100 days deep and counting…
As the summer kicks in, we’re entering a new phase. A phase in which we forecast extreme jelly levels from ravers across the UK as the world begins to slowly open up its dancefloors… And ours stay firmly shut.
It’s inspiring to see clubs re-opening in countries such as China and New Zealand. In three week’s time Australia’s dancefloors will be opening and things are slowly beginning to open up with small outdoor events popping up across Europe, too. Even as close as Guernsey, dancefloors are opening up as soon as this weekend.
Meanwhile we’re sat here in the UK with a warm can of cider and muggy heat, trying to recreate the Glastonbury ambience by getting sun stroke and avoiding thunder storms with 10 mixes all at once through various speakers around the house while leaving the door to the loo open.
Well, we could potentially be, if all this sick stuff wasn’t distracting us. It’s the final weekly Anti-Virus. For the last 16 weeks we’ve been dedicated to bigging up and saluting every creative soul who’s continued to do inspiring things, push for crucial causes and rally up the troops over the last 3+ months. Fund-raisers, tunes, mixes, production tutorials, videos, albums, beyond…
Cool people will always continue doing cool things, despite the uncharted, unpleasant and unsure circumstances, pressures and challenges: This was the message of the first Anti-Virus. While we had no idea how intense, hard, frustrating and heartbteaking things would be at points, we were right. Every week there has been amazing things to highlight and shout out, and many more we didn’t have space or time to include.
We’ve reported on projects that, combined, must have raised £100,000s for important causes; NHS, MIND, Age UK and, more recently, causes relating to the Black Lives Matter civil rights movement. We’ve shown – we = everyone who isn’t a racist bellend – that there really is a scene out there. As dramatic, toxic and volatile as it can sometimes be, the migration of this music to a fully online environment has shown there is a proper, thriving, living mass of passionate artists and fans who properly give a shit and want to fight for a better future and want to help each other.
That’s who these articles are written for. People like these below, people like you. Thank you to everyone who’s supported these articles over the last 100+ days. Enjoy…
This weekend: Follow The Sun!
24 hour party people: Viper, Bassrush and 16 Bar Clique have teamed up to create a unique stream that takes us around the D&B loving globe. Kicking off 9am UK time in New Zealand, Follow The Sun will gradually move westwards throughout the day, ending in the US 24 hours later just in time for sunset. Guests cover the entire spectrum: Trei, Ekko & Sidetrack, DJ Phantasy, Drumsound & Bassline Smith B2B Tantrum Desire, Fabio, Giganti, Koven, Delta Heavy, Rene LaVice, Winslow and Matrix & Futurebound are just some of the names performing over the 24 hour rave.
“The ethos behind it is about unity,” says Viper bossman Futurebound. “There’s been so much negativity on the planet lately, and even within our great scene. We all need to help each other more we all need more positives. This project isn’t about a load of headline DJs playing sets, we also wanted to showcase the many talents within the scene and also put a focus on the MCs worldwide as they are foundation in our culture.”
MCs and vocalists representing the 16 Bar Clique episode include Degs, Ragga Twins, Armanni Reign, Sofi Mari, Mad Hed City, Harry Shotta, Miss Trouble and Foreign Beggars’ Pav4n to name a few. The cypher-influenced show will be highlighting the Black Lives Matter movement and promises to be one of the highlights of the show.
“Really excited and honoured to have all the incredible calibre of MCs and vocalists involved in this #blm episode of the 16 Bar Clique,” says Miss Trouble, 16 Bar Clique co-founder. “Coming together to collaborate as lyricists, especially with a subject matter that is so close to our hearts, is one of the reasons myself and Youthstar created this project. It’s a platform for pure, unfiltered expression, and right now we all need this.”
With an album dropping today to celebrate, and plenty more happening across the 24 hours, this is one of the most interesting stream concepts we’ve seen this lockdown. Futurebound is already thinking of a second session.
“Everyone in the scene from anywhere around the world is welcome to get involved and to showcase your brand, your label and what you represent for drum & bass,” he explains. “We’re already thinking about the next episodes and with Follow The Sun the only thing headlining is drum & bass.”
Yes! Join the action right here from 9am BST Saturday June 27. Here’s what more of the line-up have to say…
“If you’ve ever wondered how each corner of the world showcases their love for drum and bass, this is for you. 24 hours of some of the best music from producers and DJ’s all over the world – what more can you ask for?” Richter & Fallen
“Massive respect going out to the whole Viper Recordings team for bringing the world of D&B closer together. And it seems only fitting that we kick it off in New Zealand, one of the biggest hot spots for D&B right now! Bring it on, we’re ready to rave.” Dan Aux
“We never expected to play a set under a traditional Dutch windmill. Strange times can be fun too!” T & Sugah
“I’ve not done any live streams since lockdown arrived but when Futurebound contacted me about this idea he had for Follow The Sun, I knew I wanted to be part of it. This live stream comes the day after my album Generations is released so look out for some of the really exciting exclusives I have planned for it.” – DJ Phantasy
“Streamed DJ sets and beyond! This is such a really cool and unique idea, And we are so happy to be part of such a huge lineup.” – Katie Koven
“Anything that’s about bringing people together, from all walks of life, internationally, who all love D&B, is a winning project as far as I’m concerned. Keeping this scene alive and kicking, big thanks to Viper for being pioneers as always. Lock on, lock in, and keep raving people.” – Ayah Marar
Watch: The Upbeats & Workforce – No Sleep Till New Zealand Part 2
Fresh up today, a little video pleasure for your lockdown leisure. No Sleep Till New Zealand Part 2 wraps up one of the most ambitious projects New Zealand duo The Upbeats have ever committed to. Launched way back in December 2017 (which feels like an eternity ago in light of world events) they raised enough money to take some of their favourite artists to beautiful corners of the world to make music and document it all. In the past they’ve worked with Halogenix in Iceland, Noisia in Japan and Workforce on their own stomping ground New Zealand.
“This is the final part of the series,” explains Jeremy Glenn, one half of the duo. “We did this with Jack Workforce and New Zealand legend Tiki Taane. We got to see such an incredible part of the country, which was new to us as well. It was a beautiful way to round off one of our favourite projects we’ve ever done.”
Jeremy hints that they’d love to do it again when travel restrictions are lifted. In the meantime, he’s in one of the sweetest spots in the world: NZ dancefloors are open for business. “Given the world is in upheaval, and the scene is in this weird state, there’s so much good music about. I feel very spoilt right now – it’s an easy time to hit people up for tunes. Everyone wants to see their tunes played out and we’re some of the only ones who can do that.”
Dub central. Watch the video then spend a few minutes being jelly of all NZ and AUS DJs – every distraction counts when it comes to counting down the days until we can go out to play again, too.
Marcus Visionary & Blackout J.A – No Apology
Long-time studio sparring partners Marcus Visionary and Blackout J.A have united in response to the Black Lives Matter movement with a powerful musical message. Sampling Black Uhuru’s iconic Solidarity, Marcus lays down a heartfelt groove with enough space for Blackout to tell it like it is and demand change.
“Humanity has to find a way to put an end to deep generational systemic racism,” explains Marcus who also created a video that reinforces all the reasons why these last few weeks’ protests have been so necessary. “It all starts with a conversation. We have to take the time to understand the system and the history so that we can make the necessary changes for progress.”
The time is now. No Apology is available via longstanding Toronto imprint Inner City Dance. All proceeds go directly to the NAACP Legal Defense & Education Fund. Check the video….
Essential listening: Jungle Mania Present The Junglist Book – Bladerunner & Skibadee
We’ve shared enough mixes over the last 16 Anti-Virus articles, but few hit the vibe spot as heavily and positively as this.
Bladerunner rolling it out across every single shade and flavour like an absolute badman and Skiba in fine fine fettle. Fast, fun, full of energy; it’s everything we’ve missed from the dance in the last 100+ days, it’s everything you’d want from a jungle mix. As far as DJ/MC blends go, this is up there with LSB & DRS’s Space Cadet Volume 3 as one of the best mixes of the lockdown. Deal with the matter, deal with it proper.
Drum & Bass For The NHS
The Drum & Bass Awards are hosting a stream of immense proportions next month. July 18 sees the likes of Hybrid Minds, DJ Guv, Makoto, Nicky Blackmarket, AC13, Voltage & Inja, Rene LaVice, Standard Procedure and many more heavyweights all lined up to stream for Drum & Bass For The NHS.
“This year’s Drum & Bass Awards was cancelled due to the lockdown and the whole event went online,” explains the awards founder MC Magika. “Having no celebration party, as we have done since 2006, it was important to keep up the momentum and to show the awards still stands strong and to ultimately put an online stream of significance celebrating many of this year’s winners and past winners as well as some runners up plus a few guests and putting the spotlight on some artists of the future. And to make the event even more worthy we are raising money for the NHS, so a positive addition to the whole affair. The awards will return next year with a real party to celebrate in person.”
Rough Tempo, Let It Roll, NASS, Boomtown, Breakin Science and Formation Records are all celebrating with them, too. All funds raised during the event will go to the NHS who are still very much in emergency mode, especially after recent scenes of packed beaches have triggered concerns of a second wave. You can donate here. Find out more….
Rewatch: D&BTV – Locked In: Harriet Jaxxon
Pow! Hot on the heels of her debut single The Sound, Harriet Jaxxon linked up with D&BTV Locked-In earlier this week for an hour of freestyle, three-deck fire across the spectrum and across the eras. Skills!
Reload: DJ Marky & MC Darrison Live @ Planet V Carnival Special, 27.8.2000
Rewind 20 years for this incredible time capsule. A young DJ Marky going IN at the long since deceased London club Home. Recorded and broadcast by MTV Brasil at the time, this captures a unique moment in D&B time as Bryan Gee was introducing the world to a whole new sound from the other side of the world and Marky was the forefront. Alongside the musical hosting of Darrison, this is a serious treasure trove. Sacre blue!
Saxxon’s dropped his first ever VIP pack
Just in time for the heatwave, Saxxon’s dropping The Thirst Mutilator AKA his first ever pack of never-to-be-commercially-available VIPs. “Some might call it a dub pack,” grins the DJ with the steeliest chin in D&B. “Thanks to labels Natty Dub Recordings and G13 agreeing I’ll be going splitski’z and donating 50% of the takings. I wanted to support two independent movements: Trussell Trust for food banks, as so many people have fallen through the gaps of the UK government’s pandemic plan and the Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust who actively invest in individuals and their rights to equal opportunities.”
Salute. These packs are only available until the end of June and no other details are available. You have to hit the man up direct on email@example.com or his IG @saxxongram. Grab them while you can.
Sentic Cycle raises money for YoungMinds with Patched In Visions
Rising Vienna beatsmith Sentic Cycle has teamed up with innovative UK bass label Turbine to create a cool way to raise money and awareness of mental illness in young children and teens in the UK.
“This is really close to my heart as I’m diagnosed with schizoaffective psychosis,” explains Sentic Cycle, AKA Theodor Sperl who actually wrote his debut EP while in psychiatric hospital. That was his fittingly titled Break Through EP back in 2017. Releases on the likes of Delta9 and Lost Recordings have since followed. Now comes Patched In Visions, which comes as a free download when you invest in these evocative postcards, each written personal messages about mental health from Theodor himself. He explains how he’s managed to take control of his health with strong support and regular and correct medicine but is aware how many people aren’t as fortunate.
“Unfortunately not all teenagers have the same experience as I did and also not the financial aid from parents. Some people go to the hospital at least once a year. This charity is not only about helping mentally ill kids and teenagers but also raising awareness about how severe psychosis can be.
The beats sound like this. For add sweetness, the release day is Theodor’s birthday. Big him up and buy the postcards here.
Friday June 26: Innate Charity Live Stream
Newcastle crew Innate will be holding things down stream-wise this afternoon. Humanature, Walk:r and Monrroe are all lined up, plus Innate’s team of residents in support. All proceeds raised from the stream will go to NAACP.
“The NAACP Legal Defense Fund are a charity that’s been pushing for racial equality for years and they’re doing crucial work to help the Black Lives Matter movement,” explain the Innate crew. “100% of the donations will be going to the charity. Our aim is to support the Black Lives Matter movement and spread a positive message to as many people as possible, it’s important that people come together in times like these and we want to help out however we can.” Amen. Get involved.
Friday June 26: Soulvent Stream Sessions
Soulvent kick off a monthly streaming session tonight, Friday June 26. Every last Friday of the month, 10pm, the London-based soulful / deep D&B label will be rolling out their signature gold with friends and label family. “We’re excited to finally join the fray and roll out a Friday night line up for the living room ravers and sofa-skankers alike,” they tell us about the launch. “We are joined by In:Most, Conrad Subs and Terror so expect luscious liquid, jungle flavour and switch-ups galore.” Friday night, sorted. Join them.
Friday June 26: Shogun Audio
GLXY, Pola & Bryson, Technimatic, Document One and Visionobi will be hosting the Shogun Audio stream tonight from 7pm. For full ravey impact they’ve teamed up with a visuals crew from Boomtown and for full interaction and social impact they’ve opened up the Zoom connection. Get involved, chat to the crew, chat to your fellow ravers. This is a great warm-up for tomorrow’s 24 hour Sun Chasing mission.
Saturday June 27: On A Mission
Longstanding rave merchants On A Mission have put together a ridiculous session this Saturday and instead of coming from various bedrooms and studios across the country, it’s from a proper studio on a proper rig. Remember them? Destination: Saturday afternoon. Population: Skibadee, Eksman, Problem Central, Danny Byrd, Original Sin, Harriet Jaxxon, Taxman, Basslayerz, Sub Zero, Benny Page and possibly you.
Sunday June 28: Church x Stamina
Two massive North American D&B Sunday night institutions have been joining forces every week over the last few months. Church and Stamina, representing Toronto and San Francisco respectively, have been denting Mixcloud Live with mixes from their residents and friends across the US and beyond.
“I’m a big fan of collaboration,” says Jamal, Stamina bossman. “6hrs of streaming drum and bass, 1pm-7pm PDT every week, featuring 6 DJs. Church hosts the first half and Stamina runs the second half. We opted to use Mixcloud because of the licensing and artist royalty payments. We also don’t use a DJ video feed and run visuals instead to create an experience that pushes the listening aspect instead of staring at the DJ. We’re now coming up on our 8th episode of the series and plan to keep rolling until we can get back into venues.”
This could be some time. Join the Church and Stamina crew every Sunday night from 1pm PDT (which is 9pm UK time) Check out the past episodes with mixes from the likes of Sinistarr, Kallan HK, NC17, RMS, Jamal, Klippee, Hyroglifics, Method One, Bachelors of Science and many more all archived on their Mixcloud
Further into July….
July 9 – 13: Dirtybird Campout & Rave Family Electric Blockaloo
Head over to Minecraft for a huge event next month. Probably one of the biggest online events we’ve seen all lockdown, there are multiple stages, arenas and festivals-within-the-festival to navigate throughout the four days. The line-up covers everything. From 2BadMice to Todd Terry via a whole stack of D&B dons; Ray Keith, Reid Speed, Calyx & Teebee, AK1200 and so many more. This is massive. Head to the Rave Family website for more information or the event Facebook page.
July 9: Rotations Social Live Stream
Finally, we conclude all things Anti-Virus for now with Bristol’s Rotations crew. Especially of interest to all budding and aspiring producers, they’ll be hosting a live feedback session on demos from 7pm onwards. You can send your beats to firstname.lastname@example.org. It’s a wise move: the collective is a hive mind of new-gen talent, as we revealed last year. A golden opportunity. Join them here.
That’s it for the weekly Anti-Virus. Thanks to everyone who’s supported, contributed or used these to find exciting new music and new ways to support it. Stay safe.