DJ Vapour ‘Back To The Bass 4’ interview
DJ Vapour took us behind the very rowdy, very hot, very grimy new compilation on 36 Hertz, Back To The Bass 4. And make a note of December 23: read on to find out more.
Just checking the promo mix for BTTB4, this is great… tell us when all of the tunes came together, when did the album arise?
As with all the Back To The Bass LPs we never plan them out they just kinda happen when the time is right. This year has been a superb year for the label with loads and loads of great music passing through and a lot of support from both the D&B scene and outside of it.
As the end of the year started approaching I got the idea to celebrate the year’s releases with the release of Back To The Bass Vol 4 being our last release of the year. From that point I drew up a list of artists who I wanted on there and got on the phone with them to let them know what I was looking for from them.
Bass heavy nastiness.
All of the artists who I spoke to jumped at the chance and submitted wicked tracks for the project which I feel both showcases 36 Hertz perfectly as a label and in my opinion is the best Back To The Bass LP in the series so far!
How hard is it to select tunes for an album this big, considering the amount of music you get?
With the Back to the Bass LPs the music is made for the LP in most instances – I will call up artists and request tracks and then we pick through the submissions and see what we end up with.
Certain tracks such as Vince Rollins remix of Don Gorgon were submitted whilst the LP was being put together and I felt that they fit the project so we look into including them. We do get sent TONS of music from producers as demos and I do listen to it all.
How do people get stuck in?
To find out how to submit demos to us check 36hertz.com/demos and some of it ends up with artists getting signed for full album deals.
I set the label up as a outlet to build and showcase unknown artists which is something we have done from day one of the label.
Callide’s come in with a stormer I note, nothing surprising there!
Callide always brings the fire which is why he has been releasing tracks with us for years now, I have know Callide for a very long time and he has helped us loads over the years with the label. He currently is a director at our distributors Cygnus music.
His track for the project was actually the first track I signed for the LP.
I was on the phone to him moaning that he had not sent any new tracks over for a while, I think I must have pissed him off as he gave me a link to a dropbox folder full of tracks he was working on at the time.
Some finished some not, I picked out a few I liked and ‘Warning’ was one of them BUT it was only half finished. I took what was there and edited it into a full track so I could play it in my sets at the time.
People started asking me what this track was and so when we started to think about the BTTB Vol 4 project it was the first track that I wanted to sort out for it so we got it polished off and sorted for release.
The 36Hertz vibe is always this quite edgy thing where it’s total jungle but a little dangerous, a bit dangerous (ie never nostalgic) and that is summed up by the Fync & SR tune. Who are they?
We always encourage our artists to be different and try new things, Andy (SR) from SR & Digbee fame got upset at Digbee eating the last Rolo every time they were in the studio so he went off to make a track with one of his mates (Fync) and the track ‘Kontamination’ was what they come up with – Andy then mentioned it when I spoke to him about SR & Digbee music for BTTB Vol 4 and I loved the vibe on it so we took it for the LP.
Luckily Digbee saw the error of his ways and brought SR a nice big box of Mint humbugs and they thankfully went back into the lab to finish off their LP called Turning Back which is coming out on 36 Hertz in Jan next year.
And would you agree re the above jungle statement and 36h?
With regards to the vibe of the label we have always been Jungle heads and thats what we all love – I detest two step tracks with no imagination and always tell the guys to use breaks and keep the old vibes alive we would class ourselves as a Jungle label but we also release old skool style tracks as well, under the Flashback genre.
I don’t care about sales or who is playing our tracks I just put out what I like and try to push it out there to the largest possible audience that I can. Of course it’s always superb when people who we have all as artists looked up to for decades play our music and support what we do and its truly amazed me over the years the support and feedback I get from people so big up to every one who has supported myself and the label over the years.
What sort of ways do you hear D&B these days, what channels? I have to say am inspired as ever but do get disheartened when I hear about producers that never play live.
I try as hard as I can to listen to as little D&B as possible as most of what I hear I don’t like as it all sounds the same, same breaks and arrangements and I also don’t want any influence from it.
The scene used to be full of innovation but these days everyone is copying everyone else all searching for these elusive sales and fame and fortune… if you’re looking for that in D&B you are pissing up the wrong tree ha ha.
I like to listen to anything but D&B and spend hours wandering around on Mixcloud looking for stuff to listen to. Over the past 12 months I have kind of been guilty of not doing anything other than making tracks and not playing out.
There was not enough music around to inspire me to want to play out so I stopped doing it although the past 6 months have changed that and I started doing my fortnightly show on Kool London, on Weds afternoons 3pm til 5pm GMT.
Click 36hertz.com/radio and I will be doing some gigs again next year.
I’m working on setting up a monthly 36 Hertz night for next year at some point as I would rather we do our own event with just our artists playing so we know the vibe’s gonna be right so that is going to be a major plan on the agenda for 2016.
Social Security is here and a name I know from Creative Source and also chatted to Nicky BM in the store about him, so do you go back?
Yep, Social I have known for many years now and I met him and his brother through Nicky BM many moons ago. We got on well right from the first moment we met and have been in contact ever since. We release on each others’ labels and I speak to him every week about this than and the other.
We’re combining our Kool London shows on the 23rd Dec for a six hour all day takeover form 3pm til 9pm at night Live from Kool Studios which is gonna be superb.
We are also sorting out some time to get in the studio next year and drop some beat so that should lead onto some fun releases. It’s great those guys are back making music and getting tunes out on Benefit beats which is their label as they are on the same vibes as me and want to get great music out onto the streets: the more of us doing that the better!
Jem One’s dropped a total destroyer… would you agree?
I don’t think Jem has ever not dropped a killer track ha ha.
Jem is someone who is a friend first and foremost and has been with me since I started putting tunes out back in the day it’s great that he is back making tracks and even better that he has been experimenting so much over the past three years with tempos and styles.
We have some superb music from him lined up for next year and he really has got his hunger back for the music again which is great!
So what is planned on the promo front for this?
As with all the BTTB LPs we let the music do the talking and just get it out on the street – I only promo the release two weeks before it is out. We just get it out into the wild and see what happens, feedback on the promo run was superb and we have picked up tons of radio and club support from it.
I can tell it’s been doing well as we have had a lot of emails form people who “missed” – read ignored – the mail out then come running when they hear someone else playing it in a club ha ha.
We have currently got a label takeover up on Juno records which features a FREE track and a load of other promo about the lable and the LP project. Also there is a free full length DJ mix up on our youtube channel so people can go listen to the whole project and check it out. (scroll back to top)
Thanks any shouts?
Just a big up to everyone who has supported the label over the past 12 months form DJs through to people who buy our music, many thanks to one and all.