A year on from the first installment of the scene smashing Evolution Series and Shogun Audio are finally ready to deliver the next chapter that's destined to be yet another 'must have' in record collections across the world. Bringing together a formidable array of artists from the Shogun ranks, Series 2 leads the way for others to follow with Drum and Bass that's second to none.
Rockwell delivers possibly his most unadulterated dance floor productions to date in 'BTKRSH', The Prototypes drop the utterly filthy fire ball 'Subterrestrial', 2009's 'Set It Off' by Friction & K Tee gets a bass-laced re-lick from Icicle and SPY gives us an all-new turbo charged track 'Pressure Drop'.
Hi guys, thanks for taking time to answer a few questions
As The Prototypes you guys have been absolutely dominating the Drum & Bass scene recently. Can you please introduce yourselves and tell us who The Prototypes came to be?
The Prototypes came about in late 2009 between us previous to that we had both been heavily involved with producing, promoting, driving DJs and generally trying to break into the scene for about 11 years. Both of us (Garvey & Nick) had known each other for years and were already mates, when Chris left his job in 2009 we hooked up and made the track 'Work It' by which point The Prototypes was born!
Tell us about your new track featured on the Shogun Evo release?
This track for us was a personal adventure into just a small slice of what we love about the darker side of Drum and Bass, we really wanted to make a roller for the mix, it's wicked to play with on the decks and add some bass injection!! its also a very big tick from our 'list of things to do' having this track come out on Shogun Audio as this is one of the main labels we have grown up with and being Brighton based ourselves it's been a personal vendetta to have a release on Shogun.
What other projects and label are you currently involved with? Any plans for a 'The Prototypes' full length album?
Defiantly plans in the future for an Album project, hopefully sometime next year!
What are your views on the current state of Drum & Bass and how do you see the genre progressing over the next 12 months?
At the moment we think the DnB scene is strong, a lot of new artists have come through in the last 12 months that have given it a fresh injection and renewed competition which can only be a good thing. The sheer amount of different styles of music we get sent is astounding and that for us is exciting and allows us to explore more styles when we are perfoming and producing, this can only make dnb stronger as a whole over the next 12 months.
What other DJs and Producer are you currently rating?
In terms of the DJs its still the usual suspects for us really i.e Friction, Andy C, Icicle, Hype, Noisia to name but a few and the producers that we are really feeling at the moment are Fresh, Noisia, Shy FX, Camo & Krooked, Lenzman, Rockwell & loads more.
Please tell us about your current studio set up? Hardware / Software?
We are Mainly software based our weapon of choice is Cubase SX although the new Cubase 6 does look wicked and we will probably be upgrading to that in the near future, we have a few hardware synths, outboard processors and Microphones etc..
How do you work on your productions? Are you all in the studio at the same time or sending files back and forth?
We work together on everything, thats just how we work best.
Aside from the computer have you got a special bit of kit or plugin that you would highly recommend?
Seven Phases Spectrum Analyzer!
Where do you draw your influences from?
Between the both of us we listen to alot of different styles of music from hip hop / electro / acoustic / rock / classical / early techno etc.... we like pulling all these influences into our music. Chris also plays quite a few other instruments which we try to incorporate as much as we can for example in the modestep remix we did hes playing the trumpet in it from the drop onwards, there not samples! lol
Do you have a piece of advice you wish you'd known when you were first starting out?
The thing I wish was that there was someone there to help with the 'production knowledge' in the early days (age 16). Melodies and song writing have never really been a problem, but the 'processing' of drums and learning how to use synths really is a deep exploration of your mind and creativity, this is also why there is really no set way to do things in music because everyone more or less has to go through this and everyone finds there own ways of doing things. I remember reading an interview from Roni Size a long time ago, and I vividly remember him saying the first thing is to start with 'good quality samples', it's true! Although at that time i didn't fully understand the meaning of this no matter how simple it sounds) remembering that there is now a whole host of outfits making proper sick sample packs e.g Vengeance, specific DJ sample packs etc..) which to my knowledge weren't really about back then.
How do you guys like to relax when not making music or DJing? Any favourite hobbies or interests?
Spending time with the family / frends down the beach, clubs, lots of BBQ's and partys
When stepping up to the decks whats your weapon of choice? CDs / Vinyl / Laptop? Where do you see the future DJing?
CDs is our chosen weapon, but everyone will probably just mix off laptops soon.
Do you have plans to put together a live show?
In the future yes and hopefully epic!
More and more DJs have moved over to CD and laptop DJing but many of the labels you release on still put out vinyl. Do you still see this as an important part of the scene?
It's a massively important part of Drum and Bass, vinyl is the love, we use CDs but this is because the majority of our set is unreleased and to be cutting dubplates just isn't within our budget. We tried using a combination of both CD and vinyl, but trying to mix between the two in certain club set ups can be hard due to differences in volume level between the two or decks not being set up properly etc.. it's a massively big shame, but thats how it is!
What are your views on music piracy and file sharing and how can it be controlled?
We hate it, it gets us quite angry! We've been victims of it and it's not nice, its changed how the whole music industry is now releasing music. At the same time for us as artists its a difficult one because the people who do download our music for free are 'fans' but what they need to remember is that we're not rich and they probably think we are. People need to realise how many years it takes to perfect production and song writing and how hard the struggle has been to get there. The fact of the matter is it's so easy to do on the internet we don't really see a way to stop it. The people downloading for free need to have some respect and help keep whatever act they're feelin' going! And massive props to those that do!
Any major festival UK or abroad that you're looking forward to this summer?
For sure, Beatpatrol in Austria looks wicked, cant wait for that and also let it roll fest in Czech looks banging. In the UK we are playing at Lounge on the Farm in the Hospital tent and hopefully some more to be announced soon.
Outside of the UK what other countries currently have healthy up and coming Bass scenes?
Austria, Slovakia and Switzerland have shown us how to party on more than one occasion, really positive movements going on out there.
Any musical guilty pleasures you're not afraid to share?
Nick: I am in love with UK garage
Garvey: I do have a guilty trance fetish, lol, the build ups and release on some of the drops are just sick, i have many others too, but we wont go to deep ;)
What have you got in store for the rest of 2011?
We have our debut Shogun single 'Born to Rise' in the summer which we are really excited about and also a remix forthcoming for 'Ian Carey & Snoop Dogg' on Ministry of Sound and a remix of 'Friction - Someone' in the next few months. You will definitely hear a whole heap of new stuff from us over the coming months...you have been warned!
Finally, any shout outs and special mentions?
Biggup to EVERYONE that has supported and continues to support us, it means everything to us :)
Check the new Prototypes track on the Shogun Audio Evolution EP 2 and their June Top 10 selection!