With 2016 being one of Titan Records’ most prolific years to date, the young label continues to make waves for its ability to dominate and innovate on that upfront, tech-tinged dancefloor tip. Whether it’s mashing up neuro and jump-up with Turno, providing an outlet for heads like Maniatics, Agressor Bunx, A-Cray, and Tobax, or representing the label with his untouchable style on the decks, label boss A.M.C seems determined to keep the dancefloor pressure on full tilt as his imprint continues dropping mad crushers from old- and new-school names alike.
Enter the first release of 2017—A.M.C opens up the vaults for the first in his highly anticipated ‘Dubplate Series’ on the imprint. Designed to resurrect the days when the hottest exclusives ran the underground, the series promises to deliver the hottest cuts that have been crushing it behind the scenes in a major way.
With an unholy VIP of the already hairy “Southpaw” making the cut, there’s also our favorite, “Stick or Twist,” that features A.M.C pulling out all the stops and loading up the plate with two sets of drops sure to have the heads bouncing off the walls.
Check the exclusive Bassrush Premiere of “Stick or Twist” below and lock in your own copy of the first volume in the ‘Dubplate Series’ here, as we dip into a full-fledged Q&A with the man himself.
First off, introduce yourself to the Bassrush masses. Where you from and what style of D&B do you see yourself as representing?
I’m from London, UK and represent the whole spectrum of drum & bass.
Talk a bit about your own journey. When did D&B enter your world and at what point did your love of the music turn into DJing and producing?
Crikey, this may get a bit longwinded. I used to listen to heavy metal, nu-metal, and loads of rock-based music when I was a kid. Then my good friend Lewis (goes by the name of Innate MC) showed me a tape of Nicky Blackmarket and Stevie Hyper D; from then on I was hooked. After that I immediately got some turntables, bought a load of vinyl, and basically didn’t do anything else for ages. Production came in to it after a few years of being on the DJ circuit. I decided to start making some tracks in FL Studio, then Reason, and finally settling with Logic. After a few years of doing that I started my own label, Titan Records, and everything kicked on from there.
Tell us about your early experiences in the lab and when you knew you had some tunes worth sending out.
The experience was stressful, if I’m honest. I was already quite well known in the DJ side of things, but I’d come in literally as one of the last DJs to make it without making any tracks before it all changed to: “You’ll only get to DJ if you make the tunes.” It was stressful because I had to get on it quick and get something out that was good enough to show that I could do both. Don’t get me wrong, I super enjoy making music, but it took me about four years before I was anywhere near sending something out to someone else to play. The first track…well, I won’t give the name because I don’t want people looking for it. [Laughs] But Fabio started supporting it and then others followed, so it all worked out in the end.
Your imprint, Titan Records, has come a long way in a relatively short amount of time. Give us a quick history of how it came together, your vision for it when you started, and how it has evolved since.
It’s crazy, right!? I started Titan because I used to get sent a mental amount of tunes that I would then cut on to dubplate and play out, but then I would notice that these amazing tunes would never come out. I wanted to start Titan to give the unheard, the overlooked, or the under-appreciated artists a platform to show their skills and talent to the world. That’s always been the ethos at Titan. It’s all about the artists.
Fast forward to today and we’ve had huge tracks that have gone on to be BBC Radio 1 staples, support from everyone in the scene, events that have sold out in weeks, tracks on TV adverts and computer games. It just gets bigger and better every year.
“Stick or Twist” is part of the newly minted ‘Dubplate Series.’ Give us a sense of the spirit behind the series, the release, and this tune in particular.
When I started DJing, dubplates and dubplate culture was everything. Recently, some labels have decided to send out tracks on the day of release or a few days before the release if you’re lucky and its totally killing that dubplate culture. Years ago it was dubplate culture that drove the hype behind so many amazing tracks and was what this music genre grew up on. I understand that this could be for a number of reasons: marketing restrictions, worry of losing the hype once a release is out, things like that. But I feel it’s just adding to the short shelf life of tracks these days. The two tunes that make up this release were ones I sent out to a bunch of DJs just before Let It Roll last year so that they could rinse them for ages. I feel it’s worked perfectly because the amount of people asking me when it’s coming out or if I can send it to them has been immense.
I called this track “Stick Or Twist” because I really couldn’t decide what drop to have as the first drop, so I just used both. The first drop is the “Stick” and the second is the “Twist.”
Before we go we have to absolutely send love your way as a DJ. For someone who’s never witnessed you live and in the mix, hit us with your favorite mix or video featuring yourself in the groove so they can get a look at what we’re talking about!
That means a lot! Wow, my favorite? I don’t really have a favorite mix because I’m never satisfied about my mixes, which inspires me to be more creative and try new things. I would probably have to pick my set from Let It Roll last year if I absolutely had to pick one; not because of the mix but because the crowds in the Czech Republic are some of the best D&B crowds in the world! They show me so much love and literally go nuts from start to finish. Big up Let It Roll and the Czech Republic!