In the city of Leeds a fantastic deep house experience is emerging, spearheaded by a forward thinking and ambitious collective known as Dusk. We’d definitely recommend getting out to one of their events as soon as you can. What sets Dusk events aside from a typical bass music night is their interweaving of music with décor and live performances from a variety of visual artists. If you’re unconvinced, perhaps have a look at this review of the Dusk launch party from back in February – or, better still, go and have a look for yourself!
We were able to catch up with Dusk’s Lee Sanderson (of Pesh Promotions) to ask him a few questions.
IA: Hey, Lee. First of all thanks for agreeing to talk with us at Inorganic Audio! We attended both the Dusk launch party in February and the following event in March and were very much inspired by the combination of visuals and deep/tech-house. The blend was seamless. It’s easy to overlook the contribution which a space makes to the experience of music, but after attending it was plain that taking care of the surroundings is an extremely important part of a night and certainly shouldn’t be left to the venue.
So, what drew your attention to décor and the inclusion of various other sorts of performers (dancers, fire breathers, etc.)?
LS: The house scene in Leeds can not be beaten with amazing line ups numerous times a week from other promoters. We decided to bring something new to the table something that would set us apart from the other events in the city. After a lot of trial and error we finally found something that worked, so we decided to combine the music with performance and art. It caters for everyone and is a great combination of amazing music and having more than a DJ to look at. The aim was to create an experience rather than just another ordinary night out.
IA: So how long has Dusk been in operation, and who is involved?
LS: Dusk has been in operation since February. We ran a few nights before hand whilst in planning for something spectacular and unique we wanted to get the feel for how things worked in Leeds to make sure that when we launched Dusk that it was a perfect as we knew it could be.
It is just myself and my girlfriend that run it, however we do have a lot of people who help us out which we appreciate more than anything.
IA: What’s your vision for the future of Dusk?
LS: We have recently launched our record label, Dusk Underground Music, which is where we want to go in the future. Soon we will be able to run the nights that we think about all of the time and just can’t afford and supply the public with something completely unique. We have spent a few months searching for quality producers with a unique sound. So, we plan on continue with the Dusk events and running our label parties of which we are in talks with some guest DJs at the moment so everyone will definitely be hearing more of us within the next year in Leeds and around the UK.
IA: I know that you are a music producer yourself, how long have you been producing? Do you have any particular sources of inspiration?
LS: I used to produce a while back, but only got back into it about 6 months ago. There is a lot of people I look up to and admire and I still have a lot to learn. Really, for me, it is all about having your own sound. As much as I look up to people, anybody can copy another artist, what I am really trying to find is a different sound.
IA: Can you tell us anything about forthcoming material on the Dusk label?
Well, we have literally just released some promo material by myself for free. We want to get the name out there as much as possible and getting noticed in a scene with countless people competing isn’t easy at all. Our first release should be out in about 6 months and we will be sure to keep you updated about this.
Expect something big, we have searched for a long time for these artists and are really looking to combine untouched local talent with well established artists. We have a very special producer releasing on our first E.P, whom I’m sure that you will all know very well.
IA: Do you have any advice for those aspiring to become events promoters?
LS: Just not to give up! We have had so many hits and misses it just takes a few events to get the feel of it! We are still learning ourselves as long as you do not get lazy or scared of taking a risk you will succeed in the end! Building a good reputation is key and working in this industry is a lot harder than people tend to think. However, at the same time it can be the most rewarding, energizing and fun industry in the world, as well as the fact that it is so unpredictable. This is why we love it so much.
Also, get a good team behind you everyone that works with us from reps to the DJs you get a good working force with them and there is no failing!
Thanks again to Lee for taking the time out to answer our questions! If you are curious about Dusk events, the next one is the Dusk Underground Music label launch party. It will be hosted at Beat Bar in Leeds on Saturday the 13th of April and you can buy tickets for the extremely generous price of £7 (inc. booking fee) from Skiddle, Resident Advisor, and Ticket Arena. If you live in Leeds you can also find paper tickets at Jumbo Records.
In their own words:
“New Traffic came together in 2009, shortly after Dan began getting into Hospital and Spearhead podcasts. After this Johnathan decided to buy some vinyl and we both began to mix from then. Dan had an old pair of belt-driven decks from when he was about 13 years old and he had started mixing House. After about 6 months of solid mixing at Dan’s mum’s house, we started going down to Junkbox and talking to Chris Leahy and Ben Marshall. After a year of mixing we became residents at Junkbox and started getting our name out and about Blackpool. Since Junkbox we have ran our own night called Overdose, we have also teamed up with most of the Drum n Bass DJ’s in Blackpool. Right now we are in the studio a lot making all kinds of beats but still mainly Drum n Bass. Always looking for gigs/events of any kind, hint hint Inorganic boys!! Hopefully have a FREE EP by the end of the year!
Big up! Tew, Relic, Sublogos, and all of Inorganic Audio!
Chris Leahy and Ben Marshall. We wouldn’t be producing or playing without you guys!
Rob Del Terror!
Bad Habits and Foohaf!
All the supporters!”
Having just dropped his vocal talents on Creator late in January, the Machester wordsmith Skittles has demonstrated that his skills can be equally effective across a range of genres. We caught up with him to have a chat about his origins, motivations and something about Dub Phizix and some Coco Pops.
Inorganic Audio - Hi there, firstly thanks for talking to us here at Inorganic Audio, we have been following your sound since you released “2 Pints Of Brandy And A Packet Of Skittles” on Virus Syndicates imprint, Contagious. What brought you initially to making music?
Skittles – It’s just something a lot of people do where I’m from, a culture thing.
IA – Do you consider yourself an MC first and a producer second, or vice versa?
S – Definitely an mc first, I think you can say a lot with both, but what you struggle to say with one you can say with the other.
IA – Do you feel the two are necessarily linked? Nowadays anyone can get a laptop and start making some beats, is it more important for an MC’s identity to produce his/her own music?
S – I think it says a lot about your talent, determination and how serious you are about music if you don’t/can’t.
IA – Was it a conscious decision to make music the centre of your life? Or was it just a natural progression?
S – It was a conscious decision, though I couldn’t have made it happen overnight, without naturally progressin’ I wouldn’t have had that decision to make.
IA – Many of your tracks feature themes of a constant, strong work ethic, Do you feel it is easy to become complacent with the music that you make? Is constant change healthy for creative outlet?
S – Everyone is different and should work how they feel comfortable.
IA – Your latest appearance, “Creator” with Dub Phizix (Out now on Exit Records), has been doing the rounds for a long time now (Even getting played by the man himself at the first Inorganic night, way back in January 2012). Does this extended time frame have any effect on how the project was compiled?
S – Yes, it took fucking ages!
IA – You and Dub Phizix have been known to work together on previous material, but how did this specific collaboration come about? Is this the first drum and bass release you have put your vocal talent to?
S – Right so we’re sat in the studio, and I was just freestylin’ some bollocks about bananas an panorama and that (which I believe strategy made a song out of). Dub Phizix was on Facebook eating a massive box of donuts, when he saw a comment on one of his pictures he did not like so he through a donut which hit the tape machine record button, by which point I had turned to spittin’ about the massive bowl of coco pops which I was making (or creating), the lake refers to the milk. Then Dub Phizix practically begged me to let him use it, I agreed on the condition he went shop.
IA – Many say that two heads are better than one, are you more productive alone? Or does it improve your work rate to bounce ideas of someone?
S – Nah, all my real work is done alone, though bouncing ideas off someone can be cool, and I’ve made music in most environments.
IA – What drives your lyrical content? Do you start out with a strong theme and work from there, or just try to naturally let it develop?
S – Each project is different, sometimes I just start talking and go on a mad one, with no real clue what I’m talking about, sometimes I feel strongly about something and want people to hear it! But my main drive is that I can actually change people and make a difference (awwww) ha.
IA – How much of your week is dedicated, directly or indirectly, to music?
S – All of it…..an I’m not just sayin that!
IA – Any plans for 2013 that you wish to share? Any forthcoming projects?
S – NO! It’s a secret.
IA – First Album/LP bought?
S – Michael Jackson – Bad
IA – First Gig/Rave attended?
S – Michael Jackson – Wembley
IA – Name your guiltiest pleasure in music. Something you like but know deep down you really shouldn’t.
S – Michael Jackson
IA – Many thanks for the chat, Respect for all the work you do.
S – Shadow!
If you’ve been living under a rock for the past few months, then you can be forgiven for not getting hold of Exit043 just yet. However, if you have been living at ground level, then do yourself a favour and buy the vinyl, or the shiny digital release if you really love your 1′s and 0′s.
Known for pushing the standards of drum and bass production, as well as introducing untapped potential to the scene, IM:LTD has come to be synonymous with quality control. This latest release sees them keeping the momentum gained from the highly anticipated Future 9 EP, released at the start of the year, IM show no sign of slowing down as the year rolls on into February.
Junction 12 brings only the finest talent to the plate, from new producers such as Quartz, to more established artists such as Es:tereo. We managed to have a chat with the lads from Quartz, they were even kind enough to work their magic on the ol’ 1’s and 2’s with MC XL for your lovely little ears.
Inorganic Audio: Firstly, the obvious question, how long have you been producing music? And when did you realise that it was your main focus?
Elliot – Been producing since I was 16 but just messing around on different DAW’s, played drums for about 9 years before I got into that and did a fair few grades, it all changed primarily to that really when I wasn’t picking up drum sticks every day and sitting at the computer instead.
Tom – I’ve been producing just over 3 years now and it’s become my main focus since I finished university. I feel really lucky to be in a position at the moment where I can spend most of my time producing dnb.
IA: Being a duo, does that affect your workflow? Do you work alone then combine ideas when they are formed, or do you create together?
Elliot – Sometimes together, sometimes on your own, depends on the situation really, I’m a bit of a sketch freak so I’m always making something even if its just 32 bar blazing then forgotten about the next day.
Tom – We both live together and use the same studio to produce. At times this can affect the workflow due to us both wanting to use the studio. Elliot’s an animal when it comes to sketches whereas I will make sketches every now and then. What usually happens is we’ll jump in the studio and if its got a vibe after an hour or so then we will carry on.
IA: We caught your set down at an Aperture night in Cardiff late last year, what was your first passion? Producing the music or, like a lot of people, wanting to make the records that you were mixing?
Elliot – Cheers, Hope you had a good time. More the buzz from creating a vibe, always enjoyed mixing and played in various shit bedroom bands and have bought way too much vinyl over time, but I have a sweet spot for mashing a sound up and making weird noises, in the end because of a certain few tunes and people it just centred itself on drum and bass.
Tom- I first got into drum and bass from going to raves, I wanted to be able to play in a club so I moved to Cardiff as I knew it would be good for me. I then met Garvey through a mutual love of marijuana and started making beats together.
IA: Producing music is a constant learning curve, at what point did you become satisfied with your output? Are you satisfied with your output now?
Elliot – I’m never satisfied. So thats a maybe for both questions? Dan Marshall has been a massive influence on my production though so I owe him many tapas meals.
Tom – I feel like we are constantly developing our sound. Elliot has been a massive inspiration to me by helping me develop as a producer. He is constantly trying to push which is a good influence to be around. I feel like there’s so much to be learned and i’m looking forward to seeing where it’s going to go.
IA: How would you describe the Quartz ‘sound’?
Elliot -Uhhh, late 90′s minimal brain terrorist? Depends on our mood to be honest, anything thats got groove and makes our head nod is all good.
Tom – Dark, rolling, with some techy sounds put into the mix.
IA: How well do you feel Amour King portrays that sound?
Elliot - Yea guess so, its weird, random at times, kinda rolling……so yea…..Quartz?
Tom - Amour king was more of a mess around tune which Elliot started a while back. We thought it had potential so we finished it. I guess it portrays the sound of what we like.
IA: Just starting on the scene yourselves, what advice would you give to those looking to release their own music?
Elliot – Same i think anyone would say, work hard, be original, and craft a ‘sound’ that’s apparent to you.
Tom – Just keep working hard and keep pushing. Eventually you will get a breakthrough if you try hard enough.
IA: How important are breaks from the music to you? Is it important to maintain a fresh pair of ears whilst in the studio? (Figuratively speaking of course.)
Elliot – Definitely yes, but also no, keep a distance and draw influence from everywhere and anything.
Tom – I think it’s important to have breaks from dnb just so you don’t get burnt out.
IA: Any future plans or projects for this year?
Both – Yea we have a double sided single with Alignment coming soon called ‘ Bone marrow & ‘Cut Deep’ and some more with them in the future. Hopefully More stuff with Caine (IM:LTD) too! Were doing a remix for Dj Trace which will be coming out on 117 later in the year of his old classic ‘Sonar’, and a few things for a homegrown label close to us. As always a few bits and pieces with the spaghetti monster MCXL and We have something else cooking up but you should hear more about that later this year.
IA: First Album/LP bought?
Elliot – Teebee – Black Science Labs.
Tom – A.I – Desperado .
IA: First Gig/Rave attended?
Elliot – Saw Andy C when I was about 16 and can’t remember what my first gig was.
Tom – The Orange Rainbow raves in mid wales.
IA: Name your guiltiest pleasure in music. Something you like but know deep down you really shouldn’t.
Elliot – Stuff like Genesis and Wishbone Ash, proper dad influenced music.
Tom – Sade – Smooth Operator.
Many thanks to Quartz for answering our questions, good luck to them with all their future endeavours. Be sure to get hold of the release of Junction 12, out now in any outlet with more than 2 brains cells.And if you’re feeling adventurous, cop the slick selection that the lads have provided for ya here.
Baobinga & ID - Guntalk [Build]
Mikal - Lost [Disfigured Dubz]
Von D - You’re Mine [Boka Recordings]
Sleeper - Zodiac [Chestplate]
Mikal - Higher Force [Disfigured Dubz]
June Miller & TMSV - Ghost Ship [Black Box]
Truth - Project Terror (VIP) [Aquatic Lab]
Cluekid - Into the Jungle [Terrain]
Sparxy - Gravitation [Bacon Dubs]
J:Kenzo - Body Heat [Tempa]
Tunnidge - Brixton Bass [Chestplate]
Mono - War Cry [IM:Ltd]
Dubtek - Extension [Uprise Audio]
Biome - Shaman [On the Edge]
Chimpo & Trigga - Gaza (Dub Phizix Remix) [Stripes Records]
Sleeper - Dawn of the Replicants [Chestplate]
Megalodon - Mercy Killing (VIP) [Subway]
Reso - Otacon [Civil Music]
Distance - Blue Meanie [Tectonic]
District - Painting the Mind [Chestplate]
Biome - The Planets [Sub Pressure]
District - Modulate [Chestplate]
Reso - Ishimura [Civil Music]
Matt-U - Void [Black Box]
Distance - V [Chestplate]
Matt-U - Unforgiven [Osiris Music]
Mikal - What You Know [Disfigured Dubz]
Youngsta - Destruction [Tempa]
TMSV - Sleeper [Box Clever]
Late - Voices from the Night [Disfigured Dubz]
Inorganism 020 - Sublogos & Feau
Our twentieth podcast is the first collaborative effort from Sublogos and Feau - lurking around the shady outskirts of 140bpm before finding a foothold in the spaces between House & Techno. Listen.
Nocturnal Sunshine - Meant to Be [DJ-Kicks]
Goth-Trad - Anti-Grid [Deep Medi Musik]
Kevin McPhee - Outs [Tectonic]
Jack Sparrow - Salvation [Tectonic]
Commodo vs. Lurka - Glue Sniff Riddim [Black Box]
Deadbeat - Alamut [BLKRTZ]
Kryptic Minds - Askum [Tectonic]
J:Kenzo - Invaderz [Tempa]
> DJ Madd - Body Pop [Black Box]
ARTroniks - Fractal Memory [Dubtastic]
L33 - Plucked [N/A]
Dubtek - Menace [N/A]
Aquarian - Obsidian (Randomer Remix) [UNO NYC]
Kahn - Fierce [Bandulu Records]
Sub Antix - Gully Youth [Dank]
Killawatt - Mantra [Box Clever]
Jakes - Calypso [H.E.N.C.H]
Lurka - Blank [N/A]
Indigo - Aradia [Hypercolour]
Kamikaze Space Programme - Trieste [Deca Rhythm]
Anton Zap - Deeper [Quintessentials]
Paleman - Hunt [Fulcrum]
Jon Convex - New Model [Convex Industries]
South London Ordnance - Witch Hunt [Teal Recordings]
Maya Jane Coles - No Sympathy [Elite Records]
Daniel Stefanik - Distillery [Cocoon Recordings]
Lakker - Ciar [Blueprint]
Truncate - Dial [Truncate]
Shed - Another Wedged Chicken (Martyn Remix) [Ostgut Ton]
Scuba - Dsy Chn [Hotflush]
Sleeper - Oxygen [N/A]
MTD - s355 [Consumer Recreation Service]
Deadbeat - Night Stepping [Wagon Repair]
Si Begg - Bad Boy [N/A]
Inorganism 018 - mdX, Tew, Soek
Collaborative effort this month heralding a return to 174 - representing a broad range of styles from across the DnB spectrum.
Download available soon.
DJ Fresh & Pendulum – Kingston Vampires [Breakbeat Kaos]
Mefjus – Far Too Close [Neosignal]
Noisia – Dustup [Vision Recordings]
M.I.S.T – Barracuda [Revolve:r]
Spor – Kaori [Lifted Music]
Unknown Error – Sucker Punch [Lifted Music]
The Prototypes - Abyss [Shogun Audio]
Noisia & Phace - Program [Vision Recordings]
Sabre - Halo Danger [Dispatch Recordings]
Nymfo - Matchstick [Commercial Suicide]
Loadstar - BLVD [RAM Records]
London Elektricity - Out of This World (D.kay Remix) [Hospital Records]
Shock One - Polygon (feat. Reija Lee) [Viper Recordings]
Chase and Status - Informer [RAM Records]
Alex Perez - Myriads (Jubei Remix) [Shogun Audio]
HLZ - Get the Blues [Nu-Directions]
Dub Phizix - Oi Mate. Your Glasses Have Got No Lenses In [N/A]
Logistics - Thunderchild [Hospital Records]
Nu:Tone- Balaclava [Hospital Records]
Danny Byrd - Shock Out [Hospital Records]
Break - Bassface [RUN DNB]
Neonlight & Mefjus - Puppet Master [Eatbrain]
Mistical - City Life (feat. DRS) [Soul:R]
Dub Phizix & Strategy - The Editor [Soul:R]
High Contrast - Everything’s Different (Calibre Remix) [Hospital Records]
Stray & Halogenix - Rude Industry [AEI Music]