TiD&B Interview & Mix: Dawn RaidPosted by Lady V on Wednesday, September 28th, 2011
Gideon Thomas caught up with Manchester-based duo, Dawn Raid for an introductory chat to find out more about their recent signing to DJ Vapour’s prestigious 36 Hertz Recordings, as well as what they’ve got planned in the follow up to their feel-good Summer hit ‘Breakdown’…
TiD&B: Can you introduce the members of the crew, and tell us more about your specific roles in the collective?
Dawn Raid: Dawn Raid primarily consist of two members – ADT & Kingsize. Our roles within the crew are pretty similar in terms of the fact that we cover all the pre, during & post- production roles that you would associate with writing music. What we tend to do is apportion the work in relation to the time we have available to hit the studio or our laptops. Then in general, we work towards our strengths; ADT is definitely more of a natural creative spark within the crew, whilst Kingsize brings a more regimented technical skill to the Dawn Raid table.
TiD&B: Can you tell us about your background, both in an overall musical sense, and also how you got to this point in your lives?
Dawn Raid: Yeah we both come from the early 90’s hardcore/jungle rave scene. We love the vibe/menace of the music from that era, and as a result it’s the foundation of everything we do musically. In terms of becoming Dawn Raid, we initially got together through mixing in the same social circles and realising we had a specific love for the same type of music. Aside from that we had both DJ’d, primarily all over the North-West of England, for a fair few years without ever really making real inroads in climbing the D&B ladder as DJs or indeed producers. Therefore in 2006/7 we decided to channel our efforts into working together and hone our skills in the studio, which has led us to where we are with 36 Hertz today.
TiD&B: How did the link with 36 Hertz come about?
Dawn Raid: The initial hook up with 36 Hertz happened after we sent Vapour a few of our dubs which were well received, and he started to drop them in his monthly mixes for the label. As a direct result of the quality of the tracks we were sending him, he invited us down to his studio in Newbury and upon meeting each other, it all fell into place very easily….essentially because we all have the same foundation of values when it comes to the sound we believe represents D&B and jungle best, so in that sense, it was easy to develop a solid working relationship.
TiD&B: Is Dawn Raid your main focus at the moment or are you also working on solo projects?
Dawn Raid: Everything we do musically is as Dawn Raid. This is simply because we can throw 100% effort and weight behind our intended musical goals.
TiD&B: What would you say are the good and bad points of working in a duo?
Dawn Raid: Working in a duo has very few negatives and in our opinion, they are far, far outweighed by the positives. Within the crew there is total creative freedom to just crack on with music in whatever guise when the time is available to do so. The positives are that we are able to vibe off each other (even when we are not necessarily in the studio together) and look to each other for that creative, technical & junglist stamp of approval in whatever we do.
Dawn Raid feat. Leanne ‘Breakdown’
TiD&B: Having developed your skills as both DJs and producers for several years now, what would you say are the most important things for new and upcoming artists to be aware of when starting out?
Dawn Raid: We feel that one of the most important things to be aware of when starting out at any creative level in the music industry is to surround yourselves with the right people. At our rung of the music ladder, the industry can be quite fickle. Be aware of negativity towards your own style, especially if it’s got something unique about it – this would be our primary advice. All musicians, DJs and producers have those times when we feel down in the dumps about our music, especially when your creativity is in the toilet. But by the same token, there are those times when you feel on top of the world because you’ve accomplished a goal or something of great significance. Focus on what works best for you whether it’s using a certain piece of software, or a way of writing music that allows you to bring the best out of yourself. Nine times out of ten, positivity breeds positivity, and a strong positive work ethic will bare fruit. Set realistic goals within a time-frame if possible, and most importantly…it’s a cliché but, believe in yourself.
TiD&B: Very smart advice! So what’s next for Dawn Raid?
Dawn Raid: Well having signed to 36 Hertz for the long term, with a view towards dropping an album or two in the future, we are now focusing on our next immediate project with the label which will be an EP. The EP will allow listeners to really zone in on our music. It’s likely to be a dancefloor workout of an EP with an emphasis on musicality, which we feel represents Dawn Raid best. We also aim to hit the road and DJ as much as possible (as it’s our first love), whilst continuing to drop our monthly FREE downloadable mixes & Heavy Water mixtapes on the 36 Hertz website, and keep checking our Facebook page for updates on everything Dawn Raid!
Dawn Raid also dropped us a heavy exclusive mix featuring smashers from Break, Visionary as well as label mates Jem One and Lighterman, get downloading pronto: