Chicago electronic maestro DJ Rashad has built his reputation on being a pioneering figure in the footwork scene, along with frequent collaborator and pal, DJ Spinn. Last years record TEKLIFE Vol 1: Welcome To The Chi was widely praised, and there never seemed to be any doubt that a follow-up would shortly surface – and, now on UK label Hyperdub, it has, in the form of Rollin', a short-but-sweet EP showcasing the conventions of the genre with flair and attention to detail. It may only be four tracks, but the mini-release is muscular and a good introduction for the uninitiated.

Footwork is characterised by rapid, caffeine-overdose beats (usually around the 160bpm mark), slashed samples and powerdrill bass – it's not a meek genre, nor a particularly subtle one, and the main reason behind the music is to provide a backing for a subgenre of modern breakdance, also called footwork, for what should be pretty obvious reasons. The style has crossed into the semi-mainstream, permeating overseas airwaves and clubs across Europe. DJ Rashad has made his name honing the genre, ironing out the kinks and generally spearheading innovation within the movement alongside some other contemporaries like the aforementions DJ Spinn.

This EP is filled with excellence, and although footwork is notorious for its pace and relentlessness, there are plenty of moments on Rollin' where you can find solace and breathing room. The Rashad/Spinn collaboration 'Broken Hearts' nurtures 90s hip-hop synths and wildly mutated samples, lending the cut a pop sheen for the ¾ 808s to pulse underneath. Though the rhythm is at times intense, it's plenty smooth enough, and there's no sensation of pummelling. 'Let Go' on the other hand, with its overt nods to jungle, wields a brutal pace. Those with headaches may want to leave the room. Trancey synths ebb in the background as percussive mayhem reigns absolute, polyrhythms weaving between each other in a hypnotic, precise strike.

This is a solid EP from one of the genres most prolific stars, something of a 'beginners guide' to footwork, demonstrating the most vital elements. That's not to say it doesn't inject originality though – there are times where the rhythms are more lethargic, the beat drops far slower, and jungle references linger. While it has the hallmarks of footwork, Rashad provides variation on the theme. The minor gripes lay within the presentation of the music: it comes across as quite understated at times when he just needs to explode, and occasionally some of the tinnier synths are fatiguing on the ears. It's just a little rough around the edges, which some people may even find alluring. DJ Rashad evidently has many tricks up his sleeve and ideas stashed away, so hopefully we can expect more in the not too distant future.