Never Say Die Black Label has been relentless in its sonic assault, amassing an impressive century of releases in little over five years. Time flies when you’re serving up the grittiest dubstep and riddim from the gutter, encouraging the new generation of uncompromising bass producers
“It started as mini-series on Never Say Die in 2014 to house the under-swell of raw dubstep that was fighting for mass attention,” explains label founder SKisM. “Five years on and 100 releases later, I think it’s safe to say that without the sounds and producers that we were pushing, dubstep would have died a death. Scene-wide it’s impossible to ignore the influence of the ‘riddim’ movement, and the under-swell has born the next generation of headliners. I’m not saying we are wholly responsible for that, but we’re certainly happy we created launch pad and a home for some of the most forward-thinking producers out there.”
Since the label kicked off in earnest in January 2015 with the first Black Label XL v/a album, the label has been home to a whole slew of yung hurter herberts from Badklaat to Ponicz to Trampa to Gentlemens Club to Svdden Death to Phiso and everyone in between… Including Kill Feed who’s had the honour of commanding Never Say Die Black Label’s 100th release with the Valley Of Death EP.
“I remember the first song I heard on Black Label was an EP by JuJu and it really blew my mind,” says Kill Feed, previously known as 5ohman. “Since then, I’ve really started taking producing music a lot more seriously and to now be their 100th release really is something else.”
Joining the label last summer on Black Label XL 6, Kill Feed first dented the label’s discography and made himself known with his Multiplayer EP and Exit VIP. Now comes Valley Of Death. His most ambitious EP to date, it’s inspired by some of the most important things in life: movies, old video games and girls saying cheesecake. He feels it features some of his best production work to date and it comes complete with some deliciously retro visuals.
“With this EP, I definitely took my time,” he explains. “Originally, it sounded very different. I was rushing myself to finish it. But after arriving at the realisation that I didn’t like it enough as it was, I decided to really dive deeper into what I could achieve. My perfectionist side took over and ended up with what you can hear on the EP now!”
Read on for a track-by-track breakdown. Shouts to Black Label for hitting the big 100 – bring on the next tonne.
Valley Of Death
“One day I decided to watch the horror movie IT and I ended up liking it a lot. So it gave me a lot of inspiration for what is now Valley Of Death. The intro and the overall vibe of the track as a whole is really inspired by that movie.”
“I was watching gameplay of old video games from the early 90’s. I stumbled across the famous old game Duke Nukem, which has voice lines that are so sick I just had to put them in a track. A lot of my music is also inspired by movies that I’ve watched and the inspiration for the title in this one was from the movie Wolverine. In the first five minutes of the movie, there’s this big nuclear explosion scene and I think nuclear explosions as a whole look super sick in movies. With the word nuke in Duke Nukem so it all tied in together.”
“I’ve had this sample of a girl saying ‘cheesecake’ for the longest time and decided it was finally time to use it. The track is also inspired by some of my older music. I went for a more aggressive riddim vibe with this track. Also, I just love cheesecake.”
“With this track, the first idea I had was that I wanted to make an intro with a longer build-up than usual, but with no build-up drums. Also I definitely tried out new mechanics on the sound design with this track. Especially the reverb effect that you are hearing. I feel like this is definitely one the more experimental tracks that people have heard from me.”