Commix’s 5 favourite forward-thinking D&B tracks
Commix is the 170bpm creative alias for George Levings, and a name synonymous with the very best in forward thinking D&B.
Starting out as a trio, the Commix name has graced some of Drum & Bass’ leading labels since coming to prominence in the early 2000s, and the debut album, ‘Call To Mind’, holds the honour of being the first solo artist album for historic label Metalheadz. The album itself was incredibly well received across the electronic music spectrum and is widely regarded as one of the best D&B LPs of all time.
As a DJ, Commix focuses on the deep, the experimental and the musical. Drawing on his wealth of experience in both D&B and 4×4 based genres, he joins these styles together in a mesmerising weave, defying genre and categorisation, that cements his reputation as one of the most respected artists in the scene today.
Here he tells us about his 5 favourite forward thinking D&B tracks of all time.
D-Bridge – ‘Tear Me Open’
D-bridge is always at the top of the list when it comes to forward thinking D&B in my eyes. He’s constantly looking for the next way to manipulate the genre’s capabilities. This is no less apparent on his new LP Lineage which for me is a beautifully explorative collection of tracks.
Tear Me Open is a perfect example of the versatility of drum and bass. It skirts around the D&B norms – sped up funk breaks, big modulated bass sounds etc and instead focuses on the bare bones of the groove. It’s edgy and haunting in a way only D-bridge knows how.
Pessimist – ‘Balaklava’
Pessimist is a bristol based producer who I have been following for a while now. His music is heavily rooted in techno and I love how stripped back and analog it is. A real kick back against the high fidelity sound you hear more and more in D&B these days. ‘Balaklava’ is a few years old now but I still love the way it sounds. Totally stripped back, distorted and cold. His recent productions blur the lines between techno and D&B. Using breaks in unusual ways and always with certain nostalgic elements that take you back to the early sounds of optical, no u-turn etc.
Dj Rum – ‘Water Rising’
DJ Rum is an eclectic producer who can turn his hand to various different styles and when he does drum and bass it’s always special and different. I’ve been starting my sets with this track quite a lot recently. It’s a beautiful musical track which builds cleverly and has a really clever arrangement. I love how it completely disregards the normal formulas you see in dancefloor drum and bass. It catches you by surprise, has bridges and different sections which is refreshing to hear.
Skee Mask – ‘Compro’
Skee Mask is an incredible beat programmer. He has a way of working with breaks like I’ve not heard since people like Photek were around. Compro is an album that spans across tempos but draws heavily from the early sounds of D&B, jungle and acid house. Soundboy Ext. is the track that relates most to D&B and its slamming. Super deep chords and amazing drums. Check it out. One of my favourite albums in recent years.
Overmono – ‘iii’s Front’
I love what these guys do. Both as solo artists (Tessla and Truss) and their collaborative project Overmono. Their music is breaks heavy and expertly engineered. ‘iii’s Front’ is a beats workout with exceptional beat programming. It’s basically just beats, sampling James Brown’s ‘Soul Pride’. It takes you back to the days of Source Direct but at the same time has a futuristic edge to it. This won’t leave my bag for a long time. Another fave by these guys is ‘Daisy Chain’ check it out.
You can catch Commix at Patterns in Brighton on Friday 26th July. More info and tickets are available here