After a long wait, we're finally pleased to announce that we have some tickets for sale for this year's Outlook Festival.
The more of you that buy tickets through us, the cheaper the tees will be. Simple huh?
Quick look at the line up reinstates that this is the most exciting festival this year.
Join the Facebook Group for updates and info as we await September.
Since posting his March mix I’ve been all over this Janner vibe. I needed more info on how this guy is producing such quality riddims and not being noticed. So, here’s a little bit of reading for you lot…
Tell us a little about yourself, Janner has been around for a while, am I correct?
I've been making tunes since about 1998. I made my very first tracks while I was at uni in Manchester on a Roland SP-808 hard disk recorder/sampler, without even a PC. Then I got a Yamaha RM1X sound module and then I finally got a PC. So for a while I was using step sequencers, etc. Making tunes was a very different business back then when it was 100% hardware. I’m proud to say that my first proper release was on Moving Shadow in 2000, with a track called 'The Slice' back when I was producing under the name ‘Static.’ Then I had a bit of a hiatus as DnB wasn't really cutting it for me any more and I moved to Brussels for life/work reasons. So during this time I was moving away from DnB and listening to more breaks & hip hop. Then around 2005, early Dubstep started catching my ear and I started making that more seriously... had my first Dubstep releases on vinyl in 2006 and now I’m moving through Dubstep to more 2-step things... so yeah I guess I have been around for a bit!
Computers have had a massive impact on music, I'm sure it had a substantial impact on you when you got yours. Tell us, just briefly as it's pretty expansive topic, about using computers for production compared to solely hardware.
To me the biggest advantages you get from computers are cost and interface. Before computers became powerful and ubiquitous you needed to invest a lot of money in order to start making something that even got close to professional-sounding - you needed a sampler, some sample CDs or a vinyl collection, a mixing desk, a sequencer of some sort, a set of decent speakers, probably a synth or two, and miles of cables to wire the lot together. Now all you need is a half-decent PC, the internet and the speakers. This change has opened up music production to a much larger and younger group of people. Whether this is good or bad I’ll leave it to you to decide!
Concerning interface, when everything was outboard, each piece of gear had its own unique interface method. In some cases this made things very hands-on, for example with hardware synths, but in other instances it meant loads of fiddly menus, sub menus, sub-sub menus, buttons and jog wheels, for example with samplers. Basically most things were a lot less user-friendly. Working everything through a nicely streamlined DAW is so much easier overall. Plus the different bits of the studio just didn’t talk to each other like they do now - everything had its own local memory which had huge implications for recall (or lack of). These days being able to save everything at the touch of a button and bring it back just as easily has revolutionised the way people approach making tunes. Obviously there are other important differences too such as sound but you asked me for a brief response so I'm not going to get into those here!
New producers, count yourselves lucky! You had some releases early last year and one on Haunted Audio recently - what's the difference, if any, between what you were doing then and your productions now?
I started out in Dubstep mainly experimenting with halfstep rhythms, but these days I feel that template is too limiting. I am fascinated by beats and rhythm and personally I think that there's a lot more room for variation when you break out of that halfstep envelope. So a big difference between the majority of my earlier Dubstep productions and my stuff right now is that these days I’m more focused on 2-step patterns. Also I’m not feeling this 'who can make the most fucked up abstract bendy atonal track' thing that's going on at the moment... in contrast to this movement I think that a lot of my tunes can be characterised by a certain coherence, both in melody and structure. My earlier stuff definitely wasn't as melodic. And working with Acky we're going for a kind of organic, melancholy garage vibe which to me sounds quite original. We’re both more concerned with creating something that has a bit more soul and hopefully lasting appeal as opposed to DJ ammo which feels disposable these days.
Horns Of Ganymede - Janner [RUDEEE]
What do you get up to when not in front of your monitors?
Well the reality is that a lot of my free time goes into making tunes... I don't have much free time that isn't spent on the buttons! I do quite a lot of reading so there's that. I do all the cooking in our house as well. My day job keeps me quite busy and I do a fair but of work related travel out to the Middle East to places like Cairo and Istanbul. I love cycling. I like drinking beer and scotch whiskey. [laughs]
Your March mix went down ever so smoothly this end, have you had equally good response all round? What's it like trying to get your name out there along with the all the hundreds of brand new 'Dubstep' producers that seem to have popped up in the last year - many of whom are making terrible sounds. I can't even call it music!
I know what you mean... the sound that most people associate with the term 'Dubstep' these days has really changed versus when I first got interested in the aesthetic. The scene does seem to have reached a certain saturation point at the moment. I’m just trying to do something individual that is true to where I am with music. And yea the March mix has been getting a great reaction – people seem to feel that it inhabits its own little niche which is good cos that’s essentially what I was aiming for.
In terms of getting my name out there I think this is one of the area where I fail most significantly as I do almost no self-promotion and I’m not specifically affiliated with any local crews. I don't even DJ at parties. Yea I do the occasional studio mix but that's about it. I’m just not into that kind of active promo. I’m just happy making and if other people like them and want to hear them then it's all good, but the idea of going out and DJing on the weekends doesn’t do much for me. And as I don't do this for a living I can afford to take a less business-like attitude towards it!
How would you describe your sound/beliefs? What are your main influences?
That's a very expansive topic. My sound changes over time so I can only really give you a snapshot of where I am now and at the moment I’m looking to do something with those old UKG swung 2-step rhythm structures. I always felt that the UK garage scene burned out far too quickly and that some of the central ideas can be explored a lot further before becoming stale, so I’m just trying to provide my own take on that whole thing, hopefully achieving something at least partially original in the process. And I love 8-bit sounds and old jungle and hardcore/rave sounds too, so am trying to work them in there somewhere. As a producer I’m at the point when I can usually get pretty close to what I was aiming for, so the way I tend to approach composition these days is to come up with an idea for the foundation of a tune and then expand upon that, ideally in an organic, unforced way. In terms of my musical influences they are very broad, from Ed Rush & Optical to the Stone Roses, the Chemical Brothers to the Beatles, from old rave tunes to those amazing dark garage beats that were coming out around '99 and '00.
Fever - Janner
Your favourite five producers at the moment?
Zomby, Sully, Jamie Vex'd, D Bridge and Instra:mental.
Anything else to add? Forthcomings?
Well you are definitely going to see some future releases from me on Haunted Audio. I feel very comfortable working with that label as they are extremely flexible, have a great attitude towards the music and they're quality people as well. There has been interest in from other areas in a few of my tracks but nothing concrete yet… so stay tuned I guess!
Janner, many thanks for your time.
He’s been kind enough to let you take a couple treats home with you. Give these a few listens and keep your eye out for those forthcoming bits.
Endymion - Janner
Gakk - Janner
Myspace – Soundcloud – Virb – Discogs
You should know by now, but if you don't check here.
Dark Sky have some exciting news. Firstly, that 'Crystalised' remix we've been hammering is due for official release in the next couple of months. Before that though, having secured themselves a Black Acre deal, it's nearly available to be snapped up. The promo is in at Chemical (here) so go cop that if you're desperate - personally, I'd wait for the sweet artwork.
Ghost Notes - Dark Sky [youtube]
In anticipation of the release, they're letting out a little something for free. This skippy 2-step beat accompanied by fluctuating melodies and a well-worked vocal sees this go down as another sterling production from the hottest trio around at present.
Change (Dark Sky Remix) - Mirror Mirrors
Reflex - Dark Sky
One year ago, nearly to the day, the first edition of this series was unleashed. The first has remained as the most popular, nearly the most downloaded item out of everything! Keeping up to that is tricky but since this is the 4th, we've made it super special. It's rammed full of our favourite artists at the moment plus a couple of big names doing not what they normally do. As ever, get it on your iPod, burn it to CD, upload it to Youtube, play it to your neighbours - they'll love it. We hope you enjoy it too, feedback is appreciated.
01. Crossroads (Boogaloo Crew Bootleg) - Jose Gonzalez
02. One Bright Night (Scuba's Broken Window Dub) - Way Out West
03. SOS - Daega Sound System
04. Dub Specialist - Synkro
05. Ophelia - Janner & Acky
06. The Loot (Sully Remix) - J-Treole
07. I Believe In Love (Boogaloo Crew Remix) - Supra 1
08. It’s Over - Von D & DJ Madd
09. Pitcher - D1
10. Rock City - Mensah
11. Dubsteppa - Funtcase & SBH
12. Set Me On Fire - Pendulum
13. Splash ft. Coco (Rusko Remix) - Sub Focus
14. No Relief (Daega Sound Remix) - Pete Grove
15. Street Fighter - Cookie Monsta
16. So Good - Tek-One
17. Pure Light - Vandera
18. Bon (Blasta Il Y A Du Bon Remix) - Von D
19. Tonight - DJ Madd
20. Seventy Six - Jack Dixon
21. You Got Me - Scuba
22. City of Cars (Von D Remix) - DLX & Kemst
23. Change (Dark Sky Remix) - Mirror Mirrors
24. Response Call - Code 3
All of these, except one, are a few days old but all worth a listen if you haven't picked them up already. Warm those ears up for the special treat dropping later.
At first I wasn't sure whether I liked this tune but over the last couple of weeks it's been working it's way up the 'Recently Played' and is now lodged firmly at the top. Fever Ray leave the usual haunted feeling but R/D adds life with a glitchy electro beat and powerful synths.
I'm Not Done (R/D Remix) - Fever Ray
Everyone must know the original by now, DJ Madd takes it deeper than most with a earth shuddering sub line.
Hold The Line (DJ Madd Refix) - Major Lazer
If you saw us DJ last year, this tune was in nearly every set - especially those around Ipswich for obvious reasons. Geeks, originally from England but now living in Belgium deserves some recognition sometime soon. Go check the myspace for the other productions. We been holding on to this for time but now it's out... it's perfect for playing in a club that aren't into Dubstep or if there seems to be a lack of ladies on the floor.
Show Me Love VIP - Geeks & Sikey
Last but not least - George Lenton brings us another decent production in just a few days. This tune doesn't fit in line with the other tunes because it's not a remix of something popular. However, this doesn't matter. It's begging for you all to download it. Deep vibes crossed with bleepy electro synths blend into a unique hybrid sound.
Kerloo - George Lenton
I was holding back on posting this until our new mix drops but that seems to be taking longer than expected. So, seeing as the sun has come out to play, why not have a tune to suit the mood? Get this pumping as the BBQs are fired up and the sun sets on the horizon. Guaranteed to get you jiggling. Boogaloo on the buttons as usual.
Crosses (Boogaloo Crew Bootleg) - Jose Gonzalez
If you still haven't got Rising Sun, do it.
Here we have two Hip-Hop orientated tracks. I know, a little bit different from the norm but mixing things up now and again is good for your ears. Both tracks come from special projects and here's why...
HeavyFeet have changed direction with their productions and have embarked on a 12 month project where they will release a single a month on new label Stamp! Beats. Their original will be put out for free but be backed with remixes of all kinds available at the shop. Their plan is to work with a variety of different vocalists - the first being fellow Mancunians Virus Syndicate. As promised...
I Spy (Feat. Virus Syndicate) - HeavyFeet
I Spy Remixes [beatport]
This next project, you've already heard about briefly in this post. Part two is now available at their bandcamp, spanning genres from Hip-Hop to Electronica to Neo-Soul to Dubstep. 21 tracks for free? There's got to be at least one you like in there. This one's my favourite...
Devil's Hand (Feat. Racecar & Sarah G) - Debilorithmicos
First of many posts to come... someone got sacked today!
After our mishap in Norwich with Rob Sparx he has gone on to start the biggest thread of the moment in Dubstepforum. He's questioning what's happened to Jump-Up Dubstep - I know where he's coming from but many have taken the light hearted stab to many levels. For a read, check here. I think a battle between Rob and Funtcase has been arranged on a 70K rig in Birmingham in the not too distant future. There's also news that Funtcase has some deeper material which I'm keen to hear.
Rob is known for being on the darker heavier side and from my knowledge he is amongst some of the first to write Dubstep. All tracks, as said before a couple of times, are technically produced to a high standard. Not all may be your cup of tea but that's for each and every taste to decide.
He brings us two fresh tracks which aren't available anywhere else in the world. Look 2 The Future rolls and rumbles, kick-starting those subs into action and Independent Life has strong Dub-Reggae vibes keepin' things chilled.
Look 2 The Future - Rob Sparx
Independent Life (Dubby Mix) - Rob Sparx
Volume One went down a treat and now DFRNT's Echodub imprint are back with another 13 full tracks, and as before, they are available for free. All downtempo, chilled, IDM beats orientated about that word Dubstep. I've picked my favourite two. Vandera has been impressing me no end recently and his dubs have been getting a rinsing. (One features in our new mix, set to drop very soon.) Lojik might steal the show though with this innovative, rolling, pumping, leftfield scorcher. Since stapling his name to the scene with that massive Bob Marley booty - he's not moving anywhere but upwards. Keep your eye out for Actraiser too, he's set to blow any minute.
"We selected a number of artists, and asked them all to contribute to what we feel is a showcase of some of the most beautiful music coming from the deeper end of the dubstep, electronic and IDM genres."
DOWNLOAD: Echodub Loves Vol. 2
01. Subreachers - Memories Of Better Times
02. Box Mouse - 5:37am Outside The Station
03. Actraiser - Imaginarium
04. Egoless - Back Home
05. SvpremeFiend - Prover
06. Think - All Wet
07. SimonOff - Trip To Luca
08. Lurka - Cosmic
09. Tribal - White Rain
10. Vandera - India Joya
11. Lojik - White Room
12. Jas - In A Heartbeat
13. Dminus - Ultramarine
Some might say, "I wish every weekend was a four day weekend" and on Thursday night I felt the same. Now that Monday has arrived and there's the possibility of being out for a 5th night - I'm not sure how good 4 day weekends would be. Or would we adapt?!
You might get the jist of how I'm feeling with the vibe of these tracks, a little fragile and in need of a nice long sleep in my own bed. If you're in the same boat then this is dedicated for you...
First off, yes, another xx remix but, I think this might be my favourite - of 'Islands' that is. Soothing vocal, gentle beat and clanging synths/bells. Clanging in a good way from CHLLNGR.
Islands (CHLLNGR Remix) - The xx
New from George Lenton, toning it down a little from his usual club bangers, he takes one on a ride with piano melodies and moody atmospherics.
Pulaire - George Lenton
Various Production have been on my radar for a couple of years since their 'Versus' album but had slipped out of the peripheral until I came across this beauty. Bit more upbeat than the other two but still perfect for lounging. Vocal has been worked well into the soaring surroundings. It takes me from feeling miserable to content and now I just want more.
Dressed In Dresden (Various Production Remix) - The Hundred In The Hands
All of that too soft? Stick this on a system and get blown away...
Ghost Not Memory - Darqwan [youtube]