TiD&B Interview: Matrix & FutureboundPosted by Lady V on Wednesday, July 13th, 2011
Fresh from their latest release, ‘Worldwide 001′,Â we caught up with the formidable Matrix and Futurebound, to find out more about their newest compilation series showcasing the very best from their respective imprints, Viper Recordings and Metro Recordings, including not only their own stellar productions but bangers from the likes of ShockOne, Furlonge and Camo & Krooked. Â Having notched up their good share of air miles over the past decade with extensive touring schedules taking them across the globe, we also thought who else better to quiz but the duo, on their thoughts about the drum and bass scene worldwide…
TiD&B: Now that ‘Worldwide 001′ has been released, how are you feeling?
M&F: Very tired! We put a lot of effort into the album, as we do with everything.Â Itâ€™s been a long project since we first started working on it back in January and lately weâ€™ve been in promo overdrive doing radio appearances and guest mixes for the likes of BBC Radio 1, as well as gigs all over the UK, Europe and our current North America tour.
TiD&B: Was there a specific reason behind naming the LP series ‘Worldwide’?
M&F: We wanted to do a mix that represented the sounds of drum & bass around the globe as we are always touring all over the UK, Europe, Russia, Japan, Australia, and North America.Â We also have quite a diverse roster of international artists signed to Viper with ShockOne from Australia, Smooth from Slovenia, GeneticBros from Russia, so we really want to represent not just D&B sounds from the UK but from all points of the globe.
TiD&B: As ‘Worldwide 001′ is a double cd comprising of both a compilation and mix, it must have been a huge project! How long were you working on it and how easy was it to put it all together?
M&F: We started working on it around last January.Â To be honest, it was quite a difficult process putting the whole thing together.Â Originally we were going to license a load of tunes from various labels to put in the DJ mix as this was to be the launch of the series, but as the project went on we kept getting held back with all the challenges faced when having to deal with so many different people and labels.Â Eventually after working on it for a couple of months we got to the point where we realised we had a load of great material from our own labels (Viper Recordings and Metro Recordings) and so we could put the compilation together using about 80% of our own material.Â Looking back on it, weâ€™re glad this is how it turned out as being able to do this really shows the strength of the labels.
TiD&B: What was your criteria when selecting the tracks featured? As you were both involved in choosing which music to include, were there ever moments when you couldn’t agree on specific tracks?
M&F: We wanted the compilation to represent what itâ€™s like when you come and see us play live in a club or at a big festival – we usually play out back-to-back, so this compilation was done similar to that where different sections were put together by each of us.
We both love many styles that D&B has to offer, whether it be a tearing banger or a deep roller, we love it all! So when A+Râ€™ing the labels we donâ€™t look for one particular sound, we like to look for originality.
TiD&B: Your collaboration spans back to the mid-00s with several single releases as well as the 2007 ‘Universal Truth’ LP, but for those who may be less familiar with your work as a duo, can you tell us more about how you started working together?
M&F: We had both been producing and DJing for years before we linked up. When youâ€™re on the road DJing, you obviously run into many other producers and there is always lots of talk at gigs like, â€œoh we should get in the studio mateâ€, but itâ€™s not often that it actually pans out.Â In our case, we eventually did get in the studio and the result was our first tune together ‘Strength 2 Strength’, which later appeared on our ‘Universal Truth’ album.Â At the time we thought there was a bit of gap in D&B between the all-out dancefloor bangers and the liquid side, we wanted to bridge the gap between the two and make tunes that had the musicality of some of the liquid side of things, whilst still having enough balls to smash it on the dancefloor.
TiD&B: What’s your working partnership like now?
M&F: Long walks on the beach, candle-lit dinners…and generally a lot of swearing when the bass kicks in.
TiD&B: With the recent LP release, producing your own music, a hectic touring schedule and also running your labels, how do you find time to balance it all – what’s your trick?
M&F: We wish we knew! It is very tough balancing the label duties, working with our roster of artists, touring, spending time with the family, and trying to get in the studio to write our own material. We always set high standards for ourselves and keep striving to take the label to the next level. We are never satisfied with where we are and that hunger to continue to grow is what keeps us going and a big reason why weâ€™ve been successful.
TiD&B: Touching upon Viper Recordings, Worldwide is obviously the latest big thing to come from the label, but what else has been bubbling and what should we be keeping an ear out for?
M&F: Weâ€™ve got the first single from ShockOne’s album out at the moment, called ‘Crucify Me’, a collaboration with Phetsta which has been absolutely murdering the festival scene in Australia and clubs all over the world.Â Then GeneticBros drops his debut single on the label with â€˜Everyday Of My Lifeâ€™ – a real 80s throwback ballad, and Furlonge showcases his first venture into dubstep with a huge track, ‘All I Ever Knew’.Â Weâ€™ve also got our second annual Summer Slammers album coming out soon which will feature some of the label’s biggest hits, as well as a load of new exclusive bangers. Â Look out for new tunes from Smooth, InsideInfo, Metrik, Moving Fusion, our newest signing Raw Theory, and finally ShockOneâ€™s debut LP, all forthcoming this year.Â And, if all goes to plan, hopefully the first single from our second Matrix & Futurebound studio album, which we’ll be working on, will be released towards the end of the year as well.
TiD&B: Viper’s also been collaborating withÂ Chibuku in your home city of Liverpool, can you tell us more?
Furturebound: Well Iâ€™ve been working with them for some time now and they’re a great outfit to work with, they donâ€™t mess around with their line-ups.Â Since September of last year, weâ€™ve been hosting quarterly Viper shows where they give us free reign to showcase the label, with line-ups including a mixture of artists on our roster as well special guests.Â After all this time, I still get excited to play there, itâ€™s total chaos!
TiD&B: Viper’s played an important role in introducing us to some of the biggest artists in the scene at the moment such as Brookes Brothers and Camo & Krooked, who you’ve been supporting from day dot – for all budding producers interested to join the roster, do you have any advice?Â What do you specifically look out for in a demo?
Futurebound:Â As a label, weâ€™ve always been pushing fresh new talent in the scene – this goes back to some of our very early Viper releases by the Brookes Brothers, Sigma, and ShockOne, and in recent years, weâ€™ve had some of the first releases from Camo & Krooked, Delta Heavy, The Prototypes, DC Breaks, as well as with our own camp including Metrik, Furlonge, Smooth and InsideInfo.Â Itâ€™s very important to push new talent coming through the label to keep things fresh and give a new wave of producers a chance to shine.
Thereâ€™s no magic formula to submitting a demo, but make sure to really work on your mixdowns and beats before sending something. Donâ€™t send a Version 1 which you just started working on because a proper mix down can make all the difference to the listener.
TiD&B: In honour of the Worldwide LP, and also having headlined gigs all over the globe let’s finish by talking about your experiences of the D&B scene worldwide…
Which country has been the most fun to tour?
M&F: Australia & New Zealand are always a goodâ€™un, so are Japan & China, but to be honest, itâ€™s always fun when the pair of us are away.
Which country know how to party the hardest?
M&F: The UK hands down. Although the Aussies have a good go!
Can you tell us about a country/city who’s D&B scene you really rate?
M&F: There really is loads of great places that rep the scene well, but outside of the UK weâ€™d say Austria – not just because they have a great club scene for D&B, but also because of the amount of great producers coming from there.
Which country/city would you consider your home away from home?
M&F: Perth in Australia, because they also have both a brilliant club scene and talented producers.