Monday, February 11, 2019

#BassMondays - Scotticus Finch (Interview + Dubplate 036)

It's always exhilarating to connect and host DJs/Artists from different corners of the world, and to continue expanding our DnB India family. One such artist we recently hosted is Scott Cianciosi, from San Francisco. Under the stage name of 'Scotticus Finch', he has spent the last six years honing his craft, from his beginnings in the Seoul underground, playing with heavy hitters like Bass Attack and DNBS, to super clubs like Walker Hill and Club Vera. Never one to get complacent, he founded and ran the monthly Mixtape while juggling his various residencies and crew obligations around the city. Since leaving Korea, he’s played all over the world, from clubs and raves in Europe, to East and West Coast gigs in the US. Now based in Oakland, and a resident with Dystopia, he’s spinning for the likes of Shelter, Back 2 Basic, and Silent Boom, using his skills to contribute to the Bay Area underground. Read to find out a tad bit more about his journey and the scene he has been building in Oakland. Also, hit play and listen to this bang-up set he has put together, which feels like an extension of the neat performance at the gig here in Bangalore and has some of our personal favorite names like #Nuphlo, #Barasingha, #OsmaniSoundz, #SukhKnight, #DubMotion and a lot more.




1. From those underground nights in Seoul to an established entity in Oakland, it’s been SOME journey, but we’d like you to take us back to the early days. How did it all begin for Scotticus Finch?
A - Depends how far back you want to go. My mom always had oldies on in the car as I was growing up, and by the time I got to high school I was playing guitar and trombone. Motown, disco, punk, ska, grunge, whatever—I loved it all. In college I got into dance music, but I just thought of it all as “music.”

Fast forward a few years to Korea and I sort of made the switch from bars to clubs. At first I had no idea what I was doing and was putting on little shows without even choosing a name for myself. Not long after that, a friend of mine put in a good word for me, and when an act had to pull out at the last second, I was one of the replacements. 

It was a party called Bass Attack, and they’re the OG bass music party in Korea. There were crews that did it before, but BA was the first to absolutely kill it. DJs that started in Bass Attack are all over the place. Some of them are playing festivals, some are holding it down in the underground, some fucked off and get to play in Bangalore—think of BA like the Wu-Tang Clan of Korean bass music.

So I played my first Bass Attack and survived, despite how nervous I was, and it all just kind of kept rolling from there.


2. Your DJ sets are pulsating, but the most striking feature about them is how effortlessly you switch styles in your sets. Tell us more about your approach towards DJing?
A - I just try to play the set I’d like to be hearing. I love a wide range of DnB, and I’m collecting tunes all the time, so playing different slots gives me the chance to rinse tracks I may not have been able to play out yet.

I also try to bounce around to different styles and subgenres to make sure things don’t get stale and people have a little time to breath or groove or whatever.


3. What was your biggest influence behind choosing drum & bass as your standout genre?
A -  I’m not sure I’d even call it a choice. When I first started spinning, I was doing almost everything. Trance and techno are probably the only genres I couldn’t just rock up and play a set of on short notice. DnB is just one of those genres that makes me want to dance, and pretty much all of my favorite sets when I was new to DJing were drum and bass. It’s kind of like that “don’t trust a DJ who doesn’t dance” thing. Playing a killer set to a rowdy crowd is great, but if you don’t wish you were on the floor enjoying it with everyone else, you’re probably in the wrong genre.


4. The American drum & bass scene in recent years has hit full throttle when it comes to popularity of the genre. What are your thoughts on the drum & bass scene in the US?
A - Obviously DnB isn’t at the same level in the States as it is in England and other parts of Europe, but people are always surprised by how hardcore the junglists are over here. Some of the longest running DnB nights in the world are in the US—and the people who love it are completely dedicated to it.


5. Tell us more about your residency, Dystopia!
A -  Dystopia grew out of another crew called Primitive Science. PriSci had gotten huge in the Bay Area and REM and Zykes (PriSci members and Dystopia’s founders) wanted to give DnB a home in the East Bay. San Francisco tends to get most of the attention when people are talking about the Bay Area, but places like Oakland have been hugely influential in music and culture at a national level, even if people don’t know it. Dystopia’s been holding it down for 8 years now, and I’m proud to have been part of it for the last two years.


6. 2018 was another massive year for drum & bass in totality, filled with some stunning releases. What are your expectations as an artist for 2019?
A -  Finally getting my ass on a label!


7. 5 best drum & bass tunes from last year?
A -  I legitimately cannot answer this question—there is way too much amazing drum and bass coming out all the time. I’m just going to rattle off a bunch of labels and artists that I think are killing it and hope that it satisfies you.

S.P.Y - I just roll my eyes and immediately add every S.P.Y tune to my cart. I’m a S.P.Y stan and I’m not afraid to admit it—everything he does is great.

T.R.A.C. - Same goes here, honestly. I love how well T.R.A.C. has been doing over the last year or so, and I’m old enough to genuinely appreciate that he brings an old-school vibe to MCing and still manages to do it so well.

Soul Deep Recordings - On top of being a great producer, Scott Allen has an amazing ear for talent. When you look at some of the artists who are on, or started out on, Soul Deep—and some of the labels they’ve ended up on—you’ll understand what I mean.

US producers - Flite, Calculon, Dave Owen, Random Movement, The Cenobites, Flaco, and Submorphics are just a few of the producers I can think of that are either blowing up, blew up, or are managing to consistently put out great tunes while still managing to be humble, cool people.



Follow Scotticus Finch - Facebook | Mixcloud | Instagram | Youtube


Dubplate #036 - SCOTTICUS FINCH



Tracklist

1] Nuphlo, Barasignha - Chandrayaan [Hundred Colours Music]
2] Sam Binga, Lewis James, Rider Shafique - Everfresh [Astrophonica]
3] Andreilien - Minor Inconvenience [Muti Music]
4] Freek - Honey Bee [Celsius Recordings]
5] Greekboy - Smacked That [Soul Deep]
6] Mystical Sound - Sentinel [C Recordings]
7] Dub Motion - Feeling You [Shogun Audio]
8] Furney - Flame on Fire [Soul Deep]
9] Joint Stock Galaxy - And Dancing For All [Liquid Flavours Records]
10] Logistics - Had It All (Monty Remix) [Spearhead Records]
11] Nuphlo, Osmani Soundz - Blueberry Junction [Hundred Colours Music]
12] Nuphlo, Sukh Knight - Conquest [Hundred Colours Music]
13] Safire, Drs, DLR - Last Renegade [Dispatch Recordings]
14] B1tyze - City of the Damned [Samsara Beats]
15] Moresounds - Shut Up [Astrophonica]
16] Moresounds - No Boda Dis [self-released]
17] Dead Man's Chest - Tears (Fantazia Version) [Ingredients Records]
18] Greekboy - Temple of the Dragon [Soul Deep]
19] RMS, Dublic - Soundboy Test [Deep in the Jungle Records]
20] Dilinja - Acid Track [Valve]
21] Firefox - Keep It Raw VIP [V Recordings]
22] Serum - Phenomenon, Pt. 2 [V Recordings]
23] Euphorics - Reflect [Soul Deep]
24] Fracture - Dropping You [Astrophonica]
25] InsideInfo - 2 Minds [Viper Recordings]
26] Think Tonk - Whatever You Go Do ft. Inja [V Recordings]
27] Jinx - Beat Box (Bass Antics Remix) [Ruffneck Ting]
28] Peyo - Can't Sit & Wait [Liquid Flavours]
29] Marvel Cinema - Inbetweeners [Liquid Drops]
30] Mutated Forms - Wastegash (Shield Remix) [Grid Recordings]
31] Fixate - What Goes Around [Exit Records]

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