WORDS

Reconnecting With Trex

“I don’t sell myself very well, I’m not the shoutiest man or full of hype, but some days I do feel blessed and it does feel like what I’m doing it trickling down to the right people who like the type of stuff I do and appreciate what I’m doing.” 

These were the last words Trex said to UKF on this site when we interviewed him in 2020 for his second album 15 Doors. 18 months later, he’s still one of the least shoutiest men on the block, he’s still refreshingly hype and hyperbole free… But it’s clear even more people are appreciating what he does.

In fact 2022 could well be the Londoner’s biggest year to date. Following his unanimous Dub Wars victory at the end of 2021, 2022 will see him continue this winning streak as he drops missives on a whole plethora of super respected labels.

Recently spotted on the likes of Dispatch, Onyx, Sine and Bowlcut, over the comings weeks and months we can expect to see Trex beats on the likes of Metalheadz, Innerground and Overview who he’s releasing on this week with Plummet / Sleep On It.

Then of course, there’s his own label Trust Audio which has been dishing out high grade goods this year with various VA releases including a big hitter from Trex himself alongside Teej and Medic MC.

Plenty of heat, no unnecessary hype of shouting; Trex continues to deal strictly in realness. Here’s where he’s at in spring 2022.

Belated big up on winning Dub Wars…

Thank you. It was a stressful month. Ben OB1 asked me to do it way back in season one and I knew if I got into it I’d become obsessed with it, because that’s how I am, but eventually I made time to do it because I love concept. It’s stressful, though. You’re putting your creativity out there for people to judge and you’re up against some incredible talents. It’s pressure!

You’ve got to turn things around so quickly, too!

Yeah and then you watch the votes coming in and you’ve got to entice your supporters to try and vote for you. It’s quite a hectic experience. I literally squeezed through on some rounds. There were some great producers involved and the one with Shadows was so close. I thought he was going to win that. Minor Forms’ tune in the round before I was up against him was the best tune in the whole tournament, too, so I got lucky there. If I was up against that track, he’d have trashed me.

Oh lucky! So that was how you wrapped up 2021, how has 2021 been shaping up for both you and for the label Trust?

It started off slowly with a Trust ‘Best Of’, but we’ve been ramping up nicely now with sick music coming up all year. We got releases from Stokka, Subtle Element, stuff from me, stuff from T>I nd me…

Sick!

Yeah we’ve done about eight collaborations now. We work well together and don’t worry about little details and just get into a good workflow. We got some things on Trust and something on Headz. Then I got an EP coming on Headz.

Oh nice!

Two separate releases that is – both coming pretty soon, I believe. Before that, there’s music on Overview and recently Hot One came out on Trust with Medic and Teej. We did a video in Bristol which was good fun. Having a day out, a few beers and not taking things too seriously. Teej’s tune Section 17 is really sick too. That’s had a lot of attention and I’ve got to shout out Teej, we’ve done a few collaborations and had a few remixes and he’s such a talented guy. Top guy coming through!

Yeah man! You love a collabo don’t you? You work well with people…

I’ll work with anyone if we’re on the same vibe or share the same vision. There’s a snootiness among certain labels and between certain artists, but I’m never about that. I’m not about that in life. I’ll work with any artist from any generation from any subgenre. If we click, then it’s worth seeing what we can do.

Yeah totally man! I think that’s reflected on Trust Audio as well. You seem to be ramping things up a bit on the label right now!

Yeah we’ve been working on our image and our merchandise. I work with a team called Flavors and come on board and rebrand it. We’ve been working with them since January and we’ve got a great continuity with what we’re putting out and how we’re building up an identity for the label.

A proper investment in the label…

Yeah I was looking at some labels for an idea on how slick they look within everything they do. Labels like Critical and 1985 and Sofa Sound. Labels that have a strong visual game on lock. It’s inspiring.

Trust is run with your mate Quest, right? Big him up!

He’s a big inspiration to me, that guy. He taught me the ropes when I was an 18-year-old little shit involved in running a night.  He taught me about all the classics and the foundations. I’d go round to his house and he had all the original jungle and acid house records. He’s a legend. So when I launched the label a few years ago he had to be involved.

That’s great. What’s coming up next on Trust?

We’ve just had Tribes 8, which had a couple of my students on there who I do one-to-one tutorials with. They’ve really come through and I’ve signed some amazing stuff from them. One guy is called Kawstic and other students have been Kalane and R3IDY. That whole EP is sick with tracks from Furious Freaks who are from Prague and are really good also Ninive who’s from Hungary and very talented. That EP, like all the Tribes releases, was about getting people from all over the world together. That’s the concept of that series.

Wicked that you’re signing music from people you’re tutoring. It’s nice to be part of their journey and give them that outlet and opportunity.

Yeah man, people come to me and they’re all really skilled anyway, and have amazing ideas, so it’s a case of guiding people a tiny bit and sharing a bit of advice. To be honest they’re already most the way there before they come to me and I’m very happy releasing their music too. Kawstic will have a proper EP coming soon, R3IDY too. It’s nice to build up the family.

That’s the evolution of the label!  

Yeah totally and we want to do our own Trust Audio events before the year is out, too.

Amazing. Back to the present, there’s a lot going on for you. There’s Hot One, then the Overview release, then Headz. Anything else to reveal?  

I got a tune with Haribo and Slay called No More Games which is going to be a big one, I got a few things with Haribo coming up on other labels including something with Riya and Doc Brown. Another tune with Fox and Medic. More Trust Audio releases from me. A thing on Marky’s label.

Wow. Everyone wants a piece of Trex!

Yeah people have asked me for music which is a really nice compliment. Just like collaborating with people, if I like the label’s vibes and it feels right, then I’ll do it.

Releasing on Headz is a real touch. Did you get the classic Goldie call?

Yeah man, he messaged me on Instagram then gave me one of those early morning phonecalls. He’s taken an EP and the collabs with T>I. To get on Headz is a big one for me.

Massively. I guess this is the lockdown harvest coming through?

Yeah definitely. I utilised the pandemic to my advantage in as far as advancing my music. It levelled with playing field to a degree. There was no gig footage, we were all at home and it was easier to push through a bit. I’ve also started a Patreon.

What can people expect from that?

There’s the dubpack tier where you got two tunes a month, then a producer tier where you get a tutorial every month and a sample pack, which I dug super deep for with the sound design, and some bonus tunes as well so yeah, big shouts to everyone who supports me on there and everyone who’s supported me so far in general!

Trex, Teej & Medic MC – Hot One is out now on Trust Audio

Trex – Plummet / Sleep On It is out Friday April 29 on Overview Music

Follow Trex: Facebook / Soundcloud / Instagram