Terror Danjah Interview for Grime Forum

Taken from Grime Forum

Kristian from Threefold Media talks to Grime figurehead Terror Danjah about his multitude of upcoming releases on Butterz, Planet Mu and Hyperdub, and what else he has planned for 2010.

As anyone who has clocked your twitter recently will know, you’ve been a bit busy of late! Let us know what exactly you’ve been up to?

Well I’ve been concentrating more on myself, especially now I dont have artist or a label (Aftershock) to look after/to run, It’s freed up my time to make more beats.

You have a fistful of upcoming releases on a load of different labels. Can you let the people know what they are and on what labels they are being released?

In January I’ve got an E.P. out entitled the ‘Bipolar E.P.’ which is kick starting Elijah’s new label, Butterz. The tracks included are ‘Bipolar’, ‘Air Bubble’ and a D.O.K remix of ‘Sidechain’. In Febuary, I have my debut on Kode 9’s well respected ‘Hyperdub’ record label with two tracks. [One is] called ‘Acid’ and the other is a collaboration with D.O.K called ‘Pro Plus’.

I got more tunes coming, but I’d rather surprise you haha!

Terror Danjah In Xmas Mix 09 by Terrordanjah on Mixcloud

Let’s talk about the Butterz release. The E.P. consists of three tunes: Air Bubble, Bipolar and D.O.K.’s remix of Sidechain. Why did you pick these tunes for the E.P. and what do they say about Terror Danjah in 2010?

I actually made ‘Bipolar’ and ‘Air Bubble’ whilst on the phone to Elijah! Elijah said he wanted three different styles of tunes to give a well rounded EP. So as i was making the tunes, he heard them take shape!

Butterz001 – Terror Danjah – Bipolar EP from Butterz on Vimeo.

I first heard Sidechain in a set you did at Night Slugs. What sort of reactions has that tune, and indeed the others off the E.P., received live?

‘Sidechain’ always goes down well in a rave, especially now its been released on Planet Mu. When i first gave it to people it got over looked. But now it’s been released on the ‘Industry Standard E.P.’ with three remixes from D.O.K, Swindle and Suhk Night – PLUS – a Mz Bratt featuring Wiley vocal on the original mix, it’s all popping off!

Your EP is the first to be released on the brand-spanking new Butterz label. What has it been like working with Elijah and Skilliam?

Yeah man we’re all good mates! Elijah and I are good mates who originally we got introduced by Loudmouth Melvin. We chat on a daily basis, monitoring what’s going on in the world of Grime.

Elijah has often stated his frustration with the Grime scene, saying that Grime’s success – both economically and musically – is dependent on producers and DJ’s and not the MC’s. You have shared similar frustrations in the past. Was this EP release on Butterz down to a shared ‘vision’?

Yeah definitely. I think producers are overlooked in the Grime scene, in the media and it’s always portrayed in Artist/MC terms. In Dubstep though, it’s the producers that are embraced because their music doesn’t have MC’s dictating the scene. DJ’s in Dubstep are also the producers which equates to them being artists.

I think personally, with help from Elijah, we’re changing the perspective of Grime by going back to the roots – putting DJ’s and producers first again. Without them, there would be no music!

In a recent Nightvisions interview you said how you wanted a piece of the ‘Dubstep’ money, focussing more on DJ’ing. Your scheduled releases on Hyperdub will surely solidify this. Will you be making more Dubstep moves going forward?

Dubstep and Grime are virtually the same music to me. I’m getting a lot of bookings from Dubstep promoters. I love Dubstep raves ‘cos they don’t give a shit about the MC’s – they go nuts to the beats and that’s inspiring.

How does working with Hyperdub and the Dubstep scene differ from working with the Grime scene?

It’s a lot easier and professional is the short story! Haha!

Along with Swindle and Joker, you are an exponent of a sound I like to call ‘Lengman Funk’ – those swirling synth leads, stomping bass and retro stabs are hard but still really harmonic. Does your work mark a new age in Grime/Dubstep production?

Erm, I’ll leave it to the ravers and listeners to name it, I just call it MUSIC! Haha!

You have versioned and re-edited a lot of your old tunes recently – most notably Creepy Crawler & Zumpi Huntah. Do you think that this ‘versioning’ is a good, quick and economic way for Producers to keep current in the scene?

Well, I realised that a lot people had never heard my earlier production, especially when the ‘Gremlinz’ album on Planet Mu [came out] I saw that people were blown away and that they had never heard of me before. I knew I had to up my presence and make myself heard. I guess I did the new versions to play in the clubs for myself.

Your recent 2009 Xmas mix on Mixcloud (at top of page) was incredible. One thing that struck me on ‘Horror Story’ were those infamous ‘Boogyman’ stabs! Along with the Gremlin cackle, one of your producing traits seems to be reusing and recontextualising sounds in new ways. Is this a key focus for you when you are producing?

Haha not really, but I haven’t used those strings in over 5 years…Boy I’m getting old haha!

You have left the Aftershock label behind you now to focus solely on what you are best known for – producing instrumentals. What does it feel like to relinquish those label responsibilities? Has it had a positive effect on your creativity?

It’s the best thing I’ve done in ages! Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad I started Aftershock – it laid the foundation or blueprint for me, but [dropping Aftershock] has definitely has had a positive effect on me creatively – I get more leisure time to myself.


I wrote a piece on Grime Press a little while ago which in summary said that most ‘Grime’ journalists work is off-point, lazy and ultimately throwaway. As a key figurehead in Grime, do you think this has attributed to the widespread ignorance of the scene and indeed yourself, in mainstream media?

100 percent! This gets me mad as I get left out most of the time. No disrespect to Wiley but he’s wasn’t the only guy doing Grime. There was me, Nasty Crew, Ruff Sqwad, Durrty Goodz, Bruza, DaVinChe, Crazy Titch and Roll Deep!

Any shoutouts?

Shout out my management, Shaurav at 2Tone & Maurice at Soul2Streets, Kode 9 at Hyperdub, Mike at Planet Mu, D.O.K, Elijah and Skilliam at Butterz Recs, Loudmouth, Bruza, Badness, Colin Batsa, Griminal, Swindle, Rude Kid, Sir Spyro, Mz Bratt, Dj Silencer, Dj Cameo, Dj Logan Sama and the rest of the Dj’s, Bloggers, promoters, ravers, listeners and everyone who’s pushing our scene forward and everyone I forgot, bless!!!


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