Matrix and Futurebound continue to power towards the full release of their Mystery Machine album with yet another smoking single to add to their legacy. With the soulful vocals of Alex Hepburn leading the way, the gospel-tinged “Live Another Day” builds on the ever-evolving Matrix and Futurebound sound with its feel-good vibes and goosebump-inducing bottom end.
From the epic sweep of the synth-driven intro on through to the uplifting vocals and overwhelming power of Alex Hepburn’s lyrics and voice, the subtle groove makes this one feel easily at home on a Balearic holiday as much as it does on those late-night dancefloor sessions still to come. It’s the perfect precursor to their full-length LP due to drop later this year via Metro/Viper Recordings and the perfect opportunity for us to sit down and catch up with the duo as we begin our own march towards their highly-anticipated appearance at Bassrush Massive in July (full details and tickets here).
For now, soak in the summertime vibes to get you in the mood and download/stream your own copy of “Live Another Day” here.
Introduce us to Alex Hepburn and tell us a little about this collab and how it all went down.
Futurebound: We always try to keep our ear to the ground with new vocalists and it was our management who introduced us to Alex. We’ve been working on finishing our new album, Mystery Machine, which will be out later this year. We had some ideas on the go and when we linked with Alex she delivered perfectly.
Matrix: About a year ago, we remixed Emeli Sande’s single, “Breathing Underwater,” which had a gospel choir in it and we really loved how that worked with our sound. We liked the idea of bringing some of those gospel flavors onto a track for the album and Alex has the perfect voice for that.
This is such a unique track that seems to flex your skills on a different tip. Talk to us about the vibe and if it’s any indication of things to come on the album later this year.
Futurebound: It’s not the 174bpm style D&B we usually do so it was refreshing to slow things down and go on a breaks vibe. It still has all the M&F hallmarks in the mix though, along with a good dose of gospel influence and we’re really happy with how it’s come out.
Matrix: I think it’s got a nice fusion of electronic and organic sounds going on. That’s one of the things we usually try and put into our records and it’s kind of the idea behind the title of our album: The Mystery Machine is supposed to represent the combination of our minds mixed with all the technology in our studio. That’s where our music comes from.
Stepping outside your comfort zone can sometimes be challenging in the studio. Was that the case with this one?
Futurebound: Honestly, not at all. It all came together quite quickly, which is not normal for us!
Matrix: Yeah, true. There are some tracks that take many many months and lots of tearing out of hair to get to where we’re happy, especially in the mixdown department. Ask any D&B producer and they’ll probably tell you the same thing. Somehow, though, this one kind of steered itself in the right direction all on its own.
When it comes to your live performances, do you enjoy playing out your more melodic, upbeat tunes like this one, or your more “underground” D&B bangers?
Futurebound: We love playing a combination of both, in the right scenario of course. Some shows require you to go a little more full-on and others are more open for you to showcase your full array of styles. As a DJ you have to adjust and we have no problem doing that.
Matrix: I think the best DJ sets are where you can take all sides of the music and combine them into one thread. I love it when we can fit the hardest heaviest most underground records and put them into the same set as stuff at the opposite end of the spectrum. That’s where the magic can happen for me, and that’s where you can get a really intense atmosphere going on. It’s much more exciting than just: here’s an hour or two of wall-to-wall Beatport Top 10 bangers, all on the same level and everyone out there is dropping them. Just like with production, you have to find a way to do your own thing with DJing.
As we look ahead to the album, why choose “Live Another Day” as one of the singles to showcase? Should we be expecting more tunes like this one?
Futurebound: For the most part our album is drum and bass but there is some more stuff in this kind of zone. “Live Another Day” just felt like the obvious next record to release but in case any of our hardcore D&B fans get worried we’ve also made a full-on D&B club mix of it entitled the M&F’s Smoke & Mirrors Edit so you can look out for that in the near future.
Matrix: We’ve always tried to cover a lot of different angles within D&B, whether it’s the melodic vocal vibes of tracks like “Control” or more raw stuff like “Mystery Machine” and “The Wall.” This record, although it’s not strictly a D&B track is just an extension of that. Really though, we’re just doing what we’ve always done: If we like the record and it makes us feel good, we release it and hopefully the people will enjoy it. That’s the end of the story.