Kmag recently caught up with North Base and asked a few questions to the boys ahead of a busy summer schedule. As well as talking music and Manchester, they've recorded a superb 'strictly jungle' mix exclusive to Kmag, so be sure to cop the free download!
Thanks for giving up your time to chat with us, please introduce the members of the North Base family…
The members are Dean aka DJ Silver, Wilf Prophecy, Steve aka Ikee B, Phil aka Microcosm, Jaspa aka Sonic, Simon aka Splice and Simon aka MC Longman. Splice is a new recruit.
How did it all start; did you all know each other from the Manchester scene before there was ever any talk of a collective?
Wilf Prophecy and Dean Silver had an idea and we made our first tune, Turn U On, when we moved into a flat together. We had all worked together for ten years before on club nights around the Manchester area and it went on from there. Everything and everyone fell into place!
You've remixed the likes of Laidback Luke, Ms Dynamite, TC and Kele Le Roc. Do all members of the North Base fam get involved with the production and creative processes when working on weighty projects like these?
Yeah, we bounce all the parts around and see who comes up with what. Some things we all just work on and sometimes just a few of the individuals work together or separately, depends on who is feeling what really!
Your latest release, Ruffneck/Acid Flashback, just dropped on N-Type's Wheel & Deal label, and with its sun-drenched old school vibes, it is sure to kill it this summer. How have the reactions been to the record at live shows and in the charts? The artwork is sick by the way!
Yeah, the response has been great, we have been number one in the Track It Down charts with Ruffneck and Acid Flashback was number three a week ago. It's very nice to know people are feeling it and both tracks have had a lot of DJ and radio support which means a lot! To know fellow DJs and producers like what we are doing is an honour for us and, yeah, the artwork is right up our street - it's got that old skool vibe, that's what we are trying to do. It fits well with the song really!
You reiterate the fact that the music you make is 140, without ever really stating a genre. Is this a ploy to redefine the stereotype that everything made at 140 is dubstep?
It's funny, we wanted to make music with no rules. We have even made some jungle and dnb tunes as well as some house and techno tunes. We just make music that we are compelled to at the time in the studio.
Do you find it harder or easier to only work within the confines of a set tempo?
Well, we have branched out a lot now from just 140. In our sets we try and play everything from 130 all the way to 175. When in the studio we try and do the same thing, just what we are feeling at the time really.
Who could North base put down as some main influences? Must be quite a few with there being six of you...
Influences are Skream, Redlight, Major Lazer, Shy FX, Hazard, Subfocus, Benga. Also all kinds of music from reggae, ska, dub, dancehall, moombathon… there are too many to mention, there's so much influence out there in the world of music.
Where can people catch you this summer, are there any particular shows/festivals that you're particularly looking forward to?
We will be performing at Global Gathering, Beach Break, Creamfields, Hideout and Outlook both in Croatia, Eurocultured Festival Manchester, Notting Hill Carnival and loads more. We are really looking forward to these as you get such diverse crowds at all of these these events!
Any other news about forthcoming releases/remixes that you're allowed to tell us about?
Yes, loads in the pipeline. We have the TC remix of New Style out very soon and a 12" coming on Sleepless recordings out in June/July. We have also done a track with Virus Syndicate out in July and hope to have another 12" lined up with Wheel & Deal again. There will be a remix of Shine On by Degrees of Motion with New State, and a DJs Take Control Remix by SL2 coming soon. There are talks of an EP forthcoming on Audio Warfare and a remix for Pure Filth Soundsystem out of LA. Plus we will be working on our album project very soon, so loads of stuff coming!
Your guest mix includes some real classics, is it just a selection of some personal favourites?
Yeah, a lot of favourites. In a lot of jungle mixes people just grab the classics but we really wanted to draw a bit deeper with this one.
Best places to go on a night in Manchester for those who haven't been?
The Warehouse Project is fantastic but for a more intimate vibe then Hit & Run on Monday night is always a good spot. Metropolis, when they have a party, is always worth checking out at Sankeys or at the Warehouse Project.
City or United?
We are all United, it's in our blood.
Any final shouts?
All our families and friends and then everyone who has supported us: Skream & Benga, N-type, Shy FX, Breakage, Btraits, Friction, Chris at New State, Hatcha, Mary Anne Hobbs, Annie Mac, Mistajam, Dismantle, TC, Slipmatt, Virus Syndicate, Billy Bunter, Mark XTC, Sappo and all the people of Manchester. Friends and family there are too many to mention, so if we missed you we love you as well Keep calm, keep raving to North Base!
Words: Eddy Mac
Download North Base's guest mix here
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