In June, ‘brostep’ wunderkind Skrillex posted a YouTube video on his Facebook wall linking to Dub Phizix and Skeptikal’s epic track from December last year, Marka. What ensued was a rather heated debate on both Skrillex’s wall and the YouTube comments for Marka. Aside from the fact that the DJ was six months late in discovering the tune, some people threatened him, saying he shouldn’t ‘mess with’ drum ‘n’ bass after ‘ruining’ dubstep. But, in amongst the mayhem, there were also comments praising the track as ‘trippy’ and explaining how its beats are rooted in the ‘origins of dubstep’. And, of course, some music lovers tried in vain to decipher vocalist Strategy’s jungle rumblings which rang out over the music (was that ‘banana’, ‘marijuana’ or ‘piranha’?).
Before Marka blew up in the blogosphere and got the nod from Skrillex, Dub Phizix had been producing and spinning drum ‘n’ bass tracks from his home in Manchester, England, since the early 2000s after being inspired by Madchester-era rock bands, hip-hop groups and early drum ‘n’ bass DJs. In between came commercial gigs (including penning some Nokia ad tunes) before drum ‘n bass experienced a worldwide revival and Phizix’s tunes were taken along for the ride.
Nowadays, Phizix is releasing tracks on notable British drum ‘n’ bass record labels like Commercial Suicide and Exit Records (the latter of which brought forth Marka) and playing sets at well-respected electronic events like Croatia’s Outlook Festival. Listening to some of the DJ’s tunes, it’s easy to understand why he’s gaining a dedicated d ‘n’ b following. His latest track Never Been is an understated bass-heavy tune fuelled by the familiarly indecipherable but fairly emotional jungle rapping (this time thanks to MC Fox) while his remix of Skittles’ track Dot2Dot effectively took the MC’s spitfire verbage over his own body-moving beats. So, even if Skrillex ‘ruined’ it for you and you were compelled to write on his wall, we still think Dub Phizix’s set this fortnight is well worth checking out.
Dub Phizix spins a set at XXX on Friday August 17, presented by Heavy HK. Cover is $200 at the door. Click here for more info.