On the verge of relaunching the Siren imprint after last year's massive Universal Project and Vicious Circle Broken Silence LP, Vice from Vicious Circle reflects on the beats and basslines that have shaped that inimitable Vicious Circle sound.
SALT N PEPA - PUSH IT – FFRR (1987)
This is the first record I ever bought on a seven inch in about '88 or '89 when I was about eight years old. It was well before I started DJing but it was my first introduction to vinyl and sparked my love affair with record shopping. You could call it an early introduction to beats and basslines. It has actually aged pretty well I reckon and I definitely still nod my head to this one!
HYPER ON EXPERIENCE - LORD OF THE NULL LINES (FOUL PLAY REMIX) – MOVING SHADOW (1993)
I was obsessed with this tune in around 1993/4. It encapsulates everything I love about jungle. Listening to it now I can still hear the cassette recordings from Don FM in my head and it makes me very nostalgic. The arrangement is important in this because it makes you wait for some of the best bits - something which is missing a bit from modern dnb. It has definitely influenced my production, as has the whole era, and is a shining example of the sub-driven genre which morphed into what we now call drum & bass. I feel the essence of jungle and the early dnb lives on through our tunes today.
RADIOHEAD – RECKONER – XL RECORDINGS (2008)
I wanted to get a Radiohead track on here because they have been a massive influence. Wandering effortlessly between guitar based stuff and full on luscious synth music they rarely put a foot wrong. Honestly it could have been any of about 20 of their tracks. I chose Reckoner because it's one of the most powerful and beautiful tracks I've ever heard and while today it's my favourite, tomorrow it will probably be a different one. This band emphasises the fact that good music is just good music in whatever style or tempo. A lot of people label Radiohead as self-indulgent and depressing, but I don't always want to be happy listening to music. I want music to move me and our music to do the same.
MOBB DEEP - SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST – LOUD RECORDS (1995)
We are hugely influenced by mid-late 90s hip hop, especially the east coast stuff like Wu Tang, Biggie and Mobb Deep. This is definitely one of the darkest tunes I've heard and really struck a chord with me at the time. It's the ultimate screwface anthem. The eerie vibe in tracks like this is definitely something we try and recreate in our music. Producers like DJ Premier, Havoc, and RZA are a massive source of inspiration - they managed to capture a crazy vibe within a loop that worked through a whole track and highlighted the creativity within the art of sampling.
ED RUSH – SUBWAY – PROTOTYPE RECORDINGS (1996)
This is just a perfect example of proper dnb. Dom also has got to get some props for this as well, as I think it was him on the buttons. I remember hearing it in Section 5 on Kings Road in 1996 and being absolutely blown away. I still play this tune out every now and then, and still get the same feeling when the "check this shit out man" sample comes in, because I know the bassline is coming. It's tunes like this that still set the standard for tunes today. Incredible track!
Keep your eyes and ears peeled for Siren 001 featuring S.P.Y.'s future-funk relick of the anthemic Snorkel before Vicious Circle take things deep and dirty on the flip with Solitude, a hypnotic bassline roller sure to have all the heads up in the speakers. Available worldwide May 1st.
As told to: Chris Muniz
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