If you could work with any artist from any period in time, or any genre, who would it be? This is our line of questioning when it comes to Work Experience features. But what if that artist has already worked with some the most famous artists possible? Jay-Z, M.O.P, LL Cool J, Everything But The Girl, David Bowie, Pet Shop Boys, Missy Elliot, Redman, J Majik, Pendulum, De La Soul, Beenie Man, Pharaohe Monch… The list goes on.
In fact it’s safe to say the man who gave us formative slices of drum & bass such as Metropolis and Circles is one the most versatile producers the scene has ever spawned. But first, we had to ask him THAT question; why the hell isn’t he releasing drum & bass any more?
“I knew this was coming,” he pauses. “You see comments on YouTube from people, probably the older fans, saying ‘how can you go from drum & bass to this?’ It’s 2012 now! I don’t want to make and play the same music I did 15 years ago. Breakbeat Kaos is still about the new and exciting edge of drum & bass. It’s about giving the new generation a platform. Like Goldie and Shadow did for me. You need that new generation. You need them progressing and you need to progress yourself. I’ve done hip-hop, film scores, all sorts. I produce different things. You may well hear another drum & bass track from me but it’s time for other people to shine at the moment. I have made some, I play them in my set but I don’t know if I’ll actually release them…”
Our scene’s loss is the hip-hop, pop, dubstep and electro world’s gain. In fact if you’re into his bass-bitten, raffish take on electro then keep an eye out for his Elements EP released next week. In the meantime, we chat collabos… Who his dream ones would be and how his seminal hip-hop album Kaos: The Anti Acoustic Warfare came together.
“Hip-hop collaborations are difficult becauce they don’t know who you are and it’s hard to convince them to work with you,” he says. “But once you’re in the studio it’s really easy! They’re used to a set of producers who provide them with beats, so it threw them when I came up with the Kaos album; they weren’t used to a platform or theme like that. But because I had a direction and an idea, they respected that. It wasn’t all about me going ‘how much for you to rap on this middle eigth?’ – I developed a working relationship with them and they respected my vision. I wasn’t trying to do something to suit them. I think that’s why I’ve gone on to work with them since…”
Enough of his past achievements. Let’s see who Adam’s dream collabos would be….
“THE most sampled person in hip-hop as far as I know. Sampled by myself, sampeld by Run DMC, sampled by fucking everybody! He’s got a heaviness that’s inspired me for as long as I can remember. His music combines very dark vibes with funk. Not all of it. The Taxi Theme for example is super chilled! But he’s had a huge influence on my music and the dynamics I want to create. He’s a great keyboard player, too. I have huge respect for him. I’d love to make a track with him. I actually played on the same stage as him at a jazz festival years ago! I was on before him, so I played a show with him, basically! It wasn’t like a D&B line-up; Friction, Adam F, Fresh and so on. This was a proper jazz festival! I’d like to think he had some time for my album and what I was doing. But you’re talking generations apart. He’s not like David Bowie who moves with the time; Bob James is Bob James and he does what he wants to do. I love that.”
Lalo Schifrin, Vangelis and Quincy Jones
“I’m throwing in all of these together; it’s all about the films. We’re talking proper depth; Dirty Harry was a big part of my growing up. Quincy’s done some amazing films PLUS his work Michael Jackson. All of these can be grouped together. Vengelis has had a huge influentce on people in the scene too, Dillinja sampled him on The Angels Fell. Films and the scores stand the test of time and have influenced almost every producer I know in one way or another. The scores stand the test of time often more than the film…. Nothing stands the test of time more than music.”