Aquasky have compiled the new album ‘Bring The Ruckus’ which is due out on Passenger in the autumn. The trio, comprising Dave Wallace, Kieron Bailey and Brent Newitt, have been producing in various guises since 1995, and have found their sound reinvigorated by going back to the future. Here, they talk about the new album, their new Loopmasters sample pack and there is a chance for you to win a pack of your very own!
Can you tell us about the album, and also the EP sampler out on July 1st. Who is featuring on these releases?
A couple of years ago we heard a Pyramid tune and it really got us thinking about the old days of bassline breaks. It gave us inspiration to make some again which lead to the 140 breakbeat album ‘Raise The Devil’ which really connected with us. So that got me thinking... wouldn’t it be good to try and track down some of the other groups who used to bring the ruckus back in the day alongside us. So I sent off some emails, made some calls and managed to track all but one of the acts I had on my wish list. So we have from the old school The Breakfastaz, The Autobots, Backdraft, Rennie Pilgrim, The Ragga Twins and ourselves. And from the new school we have Pyramid, 601, Black N Blunt, Roisin Brophy and RTC.
What was the idea behind getting these particular people on the album?
Well, back in like 2000 when all of breaks was about 128bpm we felt the parties lacked what we grew up with in the rave and then the d&b scene. They needed a shot of something powerful, something to connect breakbeat to d&b and the old school rave. That’s what we took on as our role. We ramped it up to 138bpm and took the arrangement principles from d&b. We also brought the filth from that scene as at that time we were well into Tech Itch and what he could create sonically. We lost our mojo in breaks, we weren’t pushing our sound forward anymore, just knocking out breaks tunes. It was a hard decision but we stopped doing breaks to concentrate on our warehouse project Black Noise. As previously mentioned, upon hearing Pyramid’s ‘Trouble’ tune, around 2010, we got the buzz. The buzz that we got when we were kicking it with Masterblaster, writing albums like ‘Beat The System’, ‘Stayfresh’ and Teamplayers’. Things kinda fell into place from then onwards, we started making 140 breaks with the same vibe as when we were doing the 138 stuff in 2000. I think there are so many parallels with the music of that era and that of today and I wanted to showcase that with this album. Us old skoolers can rock it with the new 140 massif.
Describe how these ideas have been made concrete on the end result.
A lot of blagging, which I am known for!!! If I have an idea, I like to try my hardest to make it into a reality. So many calls, reinvigorating old relationships, lots of emails. Usual sorta A&R thing for a label. I am very fortunate to have these people in my contacts and I would be a fool not to utilise them and there are many people out there that want to hear these guys. I am not sure how we all lost contact, but its damn good to be back in contact again!
Also out is the Loopmasters sample pack - tell us about this...
Well we wanted to follow up on the sample pack we did a few years back. Basically this one is all about where the Aquasky sound is now, I guess it’s a mixture of the real "modern" sounding bass, beats and production but with a bit of a nod back to the formative years of bass music, the rave/dnb roots which we came from back in the early 90s. The pack covers a few different tempos mainly 140 and 176 so there are dnb/drumstep elements in there as well as the heavier 140 sound, very much like our production style as we have always moved about between tempos and styles as a lot of people are doing these days. Back when we started doing that in 95 the junglists were up in arms about it! Now you are more likely to hear a dnb producer making dubstep than you are dnb! We were just a bit ahead on that side of things though a little bit slow in getting into dubstep!
You've given us some goodies as well - there's a DJ mix available to listen to - what's on that?
PURE FYAH NO DOUBT! Check the Soundcloud page for the track list.
I understand there is a competition to go with the release of the new pack - tell us about that...
Yes, we can give away 3 x ‘Loopmasters / Monster Sounds presents "Aquasky Future Jungle, 140 Bass and Drumstep"’ sample packs worth £29.95 each to 3 separate winners! Or if you prefer 3 winners can chose any 1 pack each, from the whole range: http://www.loopmasters.com/label/show/32/Monster_Sounds
So, leave a comment below to be in with a chance of winning this prize. The closing date is July 15. Plus there is a bonus give away, all you need to do to get your free Aquasky Future Jungle, 140 Bass and Drumstep track / samples is go the Aquasky Monster Sounds Facebook page and press 'Like'.
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