Dubstep group Pixel Fist is made up of four people who will be familiar to most drum & bass fans: Audio, Mackie, Lorne & Stapleton MC. Audio currently releases drum & bass on Virus and Mackie, also known for dnb, is currently releasing on Skint as Afghan Headspin. Meanwhile Lorne has released dnb before on Moving Shadow as Inasin and Stapleton is a well established MC within the d&b scene and has had vocal releases across multiple genres. They've already released on labels as diverse as Sub Human, Rottun, Rocstar and Boka but their forthcoming single on Breakbeat Kaos, Seduction / Tweaky, is set to be their biggest yet. Discover what they're all about and download an exclusive mix after...
You've all been involved with music for a long time, when and why did you decide to form Pixel Fist?
Pixel Fist came about in 2009, literally because we wanted to work together and explore new territory within the broad spectrum that is known as bass music.
What was it that made you want to make dubstep?
It seemed a natural choice to explore; the genre has everything in common with many other styles of bass music we have already made.
Pixel Fist is a great name, who came up with it and why?
Initially we were called Defstar, but after realising it wasn't such an original name, we went back to the drawing board. A list was drawn up of names / words we liked, and then we started mixing and matching them up. Funnily enough, the first two words on the list were "pixel" and "fist". After about ten minutes of looking at the list and putting things together, Pixel Fist was mentioned and straight away we all loved it and that was that!
How would you describe your approach to making music?
Relentless! The studio is always buzzing with one project or another, and the fact we are all working across multiple genres really does bring a lot more to the table in terms of creativity.
How does it work in the studio with the four of you?
Same time, week in week out, and just work on tracks, all in the same studio. Ideas are thrown around and consensus sought. It really is that simple.
Tell us more about your forthcoming single on Breakbeat Kaos... what did you have in mind when you made it?
Most tracks start out as a loop, and that loop is worked and extended until we feel it's at a certain level and working well. We never start out with anything specific in mind, but the drop is a very important part of all our tracks - if it doesn't "drop", it doesn't cut it! With the Breakbeat Kaos release, like always, it's striving for that holy grail of the "perfect" tune.
How did you hook up with Breakbeat Kaos in the first place?
Having all worked within the dnb scene either currently or previously, we all knew of Breakbeat Kaos and Mackie first spoke to / met Dan [DJ Fresh] via DogsOnAcid many moons ago. We were sending early Pixel Fist material out to a few top DJs, Fresh & Adam F being two of them, and they liked what we were doing and they moved it forward from there.
Tell us about some of the other labels you're working with…
Dieselboy's Sub Human, Excision's Rottun, Cut La Roc's Rocstar and ST Holdings' Boka are a few labels we have released on. We like to spread our sound around a little, as we produce styles across the board; be it a laid back swagga or full-on face melting filth, we just love it all! Good music is good music.
Got any other releases / remixes in the pipeline we should look out for?
Remixes of VENT's White Out on Hardcore Beats, Hyper's My World on Distinctive and Muffler's Cybertron on Sub Human. On the original release front, we have a few tracks complete, and many more on the verge. We'd love to get a follow-up release on Breakbeat Kaos, and even push for an album deal, but first we need to impress Dan and Adam enough, only time will tell I guess! Either way, you'll see a fairly constant stream of releases from us.
Any plans for another album yet?
We're definitely up for a second album, we just need to get the right platform in place. You never know, it could be sooner than you think!
What else have you been working on in the studio recently?
The remixes mentioned earlier, and a couple of original vocal tracks where Stapleton has had the space to really do his thing. Audio and Stapleton are also working on a d&b track called Fallback, more news on that one when we have it!
Are you all still making drum & bass?
Audio still makes and releases drum & bass. Recently Ed Rush & Optical graced the studio to collab with him and the results have been incredible, watch this space! Stapleton always has something on the horizon as far as d&b goes, and he's currently promoting a lot of work he's collaborated on with Crystal Clear, Levels and Hush Ya Gums.
Tell us more about the mix you've done for us…
The mix is an all Pixel Fist affair featuring a mixture of original tracks and remixes. It's a snapshot of where we have been musically in the last nine months.
What's the best gig you played in the last six months?
Probably for BBR / Noise @ Brixton Jamm, the first time three of us were in the same DJ booth at once, a rare occurrence! Playing in Falmouth for Freerange DJs was also a crazy one, that crowd have it like no other we've witnessed yet!
Anything else you want to tell us about?
Please follow us on SoundCloud and Twitter: @audioPXLFST, @lornePixelfist, @pixelfist and @ITZSTAPLETON.
Download Pixel Fist's Kmag guest mix here
Free Bass Music Stage Visuals Kit
Accent and bass music clothing label Dataset have teamed up to release a free stage visuals kit designed specifically to be mixed with bass heavy music.
Kmag Presents Soul Flex Digital
Our next Kmag Presents session at Cafe 1001 is on August 8 with Soul Flex Digital to launch their new 'Vintage' LP. We caught up with Dubsta to find out what's in store from the night and the album.
In The Studio: Break
Break is giving other producers the chance to add a bit of his magic to their music with his Symmetry Drum & Bass sample pack. Here Break reveals how he works in the studio.
KG Gives Away Massive Preset Bank
Drum & bass producer KG is giving away his Drum N Bass Preset Pack For Massive, find out how to get your hands on it...
Since we last spoke to Technicolour & Komatic they've become Technimatic, signed to Shogun Audio and have written the 'Desire Paths', which is about to drop. High time for another chat then...
Top 10 Free Tracks
It's Tuesday so time for ten more tracks you can download for free. This week's list includes Spirit, Evol Intent, Makoto, Digital Niyabingh, Indivision, Dawn Raid & Jungle Drummer and more.
Bop Previews Punk's Not Dead On Spotify
Kmag checks in with the genre-bending minimalist Bop as he unleashes a Spotify preview of his highly anticipated Punk's Not Dead LP on Med School.
Top 5 Free Mixes
Our list of favourite mixes from the past week includes sets from Randall, Reso, Elite Force, Hatcha and Mindscape.
Novation Announce Launch Control XL
Novation have announced a new mixer controller called Launch Control XL.
Calyx and TeeBee Interview
As they prepare to unleash their highly anticipated FABRICLIVE 76 mix on the masses, Kmag snags a peek behind the decks of the stalwart dons of d&b best known as Calyx & TeeBee.
Pioneer Launches The PLX-1000 Turntable
Pioneer marks 20 years in the DJ industry with the launch the PLX-1000 turntable.
Atlantic Connection Gives Away The Archives
Atlantic Connection is giving away nearly 80 tracks from 2001 – 2010 so we tracked him down to find out why and how his new album is coming along.
Top 10 Free Tracks
Normally each week we bring you our five favourite free tracks we've found but there are so many around just now we've upped it to ten this time.
DJ Monita Brings Back Skeleton Recs
DJ Monita is bringing back Skeleton Recordings with a remix package of The Razors Edge featuring reworks by Soul Intent, mSdoS and Blade. We spoke to Monita to find out what to expect.
Top 5 Free Mixes
Our selection of the best DJ mixes from the last seven days includes Jumping Jack Frost, Utah Jazz, King Yoof, Jurassik and PBK.