Being a drum & bass producer is a time-consuming career. So is being a label owner, likewise a promoter…
Do all of those things simultaneously and you’re a very busy person – just ask Safire.
Owner of Plasma Audio, co-founder of Broken Beat Assault and a very fine producer to boot, he’s the dynamo of D&B down under.
“Music is a mix of work and pleasure and was always the kind of thing I wanted to do” he says. “It is tough engaging in so many avenues but with a strong vision it can work.”
We caught up with the man largely to thank for Australia’s burgeoning D&B scene to find out about all of his projects and the scene in his native country…
Safire: Plasma Audio
“Plasma launched at the beginning of 2013 with a release from Icicle, followed up by a single from Sabre. They’re two artists that have inspired me over the years and I’ve been lucky to work with them, and indeed all the other talented artists I’ve collaborated with.
“Ever since the beginning, I’ve had a direction of building a sort of creative collective with Plasma, rather than solely a ‘music label’ as we’re surrounded by a lot of art in Melbourne and there are lots of creative people here. With Plasma, we focus towards music but also invest time into art, design, apparel and audio production. Bringing it all together was the initial vision.
“We’ve just released a new collaborative line with an artist named Mhak from Tokyo. He’s super talented and has collaborated with the likes of Levi’s, Gravis and Nike. We teamed up to create a new range of apparel including a five Panel Cap, tee & 12” vinyl set. My partner was also involved in the project, she’s worked in fashion and has a great sense for design.
“The next release on Plasma is something by Icicle and myself with a track from Rido on the flip coming out November 15th. We’ve then got a remix of Yoga from Alix Perez due in December.”
Plasma Audio’s site: http://plasmacolab.co/
“I’ve been lucky enough to have a few releases on Shogun this year with more to come in the new year. I’ve just been away for a while so I’m looking forward to getting back in the studio; I’ve spent a fair bit of time on BBA events this year so it’ll be good to sway the focus towards my music again. Writing music has always been my focus, so I’m going to delegate more time to it over the next year.
“When artists come over to Australia, we quite often do the party and plan to hang in the studio during downtime. It’s really nice to get the artists in the studio as well as having them play at the night, not to mention trips out to Warrandyte to visit the Roos and Red Rover missions!
“I don’t cater my sound towards a certain label, it usually finds its way to that particular label depending on the style I’m into at the time. When I was writing deeper tracks, it worked really nicely with Dispatch, whilst some of the harder stuff I’ve been writing has worked well for Shogun. I was stoked to hear Shogun were into some of the stuff I was writing last year. It’s been a great experience working with such a respected label.
“My musical tastes go in cycles; I’ve been writing and playing a bit heavier of late, but I also enjoy a lot of halftime that’s around at the moment. My roots stem from hip hop and beats and it’s been great hearing hip hop flavours coming into D&B again.”
Safire: Broken Beat Assault (BBA)
“My brother ‘Dan Finna’, the person responsible for getting me into D&B, and I founded BBA in 2004 and we’re still promoting events, although we now spend a lot of time on our Plasma brand.
“We’ve promoted events monthly for the past ten years and orchestrated our 100th event last year. We’ve put on a lot of parties and have welcomed so many artists from around the globe including the likes of Andy C, Noisia, Goldie, Calyx & Teebee, LTJ Bukem, Pendulum, London Elektricity, The Upbeats and many more. Starting Plasma Audio was a way of continuing the progression after promoting events for a long time.”
Safire: Repping Australia
“The scene has always been good here and quite busy in some parts. I’d say Melbourne is steady rather than busy, but that could change in time! There are some good D&B producers in Australia with the likes of Royalston, Lockjaw, Johnny Hooves, Dusty Fungus & Okuli.”
Plasma 007, featuring a collab between Safire and Icicle and B-side from Rido, is out on Plasma Audio on 12/11/15.