Archive for June, 2010

Jack Wills Varsity Polo 2010

June 13, 2010

On Saturday myself, my flatmate Max and friend Jack ventured to Windsor for the Jack Wills-sponsored Oxford v Cambridge Varsity Polo.

Absolutely brilliant day out – kind of like a one-day festival, with shops, a Pimm’s bus, live music, the England vs USA match on a big screen, a silent disco and, of course, polo matches!

Didn’t end up watching much polo; I can’t say I understand the rules much, and our 30-odd cans of beer and sunshine were much more enticing! Definitely going to go next year, although more planning will be necessary I think.

Here’s a few snaps of the day, taken variously by myself and Max:

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James

Adidas Originals x Star Wars – Cantina

June 11, 2010

Continuing on from the much-lauded Star Wars x Adidas collaboration collection, this advert brings several of the famous Adidas Originals faces to the Mos Eisley Cantina from the films. Ever wanted to see Snoop Dogg rock a lightsaber?

James

Artist Feature: Skurge

June 10, 2010

Logan’s belated May blog post pointed me in the direction of this Bay Area MC. I’m always intrigued to hear Yank MC’s respective takes on our sound and after doing some stealthy google work, I found his facebook page. Full up with Music clips and downloads, I got to hear what he’s got to offer and may I say now that Skurge is sick.

Taken from his facebook page:

“Skurge is a member of Sammie Award Winning Hip Hop Group, Righteous Movement. He is all styles. With a sharp delivery and lyrics that often find their mark, Skurge has been effective at giving the listeners what they want to hear. Real, Raw, Hip Hop”

Whilst he doesn’t  jump on what we call ‘Grime’, his music has that same raw element.  He has an infectious drawn-out delivery which slides over some rather tasty, weighty production. The mastering is perfect – an area Americans have always excelled in. They can make a Lil Jon record sound ‘full’ FFS!

Take a trip to his Fan Page and listen to ‘Nobody’, ‘Goose’ or ‘Open Container’ all of which are available for download. Disgusting!

Facebook
Twitter

Kristian

Logan Sama’s May 2010 Round Up

June 10, 2010

Apologies for the late blog entry. As some of you will know I was booked to play San Francisco at the end of May, which kind of messed up my schedule. However I’m back now, well rested and ready to go!

Flyer

Starting with my trip, San Francisco was cool! In terms of the actual gigs – they went ok. Dubstep has been big for a while out there, but I was the first dedicated Grime DJ to have been booked. The gigs could have been a bit busier, but amongst those that were in attendance there were some really knowledgeable people who enjoyed the tunes and knew the records.

There were some Dubstep guys on the rota and so when they played it was very much a ‘let’s stand here and absorb the Dubstep’ atmosphere. In fact, whilst I was there, ‘The One’ said he noticed his audiences being turned off by the shrill, mid-range ‘Brostep’ that currently popular. Because ‘The One’ and his lot are so in touch with the music, they only book Dubstep acts like Joe Nice and Mala – DJ’s that still incorporate the ‘Dub’ element in their sets. However, when I went in, people were jumping up and down and showing real energy. Surprisingly, they went for the vocals as much as the beats. I think after hearing instrumentals all night they needed something different to vibe to!

I’ve got to big up the promoter ‘The One’ for bringing me out to San Fran. He DJ’s and produces Grime, often collaborating with others in the area. He actually did a remix of Wiley’s beat ‘5.27’ which I played on my show about a year and a half/two years ago. There are guys out there that have been doing Grime for a good 5-6 years, who know all the tunes and are up to date with releases…With the internet, anywhere you go in the world, fans that know the music will talk to you and know as much as anyone in the UK. It’s good to see.

In fact, whilst I was out there I was made aware of a couple of MC’s bringing the Bay Area style of rapping to Grime. One is called Skurge, a talented spitter that ‘The One’ is working with. Also, there is a production crew called ManVSMachine that are doing stuff over Terror Danjah beats etc. I know Tre Mission is big now and spits double time Grime tempos, but these guys bringing a slower, drawn-out style to the table.

Logan's Sweets

Music aside, I enjoyed the American food as subscribers to my Twitter feed will know! I always think of picking up my phone when I’m about to eat…so naturally I feel to broadcast my eats worldwide! I was only there for five days and I wanted to try everything so I went to the International House of Pancakes and had a stack, had a Philly cheese steak and a couple of burgers. It was ok for a week, but if I stayed out there any longer I would’ve probably had a coronary!

Back in the UK it’s been pleasing to see so many instrumental tracks/CD’s coming out. Fans can get their hands on a lot more beats that would’ve otherwise become obscurities. I think now that this is going, we need to keep momentum behind the E.P. and single release model that JME and myself have been using. There is no reason why producers, after getting good feedback for a track, can’t fling it up on iTunes so that it comes out a couple months after audiences have first heard it. Also, this open-source remix thing going on at the moment, spearheaded by Terror Danjah, Skepta, JME etc is very healthy for the scene and is a really good platform for established producers to show the levels. I’ll be showcasing more of the efforts on my show soon, do a little medley or something.

NHNT

Despite only catching a couple of the episodes, BBC2’s No Hats No Trainers has become a great vehicle for Grime culture. If the culture gets out there, then the sound will follow. Whilst I’m under no illusion that if we were to put out Next Hype tomorrow it would make top 10, the more people who are made familiar with Grime culture the more accepting they will be of the music. Then, there will be less need for these 4/4-electro crossover efforts. You have to remember that the guys responsible for picking the track listings for Radio 1 etc, are middle-aged, middle-class men who are out of touch and incapable of spotting trends. They only pick what is popular now.

Anything that makes Grime look a little more desirable to the masses is great in my book. They said they’d get me on there sometime soon, although I haven’t heard anything yet. The Street Fighter section with D Double was something that I’d have liked to have got in on…Seeing as I was one of the first to play the tune AND I spend most of my day playing Street Fighter!

The World Cup is about to start and whilst I hope England romp home to an astonishing victory (!), I also hope there won’t be any major incidents. Having lived out in South Africa for three years, I know how beautiful friendly and welcoming the country can be. Conversely, I also know how dangerous it is in certain parts. It has one of the highest murder rates in the world and poverty remains a massive issue. So if you are going, enjoy yourself, soak up the atmosphere but be vigilant – not just of crime but the weather. It’s Winter out there right now so it’s as warm as London in the Summer during the day but at night, temperatures plummet.

As for predictions, I haven’t seen any teams that are really playing on form but aside from Brazil, I reckon the Spaniards will do well.

Until next time peeps, Keep It Grimy!

Logan

Lewi White – Metal Face (New Release)

June 6, 2010

Lewi White - Metal Face

Grime stalwart and producer extraordinaire Lewi White has always had a sinister touch to his music. Listen to Ghetts’ ‘Freedom of Speech’ if you don’t believe me. Every time I listen to it I get nightmares.

So it is with some apprehension that I blog about his new release, the fearsome dubstep smash ‘Metal Face.’ It’s dubstep for Jigsaw lovers -those who love big, screaming synths smashing them in the face and ribs. Trolley Snatcha will have his pants full up’a shittin!

It’s out now so go cop that on:

Amazon
iTunes

Kristian

Klashnekoff – ‘Back to the Sagas’ Review

June 5, 2010

Back to the Sagas album cover

With a celebrated music career that has spanned over a decade yet gleaned only a handful of releases, UK rapper Klashnekoff (a.k.a. Darren Kandler) is a figure that commands both love and frustration in equal measure.

His elusiveness and steadfast refusal to participate in industry politics has undoubtedly prevented him from wider success. However, in an age where bland, do-anything-for-the-fame urban acts dominate the media, his outspoken character and honest music is admirable.

Sagas of Klashnekoff album cover

After a three year hiatus fraught with clique divisions and label worries, Klashnekoff is back with his third album ‘Back to the Sagas.’ Working closely with rap producer Smasher, ‘Back to the Sagas’ is a weighty effort that aims to recapture the raucous, Rasta-infused essence of his debut, 2004’s ‘The Sagas of Klashnekoff’.

Indeed, the Hackney-based MC wastes no time in establishing a conceptual link between the two. Album opener ‘Church (intro)’ immerses the listener once again in a Babylonian world of struggle and tussle as Klash sets out his nihilist agenda, punctuating rousing electric guitar and synth riffs in that trademark multi-syllabic yap.

Klashnekoff

Title track ‘Back to the Sagas’ continues the candid lyrical theme and, in some detail, describes conflicts with management and Kyza’s surprise departure from Terra Firma. The rolling snare drums and orchestral stabs lend a military theme to the production, evident in varying degrees on ‘Get it Too’, ‘Repping Hard’ and the excellent ‘Soon Come’.

Not only does the dramatic instrumentation provide real depth to the music, rekindling the warm, analogue feel of his debut, it bolsters Klash’s combative tone and revolutionary sentiments. Nowhere is this more prevalent than on ‘Keep It Moving’ whereby the buoyant, summery beat gives real motion to a flurry of gritty observational prose.

Klashnekoff

Soviet sing-along ‘Klash Anthem’ offers some respite from the serious tone, adding a vein of boisterous humour to proceedings, even if its playback appeal may dwindle over time. The same can also be said about CB4-sampling ‘Music Game’; an 8-bit analysis of the music industry that, whilst cheery, seems at odds with the rest of the album.

Protest song ‘Raw’ brings ‘Back to the Sagas’ to a neat conclusion, and serves a poignant reminder of what Klashnekoff is capable of when in his niche. Whilst ‘Lionheart’, in its attempt to capture a clubbier, more accessible sound obscured the MC, ‘Back to the Sagas’ foregrounds his lyrical talent with layered, soulful and arguably more traditional Boom-Bap production.

Yes, some of the features and speech samples are superfluous, but these are significant of an artist that wants to say something through music, not merely spit for the sake of industry props or fleeting internet praise. ‘Back to the Sagas’ is a reaffirmation of Klashnekoff’s talents and although the ‘Sagas’ bar may not have been raised this time round, it has certainly been nudged.

Buy ‘Back to the Sagas’:

Play.com
Amazon.co.uk
Junodownload.com

Hit Klashnekoff up on Twitter:

@Klashnekoff

Kristian

Royal T vs. Super Street Fighter IV

June 4, 2010

The Fold is proud to present a mash up of Super Street Fighter IV and Royal T’s Kick Out. Royal alluded in Beat Blog 2 that,

On the drops for example I see explosions, fight scenes and car chases. In fact, try playing this over a Street Fighter 4 trailer and it fits really well!

Couldn’t agree more – here’s the vid:

Dré

Royal-T Beat Blog 3

June 2, 2010

Every month on Welcome To The Fold, Grime producer Royal-T airs rarities, sketches, samples, remixes and other work from his archive. This month, Royal T presents ‘CD is Dead (Royal T RMX)’

With this one I bought the acapella from iTunes, whacked it into Fruity and came up with a nice little 2-Step type beat to go around it. From there I played in the bass melody, built a punchy switch-up to contrast with the melodic intro, and seeing as the acapella was free and I was at liberty to do what I wanted to it, I decided to take a risk and make it a little more ‘techno’.

I’ve received a mixed response so far, which I’m happy about because at least my music is generating conversations and debates and not becoming stagnant. It fuels me to seek out new methods, techniques and styles. With this remix, the techno element came out of nowhere; a complete freestyle.

In a way, this remix was influenced by my first Sidewinder experience a while back. There, for the first time I heard my music in a live environment and it’s made me much more aware of ‘sonics’. I might revisit this techno idea in the future, but for the moment I’m focussing on making music with analogue instruments, branching out a bit from the hard Grime sound I’m known for, but still keeping it true to me.

As a big fan of Tempz and JME, I’d really like to work with them in the future. The original CD is Dead edit isn’t hype or downtempo, but is easy to rework into either style as Rude Kid and myself have shown. With my remix I wanted to show what my influence would be should I ever get to work with them.

The video is jokes, and I think its inclusion in the download highlights JME’s entreprenurial talent. By including the acapella, instrumental and video, he has created his own guerilla remix campaign, for nothing. Big up to him for that, that is the kind of savvy Grime needs.

Enjoy!

Royal T

P.S. As for a download you’re gonna have to wait a bit for that!