Drum and bass

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Drum and bass (/ˈdrʌm ənd ˈbs/) (also written as drum 'n' bass or drum & bass and commonly abbreviated to D&B, DnB or D'n'B) is a genre of electronic music also known as Jungle which emerged in England in the early 1990s.[3] The genre is characterized by fast breakbeats (typically between 160–180 beats per minute[4]) with heavy bass and sub-bass lines.[5] The "bass line" is usually created with sampled sources or synthesizers.

The popularity of drum and bass at its commercial peak ran parallel to several other homegrown dance styles in the UK including big beat and hard house. Drum and bass incorporates a number of scenes and styles. A major influence on jungle and drum and bass was the original Jamaican dub and reggae sound. One of the most influential tracks in drum and bass history was "Amen Brother" by The Winstons. The Roland TR-808 kick drum sound is also important.[6] Another feature of the style is the complex syncopation of the drum tracks' breakbeat.[7]

Drum and bass subgenres include drumstep, breakcore, Ragga jungle, hardstep, darkstep, techstep, Neurofunk, Ambient drum 'n' bass, Liquid funk, Deep, Drumfunk, Funkstep, Sambass and Drill 'n' bass. Despite its roots in the UK, the style has established itself around the world. Drum and bass has influenced many other genres like hip hop, big beat, dubstep, house music, trip hop, ambient music, techno, rock and pop. Drum and Bass is dominated by a small group of "hardcore" record labels. The major international music labels have shown very little interest in the drum and bass scene.

History[edit]

See also: Oldskool Jungle

In the late 1980s and early 1990s, a growing nightclub and overnight outdoor event culture gave birth to a new electronic music style called rave music, which, much like hip-hop, combined sampled syncopated beats or breakbeats, other samples from a wide range of different musical genres and, occasionally, samples of music, dialogue and effects from films and television programmes. But rave music tended to feature stronger bass sounds and a faster tempo (127 to over 140) beats per minute (BPM) than that of early house music. This subgenre was known as "hardcore" rave but from as early as 1991, some musical tracks made up of these high-tempo break beats, with heavy basslines and samples of older Jamaican music, were referred to as "jungle techno", a genre influenced by Jack Smooth and Basement Records, and later just "jungle", which became recognized as a separate musical genre popular at raves and on pirate radio in Britain. It is important to note when discussing the history of Drum n Bass that prior to Jungle, rave music was getting faster and more experimental. Professional DJ & producer C.K. states, "There was a progression as far as the speed of music is concerned. Anyone buying vinyl every week from 1989 to 1992 noticed this."

By 1994 jungle had begun to gain mainstream popularity and fans of the music (often referred to as junglists) became a more recognizable part of youth subculture. The genre further developed, incorporating and fusing elements from a wide range of existing musical genres, including the raggamuffin sound, dancehall, MC chants, dub basslines, and increasingly complex, heavily edited breakbeat percussion. Despite the affiliation with the ecstasy-fuelled rave scene, Jungle also inherited some associations with violence and criminal activity, both from the gang culture that had affected the UK's hip-hop scene and as a consequence of jungle's often aggressive or menacing sound and themes of violence (usually reflected in the choice of samples). However, this developed in tandem with the often positive reputation of the music as part of the wider rave scene and dancehall-based Jamaican music culture prevalent in London. By 1995, whether as a reaction to, or independently of this cultural schism, some jungle producers began to move away from the ragga-influenced style and create what would become collectively labelled, for convenience, as drum and bass.[8]

As the genre became generally more polished and sophisticated technically, it began to expand its reach from pirate radio to commercial stations and gain widespread acceptance (circa 1995–1997). It also began to split into recognizable subgenres such as jump-up and Hardstep. As a lighter and often jazz-influenced style of drum and bass gained mainstream appeal, additional subgenres emerged including techstep (circa 1996–1997) which drew greater influence from techno music and the soundscapes of science fiction and anime films.

The popularity of drum and bass at its commercial peak ran parallel to several other homegrown dance styles in the UK including big beat and hard house. But towards the turn of the millennium its popularity was deemed to have dwindled as the UK garage style known as speed garage yielded several hit singles. Speed garage shared high tempos and heavy basslines with drum and bass, but otherwise followed the established conventions of "house music", with this and its freshness giving it an advantage commercially. London DJ/producer C.K. says, "It is often forgotten by my students that a type of music called "garage house" existed in the late 1980s alongside hip house, acid house and other forms of house music." He continues, "This new garage of the mid 90s was not a form of house or a progression of garage house. The beats and tempo that define house are entirely different. This did cause further confusion in the presence of new house music of the mid-1990s being played alongside what was now being called garage." Despite this, the emergence of further subgenres and related styles such as liquid funk brought a wave of new artists incorporating new ideas and techniques, supporting continual evolution of the genre. To this day drum and bass makes frequent appearances in mainstream media and popular culture including in television, as well as being a major reference point for subsequent genres such as grime and dubstep[9] and successful artists including Chase & Status and Australia's Pendulum.

Musical features[edit]

2 minute sample. This clip contains 4 tracks ranging from proto-jungle "Tribal Bass" (1991) to jungle track "Here I Come" (1995) to an ominous early drum and bass remix (1995) to Aphrodites modern drum and bass remix (in a jump-up style), "Tribal Natty" (2005), all of which contain the same vocals from Barrington Levy (originally contained in the title song of his album Here I Come). Listen and compare the sounds.

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Drum and bass incorporates a number of scenes and styles, from the highly electronic, industrial sounds of techstep through to the use of conventional, acoustic instrumentation that characterise the more jazz-influenced end of the spectrum.[5][10] The sounds of drum and bass are extremely varied due to the range of influences behind the music.[citation needed]

Drum and bass could at one time be defined as a strictly electronic musical genre with the only "live" element being the DJ's selection and mixing of records during a set. "Live" drum and bass using electric, electronic and acoustic instruments played by musicians on stage emerged over the ensuing years of the genre's development.[11][12][13]

Influences[edit]

A very obvious and strong influence on jungle and drum and bass, thanks to the British African-Caribbean sound system scene, is the original Jamaican dub and reggae sound, with pioneers like King Tubby, Peter Tosh, Sly & Robbie, Bill Laswell, Lee Perry, Mad Professor, Roots Radics, Bob Marley and Buju Banton heavily influencing the music.[14][15] This influence has lessened with time but is still evident with many tracks containing ragga vocals.

As a musical style built around funk or syncopated rock and roll breaks, James Brown, Al Green, Marvin Gaye, Ella Fitzgerald, Gladys Knight & the Pips, Billie Holiday, Aretha Franklin, Otis Redding, the Supremes, the Commodores, Jerry Lee Lewis and even Michael Jackson, are funky influences on the music.[16][17][18][19][20][21] Jazz pioneer Miles Davis has been named as a possible influence.[22] Blues artists like Lead Belly, Robert Johnson, Charlie Patton, Muddy Waters and B.B King have also been cited by producers as inspirations. Even modern avant-garde composers such as Henryk Gorecki have received mention.[23] One of the most influential tracks in drum and bass history was "Amen Brother" by The Winstons which contains a drum solo that has since become known as the "Amen break", which after being extensively used in early hip hop music, went on to become the basis for the rhythms used in drum and bass.

Kevin Saunderson released a series of bass-heavy, minimal techno cuts as Reese/The Reese Project in the late '80s which were hugely influential in drum and bass terms. One of his more famous basslines (Reese – "Just Want Another Chance", Incognito Records, 1988) was indeed sampled on Renegade's Terrorist and countless others since, being known simply as the 'Reese' bassline. He followed these up with equally influential (and bassline-heavy) tracks in the UK hardcore style as Tronik House in 1991–1992. Another Detroit artist who was important for the scene is Carl Craig. The sampled-up jazz break on Carl Craig's Bug in the Bassbin was also influential on the newly emerging sound, DJs at the Rage club used to play it pitched up (increased speed) as far as their Technics record decks would go.[16]

By the late 1980s and early 1990s the tradition of breakbeat use in hip hop production had influenced the sound of breakbeat hardcore which in turn lead to the emergence of jungle, drum and bass, and other genres that shared the same use of broken beats.[24][25] Drum and bass shares many musical characteristics with hip-hop, though it is nowadays mostly stripped of lyrics. Grandmaster Flash, Roger Troutman, Afrika Bambaata, Run DMC, Mac Dre, Public Enemy, Schooly D, N.W.A, Tupac Shakur, Kid Frost, Wu-Tang Clan, Dr. Dre, Mos Def, Beastie Boys and the Pharcyde are very often directly sampled, regardless of their general influence.[26]

Clearly drum and bass has been influenced by other music genres, though influences from sources external to the electronic dance music scene perhaps lessened following the shifts from jungle to drum and bass, and through to so-called "intelligent drum and bass" and techstep.[27][28][29][30][31] It still remains a fusion music style.

Some tracks are illegally remixed and released on white label (technically bootleg), often to acclaim. For example, DJ Zinc's remix of The Fugees' "Ready or Not", also known as "Fugee Or Not", was eventually released with the Fugees' permission after talk of legal action, though ironically the Fugees' version infringed Enya's copyright to an earlier song.[26][32] White labels along with dubplates play an important part in drum and bass musical culture.

Drum and bassline elements[edit]

The genre places great importance on the "bass line", a deep sub-bass musical pattern which can be felt physically through powerful sound systems due to the low-range frequencies favoured. There has been considerable exploration of different timbres in the bass line region, particularly within techstep. The bass lines most notably originate from sampled sources or synthesizers. Bass lines performed with a bass instrument, whether it is electric, acoustic or a double bass, are less common but examples can be found in the work of bands such as Shapeshifter, Squarepusher, Roni Size and STS9.

The Roland TR-808 Rhythm Composer, produced 1980–1984, had a bass drum sound which became very important in Drum and bass.

Of equal importance is the TR-808 kick drum, an artificially pitch-downed or elongated bass drum sound sampled from Roland's classic TR-808 drum machine, and a sound which has been subject to an enormous amount of experimentation over the years.[33]

The complex syncopation of the drum tracks' breakbeat, is another facet of production on which producers can spend a very large amount of time. The Amen break is generally acknowledged to have been the most-used (and often considered the most powerful) break in drum and bass.[34]

The Amen break was synonymous with early drum and bass productions but other samples have had a significant impact, including the Apache, Funky Drummer, "Soul Pride", "Scorpio" and "Think (About It)" breaks.[35][36]

Many drum and bass tracks have featured more than one sampled breakbeat in them and a technique of switching between two breaks after each bar developed. Examples of this can be heard on mid-90s releases such as J Majik's "Your Sound". A more recent commonly used break is the Tramen, which combines the Amen break, a James Brown funk breakbeat ("Tighten Up" or "Samurai" break) and an Alex Reece drum and bass breakbeat.[37]

The relatively fast drum beat forms a canvas on which a producer can create tracks to appeal to almost any taste and often will form only a background to the other elements of the music. Syncopated breakbeats remain the most distinctive element as without these a high-tempo 4/4 dance track could be classified as techno or gabber.[38]

Tempo[edit]

Drum and bass is usually between 160–180 BPM, in contrast to other breakbeat-based dance styles such as nu skool breaks, which maintain a slower pace at around 130–140 BPM. A general upward trend in tempo has been observed during the evolution of drum and bass. The earliest forms of drum and bass clocked in at around 130 bpm in 1990/1991, speeding up to around 155–165 BPM by 1993. Since around 1996, drum and bass tempos have predominantly stayed in the 170–180 range. Recently some producers have started to once again produce tracks with slower tempos (that is, in the 150s and 160s), but the mid-170 tempo is still the hallmark of the drum and bass sound.[16][26]

A track combining the same elements (broken beat, bass, production techniques) as a drum and bass track, but with a slower tempo (say 140 BPM), might not be drum and bass but a drum and bass-influenced breakbeat track.[39]

Context[edit]

Pendulum playing the Valve Sound System with MC IC3 at the Tuesday Club, Sheffield 05/03/06

Drum and bass exhibits a full frequency response which can only be appreciated on sound systems which can handle very low frequencies. As befits its name, the bass element of the music is particularly pronounced, with the comparatively sparse arrangements of drum and bass tracks allowing room for basslines that are deeper than most other forms of dance music. Consequently, drum and bass parties are often advertised as featuring uncommonly loud and bass-heavy sound systems.

There are however many albums specifically designed for personal listening. The mix CD is a particularly popular form of release, with a big name DJ/producer mixing live, or on a computer, a variety of tracks for personal listening. Additionally, there are many albums containing unmixed tracks, suited for home or car listening.[40]

Many mixing points begin or end with the "drop". The drop is the point in a track where a switch of rhythm or bassline occurs and usually follows a recognizable build section and "breakdown". Sometimes the drop is used to switch between tracks, layering components of different tracks, though as the two records may be simply ambient breakdowns at this point, though some DJs prefer to combine breakbeats, a more difficult exercise. Some drops are so popular that the DJ will "rewind" or "reload" or "lift up" by spinning the record back and restarting it at the build. "The drop" is often a key point from the point of view of the dancefloor, since the drumbreaks often fade out to leave an ambient intro playing. When the beats re-commence they are often more complex and accompanied by a heavier bassline, encouraging the crowd to dance.

Although it declines,[41] DJs are often accompanied by one or more MCs, drawing on the genre's roots in hip hop and reggae/ragga.[42]

MCs do not generally receive the same level of recognition as producer/DJs and some events are specifically marketed as being MC free. There are relatively few well-known drum and bass MCs, Stevie Hyper D (deceased), MC GQ, Dynamite MC, MC Fats, MC Conrad, Shabba D, Skibadee, Bassman, MC Stamina, MC Fun, Evil B, Trigga, Eskman, Harry Shotta and MC Infinity as examples.[43]

Live drum and bass[edit]

Aphrodite in 2009 at Pirate Station, the world's largest drum and bass festival, in Moscow.

Many musicians have adapted drum and bass to live performances, which feature instruments such as an drums or triggered drum, synthesizers, turntables, bass (either upright or electric) and guitars (acoustic or electric). Samplers have also been used live by assigning samples to a specific drum pad or key on drum pads or synthesizers. MCs are frequently featured in live performances. Artists who have been known to perform live include Rudimental, DJ Fresh, Modestep, Roni Size, Salmonella Dub, Shapeshifter, Pendulum, La Phaze, Netsky, Chase & Status, Camo & Krooked and London Elektricity.

Music cartography[edit]

Subgenres[edit]

Smaller scenes within the drum and bass community have developed and the scene as a whole has become much more fractured into specific subgenres, including:

  • Drumstep is a combination of drum and bass and dubstep where the beat structure is “half time”, the remaining elements still adhere to the usual tempo and melody pattern style from drum and bass. Since the early 2010s, drumstep has become one of the most popular subgenres of drum & bass, with some songs receiving over 10 million views on YouTube.
Congo Natty, a ragga jungle artist
  • Breakcore is a style of electronic dance music largely influenced by hardcore, jungle, digital hardcore and industrial music that is characterized by its use of heavy kick drums, breaks and a wide palette of sampling sources, played at high tempos.
  • Ragga drum & bass was inspired by the original ragga jungle style, with influences from reggae and dancehall music. Notable artists include Shy FX & T Power, Congo Natty, Potential Bad Boy, Marcus Visionary, Serial Killaz, Benny Page and vocalists such as David Boomah, Top Cat, Tenor Fly and General Levy.
  • Hardstep is a harder style which uses gritty basslines and heavy yet simple electronic melodies.[3] Notable artists include Dillinja (early work), DJ Krust, Mampi Swift, Dieselboy, Current Value, MachineCode etc.
  • Darkstep is characterized by fast drums and a general dark mood, drawing influences from dark ambient, industrial and hardcore music. Prominent artists include Technical Itch, Dylan, Kryptic Minds & Leon Switch, B-Key, Resonant Evil, Infiltrata, SPL, Counterstrike, Evol Intent, The Panacea, Limewax, and Current Value.
  • Techstep is characterized by sci-fi soundscapes[10] and samples from science fiction culture. Pioneered by artists such as Bad Company UK (DJ Fresh, D-Bridge, Maldini & Vegas) Ed Rush, Optical, Trace, Fierce and Nico, Konflict (Kemal & Rob Data), Dom & Roland, Dillinja, Ram Trilogy (Ant Miles, Andy C & Shimon), Moving Fusion, Decoder & Substance, Digital & Spirit, Future Cut, Dylan, Loxy & Ink, Total Science, D.Kay, Stakka & Skynet and Keaton with Usual Suspects or Universal Project, Klute, Concord Dawn, and the label Moving Shadow.[44][45]
  • Neurofunk or Neuro is the progression from techstep[46] incorporating more elements from jazz and funk. Prominent artists include Ed Rush & Optical, Matrix, Bad Company UK, Cause 4 Concern, TeeBee, Future Prophecies, Black Sun Empire, Calyx, Hive, Gridlok, Noisia, Phace & Misanthrop, Silent Witness & Break, State Of Mind, The Upbeats, Chase & Status, Spor, Psidream, Catacomb, Rregula.[47]
Pilgrim - Crash

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  • Jump-up, appeared in the mid 1990,[48] employs heavy and energetic drum and bass,[48] characterized by robotic and heavy bass sounds. Notable artists include DJ Hazard, Generation Dub (Original Sin & Sub Zero), Baron, Cabbie, Clipz, Nightwalker, Callide, Taxman, Jaydan, Sub Zero, Original Sin, Annix, Konichi, Decimal Bass, Tyke, DJ Zen, Majistrate,[49] Twisted Individual, Distorted Minds, TC, Heist, DJ Pleasure, DJ Hype[50] and his label Playaz Recordings.
  • Ambient drum & bass, Atmospheric drum & bass, Intelligent drum & bass, Jazzy drum and bass or Intelligent jungle is a smoother style, influenced by ambient music, chillout, jazz and soul music. It was pioneered by such artists as Timecode, Omni Trio, Foul Play, Hyper-On-Experience, DJ Pulse, Higher Sense, Deep Blue (Sean O'Keefe, Cause4Concern Records), Photek, Jack Smooth (Basement Records), Blame,[51] LTJ Bukem[51] and his label Good Looking Records,[3] and the label Moving Shadow.
  • Deep aka Deep drum and bass also a smoother style, lots of commons with atmospheric dnb and also techstep, but with strong emphasis on round (mostly sin-ish, triangle-ish) baseline and more minimalistic and/or synthetic sound. Lack of uplifting feel, relieving to more complex, (usually) kinda distant soundscapes.[citation needed]
  • Jazzstep or Jazzy jungle demonstrates heavy influence by jazz. It uses typical jazz scales, rhythms and instrumentation. Notable artists include Roni size & Reprazent,[52] Goldie,[52] Morgan Sullyvan, Makoto, Peshay, Alex Reece,[3] and DJ Dextrous.
Changing Faces ft. Charli Brix - Everything Is Gone

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noraus - Level 99 boss

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  • Drumfunk or Choppage is atmospheric drum and bass with a heavy emphasis on complex drum patterns, often with sections of the track where the drums are unaccompanied. Prominent artists include Breakage (early work), Seba, Paradox, and Equinox, Nebula, and the Scientific Wax label.[citation needed]
  • Funkstep incorporates elements from funky house, electro house and dubstep into drum and bass. Funkstep songs start with calm intros, which can sometimes be mixed up with drumstep because of its dubstep and drum and bass-like drums. But after starting with a typical funkstep riff and changing the bassdrum to a consistent 4x4-candence, it is easy to recognize the bridge to more complex house music, which is typical for a funkstep song. A song can contain these bridges and changes repeatedly, which mostly indicate the drops and highlights.
  • Sambass (or Brazilian drum and bass) incorporates elements from samba, bossa nova and other Latin music styles. Pioneered by artists such as DJ Marky,[54] XRS, DJ Patife and Bryan Gee's label V Recordings.
  • Drill 'n' bass (also known as Fungle and Spunk jazz) incorporates double-time drum 'n' bass with undanceable rhythms, low-brow humor, and ambient vibes.[55] The subgenre was developed by Squarepusher and Aphex Twin, whose rapid and irregularly syncopated basslines discouraged dancing.[56]

Regional scenes[edit]

Despite its roots in the UK, which can still be treated as the "home" of drum and bass, the style has firmly established itself around the world. There are strong scenes in other English-speaking countries including Australia, Canada, South Africa, the United States and, New Zealand.[57] It is popular throughout continental Europe, and in South America. São Paulo is sometimes called the drum and bass Ibiza.[citation needed] Brazilian drum and bass is sometimes referred to as "sambass", with its specific style and sound. In Venezuela and Mexico, artists have created their own forms of drum and bass combining it with experimental musical forms. In Colombia there is a large underground scene, The RE.set Label and Bogotá Project are two collectives that put on DnB events in the city, as well as a twice yearly event called Radikal Styles, that brings together local talent and international big names.

Genres influenced by drum and bass[edit]

The Panacea deejaying in 2006

Born around the same time as jungle, breakcore and digital hardcore share many of the elements of drum and bass and to the uninitiated, tracks from the extreme end of drum and bass, may sound identical to breakcore thanks to speed, complexity, impact and maximum sonic density combined with musical experimentation. German Drum and Bass DJ The Panacea is also one of the leading Digital Hardcore artists. Raggacore resembles a faster version of the ragga influenced jungle music of the 1990s, similar to breakcore but with more friendly dancehall beats (dancehall itself being a very important influence on drum and bass).[58] Darkcore, a direct influence on drum and bass, was combined with influences of drum and bass itself leading to the creation of darkstep. There is considerable crossover from the extreme edges of drum and bass, breakcore, darkcore, digital hardcore and raggacore with fluid boundaries.

The genre has influenced many other genres like hip hop, big beat, dubstep, house music, trip hop, ambient music, techno, rock and pop, with artists such as Bill Laswell, Incubus, Pitchshifter, Linkin Park, The Roots, Talvin Singh, MIDIval Punditz, Missy Elliott, The Freestylers, Nine Inch Nails and David Bowie (the last two both using elements of Goldie's "Timeless")[citation needed] and others quoting drum and bass and using drum and bass techniques and elements. The USA has adopted the sound with a genre called ghettotech which have synth and basslines similar to drum & bass.[16][59][60][61][5]

Record labels[edit]

Drum and Bass as a whole is dominated by a small group of "hardcore" record labels. These are run mainly by some of the scene's most prominent DJ–producers, such as London Elektricity's Hospital Records, Andy C's Ram,[62] Goldie's Metalheadz, Basement Records (Jack Smooth), Chris Renegade's Lifted Music, DJ Friction's Shogun Audio,[63] DJ Fresh's Breakbeat Kaos, Futurebound's Viper Recordings and DJ Hype, Pascal and formerly DJ Zinc's True Playaz (now known as Real Playaz as of 2006).[64]

The major international music labels such as Sony Music and Universal have shown very little interest in the drum and bass scene though there has been a few signings, most recently Pendulum's In Silico LP to Warner. Roni Size's Full Cycle Records played a big, if not the biggest, part in the creation of Drum and Bass with their dark, baseline sounds. V Recordings also played a large part of the development of drum and bass. Roni Size, Krust and DJ Die produced some of the first tracks to be considered mainstream drum and bass tracks.

In recent times, Andy C's Ram Records have been pushing the boundaries of drum and bass further into the mainstream with artists such as Chase and Status and Sub Focus releasing many tracks on RAM[62] Chase & Status as well as Pendulum are already hovering in the mainstream and singles like "DJ Marky and XRS – LK" have in the past topped the UK charts. Bringing back UK jungle music legends from LTJ Bukem's label Good Looking artists Bay B Kane, breakbeat hardcore heavyweight Nebula II and original junglist Gappa G who had a big hit with Information Center after remix's from DJ Zinc and Ray Keith. Other Bristol labels such as Cafe Bass have also helped to push through a sound categorised as 'bass music' with the help of influential artists such as Lone Ranger.

Formats and distribution[edit]

Purchasing[edit]

Originally drum and bass was mostly sold in 12-inch vinyl single format. With the emergence of drum and bass into mainstream music markets, more albums, compilations and DJ mixes started to be sold on CDs. As digital music became more popular, websites focused on electronic music, such as Beatport, began to sell drum and bass in digital format.

Distributors (wholesale)[edit]

The bulk of drum and bass vinyl records and CDs are distributed globally and regionally by a relatively small number of companies such as SRD (Southern Record Distributors), ST Holdings, & Nu Urban.[65]

As of 11 September 2012, Nu Urban Music Limited ceased trading and RSM Tenon were instructed to assist in convening statutory meetings of members and creditors to appoint a liquidator. This left many labels short on sales as Nu Urban were one of the main Distributors for the vinyl market in the drum and bass scene.[66]

Media presence[edit]

Today, drum and bass is widely promoted throughout the world using different methods such as video sharing services (YouTube, Dailymotion), blogs, radio and television, the latter being the most uncommon method. More recently, music networking websites such as SoundCloud and MixCloud have become powerful tools for artist recognition, providing a vast platform that enables quick responses to new tracks. Record labels have adopted the use of Podcasts. Prior to the rise of the internet, drum and bass was commonly broadcast over pirate radio.

Radio[edit]

The three highest profile radio stations playing drum and bass shows are BBC Radio 1 with The Drum and Bass Show with Friction, simulcast in the US and Canada on Sirius XM, and DJ Hype on Kiss 100 in London.

The BBC's "urban" station BBC Radio 1Xtra used to feature the genre heavily, with DJ Bailey (show axed as of 29/08/2012) and Crissy Criss (show axed as of August 2014[67]) as its advocates. The network also organises a week-long tour of the UK each year called Xtra Bass. London pirate radio stations have been instrumental in the development of Drum and Bass, with stations such as Kool FM (which continues to broadcast today having done so since 1991), Origin FM, Don FM (the only Drum and Bass pirate to have gained a temporary legal license), Renegade Radio 107.2FM, Rude FM, Wax Fm and Eruption among the most influential.

As of 2014, despite higher profile stations such as 1Xtra scaling back their drum and bass specialist coverage, the genre has made its way in to UK top 10 charts with drum and bass inspired tracks from artists such as Rudimental and Sigma. Earlier in August 2014, before Crissy Criss' show was axed, the BBC held a whole prime time evening event dedicated to showcasing drum and bass by allowing four major labels to participate.[68]

As of November 2014, there has been 6 drum & bass songs reaching the no.1 spot on the UK's top 40 chart, since the genre was first being played on the radio, around 1993. The first of these was in 2012. The fact that all 6 of these songs have reached number 1 in only two years shows the increase in popularity and commercialization of the genre in recent years. The artists that produced these songs are Sigma, Rudimental (both have had two No.1 hits), Wilkinson and DJ Fresh.

Internet radio[edit]

Internet radio stations, acting in same light as pirate stations, have also been an instrumental part in promoting drum and bass music; the majority of them funded by listener and artist donations. Sites such as junglist.com (which no longer exists) were very popular in the early years of the 2000s. Other popular forums are Bassdrive (est. 1999), JungleTrain (est. 2001), DnbRadio (est. 2002), and EverydayJunglist.com (2001). Digitally Imported (est. 1999), known as di.fm, has three channels (dark, liquid, and regular drum and bass). Other well known sites include Renegade Radio 107.2FM (est. 2005), Bassjunkees (est. 2006), drum and bass lounge (est. 2012), BassPort FM (est. 2012), DrumandBass.FM (est. 2014). Runningtingz.com (2001) was among the first of the stations and is still operating.[citation needed]

Drum and bass was supported by Ministry of Sound radio from the early 2000s until 2014, with Bryan Gee of V Recordings, and later featuring Tuesday shows from labels such as Metalheadz, Dispatch Recordings, Fabio & Grooverider, DJ Marky, DJ Bailey, Viper Recordings, Technique Recordings, Shogun Audio and Hospital Records. From September 2014, Ministry abruptly dropped all non-mainstream genres to focus on mainstream EDM, causing disappointment amongst the fans of the D&B community.[69]

Satellite radio[edit]

In North America, XM Satellite, 89.5 CIUT With Marcus Visionary, DJ Prime and Mr. Brown Is North America's longest running Jungle Radio show (Toronto), Album 88.5 (Atlanta) and C89.5fm (Seattle) have shows showcasing drum and bass. Seattle also has a long standing electronica show known as Expansions on 90.3 FM KEXP. The rotating DJs include Kid Hops, whose shows are made up mostly of drum and bass. In Columbus, Ohio WCBE 90.5 has a two-hour electronic only showcase, "All Mixed Up," Saturday nights at 10pm. At the same time WUFM 88.7 plays its "Electronic Playground." Also, Tulsa, Oklahoma's rock station, 104.5 The Edge, has a two-hour show starting at 10:00PM Saturday nights called Edge Essential Mix mixed by DJ Demko showcasing electronic and drum and bass style. While the aforemention shows in Ohio rarely play drum and bass the latter plays the genre with some frequency. In Tucson, Arizona, 91.3 FM KXCI has a two-hour electronic show known as "Digital Empire", Friday nights at 10pm (MST). Resident DJ Trinidad showcases various styles of electronica, with the main focus being drum and bass, jungle & dubstep.

Magazines[edit]

The best known drum and bass publication was Kmag magazine (formerly called Knowledge Magazine) before it went completely online in August 2009. Other publications include the longest running drum and bass magazine worldwide, ATM Magazine, and Austrian-based Resident. London-based DJ magazine has also been running a widely respected drum and bass reviews page since 1993, written by Alex Constantinides, which many followers refer to when seeking out new releases to investigate.

Literature[edit]

Online[edit]

Drum and bass has a very strong, important and vocal online presence with many dedicated portals, forums, communities and internet radio stations – the internet has to much degree superseded the role of pirate radio stations in spreading and popularising the genre, as the stations have switched to newer genres.[70] Internet sites are a source of the latest mixes (professional or amateur) and tracks by unsigned producers. The dominant and most popular websites are Dogs On Acid and Drum and Bass Arena.[71] YouTube has played a major role for Drum and Bass on the internet with the appearance of Pandadnb[72] in 2006 and DNBR[73] in 2007, these were later followed by the hugely successful UKF which to date has reached over 1 billion views.

Mainstream acceptance[edit]

30 second sample. One of the few drum and bass tracks regularly played on commercial popular radio.

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Certain drum and bass releases have found mainstream popularity in their own right, almost always material prominently featuring vocals.[citation needed] Perhaps the earliest example was Goldie's album Timeless from 1995, along with Reprazent's Mercury Music Prize-winning New Forms from 1997, 4hero's Mercury-nominated Two Pages from 1998, and Pendulum's Hold Your Colour in 2005 (the best selling drum and bass album of all time).[74]

Video games such as Hi-Rez Studios' Tribes: Ascend and Rockstar Games' Grand Theft Auto series have contained drum and bass tracks. DJ Timecodes MSX/MSX 98 radio station in Grand Theft Auto III and Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories played drum and bass exclusively.[citation needed]

The genre has some popularity in soundtracks; for instance, Hive's "Ultrasonic Sound" was used in The Matrix's soundtrack and the E-Z Rollers' song "Walk This Land" appeared in the film Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels.[citation needed] Ganja Kru's "Super Sharp Shooter" is heard in the 2006 film Johnny Was.[citation needed]

The Channel 4 show Skins uses the genre in some episodes, notably in the first series' third episode, "Jal", where Shy FX and UK Apache's Original Nuttah was played in Fazers club.[citation needed]

Drum and bass often makes an appearance as background music, especially in Top Gear and television commercials thanks to its aggressive and energetic beats.[citation needed] Cartoon Network's Toonami programming block employs it for television spots and show intros, like the 1997 relaunch of SCI FI Channel segue music by the Jungle Sky label.[citation needed]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Ishkur (2005). "Ishkur's guide to Electronic Music". Retrieved May 29, 2014. 
  2. ^ Reynolds, Simon (2013). Energy Flash: A Journey Through Rave Music and Dance Culture. Soft Skull Press. Whether they were black or white, these artists reaffirmed drum and bass's place in a African continuum (dub, hip hop James Brown, etc...) whose premise constitute a radical break with Western music, classical and pop. 
  3. ^ a b c d Gilman, Ben. "A short history of Drum and Bass". Retrieved June 1, 2014. 
  4. ^ IMO Records "The History of Drum and Bass", IMO Records, London, 8th November 2011. Retrieved on 22 November 2011.
  5. ^ a b c "Jungle/Drum'n'Bass". Retrieved June 1, 2014. 
  6. ^ "TR-808". Retrieved December 24, 2006. 
  7. ^ "Amen Break video on youtube.com". Retrieved September 6, 2006. 
  8. ^ Reynolds, Simon (2013). Energy Flash: A Journey Through Rave Music and Dance Culture. Soft Skull Press. So when I talk about the vibe disappearing from drum and bass, I'm talking about the blackness going as the ragga samples get phased out, the bass loses its reggae feels and becomes more linear and propulsive rather than moving around the beat with a syncopated relation with the drum. 
  9. ^ Global Bass on the music landscape
  10. ^ a b Reynolds, Simon (2013). Energy Flash: A Journey Through Rave Music and Dance Culture. Soft Skull Press. Where intelligent drum and bass suffers from a obsessive-compulsive cleanliness, techstep production is deliberately dirty, all dense murk and noxious drones. 
  11. ^ New Dawn – City Clubs Take Back The Night article, Village Voice, February 27, 2001
  12. ^ "Knowledge Magazine Article mentioning rise of live drum and bass in 2004". Retrieved October 18, 2006. 
  13. ^ "Knowledge Magazine Article on live drum and bass bands". Retrieved October 18, 2006. 
  14. ^ "NJC–Sativa Records interview by Dhanu Le Noury at planetdnb.com". Archived from the original on May 10, 2006. Retrieved September 6, 2006. 
  15. ^ "A Guy Called Gerald's Silent Drum & Bass Protest by Benedetta Skrufff at tranzfusion.net". Retrieved September 6, 2006. 
  16. ^ a b c d "Red Bull Academy Interview Fabio – The Root To The Shoot". Retrieved September 4, 2007. 
  17. ^ "Liquid V Show Us The Bigger Picture". breakbeat.co.uk. Retrieved September 6, 2006. [dead link]
  18. ^ "Mike Bolton interview on rwdmag.com". Archived from the original on October 25, 2006. Retrieved September 6, 2006. 
  19. ^ "Being Everything But The Girl". Salon. 28 September 1998. Retrieved January 26, 2007. 
  20. ^ "Bailey profile". BBC. Retrieved September 6, 2006. 
  21. ^ "Makoto interview". 404audio.com. Retrieved September 6, 2006. 
  22. ^ "Ill Logic & Raf interview". breakbeat.co.uk. Retrieved September 6, 2006. 
  23. ^ Collin, Matthew. "Goldie". techno.de. Retrieved September 6, 2006. 
  24. ^ "Photek interview". native-instruments.com. Archived from the original on March 20, 2006. Retrieved September 6, 2006. 
  25. ^ "MC XYZ interview at planetdnb.com". Archived from the original on May 10, 2006. Retrieved September 6, 2006. 
  26. ^ a b c "Zinc interview – Hardware Bingo". Red Bull Academy. Retrieved September 4, 2007. 
  27. ^ Horton, Noah. "NOOKIE". weeklydig.com. Retrieved September 6, 2006. [dead link]
  28. ^ Berman, Nigel (2002). "Goldie article". Insight. Nigel Berman. Retrieved September 6, 2006. 
  29. ^ "LTJ Bukem". knowledgemag.co.uk. Retrieved September 6, 2006. 
  30. ^ "History of drum & bass on London News". Retrieved January 18, 2007. 
  31. ^ "Klute". knowledgemag.co.uk. Retrieved September 6, 2006. 
  32. ^ "Discogs.com entry on Ready Or Not remixes". Retrieved April 9, 2007. 
  33. ^ "TR-808". Retrieved December 24, 2006. 
  34. ^ "Amen Break video on youtube.com". Retrieved September 6, 2006. 
  35. ^ "Forever And Ever Amen article on knowledgemag.co.uk". Retrieved September 6, 2006. 
  36. ^ "junglebreaks.co.uk". Retrieved August 15, 2010. 
  37. ^ "Dom & Roland interview by Ben Willmott at knowledgemag.co.uk". Retrieved September 6, 2006. 
  38. ^ "Life in The Fast Lane: An Overview of Drum and Bass by George Broyer at drumbum.com". Retrieved September 6, 2006. 
  39. ^ "Remix Mag Interview with Rob Playford, drum and bass pioneer at remixmag.com". Retrieved October 5, 2006. 
  40. ^ "The Good Life, No Such Thing As Society", The Independent, July 23, 2003
  41. ^ Reynolds, Simon (2013). Energy Flash: A Journey Through Rave Music and Dance Culture. Soft Skull Press. When the drum and bass gradually fell into the orbit of techno, the MC &madash; both as a samplesource taken from dancehall and rap records and as a live partner of the DJ in the club &madash; began to disappear from the music. 
  42. ^ "Goldie in Shanghai on youtube.com". Retrieved September 6, 2006. 
  43. ^ "MC Evolution feature on knowledgemag.co.uk". Retrieved September 6, 2006. 
  44. ^ "Slipping Into Darkness". The Wire (148). June 1996. Retrieved 31 January 2013. 
  45. ^ Chris Christodoulou (2002). "Rumble in the Jungle: The Invisible History of Drum and Bass by Steven Quinn, in: Transformations, No 3 (2002)". Retrieved April 6, 2014. Techstep is a sub-genre [sic] of drum ‘n’ bass characterised by harsh noise, tonal dissonance and a discourse of sonic violence. 
  46. ^ "2 Steps Back". The Wire (166). December 1997. Retrieved 31 January 2013. 
  47. ^ Neurofunk at dbpedia.org
  48. ^ a b Bogdanov, Vladimir (2001). All music guide to electronica: the definitive guide to electronica. Rough Guides. pp. 225, 638, 140. ISBN 1858284333. 
  49. ^ Ishkur (2005). "Ishkur's guide to Electronic Music". Retrieved June 1, 2014. 
  50. ^ Reynolds, Simon (2013). Energy Flash: A Journey Through Rave Music and Dance Culture. Soft Skull Press. At clubs like AWOL, the ruling sound is the gangsta hard-step and 'jump up' jungle of labels like Ganja, Frontline, Dread, Suburban Base and Dope Dragon, made by DJ—producers like Hype, Pascal, Andy C, Ray Keith, L. Double, Shy FX... 
  51. ^ a b Ishkur (2005). "Atmospheric drum and bass". Retrieved June 1, 2014. 
  52. ^ a b Ishkur (2005). "Jazz step". Retrieved June 1, 2014. 
  53. ^ a b c d Ishkur (2005). "Liquid funk". Retrieved June 1, 2014. 
  54. ^ Chris Christodoulou (2002). "Rumble in the Jungle: The Invisible History of Drum and Bass by Steven Quinn, in: Transformations, No 3 (2002)". Retrieved June 1, 2014. the popularity of the sambass sub-genre [sic], exported to the dance clubs and pop charts of the UK by Brazil's DJ Marky in the mid-2000s, or the Asian drum 'n' breaks scene, which draws on classical Indian music, bhangra and Bollywood film soundtracks. 
  55. ^ Shapiro, Peter (1 August 1999). Drum 'n' Bass: The Rough Guide. Rough Guides. p. 207. ISBN 1858284333. 
  56. ^ Greene, Paul D.; Porcello, Thomas, eds. (1 March 2010). Wired for Sound: Engineering and Technologies in Sonic Cultures. Wesleyan University Press. p. 161. ISBN 0819565164. 
  57. ^ "Drum & Bass Keeps The Beat", Boston Globe, February 6, 2003.
  58. ^ "Raggacore article on lfodemon.com". Archived from the original on February 17, 2007. Retrieved September 6, 2006. 
  59. ^ "A Guy Called Gerald feature at knowledgemag.co.uk". Retrieved September 6, 2006. 
  60. ^ "Remix Mag Interview with Rob Playford, drum and bass pioneer at remixmag.com". Retrieved October 5, 2006. 
  61. ^ a b http://ramrecords.com/about-ram
  62. ^ http://www.shogunaudio.co.uk/about-us.php
  63. ^ https://www.facebook.com/playazrecordings?sk=info,
  64. ^ "Distribution feature at knowledgemag.co.uk". Retrieved September 6, 2006. 
  65. ^ "Announcement of bankruptcy on nu-urbanmusic.co.uk". Retrieved September 21, 2012. 
  66. ^ http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b04f8m00
  67. ^ http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b04dm0p1
  68. ^ http://kmag.uk/2014/09/26/ministry-of-sound-radio-drops-drum-bass/
  69. ^ "Jungle And The Web feature at knowledgemag.co.uk". Retrieved September 6, 2006. 
  70. ^ "BBC – Radio 1 – Fabio & Grooverider". BBC. Retrieved November 4, 2007.  Both listed in the 'Fabio and Grooverider's links' section.
  71. ^ "PandaDNB". Retrieved 1 June 2006. 
  72. ^ "DnBRevolution". Retrieved 13 October 2007. 
  73. ^ "The Pop Life", New York Times, September 17, 1997.

External links[edit]