Elle Andrews & Jon K’s MAL imprint racks up a heavy cross-section of dancehall and downbeat-adjacent styles and patterns by friends and fam, clad in artwork by Yoshi Yubai of the legendary Re Search publications and featuring exclusive cuts from Equiknoxx’ Bobby Blackbird, Joe Cotch, Herron, DJ Ojo, Malvern Brume and more. First of two parts! ’Pressure’ is MAL’s rude resistance to an increasingly tense socio-political climate. Finding strength in collaboration, it organises a phalanx of contemporary club pioneers, programmers, dynamos and disruptors under a clarion call to dance away our worries. Shoulder-to-shoulder, Equiknoxx’s Bobby Blackbird does aerobic mystic dancehall beside the dread tang of London ringleader Joe Cotch, and Manchester g Herron squashes beatdown into acid dub squirm next to Malvern Brume’s haunted warehouse steppers, each intersecting a mutual, autonomous zone of interest oblivious to borders. Bobby Blackbird’s ‘Shanique is 5 Mins Away’ firmly roots the session in naturally mutant Jamaican disciplines key to the label, which delineates most explicitly between the darkside 2-step echo chamber ricochet of DJ Ojo’s ‘Grape Storming’ and Grischerr & Jules’ cranky heave in ‘Jettison’, and the more abstract dubwise suspension of ‘Night Ascent’ by Zaheer Gulamhusein (Xvarr/Waswaas) as The Sigil Oblique. Crudely distorted echoes of nyabinghi and talking drum rituals feature in Malvern Brume’s ‘Ebb’, a brilliantly unexpected follow-up to the supine grog of his ‘Body Traffic’ LP, while closer to the label’s spiritual home in Manchester, Herron keeps it strictly stripped on the brittle, dread acid dub of ‘Reducer’, and Greek/Manc hero Duster Valentine supplies the dadaist antidote to an intensifying hypernormality of logic with the sardonic vignette ‘Cloonies’ that keeps the session open-ended and all of us on tenterhooks for Vol.2.