The Simmer Down collab EP with Fox, Sam Binga, and Foreign Concept due out Friday, September 28 on Critical Music may seem strange at first for a couple of reasons. First, the three producers’ individual styles may seem very different from each other. With Foreign Concept’s recent stuff being deep and steppy, Fox being ravey and melodic and Binga the wild card of drum & bass as a rule, almost anything could happen when these three get together.
The second interesting thing about the collab EP that is Simmer Down is the way in which it was put together. Rather than one of the three producers being a main artist with the other two being featured on one of the four tracks on this EP, each one is a true collab, with all partners sharing credit and all styles equally represented. Simmer Down is a true mashup and it’s truly fun, with steppy rhythm, well-crafted melodies and no shortage of reggae influence and amens.
When Critical decided to hand Bassrush the premiere for “Love Coup” off the album, the truly seamless collaboration between Binga, Foreign Concept and Fox was so apparent and so interesting, it got us to thinking: how do each of these artists feel about and connect with the music of their collaborators? What inspires each of them about the other two, and how did that factor in to this truly novel project? We decided to ask the boys, and they came up with a playlist that shows not only how much these three friends respect each others’ music, but really how they worked together to craft the EP.
So check the premiere of “Love Coup” above followed by a raucous journey through the headspace of Sam Binga, Fox, and Foreign Concept on their ‘Simmer Down Playlist’. With the full EP dropping via Critical this Friday be sure to click here for pre-order and streaming on multiple platforms.
Sam Binga’s Picks
Foreign Concept: “Make Meals”
Battered this one at the peak of the initial half-time wave, partly because it reminded me of Gangstarr. Big and bashy, with a snare the size of a cement mixer. It initially put me off, until I got over myself and saw what it did in my sets. Interesting fact: the first time Matt met me he thought I was an absolute prick. He probably still does, but he’s got better at hiding it.
Fox: “Necessary” (Sam Binga and Chimpo feat. Fox and Rider Shafique)
Initially, I knew Fox more from his live sets than his recorded material to be honest, but they were enough to make me want to get him in the studio. When I was working on ‘Wasted Days’, me and Chimpo built a weird halftime Neptunes-influenced beat with a hook made from the sound of a drill. Fox came down, hung out for a while and bodied that beat, which became “Necessary”, so I’m gonna be egotistical and choose that one even though I made because that’s the reason I’m now lumbered with a friendship with the Mancunian OG. It’s all good though, we share tips on dealing with lower back pain and overly friendly ravers with no sense of personal space.
Sam Binga: Jon e Cash “Hoods up Dub” (Sam Binga and Chimpo remix feat. Trigga and Killa P)
I’m throwing this in first because the second I heard it, I wished I was on this tune! It took me back to the ‘90s in Manchester, classic Trigga and now with added Killa P! [Editor’s Note: This one’s unavailable on Soundcloud so hit the YouTube link here to check the beats].
Foreign Concept: “Mob Justice”
‘Cos it’s ‘ard!
Foreign Concept’s Picks
Sam Binga: “Lef Dem” (feat. Redders)
This was the second ever Binga track I’d heard after “Ayo.” “Ayo” had tickled my curiosity, but with “Lef Dem” he had my attention. Big, bashy and loud…Sam has been great to work with in the studio.
Fox: “Run Away” (with Marcus Intalex and Calibre)
Fox has got many strings to his musical bow but when he sings and gets all sultry there’s no one better. This track is a prime example of that; pure emotive vibes!