Dreadzone

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Dreadzone
Dreadzone live Athens 22 06 2007.jpg
Dreadzone live in Athens, June 2007
Background information
Origin United Kingdom
Genres Dub, reggae, techno, folk
Years active 1993–present
Labels Virgin
Dubwiser Records
Website www.dreadzone.com
Members Greg Roberts
Tim Bran
MC Spee
Earl 16
Leo Williams
Chris Compton
James Bainbridge
Past members Steve Roberts
Dan Donovan
Chris Oldfield

Dreadzone are a British band whose music is an eclectic fusion of dub, reggae, techno, folk and rock. They have so far released nine studio albums and two live albums.

Career[edit]

Dreadzone formed in 1993 when ex-Big Audio Dynamite drummer, Greg Roberts, teamed up with Tim Bran, who had previously worked as a musician and sound engineer for Julian Cope. The name Dreadzone was suggested to Roberts and Bran by Don Letts.

Bran and Roberts were soon joined by bassist Leo Williams and keyboardist Dan Donovan, also formerly of Big Audio Dynamite. The band signed to Creation Records in 1993 and released their first album 360°. The following year the band signed to Virgin Records and released their second studio album Second Light. In the meantime, Dreadzone had become a favourite festival act and in June that year opened the Pyramid Stage at Glastonbury Festival.[1] During these early years their backing vocalists included Melanie Blatt, Denise van Outen and Alison Goldfrapp.

In January 1996, the group had their first and so far only Top 40 hit in the UK Singles Chart with "Little Britain",[2] which reached #20. The song sampled a line from the 1968 cult British film If.... - "Britain today is a powerhouse of ideas, experiments, imagination".[citation needed]

John Peel championed Dreadzone on BBC Radio 1, and cited Second Light as one of his favourite albums of all time.[3] Tracks from Second Light also dominated Peel's Festive Fifty in 1995, and the band recorded six Peel sessions between 1993 and 2001. In 2000, MC Spee joined as a second vocalist. Between 1998 and 2001 the Dreadzone sound system hosted the Dubwiser club night at Notting Hill Arts Club. On 26 October 2006, it was announced on the Dreadzone forums that Dreadzone guitarist Steve Roberts, the brother of Greg Roberts had died.[4]

In 2007, the band were joined by new members Chris Compton and Chris Oldfield (DJ and lighting designer) and returned to touring. In 2007 and 2008 they played gigs and festival across the UK and Europe, and signed to a new management company in 2008. In 2010, the band released their sixth studio album, Eye on the Horizon.[5]

In 2011 a new video was released. Produced and filmed by John C. Massaria of GoodPixel Productions, it featured music by Dreadzone, "A Dream within a Dream" (in Moscow). In May 2011, a best of compilation album was released by Dubwiser Records entitled The Good, the Bad and the Dread: The Best of Dreadzone.[6]

Discography[edit]

Albums[edit]

Singles[edit]

  • "The Warning" (EP) (1993)
  • "The Good, the Bad and the Dread" (1993)
  • "Dream On" / "House of Dread" (1993)
  • "Fight the Power" (1994)
  • "Zion Youth" (#49 UK, 1995)
  • "Captain Dread" (#49 UK, 1995)
  • "Maximum" (EP) (#56 UK, 1995)
  • "Little Britain" (#20 UK, 1996)
  • "Life Love and Unity" (#56 UK, 1996)
  • "Earth Angel" (#51 UK, 1997)
  • "Moving On" (#58 UK, 1997)
  • "Crazy Knowledge" (2000)
  • "Believing In It" (2001)
  • "The Warriors" (2002)
  • "Once Upon a Time (in Jamaica)" (2005)
  • "King Dub Rock" (2005)
  • "Elevate" (2006)
  • "Iron Shirt" (2006)
  • "Mashup the Dread" (2006)
  • "Beyond a Rock" (2009)
  • "Gangster" (2010)[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Dreadzone.com[dead link]
  2. ^ a b c Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 168. ISBN 1-904994-10-5. 
  3. ^ Dennis, Jon (13 October 2005). "The Peel detective". The Guardian (London). 
  4. ^ Dreadzone.com[dead link]
  5. ^ "Eye On the Horizon - Dreadzone : Songs, Reviews, Credits, Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 2013-02-05. 
  6. ^ a b O'Brien, Jon (2011-05-16). "The Good, the Bad and the Dread: The Best of Dreadzone - Dreadzone : Songs, Reviews, Credits, Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 2013-02-05. 

External links[edit]