GOLD DNBLH INTERVIEW

 

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The past 20 years of Jungle and Drum & Bass have seen a phenomenal amount of growth and change. The sound has evolved and morphed and branched off into a wide array of sub-genres and recognizable styles. It all started at around 140bpm in the early 90s when the genre was labelled Hardcore Breakbeat. Within a matter of 2 years most producers started picking up the pace and a very strong reggae influence became the focus and the genre was coined Jungle. By the late 90s largely influenced by the advancements in production technology the sound had evolved into something completely different and the standard concept of Drum & Bass was born clocking in at about 175-180bpm.

To this day there are still a large number of devoted individuals working really hard all around the world trying to preserve the classic style of Jungle. Legends such as Shy FX, Bladerunner, Serum, Benny Page, Jacky Murda, Aries, Marcus Visionary & RCola have spent the last 10 or more years ignoring the popular trends in the Drum & Bass scene and focusing on their brand of soul music. Although all of these top selectas remains quite focused, none seem to show any signs of prejudice towards the changes in the industry and within the top ranks there is still a large amount of diversity and experimentation.

One producer who is taking the classic style of Jungle to all new dimensions is Birmingham UK’s GOLD. Although GOLD has made a huge name for himself as one half of LIONFIRE (a collaborative effort between Aries & himself) he has been making huge waves in the global jungle scene with his new solo adventures into the 140bmp range. Maintaining the trademark reggae influence and classic sample-base, the shift in tempo seems to be spreading like wildfire among those familiar with it through the dubstep explosion of the past few years.

A couple of Gold’s new and noteworthy tunes are his most recent release of King Yoof’s Warriors Charge ft. Jah Mirikle

and his remix for Max Powa ft Horace Andy ‘Do you Love’

Luckily for us GOLD seems to be one of the more generous producers in the industry and you can find tons of freebie bootlegs and mixes up for grabs on GOLD’S SOUNDCLOUD:

We were lucky enough to catch a moment of GOLD’s time for a little interview. Here’s what the man has to say:

DNBLH: First off man, much respect for all the hard work and great releases as of late. You’ve really had a solid flow of output and we’re definitely appreciative of you hooking up the interview. I know you’ve been in the game for some time now but the last 2 years seem to have been especially crazy for you with the Lionfire project and your solo “future jungle” 140 stuff. I’m curious when the definitive moment was that you really felt that all you hard work was starting to pay off?

GOLD: For me I think the last 6 months have really been key. Last August I went to Italy for some time off and it was there I decided that I needed to add more dimensions to my music, you see I come from quite a varied background, my Mom was a Reggae, Soul and Funk DJ in her day and my Dad was an engineer and later a manager for various acts ranging from Rock to Reggae. My DJing has taken me across many different genres including Hip Hop, Reggae, Breakbeat, Garage, Dnb & Jungle. So for me it wasn’t that I wanted to follow some trend, I think it was more of the case of I needed to let this part of my life be heard. I found it hard to express a lot of these different genres/sounds at 175bpm but changing to 140bpm seemed to allow more possibilities. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still working at 175bpm but I just think for me 140bpm is a happy medium to express myself.

DNBLH: You really seem to be a guy who supports his audience as much as he hopes they support him in return. All the giveaways have really been great additions to my music collection and honestly make me happy to shell out the cash for the releases that only come out on my favourite online record shops. Has it always been a part of your philosophy that you get as much love as you put into this game?

GOLD: For me if people get some kid of joy out of listening to what I do then I’m doing my job right. I love reading feedback from people, no matter who you are, good or bad, as long as it’s constructive.

DNBLH: So how old were you when you got into Jungle?

GOLD: I remember going to Don Christies (legendary Birmingham record outlet) with my Mom as a kid and she would go and listen to/buy vinyl. One day we were in the shop and I picked up this CD and was instantly attracted to it. I remember my Mom asking if I wanted it, it was Jungle Mania 94. I used to love that CD (still got it to this day infact). If I wasn’t only 10 years old at that time I swear I would have gone and found the nearest rave.

DNBLH: Your love of reggae is pretty obvious in all of your tunes. What is your musical background? Was it reggae that drew you to Jungle or vise versa?

GOLD: Yer defiantly, as I’ve already said my parents played a big part in this but out of everything they listened to it was always the reggae records that went missing from their collections. My Dad used to hate it as he had his collection in alphabetical order and I would just come and take vinyl like it was a library, and I never returned stuff on time haha. I spose during all of my different flings with different genres, reggae was the one sound I always came home to at the end of the night. I love it because it’s so many things all at the same time. Party music, relaxation music, motivational music, go to bed music etc.

DNBLH: So back in the day, who were your mentors?

GOLD: I spose one of the key figures in my life was a guy who lived on our street; he really got me into DJing and my 1st taste of production when I was 13 years old. I basically ended up buying his entire collection of Hip Hop vinyl off him after he took me to buy some turntables one day. It was properly only to stop me doing his head in and tbh after a few lesions it properly worked as I devoted most of my time to then annoying my parents with the bass coming through the ceiling.

DNBLH: And these days who are you looking to for inspiration?

GOLD: Man, now a days it’s not a matter of looking for it, the internet has made it so ready available to connect with like minded individuals it’s crazy. There are 15 and 16 year old kids out there making some amazing music, a lot of the time stronger than what key players should be. I suppose passion like that is contagious!

DNBLH: On the topic of other players. This 140 “future jungle” stuff is a market that is definitely far from exploited. There’s a few names that come up in my head of people who have worked on that tip but I could count them with fingers to spare. Are there any other artists you suggest our readers check out if they like what you are doing?

GOLD: For sure, just hope I can remember them all… It’s kinda mad at the moment because I am meeting people from all different genres who have landed on the 140bpm thing. But people like King Yoof, Northbase, Sanxion, DJ Madd, 6Blocc, Jinx in Dub, Toronto Is Broken, Warrior One, schema and Gella are really doing it for me atm.

DNBLH: There’s a bit of homework for the beat junkies out there. You’re the man we’re here for so lets chat a bit more about you. One of my favourite tunes so far was SUN IS SHINING. I’ve got to say, it’s probably the best remix of that classic Bob Marley joint that I have heard to date. I’d imagine it’s pretty much any reggae fan’s dream come true to ace a Bob Marley remix. If you could pick another one of his tunes to remix which would it be?

GOLD: Yer that was loads of fun to make, mainly because we were so hyped about it and so it kinda ended up writing itself. But as it happens I’ve just been blessed enough to remix Mr Brown for the Jing Bong (Jacky Murda & Max Powa) project and will be a free give away with my forthcoming ep on sub slayers (due out end of May).

DNBLH: We’re definitely looking forward to that one! I’ve heard lots of good things about your DJing skills as well as your studio work. Living in Canada it’s pretty hard to imagine the popularity of Jungle/DnB and the high concentration of events and clubs all within driving distance. It must make for a pretty crazy schedule for someone as in demand as you are. What are some cities and clubs in England that you are always really excited to return to?

GOLD: Yer, for me Djing always came 1st. That was my passion, the production came as an after bonus I spose, kinda like a 2nd child haha. I really love the vibe up north, so Liverpool & Manchester are usually good. But I still love playing in my home town, I spose because it’s home.

DNBLH: What’s your favorite country that you’ve played in so far?

GOLD: This year Germany was the one for me but we’re not into the 2nd half yet so there is still time to out do it haha.

DNBLH: Definitely lots to look forward to for you this year! Whats on your plate for festival season?

GOLD: Boomtown fair (August), Reggae City (June), Soundflow (July). Check out the website for any other up n coming dates – www.24karatdub.com

DNBLH: Looks sick! I’d definitely love to check out Boomtown this year. Solid line-up! So when you’re DJing who are your favorite MCs to work with?

GOLD: One’s who know when to shut up! For me this is always a problem, I play a lot of vocal stuff and it seems a lot of MC’s don’t really care for that. Be warned tho, I control the levels on the Mic haha.

DNBLH: I hear you there man. I’m all for the hype man but some people really take the “master” part of MC a bit too seriously. Any exciting upcoming projects that you can tell us about?

GOLD: OK…
-End of May my 2nd release on Sub Slayers with Aries, Nike and Parly B on board.
-Myself and Aries have just done a 140 Jungle remix of David Boomah and Serocee (forward ever) for David’s album.
-We just remixed a classic Congo Natty track with Jacky Murda.
-I’ve got a remix for Adam Prescott ft Dynamite MC & Jah Screechy due to drop on Nice UP!
-King Yoof and I have also just put an EP together to drop on Sub Slayers.
-Lionfire (Aries & Gold) are due to drop an EP on Dread with Jinx.
-Aries & I also have a heap of tracks and remixes on the go including our latest remix for Tango’s ‘Project one’.
So yer. Lots going on

DNBLH: Man, you keep busy!!! So outside of the music word what kind of hobbies or passions do you have? Tell us a bit about the man behind the music…

GOLD: There’s a world outside music?

DNBLH: Haha! Truth! Could you share some wise words with our readers who are into production? Any elements they should focus on to give keep the music well weighted or tips on and tricks that might help down the road?

GOLD: Less is more, I remember when I got into production, Id throw all my samples at it. Have 10 different breaks but it was just confused I think. It’s like a story, you need things that are relative to it to keep the listener interested. Choose your samples wisely. Have fun! But the main thing is do what you love I think. If you love something it’s harder to give up!

DNBLH: Sick man! It’s been a real pleasure. Thanks again for the chat! I’m really looking forward to what is to come for GOLD and all of your projects! These are really exciting times and you’re on the top of your game! Big ups and keep up the great work!
For more GOLD check out:
www.24karatdub.com
www.soundcloud.com/djgold
www.twitter.com/djgolduk
www.facebook.com/djgolduk