Over the last few months Exit Records have been on the cryptic offensive with puzzling, intangible and obscure posts about the mysterious, funky-looking alien-headed Richie Brains and his true identity.
Not just online but IRL too as posters, flyers, stickers and t-shirts were spotted across the world from Antwerp to Tokyo.
With the revelation promised for last night – May 11 – at London’s Phonox, suspicions, theories and conspiracies have been circulating like wildfire in the build up.
Tracks that have been teased and leaked led to all types of conclusions and artist combinations. Richie Brains representation on Dub Phizix & Strategy’s Radio 1 show led to theories of it being a Manchester collective, heavy representation in Alix Perez and Ivy Lab sets led many to believe it was London combination while the MC/producer dynamic of tracks such as Splatta whipped up strong whiffs of Sam Binga.
Even DBridge’s Bad Company bandmate DJ Fresh got in on the garden path action….
A photo posted by dBridge (@dbridge) on
One thing that’s always been certain… Richie Brains tracks are sick and seriously on point. Sitting somewhere in the exciting, creatively endless halftime/juke/jungle axis, the tracks we’d heard had such formula free fusion they hinted at anyone on Exit’s roster. Or the rosters of Cosmic Bridge, Civil Music, Astrophonica, 20/20 LDN for that matter.
And last night, we found out once and for all…
Richie Brains is actually one of drum & bass’s biggest super groups of all time: Alix Perez, Chimpo, Fixate, Fracture, Om Unit, Sam Binga and Stray.
We’ll repeat that: Richie Brains is Alix Perez, Chimpo, Fixate, Fracture, Om Unit, Sam Binga and Stray.
Exit Records is no stranger to massive collaborations. DBridge himself coming from one of drum & bass’s most historic super groups Bad Company, his label has encouraged cross-pollination and fusions from the off with notable creative crews such as Binary Collective, Module Eight, HeartDrive and many other projects.
But this? Just like the promotional campaign that built up to it, it’s ridiculous. Seven – seven!?! – of the most forward-thinking men in drum & bass all making music together? Who knew there was studio big enough to fit so many heads/opinions/ideas? Who knew it was possible to lock down a final track with so many different technicians? Who knew such consistency could be derived from such creative chaos?
Questions questions… And all the answers are on DBridge’s blog: the roots (that go back two years), the creations (that actually stretched over three studios) and the concept are all addressed in master puppeteer DBridge’s distinct, frank style.
The rest of the answers you’ll find on the superb album….