Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Samurai Music announces a new Japanese drama-inspired series called Samurai Hannya.


Samurai Music is arguably one of the most important labels in the history of the genre. Since their launch in 2007, Samurai Music has consolidated its name as one of the most respected labels in Drum & Bass who are known for consistently delivering quality music with every release. 
Owned by DJ Presha, an acclaimed name in the scene, the New Zealander has always ensured that Samurai releases are distinctive for their high-quality artistic direction and highly collectable vinyl packages. The label historically, has always been careful with their approach in every release whether the artist is a newcomer or an established name. Samurai Music is responsible for giving the scene some seminal releases from the likes of Klute, Dub Phizix, Calibre, Tokyo Prose, State of Mind and many more.
Continuing their trend of pushing experimental Drum & Bass, the label has released a new series of 12"s called as Samurai Hannya. The series is based on the mythical masks of a Noh drama (a form of traditional Japanese theatre). Hannya masks capture the stages of transformation of a female character as she undergoes a metamorphosis into a demon/ogre.
The 12”s for the series are named after these 3 stages/masks and feature all new tracks from the Samurai Music roster created specifically for this project. The series also introduces a new Russian artist Roho with his tune “Totemz”, two collaborations from the label head honcho DJ Presha (with Homemade Weapons & Ancestral Voices) alongside label regulars Homemade Weapons, The Untouchables, Torn, Artilect, Last Life, Antagonist, and for the first time on Samurai Music, Weaponry artists Torana.

Listen to the series here : 


Tracklist:

12” Tracklists 
Hannya White (Ghost) | 葵上 
01. The Untouchables - Bushi Ronin 
02. Ancestral Voices & Presha - Niflheim 
03. Last Life - Rotterdam 
04. Antagonist - Ministry 

Hannya Red (Snake) | 道成寺 
01. Artilect - A Message 
02. Presha & Homemade Weapons - The Claw 
03. Homemade Weapons & Roho - Kifuka 
04. Torana - Amok 

Hannya Black (Demon) | 黒塚 
01. Homemade Weapons - Omen 
02. Torn - Dance On The Bones 
03. Homemade Weapons & Torn - Isolation 
04. Roho - Totemz 


Sunday, July 21, 2019

Drum and Bass India X Boxout Wednesdays | Staple tunes



To get you prepared for the upcoming DnB showcase by Boxout.fm [24th July at Summer House Cafe, New Delhi], we curated a playlist of staple tunes by all the artists in the line up - Tunes that regularly feature in their sets and continues to inspire them, still.




Event details here.

Thursday, July 18, 2019

Boxout to host a DnB night this July | Get to know the artists


It was early 2017 when Mohammed Abood aka DJ MoCity and Sahej Bakshi aka Dualist Inquiry came up with the idea of delivering to the ever-growing need for a platform for the alternative music and culture in India. Fast forward 2019, Boxout.fm has completely transformed the Indian music scene with care and precision and currently there is no other platform to can rival Boxout.fm.

Boxout.fm boasts a monstrous roster of some of the country’s most dedicated musical minds alongside DJs, selectors, commentators and cultural icons from all over the world. From IDM to Dancehall to Hip-Hop to Jazz, you name it and they have it.
The radio’s passionate support for Drum & Bass is unparalleled. Boxout.fm has been home to our very own Debjyoti Das aka The Untitled One and it has helped the Bangalore based DJ to showcase his art to the world. Just when we thought this wasn’t enough, Boxout is set to host another Drum & Bass show, featuring some of the most revered heavy-hitters in the Indian Drum & Bass scene, on the 24th of July, at Summer House Cafe, New Delhi. And we couldn't be more excited about being a part of the night.

First one on the line-up is Rohan KaléDelhi based Rohan Kalé has meticulously consolidated his name as one of the finest selectors in the country. His “Music without borders” approach has given us some stunning live performances. Rohan Kalé’s penchant for soul-stirring melodies and skull-shattering Jungle coupled with the his intricate take on his DJ sets makes him THE artist to watch out for. The Delhi badman also has some incoming music so keep your eyes peeled.

Next up is Delhi based Ravana; an artist whose music is synonymous with infusing traditional Indian music with his production styles in the most intuitive manner. The intricate approach to his sets makes him one of the versatile DJs in the line-up. Ravana’s knack to infuse Drum & Bass with Jungle, Break-core and Dub will always leave you with surprises throughout his sets. 

The next artist on the line up is Watashi. The Bangalore based DJ and producer has made Neurofunk Drum & Bass his own realm. Watashi is known for his high energy sets which are packed with relentless tech steppers.

On supporting duties will be Shillong based Wave Diary and Boxout’s resident artist, Drum Attic.


We caught up with all these artists and had a quick word with them about their music, journey, future plans, their thoughts on the DnB scene in the country and a few other things.



|| Kalé ||


1. In your interview with us, you'd mentioned what liquid drum and bass means to you but we're also aware of how much you love Jungle. Would you like to release some jungle in the future?
A : Absolutely. Jungle will always hold a very special place in my heart. It has been one of the most prolific genres of our time and before. Simply put, it's timeless music. I would love to release some jungle, I have some loops and ideas that will turn into full songs (soon, i hope!) 
2019 has mainly been about me working to elevate my production skills and it has been going great so far, so do expect a bunch of releases (Jungle included) from myself in the near future.

2. You've always been lyrical about the importance of using those classic r'n'b samples in your music. Can you tell us more about it?
A : RNB from the 90s and early 2000s is, again, absolutely timeless music. The soul that these vocalists poured into every word they uttered is beyond compare. So much love, so many emotions, such feelings! Just talking about it makes me smile. A LOT of this music has been sampled abundantly by DNB/Dubstep/Garage etc artists. You could easily spot a sample in every other tune within these genres and beyond. I have actually considered doing a show about the art of sampling in Liquid/Deep Dubstep because it's a masterful skill and it just adds that extra warmth to such music. 
I am guilty of using these in the music I create as well! Keep an ear out, some releases coming through soon.

3. The Drum & Bass scene in our opinion has taken a beating in the last few years. It did peak 5 years ago but now it seems like we're playing catch up. How do you think the scene can be improved?
A : I think the most important thing is to keep believing in the vision and pushing the sounds to the people as much as we can. In my opinion, as soon as DNB is uttered people just assume its HEAVY and LOUD. That needs to change. There is a lot of subtle, gentle and soulful DNB music out there and it's our responsibility to share this music with the listeners here so it becomes a more accepted genre. I know there are a few shows on boxout.fm that are strictly DNB which is definitely a step towards the right direction. The other thing would be to curate more DNB focussed nights around the country and market the shows well so more people are exposed to this beautiful genre. Another helping factor would be to bring in some international acts which would attract more people to such events and would spread the music further.



|| Ravana ||


1. 24 EPs until now is QUITE something. Not many Indian artists have gotten near that number. How would like to describe your journey over the years?
A : Yeah, so I have 25 full ALBUMS and not EP's that I have released independently on my bandcamp pages [ravana.bandcamp.com] [draama.bandcamp.com].
And the latest I released under AMARRASS RECORDS on a Vinyl called. DUBFOUNDED (Folk + dUb)

Since my teenage days all I wanted to do was to be in a band and grew up dreaming about making music and creating lots of music albums (so old school). We even named the hypothetical band as, KALI DEATH :D. But the band thing didn't work out much and Electronica became a part of my life. I started Djiing in 2002 when I left my corporate job and dnb has always been my preferred genre to play around, but at the back of my mind was to always produce music albums that got realised in 2011, when I finally got my hands on a computer that I bought at a very cheap rate from my friend. The result was a Jungle mix that can be found here - https://www.mixcloud.com/Ravana/stop-tribal-hunt-ore-naheen/

Soon I started producing music and the search began for the sound I wanted to produce. It took me around 5 years and many tracks to reach a stage I felt comfortable and knew this this is what I wanted to do music wise. In 2016, I released my 1st album OLD DELHI, dedicated to the city I grew up in and music inspired by the Great MUSLIMGAUZE (also a tribute album). I don't think producing this many numbers of album is a big deal, I am just clearing the back catalog of all the ideas I had in the last 2 decades. My journey has been great to say the least, it has not been difficult at all but has been frustrating in the sense that a huge number of the audience is still very much where it was many many years ago and will always be there. Because the kind of sound I produce or play in mixes are so UNDERGROUND that usually it is not preferred by the masses, so in most cases RAVANA becomes not viable.

2. "Dubfounded" is a gorgeous piece of art. Tell us more about your experience while working on this tune?
A : Rana from Reproduce introduced me to Amarass (Ankur + Ashutosh) back in 2014. On the 1st of July 2013 I released an album called GHALIB (Tracks + Remixes)

Probably after hearing the album he must have thought that I could do some collab with AMARRASS. Yeah, so I did my 1st eclectic show for Amarrass of Remixes I had done of Ghalib in one of Amarrass' folk festivals back in 2014, in dilli. Since then I have been a regular at their events. So when Jumme Khan (the poet and vocalist in the album Dubfounded) came  to Delhi from Alwar, I was their choice of music producer. It was a great experience to work with Amarrass (because I had the creative license, without any external interference) and secondly I had to produce an album that would not compromise on the signature RAVANA sound but at the same time should not sound like a disaster for the masses, because this was to be a balanced act between art and commercial spheres.

3. The Drum & Bass scene in our opinion has taken a beating in the last few years. It did peak 5 years ago but now it seems like we're playing catch up. How do you think the scene can be improved?
A : Even back in 2002 when we were doing our DnB nights there were not many Pub / Club owners who preferred it, probably because of the rawness of the sound (Drum & Bass) and still the scene is the same. Just yesterday at a gig in jaipur a boy came up to me and asked if I can play something that he can dance to. :P
I think a majority of the public are so used to and fed substandard beaty 4/4 sound that it is quiet impossible to change the scene upside down. There needs to be more promoters who have to come forward and just relax a bit about the commercial aspect of things and invest more on sustainability and building up the scene from bottom up. RANA has been doing this with Reproduce Listening Room (Noise + Anything goes kind of music), Amarrass have been doing this in the Folk area and i think now Boxout is also on the same wavelength to promote good music as well as artists/dj's who probably wont get a gig or place to play their sound.



|| Watashi ||


1. You've meticulously carved your way as one of the known drum & bass DJ/artists in the country. How would you like describe your journey so far?
A : Best way to put it would be "a big learning curve." I've improved as a musician and as a person over the last year and a half, I'm not so rigid when it comes to music anymore which is a great thing. End of last year, I played a lot of gigs and it's all a blur now, but they helped me sort of define my sound. This year has been a bit scarce when it comes to gigs but as an artist every gig has been more satisfying. The response has been great, especially from people who listen to me play for the first time. I'm much more certain about what sort of set I want to put out every time. And honestly, DNB community has been very friendly and has always given me complete freedom. I mean, the gigs with DnB India or the one in Kochi, I've always felt that trust to put out whatever music I want to. That Kochi gig with the Kekao crew was mad by the way. Nights like those make you feel like you're doing something right and can keep you going for months.

2. Your recent release on Nrtya packs a punch. Can we expect Watashi to make some proper industrial stuff soon? 
A : Honestly, that track was just an experiment. Drum and bass production is really technical and it's easy to get lost tweaking a snare sound for six hours. And I get frustrated because I'm not finishing nearly enough tracks. So all the other stuff I keep making is just an escape from that since it gives me the feeling of being productive and having some output at least. I'm focusing on putting out more DnB releases this year, all the other stuff will have to wait. I'll definitely play some unreleased tunes for this gig. But yes, I've developed some fondness to industrial/broken techno and would love to make more music with a similar vibe, maybe under a secret moniker, who knows.

3. The Drum & Bass scene in our opinion has taken a beating in the last few years. It did peak 5 years ago but now it seems like we're playing catch up. How do you think the scene can be improved?
A : I agree. I keep thinking about this way too much. It's sad to see the thing you love dying. And I have no decisive answer for this. Sometimes I feel it's the fact that the younger generation is getting used to slower tempos which is easy listening music and on the other hand DnB is such an acquired taste. Also, Dnb is meant to be underground music yet it never could identify as rave music in India. I mean, I'm sure you know a few artist friends in Europe who are playing huge underground raves, Jungle/DnB has been at the forefront of rave culture over there. We have to somehow make that happen here as well. Young listeners are getting introduced to new music by watching boiler room sets and when was the last time you saw a complete DnB set on boiler room? It is very rare. I mean, people do throw in a few jungle tunes now and then, but that's not doing much for promoting the genre. We have to involve the younger generation of DJs and producers somehow, they tend to be more passionate about what they like. And do more gigs with proper DnB lineups that represent our music in its raw-unadulterated form. Maybe gigs in smaller cities, people tend to be more open to new music there. And above all, stick to it.



|| Wave Diary ||


1. How did you get into drum and bass? And how would you like to describe your sound?
A : Born and brought up in Shillong, i grew up listening to a lot of  metal and punk rock music, my favorite child hood memory was to see my dad perform which inspired me to pursue my career  in music.
When i started my career as a DJ i got into techno, but every time i got on stage I would fail to deliver and connect to the people which i loved the most. I just wasn't really connecting to that style of music, this made me start exploring different genre until i found Drum and Bass.
Having said that growing up listening to metal music, the influence of heavy percussion's stayed within me. I've always loved the sounds of classical instruments. The juxtaposition between the two is what defines my taste.

2. How do you think is the drum and bass scene bubbling up in your hometown?
A : About 5 years ago, there weren’t many events dedicated to Drum and Bass in Shillong. Most artists (really talented and great friends) were pushing the Club scene in town while there wasn’t much work in DnB.
Knowing that people of Shillong are open to different tastes of music ,a bunch of us were really excited to start our own scene in Shillong which inspired me to start ‘Bass Block’. A thing that initially started as an after party ritual. 
The first ever ‘Bass Block’ wasn’t typically successful, but that really got me thinking about how to keep people entertained while still staying under the genre . For the second show, I started adding elements (something they could relate to ) in my set. This continued for a couple of shows after which I could see people really jamming to proper Break Beat.

Krunk coming in with ‘Bass Camp’ for two years straight played a major role in the scene. 
Even though the scene is still young and upcoming, I think it is a really exciting time for DnB in Shillong.

3. The Drum & Bass scene in our opinion has taken a beating in the last few years. It did peak 5 years ago but now it seems like we're playing catch up. How do you think the scene can be improved?
A : Drum and Bass started as a Break Beat hardcore style, but over the years evolved as an umbrella term for sub-genres like Reggae Dub, Liquid, Jazz Step and so on.
Every genre enjoys a peak phase, and leads towards a starting point for a new cycle, in this case a new sub-genre.
I think the most important thing for us is to keep producing more music for the core DnB community because I believe in making music that I love and  not just take it as a trend.
Drum and Bass will re-emerge taking on a new form to complete the cycle of music or perhaps starts a new one.





DO NOT miss it because this promises to be a mayhem!!


Sunday, July 14, 2019

Monty releases a stunning 5 track EP on 1985 Music featuring his signature hard-edged sounds.



Toulouse based Monty Brimley aka Monty is one of the hottest properties in Drum & Bass at the moment. After making his debut in 2016, Monty’s name has become synonymous with fast-paced, and cutting-edge drum & bass music.

Monty was born in England but moved to France when he was 8 and that’s where he honed his skills as an artist by taking influences from his father who was jazz musician. Since his first release on Syndrome Audio in 2016, Monty has gained some serious recognition from some of the biggest names in Drum & Bass like Noisia, Ivy Lab, Alix Perez and the entire 'Critical Music' family. Very few up and coming producers have been able to rival Monty’s meteoric rise and his mind-numbing releases are a testament to the graft that he puts in the studio.

Monty’s DJ sets are equally good if not better. He is known for his progressive and high energy approach to his sets. Flowing through sub-genres smoothly and harmonically, Monty is known for taking the audience on a sonic journey through wonky halftime beats and rollers with a consistent theme of catchy basslines with unparalleled groove.



Monty has been a frequent member on Alix Perez’s 1985 Music roster. The French producer has already released four stunning EPs on the label and for this fifth EP release on 1985 Music, the eclectic producer has delivered a pulsating 5 track EP called as “Hello”.

The EP begins with the title track “Hello” which exemplifies Monty’s haunting and nuanced approach to his music. “Limbo” featuring Visages and Benabu is a tune you would expect if you are a follower of 1985 Music’s releases; rolling, sleek and cutting edge. “Legion” and “Intoxication” are two brutal pile-drivers which are aimed straight at the dance floor. Monty finishes the EP off with a rump-shaking half-time banger in the form of “One Shot”.





Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Ed:it returns to Shogun Audio for Silhouettes - Part One, a 4 track EP which will serve as the first chapter of his Silhouettes project.



Since making his debut in 2011 for the groundbreaking “Coexistance” EP on Flexout Audio, Ed Warren aka Ed:it has carefully consolidated his name as one of the important producers in the Drum & Bass circuit. Ed:it’s penchant for soul stirring melodies coupled with his signature gritty sounds has seen him receive heavy support from some of Drum & Bass' biggest names & labels.

Since first releasing his music on Flexout Audio, Ed:it has released his music on some of the biggest labels like Commercial Suicide, Dispatch Recordings, Addictive Behaviour Records and these releases came with some high-profile collaborations with the likes of Pennygiles, Hyroglifics, Overlook, Krakota & Eastcolors. And Since signing exclusively to Shogun Audio, Ed:it has released some of the finest drum & bass music in recent years which includes his seminal “South City” EP.





After the release of his “Junction” EP in 2017, Ed:it hadn’t released any music and now, after a two-year hiatus, the Nottingham based producer has returned with “Silhouettes – Part One” which will serve as the first chapter of his 3 EP series. From those signature punchy drums to more musical & liquid styles, this series will be a testament to Ed’s relentless work behind the album.

“My main inspiration is to create original rolling beats and breaks which include a natural percussive sound. I’ve tried to focus on this throughout the series and sometimes concentrated the vibe on the drums alone. Also directing the percussion to the foreground to provide more groove to the music. I feel that this has brought together a fresh meaning to my production, especially on certain sounds.”

The EP begins with ‘Dayz’ a straight up, deep low end roller while ‘Brink’ featuring Lady Soul is a another gritty drum & bass number, packed with Ed:it’s trademark dubby overtones. ‘So True’ features a live recorded guitar part and vocal sample while staying true to his rolling sounds. Ed:it finishes the EP with ‘Generally Speaking”, an unapologetic peak time banger representing his classic style of drum and bass.







Monday, July 8, 2019

#DnBIndiaDubplate 041 | Sub-Z

Sub-Z is a collective of DJs and producers from New Delhi fascinated by sounds from the heavier side of bass music. Consisting of Tanzen, Stain, Npstr and Miredo. Sub-Z was started to bring a change in the way people perceive nightlife in Delhi with a very heavy influence of Bass Music. The crew curates their own nights at location undisclosed to the real world which goes by the name of “BASSMNDI” while also hosting a weekly radio show "Sub-Z Sessions" on Boxout.fm. The Sub-Z boys have shared the stage with the likes of Ivy lab, Skeptical, Flowdan, Anna Morgan, Cera Khin and a few more. In 2018, their Debut EP “Breach” was released which consisted of 4 tracks by the members.

Hit play, listen to this wicked mix they have put together for us, which by the way is all originals by the boys and read on to know them a little more.




1. How did the idea of Sub Zero come about?
A - Sub-Z as an idea was bigger and greater than just a collective of bedroom producers coming together to throw underground parties at disclosed locations.
The whole idea was to move away from the same routine of bookings at cafes and clubs where we could not express the music we wanted to as an artist and were required to play what the venue or the agent asked us for.

With Miredo & Stain being the earliest members they contacted Tanzen who linked with Npstr & Sodhi together brainstorming over coffee and cigarettes came the idea of BASSMNDI & Sub-Z as a whole was established.
We have had other members who with time called off and went separate ways and we respected their life decisions.

Sub-Z when in its initial stage was just about 4-5 guys trying to do something out of the box and create a mark but as we went through so much of experiences and exposed to a variety of cultures, our concept became not just more serious but more than that a way to educate & change the way people hear music with broader aspects.



2. The most distinctive feature of your music is that it isn't Drum & Bass despite taking a host of Drum & Bass elements in your productions. How do you guys approach your projects?
A - If you ask us about music production we can just go on and on and maybe take all your time and get you interested into trying your own luck in production as well.
But jokes apart, the unique part about our collective is that everyone of us as a producer has a different style and ways of approaching the final output. 

The bad part of a producer collective is that too much information is flowing continuously and sometimes it gets too much which leads to a lot of creativity but lack of putting it down.
But the good part about a producer collective is that you can always learn more from the other person and have the support when there is creative block which is quite often. Its always fun to sit together in the studio and designs some sounds that are filthy & nasty.


3. The last 12 months have been really busy for you guys supporting some huge names in the Drum & Bass fraternity. Tell us more about the experience?
A -  I mean last year was a great year for us and as well as the Bass Scene itself as we saw alot of international artists that we look upto doing tours in India and it was a good year to keep people hooked to the scene as it was peaking after a very long time.

We had an honour supporting some of the finest of the Bass Music Industry all over the globe. Names like Flowdan, Symbiz, Anna Morgan, Ivy Lab, Cera Khin, Skeptical & Fracture along with some renowned Indian Acts. We had our debut collective EP released called BREACH for which we got a good support from WIldCity & Bangin' Beats.
The most fun was our first anniversary a couple of months back when we brought down The Voice Of Thunder Rider Shafique for his first ever Indian tour and mainly to host our anniversary celebrations. We also tied up with Krunk for their annual BassCamp Festival as the official afterparty in Delhi.

We got to hang out with the jolly & energetic Anna Morgan and also got an opportunity of a lifetime of Ivy Lab going in at BASSMNDI spinning some of their iconic tracks at our underground party itself. Previously we were a part of the 2 year anniversary of Boxout.fm called “Boxout Weekender” where we as a collective for the first time ever played a one hour all original set which was a huge milestone for us as producers. It was a fun 12 months period but now we are focusing on other stuff which involves more of local acts trying to push more of them as we need to keep the roots stronger.


4. How would you like to describe Sub-Z's style as a collective?
A - Sub-Z as we see is all about DIY concepts, ideas, productions, marketing, and strategies.
We all together think of different ideas and conclude it with a final poll of decision which keeps it transparent between all the members. We like to keep Sub-Z very low-key and maintain the dark & dingy vibe that we have through our music as well as our events.



5. What would you guys like to make other than bass music?
A -  See, Music is our language and bass is our mother tongue, but we always want to explore new genres of music which totally breaks the concept of genres in our head.
Right now we very much are focused on bass music but it is not necessary to sit in your studio and think of only making bass music. The best part about being a producer is that we don't have any restrictions or parameters and we are free to create whatever sound or genre we want to.
So lets see where this journey of music takes us.


6. What's next for Sub-Z?
A -  We are planning a lot of things for the future as we mentioned earlier also which has something to do with the local bass scene in the capital and gradually moving to other states bringing all the musicians, artists, producers & dj's together for the sake of bass. Thats all we can say for now.


7. 5 tunes you guys are digging at the moment?
A -  P Money - Shook
    V.I.V.E.K - Over My Head ft. Mel Dymond
     Halogenix - Out Of Line
     Freddie Gibbs & Madlib - Crime Pays
     Little Snake - ISTHISREAL.MP3 (ft. Kage)


Follow Sub-Z Facebook | Soundcloud | Instagram


Dubplate #041 - SUB-Z



Tracklist

 1] Tanzen - CNG 2] Npstr - Laidback beat 3] Miredo - Swamp 4]Miredo - ID 5] Stain - Cinnamon 6] Npstr - Blood Spatter 7] Mala - Changes (Stain Bootleg) 8] Npstr - Infirmary 9] Miredo - Adagio 10] Stain - The Average Thinking 11] Stain - Why did I Make this beat 12] Miredo - Ret 13] Tanzen - Riddim G 14] Miredo - Icky Shrimps 15] Tanzen - Chor Ki Rani 16] Stain - Disowned Realms 17] Stain - Rukus 18] Tanzen - DNB ID 19] Miredo - Shuvit 20] Npstr - Wig get spun 21] Miredo - Candyflip 22] Tanzen ft. Lacuna - ID 23] Stain - Mogambo (Tanzen VIP) 24] Stain - Mogambo