Creamfields to Notting Hill Carnival, Sonar to Coachella.
For the most part, it could be a while until we find out the true impact of Spice Up My Life.
Nonetheless, there’s one thing that is guaranteed – Spice Up My Life is the release that will make everyone wake up to brilliance that his Sammy Virji.
Spice Up Your Life is out now and available to buy here.
Label Manager, Radio producer and playlist specialist, David Akosim has worn many hats in his music career. He spent 4 years at Radio 1 and 1Xtra pushing underground club music, working with the likes of Logan Sama, Sian Anderson, Deadmau5 and TQD. In addition David was part of the 1Xtra playlist team curating the daytime sound of the station. As manager of his own label, Resonate Sounds, David is at the forefront of pushing new innovative bass music in the U.K