Futurebound is a pioneer of the DnB scene.
He's been releasing seriously good tunes for nearly two decades now and his brainchild Viper Recordings has been going strong for almost 10 of them. He's made waves all over the scene, recently hitting the Top 40 chart with 'All I Know' alongside partner in crime Matrix.
TID caught up with Futurebound ahead of the 'Summer Slammers 2012' album launch party at Cable on the 6th July to find out what he's been up to and to see what have been some of his finest moments so far...
Thanks very much for taking the time out to speak to us! Can you tell the readers where you are in the world today and what you’ve been up to over the last 7 days?
I’m spending the day in my studio in Liverpool working with Matrix on a remix of the new Afrojack single ‘Can’t Stop Me Now’. This past weekend I was in London for a gig at Proud2 for Crissy Criss’ new night and spent last night at the pub watching the finals of the Euro!
We’re very excited about the Viper Summer Slammers Album Launch party at Cable London on the 6th of July. What have you got in store for us on the night?
I know every promoter says this, but this has definitely got to be our best line up yet!
The Cable nights have been really banging so far and always a packed house right up until 6am. The crowds have really been amazing, such a great vibe in there! This time round we’ve got Matrix & Futurebound, Drumsound & Bassline Smith, Sigma, Brookes Brothers, Metrik, Culture Shock and Crissy Criss. Funkatech Records also are once again hosting room 2 with their boys Far Too Loud, NAPT, Specimen A, Pyramid, Flore. It’s looking set to be a killer night this Friday and I can’t wait to hit the decks.
This is the third edition of the Summer Slammers album, can you tell us a bit about this series and what we can expect on the release?
It originally started because the summer months of July and August were typically very lean for releases in the past with (vinyl) distributors shutting down for summer months, people going away on holidays, etc. and we didn’t want to have this big gap in the schedule every year.
We’d also built up a great catalogue of releases on the label over the years so we wanted to start bringing all the best Viper tunes past, present and future together in one package.
This year we’ve got another massive line up featuring some new exclusives from; Metrik, State Of Mind, InsideInfo, Kove, Moving Fusion and Ble3k & Kryteria, as well as some of our biggest tunes from the last year such as ‘All I Know’, ‘Just A Thought’, ‘Between Worlds’, ‘Relapse’ ‘Below Us’, and some guest appearances from Porter Robinson, Kill The Noise, DJ Fresh, Nero, Far Too Loud and loads more.
Since your first forays into the rave scene way back in 1989 you’ve been fully immersed in the business. Can give us a few of your personal highlights over this 23-year career?
First and foremost getting my first DJ slots around Liverpool. One night in particular I was warming up for Grooverider and Carl Cox and that was my first real test.
Getting my first release pressed on white label, which was under the name New Force Project with a couple other mates at the time. My first big breakthrough record was ‘Sorrow’ which came out on Skanna, which Bukem, Goldie and all those guys were playing at the time.
Another time in Middlesbrough I remember DJing and all of a sudden I realised Roni Size was standing behind me in the booth. After my set he gave me some great words of encouragement, which really gave me a lot of confidence.
Then obviously starting Viper and releasing my first artist album ‘Universal Truth’ with Matrix, and now just recently hitting the national charts with ‘All I Know’ getting in the Top 40.
Your production has been very influential on Drum & Bass worldwide, from your opinion what’s the state of play of the scene in summer 2012 and do you think there’s potential for even more commercial success?
The scene is in a great spot at the moment. There’s lots of cross-over ability now as you can see with some of our Viper artists like ShockOne and Metrik who have obviously had great success in dnb, but have also released some massive dubstep tracks and remixes.
The same can be said with our recent ‘Polarized EP’ from Seven Lions a dubstep artist who really bridges the gap between multiple genres.
There’s also more potential now for Radio chart success with people like DJ Fresh, Adam F, Chase & Status, Sub Focus, etc. all climbing high in the charts, as well as our last Matrix & Futurebound single ‘All I Know’, which hit #26 in the UK charts.
Traditionally when DNB has had a run in the charts, the core producers manage to take it back to the underground by making darker and harder beats. Can you see this building up in the rave scene or is everyone happy to keep on aiming for the crossover right now?
Well I think the main difference with now and in the past is the acceptance of vocals, which is always going to be the key to chart success.
Back when me and Matrix made our first album ‘Universal Truth’ in 2007, hardly any dnb producers were using full-on original vocals. So when we made tunes like ‘Coast To Coast’ it was quite unusual back in 2007, but now it is completely accepted. So it’s not that we’ve changed our sound, rather the sound has changed.
Your tracks are very fast paced, full of crazy synths and crisp basslines. What software do you use to create your sounds and what is your favourite piece of kit right now?
I use Cubase 6.5 and my favourite kit is my Mackie Big Nob so I can crank it!
Along with Matrix you have collaborated with many different artists. How do you usually work with another producer and what’s the secret of controlling egos in the studio?
Yeah I’ve been fortunate to work with some great producers and have done a collab with just about every artist on Viper. It’s all about different vibes really and bouncing ideas off each other. You’re always going to produce something different when you have somebody different to feed off and try out new things.
The secret to controlling egos is that I’m always right! (jokes)..
There is an enormous amount of dance music available today due to the vast amount of new genres and sub genres emerging. Do you listen to much music outside of Drum & Bass and is there anything in particular that is influencing you right now?
Yeah of course. You never want to only be influenced by just your own genre. I listen to a lot of house music like Eric Prdyz for influences, and lots of 80s stuff, Pink Floyd, Michael Jackson, and so on.
The festival season is upon us I imagine you’re going to be very busy this summer. What are the three most essential items you have to take with you on the road and why?
1) My LFC football jersey, which always seems to get me through customs.
2) My Macbook Pro so I can burn last minute CDs
3) My book, ‘The Wit and Wisdom of A People’s Man’ by Bill Shankly.
Finally, we know you DNB lot love to cut loose and let your hair down. What’s Futurebound’s favourite summer slammer at the bar!?
Jack Daniels & Coke always works for me.
Sadly that is all we have time for. A big thanks to Futurebound for taking the time out to speak with us.
You can catch Futurebound at the Viper 'Summer Slammers Album Launch' at Cable London this Friday (6th July). Trackitdown has tickets on sale now, to buy click here!
Futurebound's Track Recommendations
When has Metrik ever not smashed it?
My 4 year old son insists on me playing this every morning before he’s off!
Seven Lions has just absolutely smashed it on his debut EP with this one which has been tearing up the charts. Expect to hear a lot more from him soon.
From Netsky’s new album which has just smashed it across the board.
These guys have been on a tear for the last 12 months or so and are always guaranteed dancefloor destroyers!
Another rising star in the Viper camp, this boy is coming with some tasty vibes!
This one was first featured on our Worldwide 001 mix last year, great to see Moving Fusion boys back in action.
Great remix from our man InsideInfo off Camo & Krooked’s album which always goes down well.
Great to see Matrix back in full force with Metro.
Got to throw at least one M&F tune in there, don’t I?
Massive thanks to Futurebound for his time and selection!
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