Archive for the ‘Interview’ Category

Dub FX Interview July 2017

LISTENING web

We caught up with Dub FX on the release of his new track ‘Listening’ and he kindly took the time to talk about music and life, read on….

‘Listening’ Buy Link: http://apple.co/2sRrKg7

Tell us a bit about yourself.

I’m obsessed with music. I write produce and perform my music live by myself or with other musicians. I started this project as a street performer. I lived in a van for six years and built up my following from selling cd’s in the street and via social media.

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How would you describe your production style?

I try to create soulful, conscious, nostalgic music in the most original way I know how.

Are there any major influencers production wise that inspire you?
These days I listen to a lot of Dub, Reggae, Drum n Bass, Jungle, Garage, Neo Soul, Cuban Jazz, Bossa Nova… Anything soulful and groovy. But back in the day I also listened to heavier music like Rage Against the Machine or Tool etc… When I record my studio albums I try to make music that sounds good on hifi or in cars not necessarily for djs to play in a club.. But when I play live, I’m usually having to compete with djs so I go for a heavier sound.

So before we hit play on this new forthcoming release of yours Listening on CONVOY UNLTD / Membran, can you tell us a bit about the inspiration behind it?

I’ve recently discovered a lot about my privilege as a white male being born in Australia which is such a rich country. I realised that I had woken up one day and decided I wanted to make music my career and I didn’t have much stopping me from doing that. Except for myself of course. But all the music that inspired me was created by people who suffered to create that art.. Especially reggae and Cuban jazz.. Or any type of black music really.. So this song is my way of showing respect and love for reggae music and how it affected the way I view the world. 

When would you say was your breakout moment? When heads turned to your music?

I had been playing in a lot of different bands from the age of 17 to 23 around my hometown Melbourne. I didn’t seem to turn many heads in that time but I did cut my teeth on a lot of different genres such as hip hop, metal, reggae, jazz, acoustic and electronic music. As soon as I left Australia and started street performing around the streets of Europe I blended all those different genres together and heads started turning pretty much instantly.. 

Of all the tunes you’ve made, which is your favourite?
Each song represents a small part of who I am so I don’t have a favorite.

If you could work on a track with anyone from now or way back when, who would it be?
Bob Marley, Frank sinatra, Nina Simone, Herbie Hancock, Erykah Badu, Anderson Paak, Damian Marley… The list doesn’t really end…

Tell us about any other music related stuff you’re involved in.

I’ve just finished working on 8 tunes with my incredibly talented wife Sahida Apsara. I’m so proud of these new tunes. I would go as far as saying this is probably the best music I’ve ever made. I love producing other people. Also I’m currently on tour in Europe. 

Which events from over the years in your illustrious career really stick in your mind and why?

I’ve been to over 45 countries and I play about 30 festivals per year.. So It’s much easier to remember the dull moments which are so far and few between.

Are there any unfulfilled goals or aspirations of you musically?

I just want to keep learning how to produce music live and in the studio. I want to start writing literature also.

Could you offer a bit of advice for an up and coming producer?

My advice would be to listen to as much music as possible and work out what it is about that music that you love and hate.. Read as many forums and magazines about production and challenge yourself when making music.. Try and do as many genres as you can.. That’s the only way you will find your own sound.

Any final words and shout outs?

Shout out to my beautiful wife Sahida Apsara and our little princess Sahara.. And to my homie and manager Cade aka killafaux aka plan C aka deadly every day…

Interview with the legendary RatPack

Interview with the legendary RatPack

Buy RatPack – The (co)LabRats LP: http://apple.co/2ti0Axi

It’s an honour to be able to interview rave legends, The Ratpack. We chat about the history of The Ratpack, their current LP and more below….

1.Perhaps an obvious question or indeed one you guys will have been asked before but how did you get into the early rave scene?

I’m going to be cheeky on this one and tell you to click the link: www.ratpackmusic.net/biog

2.Where did you first DJ’ing and MC’ing?

We both started with a sound system call Locomotion Sound System back in the early 80’s. But our first set as a team in the rave scene was at our own Trip City parties back in 88/89

3.This new album is packed with collabs that will make old ravers get misty eyed, how did this all come together? Was it an easy process to link up with everyone involved?

It just made sense really. We’re all friends and everyone on the album has their own diverse sound to bring to the album as well as the massive contributions they made to the UK rave scene. When you bring a huge line up of legends together like this, you know it’s great for the whole scene.

4.’Rave Music’ was on a meteoric rise back in 1992 and has ultimately survived albeit in a more niche fashion, what in your opinion killed it off? Did it get too fast and inaccessible to the masses? Or was it a case of being way ahead of it’s time?

It (Rave Music) was always ahead of its time as you can hear in the influence of many big tunes in the charts these days, it has never been killed off in my opinion, people still love to listen to the music and all of the hybrids that were born from it. The main difference these days is that people have a much broader spectrum of music to pull from with such easy access today, so they may not listen to the same style of music every day. But out in the clubs and festivals all around the world, it’s pretty obvious that Rave Music is still here and will be for years to come.

5.When you’re not rockin’ the crowds, what do you guys like to chill with? Bit of Game Of Thrones? Some X Box?

I love my music sooo much that when I get time to chill I’ll probably be on my keyboard playing (or learning) something classical or a legendary tune from the past. I do watch G.O.T and Power and Narcos but they finish too quickly, so I have to keep occupied for the rest of the year haha!

6.There is something of a surge in oldskool interest, you guys have a new album, Liquid just did one, Bunter & Sanxion did one, Vibes is working on a subscription-based one-off LP a la DJ Ham/Hamilton and Kniteforce is back putting out amazing content. Can this rise be sustained and if so, how?

Like I said, it never went away in my opinion. If there wasn’t a demand for it, we all wouldn’t be making it. Can you imagine if the whole Oldskool sound ceased to exist? …….No? Me neither.

7.’CoLab Rats’ is very much a multi-genre LP in the spirit of the original early 90s scene, was this an intentional thing on your part?

No, nothing was planned, it was all totally organic and spontaneous, every time we got into the studio with another artist.

8.What’s next after ‘CoLab Rats?’

Maybe more collabs, who knows. There’s also a few interviews and small movies we’re doing for TV about the Rave scene, so stay posted for that too.

9.Any final shouts and/or words of advice to the newbies?

To all the up and comings: Just love what you do and do what you love. Always remember, It’s nice to be important but it’s Important to be nice. Aaaaaannnnd, if you haven’t got haters on your back then you’re not worth talking about so don’t let those mofos get you down, jab back and fight for what you believe in.

Big up to Dan and Lewis and ALL the crew at CygnusMusic.net for all the help and advise. Big up to Andre Jacobs (D-Zone) for cracking our heads together and making us do this album. Big Big Big up Freestylers, Wideboys, Baby D, Slipmatt, Ragga Twins, King Yoof, Billy Daniel Bunter, Shut Up And Dance, Stephanie Smart, 2Hype & Secret Agent, 28Hurtz, Skibabdee and Lady Chann, Papa G, Chewey Beats and The Sound Collective for their influence over the years and their massive contribution to this album. Big up OnTheRise for the promo work, Big up Free Breaks for this interview. But the biggest of all big ups has to be to each and everyone of you who has supported us over the years. Without you guys we a nothing!! Stay Blessed!!

Johnnypluse & The Storm Troopers of love interview.

Johnnypluse & The Storm Troopers of love interview.

Buy The New LP

Soooo, we’re chattin’ with Johnnypluse & The Storm Troopers of love and lovin’ their new album, listen and read on below…

Whats your name and where are you from?

Johnny Pluse & The Stormtroopers of Love from Meath, Ireland
Whats the name of your album? Whens it released and where can people buy it from?
Album; Dos Tonas, out now and available from iTunes, Juno Download, Deezer & Spotify
Whats the best food to eat in the studio?

Ham, Cheese & Chilli Jam sandwich. Savage
If you were a food, what would it be and why?

Pineapple, sweet tasty and painful when thrown
Do you think big name DJ’s take themselves to seriously? (David Guetta, Tiesto etc..)

Ah, were serious about having the best time we can but it can be hard so maybe a little.
If you could have 1 super power what would it be?

Lasers! Definitely Lasers.
Whens the last time you did a handstand?

Intentionally? Naked? 3 days ago.
Back to music. Who are your biggest musical influences and why?

For ethos, it’s gotta be punk. DIY scene getting nasty and enjoying ourselves. Make music like e don’t give a f*ck
If you could work with any artist dead or alive who would be be and why?

Johnny Rotten? Punk icon who jammed with Leftfield.
If one of you had to arm wrestle Sylvester Stalone to win your freedom, which one of you would stand the best chance and why?

Mmmm, Pluse by a mile. Sly would be charmed into submission.
Ok, back to music again, whats your studio process like? Do you all work together in one room or do you email the music to each other?

It all starts with Johnnys idea, beats first and then into the heavy stuff. Normally we meet in the studio, were lucky to live real close so it’s easy. Johnny has the studio setup for adding drums, vocals and keys.
Which one is better? Star wars or Star trek and why?

As Stormtroopers of Love, gotta be Wars.
Can you tell us a crazy story about a show you have played?

Hahaha, suppose one of our shows at Bennicassim 2015. Last night of the festival and we’re over with the guys from Trenchtown. The heat was killer but we were having great fun. Were on about 2am and blasting it out. Boss man for the place comes towards us midset, all our hands are full so he’s pouring a bottle of Malibu into our mouths. Fills us up and heads off.
Finally, why should everyone go out and buy your album?

Well, if you want to hear some cracking but different tunes and party, buy the album

Glowkid Unity In The Sun special

Glowkid Unity In The Sun

Our good friend Glowkid shares exclusive interviews with Billy ‘Daniel Bunter’, Ratpack, DJ Vibes & Fat Controller recorded at ‘Unity In The Sun’, Corfu, 2017

Interview With Alex Doorman + New Track ‘Spirits Of The Past’

Axel Doorman

Axel Doorman has a new track out on Jula Music, you can buy/listen via the Traxsource link below and while you’re there, why not read this short interview with Axel

Hi Axel

1. Can you take us through a VERY brief history of your music production work?

The briefest I can do is telling I’ve been producing music since 1997. Had a “couple” of releases since then and never lost my love for it.

2. When musical inspiration is needed, where and to whom, do you turn?

I think it’s not about whom or where. It’s about how I feel at the moment. Music is the purest reflection of my soul and a way of expressing myself. So, the music I create is often a reflection on what my mood is at that moment

3. If you could work with any producer at the moment, who do you think you would pick?

There are a couple of people I would love to work with, but one in particular and that would be Timbaland. It’s far from the music people know I’m doing, but there is a lot of magic in every track he produced!

4. If you could categorise or pigeonhole your sound, what would it be?

In two words: House Music.

5. You’ve been dropped onto a desert island and you’re allowed to take 3 vinyl records and a turntable with you. Which do you pick and why?

“Coldplay – Parachutes” – It’s my ultimate “relax, everything will be fine!” soundtrack.

“The Prodigy – Music For The Jilted Generation” – Because nothing motivates being pumped up more than this

“2 Many DJ’s – As Heard On Radio Soulwax (if part 1 is on vinyl it is) – To what else I need to sip my coconut cocktails on?

6. How do you feel about this business we call music at the moment?

I feel good about it, because there is a lot happening. Not only Musically speaking, but also on the sidelines. There’s a lot happening on making it fairer to the lesser established artists again. That is a motivator!

7. So you’ve signed to Mark Zowie’s JULA imprint, how so?

I’ve been in contact with Mark, the head honcho, for a while and like his “out of the box” approach on music. No specific genre, just music that has that certain factor of beauty and niceness. I loved the music released on the label and kept following the releases. When he asked me to remix his track “Need Your Love”, things got on the roll. A few months later, I sent him “Spirits Of The Past” and it was an instant match.

8. What is your must have piece of studio equipment and why?

I’m fortunate to have my dream piece: The original Roland Alpha Juno 1, owned- and used by Human Resource for the track “Dominator”. As a kid already I was fascinated by the world famous hoover sounds. A couple of years back I got it and it will NEVER leave!!

9. Any Live performance commitments or DJing to note coming up?

Unfortunately not. As I’m not the greatest in selling myself to the promoters is probably my weakest point. Still, I hope that one day I just get noticed by what I do if it comes to DJ’ing. Just as producing music, playing it is a huge passion.

10. What do you see the future holding for Axel Doorman?

The future is always a great question to think about. My greatest wish, as for many, is to make a full living out of the thing I love to do most of all. I’m not that much of a dreamer anymore but still, I’m driven to make that wish come true.

DJ Vapour Interview + New ‘Beatopia LP’

DJ Vapour-Beatopia LP

We spoke to DJ Vapour on the eve of his upcoming ‘Beatopia LP’. We talked a bit of DnB and a bit about ‘The Donald’ Pre-order Vapours new LP below and continue on to read the interview

https://36hertz.bandcamp.com/album/beatopia

We’re catching up with as you release your 2nd LP, tell us a bit about the sleepless nights, fits of studio rage and most importantly the mindset that went into this LP

Well, I’m a bit past having sleepless nights and studio rage these days I leave all that to Indigo Virus as he has enough studio rage for everyone on the label put together lol. The mindset for the LP was from building the new studio – I have always run an analogue studio but a few years back I switched over to a computer based set up, after 8 months I was not happy with it so I started planning and building my dream set up. It took well over a year to put it together and another 10 months just to get my head around it all and get my sound how I wanted it. Once I was happy with what I was making the LP idea slowly started coming together, It took another 14 months of making tons of music to get the LP finished as it was a case of make a track and put it on the pile then some would stay and some would go eventually the LP project was complete and here we are.

Let’s dive straight in and talk about some of the tracks from the new LP. On your facebook page, you recently posted clips of ‘Bubbles’, ‘Give It To Me’ and ‘Eats shoots and leaves’ among others. Are these or any others personal faves from the LP and if so, what is it you enjoyed about putting them together?

We got promo videos made for each of the tracks from the LP which I have got set up to post 1 a day on the run up to the LP on social media to help promote it so they will all be going up on the lead up to the LP release, I’m very happy with the whole project as I feel its the best work I have done as a producer over the past 16 years. My personal favourite track from the LP has to be “Earthquake” though as it’s something that has a sound to it that I’m really happy with as a producer as the mixdown works so nicely in my opinion. I have been playing that one on our fortnightly 36 Hertz radio show on Kool London pretty much every show since I made it and I’m still not bored of it yet. As far as putting the package together goes I wanted to make sure that only my very best material went on there so it’s been good fun really pushing some ideas and working as hard as possible to make good music for the project. I get bored really fast with tunes and rush things sometimes just to get them finished but with the whole project, I made sure to really take my time and spent a lot of time making sounds and samples from scratch rather than using sounds that would just do to save time.

It’s a clichéd question but is it fair to say your production style is very much about the golden era of DnB. The tracks on Beatopia are busy and varied and this is a method you most definitely favour

100%, I’m not a fan of modern DNB as I feel most if it is just noise – everyone is more interested in how loud they can make a snare rather than making tracks with good vibes. For me with this project and my other productions I wanted to go back to a period where tunes would smash up a club BUT be a track you could sit down and listen to at home. Having a great club track is all good but music is not all about clubs it should be something you can put on and listen to at home. When I was finalising the LP I had various people come round and listen through the LP at mine and got their feedback on it to make sure I had something that was an enjoyable listening experience as a whole package.

Will you be commissioning any remixes for Beatopia?

I have stopped doing remixes of my releases as I got fed up with people taking my samples and using them in 20 other tunes afterwards.

Another rather hackneyed question admittedly but what are the plans post Beatopia for both yourself and your label, 36Hertz?

For me I am just making as much music as possible I already have about 30 new tunes just sitting on my computer doing nothing so there is plenty of material there BUT I’m not that bothered about putting out tons of music anymore I just want to enjoy making tracks and if things organically come out then so be it. I run a mastering company – www.36hertzmastering.com which takes up a huge amount of my time so music production is something that I fit in as and when I WANT to rather than worrying about putting out 20 tunes a month. As far as 36 Hertz is concerned its the same thing really I have slowed down on releases as we had so much music coming out last year it was turning into a chore dealing with all the release schedules etc so we have cut right back on what we are doing. After the LP we have a special project from Jem one then an EP from Vince Rollin which has been in the works for over a year now. We are also in the process of compiling Back to the bass volume 5 but that will be coming as and when it’s ready. Indigo Virus is as always buying yet more synths and making more music so there will be a release from him at some point soon as well.

Could you tell us your fave 5 36Hertz releases?

1. DJ Vapour ‘Sting in the tail’ First release on the label and something I still play and hear getting played now 9 years later

2.Callide ‘Warning’ One of many releases from Callide on 36 Hertz and one of the last he made but defo my fave track from him as he just went off on a different style to normal

3.Hades ‘The Break’ Again on the first release but still getting played

4.Lutin ‘Untitled Gully’ If I had to sum up 36 Hertz in 1 track I would choose this, someone sent us a pic of their car after they rolled it as they got over excited listening to this track lol

5.DJ Vapour ‘Paper Cuts’ The 5th release and the tune that really got us on the map as a label

And lastly, if Donald Trump made music, what kind of music would he make?

LOL! if ‘the Donald’ released music it would just be a recording of his voice telling everyone how great he is!!

Section Interview + New EP

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Section launch their new label ‘Locked Up Music’ with the ‘Give Us  A Break EP’ It’s out right now on Bandcamp followed by Juno Download from May the 11th and all good download stores from the 18th of May. Read on for an insightful interview from the Section lads….

For those who don’t know, tell us a bit about Section. How did you get into music production? What were the initial steps?
We are from Worthing, West Sussex (UK) and are made up of James Barclay (Jay B) and Nathan Solley (Solley). We have been mates for years and always talked about music and go to nights in Brighton. I used to DJ a lot in the early 00s and this inspired Nathan to make Drum & Bass. I was never interested in the production side of things but when Nathan showed me the process on Cubase I became hooked! In 2007 I got my own setup and things progressed from there. We formed Section in 2013 and we’ve never looked backed!  (more…)

Ghetto Dubz Vol 1 Feature And Interviews

GDubz001

Back in 2015, Vinyl Junkie & Rachael E C launched a new label called ‘Ghetto Dub’. From the early releases, Ghetto Dub has showcased new and emerging talent like Kazan alongside long-term veterans like Sanxion and others who have experience of every aspect of music production and a diverse history of music in a variety of styles. They have even featured bona fide hardcore techno legend The DJ Producer on the jungle tip! Vinyl Junkie himself has taken the time to help new artists fine tune their beat making skills and given them fledgeling releases on the label. When your artist roster is this strong and your label bosses are both DJs and producers themselves with decades of experience in the art of rocking the raves, clubs and festivals, its a given that the label content will be of the highest calibre. Now, Ghetto Dub prepares to set another milestone with a 30 track compilation LP ‘Ghetto Dubs Volume One’

Buy ‘Ghetto Dubz Vol One Here>>> http://www.junodownload.com/products/vinyl-junkie-presents-ghetto-dubz-vol/3372476-02/

Free Track:

The album features luminaries like Aries & Nicky Blackmarket, fresh new talent like Jay Aftermath and a wide range of styles from a global collective that includes SR, Jungle Citizens, X-E-Dos, Kumarachi, Madcap, Durban, Sound Shifter, RMS, Brian Brainstorm and more. Vinyl Junkie features on a few tracks himself… Collabs with Rachael EC, Madcap & Ikon B as well as a solo track. On listening to this album you will hear everything from big room DnB bangers to dark Drumfunk and everything in between. We’re extremely excited to talk to Vinyl Junkie, Rachael EC, Madcap, Jay Aftermath and X-E-Dos who share some thoughts on this monumental new release.

VINYL JUNKIE

VJ 2

After years of running the successful 140 breaks label ‘Warehouse Wax’, what inspired you to make the switch to DnB with Ghetto Dub?

It was a natural progression really. I’ve always been into Jungle / DnB anyway but in recent years I’ve found it has got really fuckin good. That inspired me to start playing it more. 

I never really wanted to start another label to be honest. I was winding down Warehouse Wax as running a label can be a lot of work and I just wanted to free up some time to concentrate more on production and getting my head round producing DnB. Rachael wanted us to start a label but I didn’t want to. But she kept on until I said yes. And I’m glad I did!

Oh, and it should be noted that Ghetto Dub is not just a DnB label. We are open to all forms of bass driven music and have released some 140 stuff and have more lined up.

Has it been difficult breaking into such a saturated scene or does the phrase ‘content is king’ ring true?

It is a difficult scene to break into and I think we are still in the process of doing that. But I think the music speaks for itself. We are getting some really high profile support and things have gone mad over the last month with the build up to the album. So yeah… Content is king!

After a string of quality releases on Ghetto Dub, we now come to this huge compilation album. Was there a concept in mind when curating the tracks? Many labels theme their albums on events like the Miami Music Conference, is there any kind of central theme running through this album?

There wasn’t a theme for the album as such. I just wanted to showcase lots of different aspects of the Jungle / DnB spectrum which is basically the ethos of the label as well. Some labels just immerse themselves in one of the sub-genres. We didn’t want to do that because mine and Rachael ‘s taste in DnB is very broad and eclectic, encompassing all the styles. We wanted our label to reflect this.

Having heard the tracks on ‘Ghetto Dubs Vol One’ its clear you set the bar really high. There’s some incredible productions from the likes of Kumarachi, Durban and others. To the average listener (like me) these tracks sound amazing but technically, given your extensive knowledge of music production and sound aesthetics, what stood out to you about these tracks so much that you signed them for the album?

I don’t know man, I guess I’ve just got an ear for a good tune. All of the artists that I approached for tunes for this project were already banging out some excellent music and their production levels were already top notch, so I was onto a winner really. There is quite a lot of old skool vibes on the album as well so I think some of the artists tailored their tunes for me

With so much in the way of new music almost every day and with so much of it being genuinely good, are we experiencing a new ‘golden era?’

Quite possibly! For me, the whole Jungle / Dnb thing is the best its ever been. There’s so many cool new producers making some really fuckin’ ace music but there is also loads of the veterans that are still around and taking shit to the next level. 

I’ve also noticed quite a few foundation artists that had seemed to have disappeared, come out of the woodwork lately and get their groove back on which is amazing. Its like a giant worldwide melting pot and although there is still division between the sub-genres I feel that there is a lot of crossover between them now as well, and that’s awesome.

RACHAEL E.C

Rachael EC

Your roots are in the original Jungle sound of the mid 90s, how did you come to discover the sound and what was that one tune that switched you on to it?

This was such a great era! When I moved to Portsmouth in 1994 I started hanging with some like minded people, ravers, and we would chill, smoke and spin tunes in each others’ rooms in the shared houses we lived in. There were a few small nights going on in the area and there was this one high street club called 5th Avenue which had a Room 2, the Jungle Room. That’s where I first heard the sound and felt the vibe… I was drawn in and loved the heavy bass and the rolling drums; also the energy that came from the music was intoxicating. From there, we went on to the big raves like One Nation, World Dance and Helter Skelter; I saved up and bought a pair of DLP 3’s and a made to fade mixer and started teaching myself to mix, it was all about the D&B. If I had to pick one tune that stands out from the 90’s era and had the biggest impact on me and still blows my mind when I hear it now it has to be Dr. S. Gachet’s ‘Remember The Roller’ . I heard Gachet play this at The Sanctuary, Milton Keynes and it was a big moment, it is a classic, I love it so much.

From there, we went on to the big raves like One Nation, World Dance and Helter Skelter; I saved up and bought a pair of DLP 3’s and a made to fade mixer and started teaching myself to mix, it was all about the D&B. If I had to pick one tune that stands out from the 90’s era and had the biggest impact on me and still blows my mind when I hear it now it has to be Dr. S. Gachet’s ‘Remember The Roller’ . I heard Gachet play this at The Sanctuary, Milton Keynes and it was a big moment, it is a classic, I love it so much.

Perhaps a cliched question but in a male dominated world, how has it been for you as a DJ?

Its had its ups and downs and if I’m totally honest there have been some really tough times, for example having my whole set up and all my records stolen in 1999, which included a brand new pair of 1210’s I bought from Orange in Reading, my beloved Vestax mixer and a record collection spanning from 1994-1999, a brand new Denon amp and my Jamo 265 speakers. It would happen to me again in the future with two further incidents where I lost my set up and records . Why did this happen ?? I hear you ask. The answer is I got involved with the wrong people and jealousy is an ugly thing and how better to really piss me off than to take my music. I learnt from these sad situations and moved forward; now I am much more careful who I let into my life.

The positives have far outweighed the negatives though. When I think about all the great people I have met that have now become good friends and the experiences I have to hold in my memory forever; I can only be massively grateful and totally humble about being a female DJ. I operate from this viewpoint ‘ Seek and You Shall Find’ , if you want to go looking for sexism, misogynists and haters in all forms – you will find them. So I choose to ignore them and embrace the good people, and show respect and appreciation to those who have helped and supported me, of whom there are many, big up to all of these lovely people and to the music lovers and the ravers who keep the scene vibrant and positive.

Is there a particular event in your DJ career that sticks out for you and what was it about that one?

Glastonbury Festival 2016! Playing in The Temple on the Saturday night midnight set after The Freestylers and before Aphrodite was totally mind-blowing and that is no exaggeration – my mind was actually blown! The Common Crew there who run the show are fantastic people and made me feel so at ease, even though my heart and my mind was racing cos it was a big gig and I wanted to do an A Class set. The whole experience was brilliant, the sound system was booming, I loved playing, really enjoyed it and ran a live stream video during my set. This was a special set and although I loved playing there the year before in The Cave; it was topped by The Temple.

What inspired the name for Ghetto dubs?

ghetto dub logo

Ghetto Dub was created from a basic idea that we both had, wanting the name of the label to encompass many genres of underground bass-driven music. We brainstormed a load of words and kept checking on Discogs and Google when we thought of something to find out it was already taken! We both liked ‘Ghetto’ then one day Junkie just came out with Ghetto Dub – and that was that. We both liked ‘Ghetto’ then one day Junkie just came out with Ghetto Dub – and that was that.

I think it was in the back of his mind though, cos back in the day he had a baseball cap with that on it.

And ultimately, what inspired Vinyl Junkie & yourself to take those steps into an incredibly competitive landscape to start up a DnB label?

Well, that was my idea! Junkie didn’t really want to start up a new label, as he already had Warehouse Wax, but I managed to persuade him it was a good move forward for us to create a new project together from scratch and with two of us; sharing the work-load would make it manageable. We were already playing out regularly and would get booked for B2B sets, and I basically visualised how we could begin something really special with the Jungle D&B. Junkie soon became enamoured with the plan and we put our heads together and our brainchild Ghetto Dub was born.

We are really enjoying working with all the artists involved, especially with the Ghetto Dubz Vol.1 Album… Its beyond what we envisaged from the start, cos we were motivated by the love of the music and what we want the Ghetto Dub sound to represent, which is no holds barred, no rules of genre, no restraints, just great quality underground Jungle D&B.

On this album you produced a track with Vinyl Junkie, can you tell us a bit about the process that went into it?

Long Dead was inspired from the film ‘Mad Max – Fury Road’. I wanted to do a track that was a heavy roller so we played around with the Serum plug-in and Junkie created that futuristic sounding bassline. 

There was a lot of work done on the drums and we added the breaks and drum reversals to give it more impact on the drop and the mentasm/dominator stabs were a necessity! 

We started working on this track last summer and we both put the hours in, although Junkie is the Head Honcho on engineering as I’m still learning and I have an excellent teacher, so watch out!.

The DnB/Jungle scene has become a platform for lots of online debate from purists and current fans & artists. Here at Free Breaks Blog, we believe DnB/Jungle is every bit as good now as it was in it’s formative era, what’s your take on this lively debate?

The Jungle D&B scene is so strong now. I admire the foundation artists that have been working and contributing in the scene since it fist began and stuck to their guns and stood by D&B to get it where it is today and there are many names I could mention who fit that honour.

I try to avoid online debates are I think they are fruitless and energy wasting as sometimes people just want to argue. I’d love to have a time machine and go back to my early days of raving because the memories and the emotions I have from back then are so special.. as they must be for many many other music lovers and ravers. There are so many timeless tunes from the Original Jungle days that get played today and still sound fresh, which is remarkable when you think about the level of production nowadays and the tools available to do it. Sometimes I think that there is a lack of a vibe in some new Jungle D&B I hear, and that is what this music is all about. Having said that, there is some excellent new music around and its a very inspiring time right now for artists. On a personal level, I play music that connects with me, which is why I will play any genre of D&B and I love to drop the classics in my sets too. To answer the question, I think the scene is stronger now than ever and the music has evolved.

 

MADCAP

Madcap
Your sound is a pure sound system one, plenty of deep dubby baselines and layered drums. We’re guessing the 70s/80s dub reggae sound plays a big part in your production style?

Yes, I love all the old dub reggae but didn’t grow up listening to the original tracks. Like many of us, I have gone back & done my history, finding out where the samples came from, discovering great tracks along the way. Listening to early Hardcore & Jungle & hearing tracks like Noise Factory – Futuroid (The Capsule EP) or 3 Way Split feat. Easygroove – Wicked Ones both really inspired me.

What was it like winning the Movement/Technics DJ competition back in 2002? It was an amazing feeling.

I remember feeling really nervous before hand but had about 30 of friends there supporting me, which was really appreciated as I only found out 3 days before that I was in the top 5. Winning the comp got me a lot of work around London including the infamous Movement at Bar Rumba.

As well as DJ’ing and producing, you also promote events, any that you are particularly proud of? Any events in the pipeline?

I haven’t promoted any events for a few years now. It was something I did from 1994 onwards, starting local, hiring small halls, sports clubs, 150-200 capacity etc & then progressing to clubs around 1997. I was involved behind the scenes with an event called Uncertified which took place monthly on a Thursday night in Aylesbury, Bucks & we had names like Randall, Kenny Ken, Nookie, D-Bridge, Friction to name a few. A couple of highlights from these events were having Goldie because not only was there a great atmosphere but it was a big achievement. Also, Storm played a great set dropping Golden Girl by Makoto Feat. MC Conrad & he was in the crowd, so we managed to get him on the mic singing along to it. 

The last things I did were on a smaller scale but we had DJ Sy & Tango doing Old Skool sets down one of local pubs which was pretty mad. I have no plans to promote any events at the moment.

You’ve worked with Vinyl Junkie on a number of occasions over the years, how did you meet up?

If my memory serves me correctly John (Vinyl Junkie) messaged me through myspace, after hearing some tracks I did back in 2008. At the time I was doing a side project experimenting with the 140bpm sounds, so our first studio sessions were at this tempo. Meeting up several times in the studio & events formed a great friendship.

You have a collab with Vinyl Junkie on Ghetto Dubs Vol one, is there any chance of some further collabs cos’ we’re loving this one!!!

Thanks man, Mind, Body & Soul started to come together last year but I recently went back in on it, changing the bassline to make it roll a little more. It’s had some positive feedback & has been supported by Donavon ‘Bad Boy’ Smith, Randall & Bukem. Yes, John & I will be back in the studio at some point but at the moment I’m working on a number of projects that I need to finish.

Your production style is rooted firmly in the deeper ‘intelligent’ jungle sound that was popular from 1993 up to the late 90s. You have worked with many of the top names within that circle. Is there any famous producer from that time period you would love to work with that you haven’t had the chance to yet?

I love that era & yes, you’re right, my sound has an old skool influence, it’s hard to shake it off haha. LTJ Bukem & Nookie are friends I speak to on a regular basis & would love to get in the studio with them in the future, they have been supporting my tracks for a long time & I have a lot of respect for them.

JAY AFTERMATH

Jay Aftermath

How did you get the music production bug?

Well, it’s such a cliche but it was through DJ’ing. I’d always been messing about with sounds and various software, throwing samples and loops together, nothing ever good enough to play out. Then through doing loads of gigs I started to realise there wasn’t really anything that would make my sets stand out from anyone else, so it just kind of started from there really. I wanted to play out stuff that was just going to be used in my sets.

You’ve got off to a good start with a previous EP on Ghetto Dub, how did it feel getting that first release?

Yeah, it was a bit surreal at first to be honest, seeing my name on iTunes etc. And hearing the good feedback from people in the scene that I’ve always looked up to, it was a good feeling overall. 

I’d put off releasing anything for quite a while as it just didn’t feel right, I then got talking to John (Vinyl Junkie) and one thing lead to another and I was really impressed with what was going on with Ghetto Dub and where its going so we ended up putting out a 6 track ep!

You’re clearly influenced by a wide range of styles, where did you have to go to discover the multi-faceted world of DnB?

Just through going to all the different raves really, when I first got into it, it was all just DnB, you could go to a rave or event and the line up would have loads of different DJs repping different styles, and i just loved it all. Ended up becoming a DnB fiend.

Its also nice to always be able to find a DnB tune that reflects my mood, so I always end up listening to one of the many different sub-genres. And with the internet now it’s so easy to discover new music of all styles. I also try to listen to as many different types of music as possible from Hip Hop to even film soundtracks.

What’s on your portable music player right now?

Ghetto Dubz Vol 1 Obviously!. There’s all sorts on there from Kendrick Lamar to Groove Armada. Recently I’ve been listening to more stuff from the early to mid-90s, The Prodigy and Jungle music, that’s more to try influence my own production and bring some of them vibes into the songs I’m working on now. But next week I could be listening to Slipknot .

As someone who is breaking into the scene, what would you advise other serious aspiring producers?

Have fun without a doubt that is the most important thing, just do your own thing and try not to worry about what people think too much, not everyone is going to like what you do. Keep learning as well, I suppose we are all still aspiring producers in a sense as technology is constantly moving forward and we have to learn new techniques and ways of making sounds.

Also just keep going, there’s going to be times when you just want to give up, but it only takes one tune to make the difference.

What were you going for when putting together your track for ‘Ghetto Dubz Vol One?’

I had an idea of wanting to make just a full on jungle tune, and I had this sample from the film seven that I have been wanting to use for ages which I felt just fitted with a jungle track. Its basically a guy saying how’s this for culture, hence the name, and I wanted to use it to sort of show people that the jungle scene is a whole culture within itself. Sounds a bit deep for an idea to make a tune but it goes that way sometimes and I just went with it and John and Rachael really liked it.

Where do you hope to go on this journey as a producer?

Anywhere exotic would be a bonus I suppose! … being serious though, where ever it takes me it’s been fun so far and I’m just getting started so let’s see where I end up…

X-E-DOS

Could you offer a glimpse into those early days making beats on the Atari and attending raves back in the golden ear, if you could describe it in a few short words what would you say?

My first adventures on the Atari were super limited, never really made a track. Used a piece of software/hardware called Stereo Replay. Allowed you to play 3 samples at once, one panned left, one right and one out of both speakers…. 1 thing it did teach me was to be creative with what you had.

Which era of Jungle/DnB do you have the fondest memories of?

It has to be the early Photek & Source Direct era. These and others were bringing some really stripped back, eerie atmosphere and sharp breaks. They sort of appeared at a time when the drums had snares rolling all over the place, and brought a fuck load of soul back into the scene.

You’re rather fond of the darker side of beat making as evidenced on your awesome tunage, any particular reason for this preference?

Not really. Just what I like. I’ve always liked the heavy side of music. Back in the rave days, I went for the darker ones, and have always been a sucker for a heavy break and deep sub. I like a track to have atmosphere, something that pulls you under with interesting noises popping in and out, stuff that makes you think.

As someone who has worked with music hardware and software through out the progression from Sequencers, Amigas and Ataris to modern day DAWs do you prefer the old equipment or the new stuff?

New, without a doubt. Things you can achieve on even the most basic of setups is the stuff of dreams from when I first started out. I do miss the midi timing, the Atari and a sampler still felt tighter to me. But, with a pair of virtual scissors and a load of audio files, much fun can be had!

What did you have in mind when you switched on the studio for this track on ‘Ghetto Dubz Vol One?’

To be honest, I had already got the intro roughly penned out when John contacted me. He mentioned that he was after something a little more ‘dubby’ and I thought that it was going in the right direction. I tried to turn it differently, for me anyway, not over darken it and roll it out more.

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