After a relatively quiet period, Mutated Forms have gone from barely making drum & bass at all to releasing their debut album.
Not only is it the duo’s first ever feature length offering, it’s also arguably one of this year’s standout efforts so far – which is saying something considering the amount of serious quality LPs we’ve had this year in D&B.
We spoke to Artjom, one half of the duo, to find out three more reasons why you should give it a listen.
“We poured our heart and soul into this album and we really wanted people who usually listen to our music to like it. The response so far has been amazing.”
They were pushed into it by Chris from Blu Mar Ten….
“A few years ago, we were kind of stuck. We weren’t too sure what sound to produce and at one stage we thought Mutated Forms might end altogether. We became ‘Undercut’ for a bit, producing other genres away from drum & bass. It was fun but didn’t seem to be going anywhere…
“Then after a long break we decided to try a drum & bass track again and all of a sudden we had three labels fighting over it, and then it happened again with the second track; it felt like we were back home.
“We sent one of the tacks to Chris from Blu Mar Ten and he said he really liked it and asked us why we weren’t writing an album! We sent him another track and he asked again, with more force: “why the hell are you not writing an album!?”
“We decided to meet up with him and he gave us an insane kick up the ass. He got inside our heads and asked us really deep questions like whether or not we enjoyed writing music and why we were in the business. He was proper full-on and a massive help to us.
“We then met up with the guys from Spearhead and decided the album would suit their label best. Chris didn’t mind at all, he was just happy that we had finally decided to do an album.”
It tells a story…
“I’ve always thought it’s interesting how you can capture memories in sound in the same way you can with pictures and videos. If you listen to a track you have strong associations with it completely takes you back to a certain moment in time, and when you do it with your own tracks, that feeling multiplies by a hundred.
“We wanted the album to create that effect; reflecting different moments in both of our lives. We wanted to call it Captured In Time for that very reason but Steve (BCee) already has a tune with that name so he said we couldn’t use it, the bastard…
“So when I was on holiday I had a long hard think about what else could work and I came up with Holograms. I ran it by Zub and he really liked it too. I thought it still captured a similar feeling and also had a lot of potential for artwork as well, so I called on my good friend Megan Egan, who came up with the wicked design.
“We wanted this to be more of a listening album which tells a story; we didn’t want all the tunes to be super DJ friendly. As cheesy as it sounds, we wanted it to take the listener on a journey. The first tune, for example, is a massive intro track with a big build up followed by a short drop.
“In that tune there’s a random conversation we recorded on a train going from Woolwich. It’s a conversation of a Rasta guy talking to a Polish couple and he says something to them. It works really well and ties in with the idea of telling a story.”
Writing it almost killed one of them (sort of)….
“After we finished writing the album I went back home to Estonia to see my family and friends. A few days into the trip I decided to try an old hometown tradition which involves walking across the arch of a bridge pretty high up, something I’ve done loads in the past.
“However this time it ended very, very badly; I fell off onto the concrete below and nearly killed myself! I had to spend a whole month in hospital. It was a pretty life-changing experience. I’m off the crutches now but I’m walking like an old lady…”
Here’s what’s next for Mutated Forms…
“It will be good to make music without having the album pressure on us, we’re going to go away and think what the next step might be.
“We’re not in a rush to do anything right away, we’ll just experiment and go with the flow. It feels like a huge weight off our shoulders now that the album is out there. It was a really fun journey and we enjoyed it but there was a lot of pressure involved.”