It comes round quicker than a knucklehead can shout ‘ghost produced!’ any time a woman dares to release a tune, it’s the Anti-Virus. A weekly round-up of lockdown busters, sonic distractions, live streams and, most importantly, examples of artists and labels doing powerful things provoke thought, raise awareness and much needed funds for a whole range of causes.
Edition 15, week 14: codename LONG. We’ve passed the three month mark. While some social restrictions are being lifted and a few countries are lucky enough to be out raving again – yeah we got our jelly eyes on you New Zealand – life is still far from normal. Tensions are still high. The future feels woefully bleak. We all need haircuts (unless you’re lucky to live with a hairdresser or a barber – we’ve got our jelly eyes on you, too)
But no matter how hard it gets, no matter how much people piss you off right now in the social media cesspits, please try and leave the raving until it’s safer to do so. Free parties can be amazing, but they’re really not advisable right now. All of the below most certainly is, though. Enjoy…
GLXY x Degs – Young Hearts
Out today: GLXY and Degs have captured the heartache of the BLM movement with Young Hearts. Exclusive to Bandcamp, Degs delivers some of his rawest most personal thoughts on persistent experiences of systematic racism and the urgent need for change over a signature barbed soul GLXY beat. All proceeds will be split between NAACP and the Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust.
“I’ve been pretty vocal about the issue of societal and institutionalised racism so when my friends at GLXY hit me up to write a track for two great causes – it was a no-brainer,” says Degs. “Our hearts and souls went into this.”
The most personal and poignant record either act have made to date, it couldn’t be fresher – they literally finished it on Tuesday.
“Safe to say, Andy absolutely killed it and lyrically this track cuts through very deeply and highlights the issues in their rawest form,” says Tom GLXY. His partner in vibes Jon GLXY agrees: “Reading comments and posts online recently has shown me there’s still a lot of ignorance in the world. It felt like a good time to share this message with the drum and bass world and try and raise some money for some very worthy causes.”
NAACP help with litigation for black people in the USA while UK organisation the Stephen Lawrence Trust supports and enables disadvantaged and discriminated young black people and campaigns for, and invests in, a fairer, equal future. Visit Degs’ Bandcamp page.
Strats x Footsie x Cimm – Black Boxes
Another powerful piece of music released this week to highlight the Black Lives Matter movement comes from Strategy and Footsie. Cimm provides the beats, while both Manny and Newham MCs fire off sobering sharp-tongued insights and political incisions. All proceeds go to the Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust. Grab it on Bandcamp.
Submotion Orchestra – Eyeline (Blocks & Escher Remix)
Blocks & Escher have gone into the vaults and unlocked a long lost Submotion Orchestra remix that’s never been available digitally to raise money for Black Lives Matter UK, an organisation dedicated to dismantling capitalism and power structures that disproportionally affect black people in Britain. A hurricane tune, fittingly full of tension and rage, pay what you can for a very worth cause.
V/A – Ramp Up The NHS Volume 2
Back in April, Bristol label Ramp Up rallied up some serious troops for Ramp Up The NHS, a bass music album raising funds for the frontline soldiers. Two months later, they’ve done it again and recruited another hench roll-call: Andrezz, Dr Meaker, Sikka, Cabin Fever UK, Con-Figure, Don-E, Suvstep, Wobble T, Slix and many more provide beats ranging from grime to jump-up. Ramp it up right here.
KinKai & Akemi Fox – (Lenzman Remixes)
No stranger to Manchester’s endless pool of talent – almost all TNQ releases feature a Manchester singer or MC – Lenzman takes his Dutch Northern Quarter to the UK north with two beautiful remixes of Manny rising stars Kinkai and Akemi Fox. Released today on Bandcamp all proceeds will be split between Black Minds Matter, an organisation helping to highlight and combat mental illness in black communities and Justice For Shukri Abdi, a young Manchester girl whose tragic death was dismissed as an accident without investigation. Head to The North Quarter.
Cover up with Junglist Movement
Mandatory on public transport and could potentially come into place in other public places in the near future, face masks have overtaken bucket hats as the essential accessory this summer. So why not put your music where your mouth is, cover up and protect others with Aeorsoul’s Junglist Movement masks. Successfully hitting the crowd-funding target we highlighted four weeks ago, they’re now on sale and £2.50 of each mask will go to the UCLH Haematology Cancer Care unit of the NHS, a service close to the Junglist Movement brand founder and designer Leke’s heart. Cop the masks here and see here for an interview we ran with him earlier this year that tells the story off his iconic brand.
Aspiring producers and labels: Get to know Mentor Audio
Aspiring producers: Tired of not hearing back from your demos? Don’t worry, your snare definitely is rubbish but there’s still hope for you yet. Mentor Audio is a new service that links demos to labels and podcasters who are willing to mentor, feedback and help you with your productions. For free.
A great way of labels linking up directly with tomorrow’s talent and helping them with their early steps of their career and a priceless pool of industry insight, feedback and connections for anyone submitting a demo; this is a win-win situation. So far over 20 drum & bass labels have signed up to feedback and mentor entrants, including Korsakov Music, Overview and Sub-Liminal. If you’re a label or an artist and would like to get involved as a mentor, you can fill in this form right here. Still currently in its early phases, this does seem like a great way of turning the demo process into an engaging dialogue that will help artists develop much quicker than the tired old tradition of years of inbox silence. Get involved.
Friday June 19
Belgian minimal monsters Bredren are teaming up with D&BTV: Locked In and heading to their usual haunt Fuse tonight for a social distanced club show. No crowd but plenty of dubs all the same, they’ll be joined by Hystatus, Flou & Drama and M-Zine. More info
The award for the best named event this weekend has to be Only Nans. Held by Cryptik Events and happening across the weekend from Friday to Sunday, the event will be raising funds for Age UK and it’s a pretty hefty rollcall of selectors… North Base, Traumatize, Kastro, Bad Habitz, BLCKHRY, Crossy, Diligent Fingers, Manuel, Klue, Lupo will all be representing and raising funds over the weekend. Blessed are the nans!
It’s Friday night so Play It (( LOUD )) with Colombian crews RE.SET and REC. Any DJ who’s toured in Colombia will know all about the legendary Re.Set crew and since April they’ve been hosting streams every Friday night. Over the weeks they’ve had 33 DJs from 13 countries.
“We just wanted to share vibes with friends,” says Re.Set founder Jairo who’s linked up with local radio station REC (Radio Electronica Colombania) “I wanted to show people how we do things. Especially people here in Colombia, how they’re recording their sets in their homes with the means they have. We’re just keeping the vibes up and spirits up.”
Vibes go up at 6pm Colombia time (Middnight UK time) and roll out for three hours. Tonight’s rollcall comprises Eightball, Elerreme, Jhofre. Turn it up.
Saturday June 20
Time for a bit of northern soul as the Yorkshire D&B scene represents this Saturday at Leeds For Love, a 13 hour D&B streaming session to raise awareness and funds for UK foodbanks. Aperio, Loz Conreras, Manoeuvre, Colossus and LD50 are some of the selectors playing. Get the full event details.
Fresh from last week’s In Harmony In Solidarity festival, Electric Hawk return with more D&B harmony on Saturday with a very impressive rollcall: The Caracal Project, Ekko & Sidetrack, GLXY, Rohaan, Reid Speed, Posij and IMANU are some of the vibe spreaders this Saturday. There’s plenty going on Sunday, too. See full line-up below and find more information here.
Dutty Bass has recruited an almighty line-up for their 24 hour Sick Kids Sessions stream. Running from 12pm Sat to 12pm Sun (UK time) DJs include Voltage, NC-17, DJ Hybrid, RMS, Conrad Subs, Marcus Visionary, Liondub and all funds raised will go to the Sick Kids Foundation. This is massive.
ANOTHER massive one this Saturday! Kasra and family will be raising money for the Trussell Trust foodbanks and Black Lives Matter with their Critical S T R E A M. Kicking off 1pm UK time, some impressive heavy hitters are scheduled to play… Coco Bryce, Enei, Fade Black, Buunshin, Charli Brix, Particle, Waeys, Levela and Serum will all be playing. Kasra will be present too in the form of a Studio 338 set from last year. Watch the crowd the remember how things used to be… And how they’ll be again. Full information.
Fabio interviewing Calibre. Need we say more?
From how Calibre met Marcus Intalex to writing a drum & bass soap opera to the art of interacting with the dancefloor as a DJ, over an hour of conversational donnie gold has been uploaded by the Marcus Intalex Music Foundation. It’s amazing. Check out the first part below and find the second part here.
Bachelors Of Science have shared the first single from their forthcoming fourth album. Love Is Found features Ben Soundscape, Dominique Gomez and Emcee Child and comes complete with this powerful video of frontline workers doing their thing.
“This song is all about upliftment, and standing together during tough times. As a tribute to the incredible show of strength that the global community of first responders, workers, and everyday people have shown during the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic, all proceeds from this video will go to organizations helping to tackle the pandemic. We encourage you to share this video and donate if you can to organizations such as Give Directly. We will get through this, and dance together as one again soon.” Amen. Stream or download it here.
Massive shout to Neonlight. Last Friday the German duo hosted a 24 hour studio stream in which they made the best part of a track (which they’ll be finishing very soon) and heartily vibed with the chatroom soldiers who stood firm with them for the whole sleepy situation. Bassline quizzes, old WIP presentations, raising over 200€ for charity and…um….making foghorn basses out of watering cans. Some of the stream can be found on the Blackout channel here. Wonder at the watering can creativity right here…
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#tbt to the first few seconds of our 24 hours looooooooooooooong production live stream from last Friday. @tobi_neonlight presents the ‘Watering Can’ aka ‘the original Neonlight Foghorn’. This sound made it in the final version of the track btw???? Once more a huge shout out to @blackout_music , @wintermutemusic and all who joined us on that ride. ????❤ // #neonlight #neonlightmusic #blackoutmusic #twitch #youtube #livestream #foghorn #wateringcan #cowbell #goodtimes #leipzig
It’s another fruitful week for MC sprayouts as both Visionobi and Bazil MC have posted brand new bars. Both flexing some deep and philosophical thoughts on where we’re at right now, Bazil goes in over Monrroe – Faint Intention while Visionobi brings the second part of his Drop In The Ocean concept developing a lyric he wrote 10 years ago and refixing it for a an even bleaker present day over Perez & Sabre’s beautiful classic Solitary Native. Both need your attention.
Meanwhile on more of a spoken word tip, MC and broadcaster Paleblu has just depicted the last three months of our shared anguish, anger and frustration in this formidable three minute piece. Prepare to be moved…
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WATCH THE FULL VIDEO… A few months ago, I started writing this piece about Coronavirus and my feelings about the lockdown. Then just weeks ago I feel like some kind of global awakening happened. More and more people were starting to realise that institutional and systemic racism is something that is affecting people all over the world. This piece then took a change of course and became a poem about racism in the world. This is my first spoken word piece I’ve ever put out so I hope you enjoy. Massive thank you to @crums for the drone footage, @4tune_empire for the music and my brother @everybodylovesfate for editing the video. Hopefully this will give other people the courage to speak about these issues! ?❤️?? #SpokenWord #Music #BlackLivesMatter #FuckRacism #FuckInstitutionalRacism
You want the truth? If you’re a fan of OG MC 2Shy and you love beats from the likes of Calibre, Alix Perez, Phil Tangent, Degs, Pola & Bryson and London Elektricity then you can most definitely handle the truth. Following his Sound Bytes series last year, this is brand new material from The Prototypes’ MC of choice. Vibes from the booth.
Missledz has dropped a fresh hour of filth this week. Fresh up on the BPM agency’s Soundcloud, it’s an hour of purring, growling darkness. Expect tracks from DLR, Ill Truth, Koherent, Octo-Pi, Amoss, IMANU, Waeys, HLZ and loads more. Savage.
Another act known for their penchant for the darkness, Scar flipped the musical switch on their first ever Metalheadz Podcast earlier this month. Digging deep into their influences, they tell a story of UK dance music history with cuts from the likes of Orbital, Massive Attack, 2 Bad Mic, 4 Hero, Shut Up & Dance, Bizarre Inc and many more iconic foundation acts. Two hours of awesome musical history.
Finally, a free download… We just caught this creepy little sizzler from rising talent Nemy before finishing up. Currently denting the discographies of Delta9, Program, Locked Concept, Skankandbass and beyond, he’s cooked up a treat with Synthesis. Watch out for the variety of switches laced throughout. Check it, then check out. See you next week.