As the bass scene moves forward in leaps and bounds, it incorporates styles and elements from different areas of underground music as it goes. This list includes areas such as grime, reggae, breakbeat, techno and more, all of which add their own sprinkle of colour to a very expansive bank of sounds. One genre that we feel has almost been neglected in its musical and rhythmic influence is UK garage.
It’s safe to say that garage is back on the come up, with artists such as MOAD, Conducta and many more pushing the authentic 2-steppy sound back into prominence, gaining some serious popularity as they do so. We were lucky enough to grab a little chat and discussion with one of the garage scene’s most prized up and comers: Movement, who has been turning some serious heads with his uniquely vibrant production style.
We sat down to discuss quite a specific topic, and that was the basics of what UKG means to bass music in its current format, from influential sounds to rhythmic design and more. We also were able to grab a couple of sneak peaks of projects coming up from the man himself. You can check the full interview below:
– – Interview – –
Q: How did garage first become a part of your life?
Movement: My sister introduced me to it, completely. Growing up in suburban London I heard bits and bobs growing up but that was mostly the really famous tunes like ’21 Seconds’ (which i’m not a huge fan of to this day – like lots of solid stuff though). My sister is proper into house and garage so essentially I just picked up tunes from her. At the start of the grime resurgence circa 2014, I started to dig deeper into Wiley’s catalog and found all this old garage he’d been making with Pay As U Go etc, and I never really knew that he did that stuff. Through him I discovered that darker side of garage, like the more grimey So Solid tunes EL-B, Horsepower Productions and Groove Chronicles which remains my favorite style to this day.
Q: Obviously, with the bass scene being so busy right now, do you feel people with a more direct garage influence on their tunes stand out?
Movement: Well If im completely honest, I don’t think most of the garage being made these days is particularly forward thinking (Of which I am myself incredibly guilty), and for me that’s what makes music stand out. That’s not to say that I don’t love it; in fact it’s the opposite, garage is a vibe and if a producer gets that vibe, then they’re winning from me. I just don’t think it would particularly stand out, but I don’t think it NEEDS to stand out. It’s just good, feel good, vibesy music that’s not trying to grab the limelight where other genres do.
Q: When you set out to make a tune, what is your process?
Movement: From a creative perspective, I usually get a flash of creativity from listening to a song, going to a night out, or maybe something more obscure like a film or an image that conjures up music in my head (although that doesn’t happen very much!) I just build from there and see where I go along the way.
From a technical perspective, I usually start with the drums, then go to the bass, then follow with synths and melodic lines, then finish with FX and transitions. Recently I’ve been trying to start with melodic elements to get a fresh perspective, but I’m usually rubbish at it haha.
Q: Which is more important, Rhythm or Sound design?
Movement: I want to make it clear that i’m not knocking sound design, because genres like bassline and neurofunk are heavily based around sound design, and they’re becoming incredibly successful and I have huge respect for those sound design pioneers out there. For me personally, it’s all about rhythm over sound design. Obviously sound design is there to make something audibly interesting, so I use it myself, but I think the vibe of the track comes mostly from the rhythm, which is why i’m not the biggest fan of 4×4 beats, and although I use them sometimes, the majority of my productions I try and switch it up a bit with new rhythms and grooves, whether that be bass drums or synths.
Q: What do you feel garage means to bass music?
Movement: Garage is to bass music what jungle is to drum n bass, its musical ancestor. Both genres are now shadowed by their descendants, but as a member of both these scenes, it’s a nice feeling because a lot of bass music producers do know their history with garage and show love to it. Sammy Vriji’s remix of Tina Moore’s “Never Let You Go” was so good because it was a huge nod to garage, but has that fresh, modern sound. I think garage fans don’t mind that it’s not as much in the limelight anymore, as it allows producers to experiment more and create their own new sounds without pursuing commercial success.
Q: Who are the garage artists that you currently feel are leading the way (other than yourself?)
Movement: Thanks for the compliment but I don’t even think that! But anyway, my favourite garage artists who are really pushing things forward are the big guns like Conducta who hasn’t watered down any of his work, MOAD because he’s just a fantastic producer both with rhythm AND sound design. This is a good opportunity however to showcase some lesser known producers who are pushing the sound forward, like Earthnut, Harrta and Gru Var, who are all making unbelievably high quality garage. Seriously, remember those names for the future of UKG.
Q: From your catalogue, it’s clear that garage isn’t everything for you, what else would you say inspires you heavily genre wise?
Movement: Yes that’s very true. My two biggest influences are jungle and UK style techno. Jungle has always been a part of my life since I accidentally downloaded a jungle album when I was 13 (I thought it was gonna be reggae). Jungle taps into my love of crazy rhythms. Through that I discovered Goldie, and his label Metalheadz, which completely changed the way I approach writing and producing music. I used to find it very difficult to use atmospheric production with bass heavy drops, but this style of jungle gave me the confidence to try it, and I think my recent unreleased jungle stuff is up there with some of the best stuff I’ve ever done (not to blow my own horn).
When it comes to techno, I was always very dismissive of it (mainly because of its incredibly annoying and pretentious fanbase). But once I filtered out the boring ultra minimal stuff, I discovered so much good UK techno music, from the likes of people like Akkord, Throwing Snow and Nuvaman, labels like Jelly Bean Farm and Circular Jaw and Hessle Audio which all put out incredible music regularly. Techno also made me want to try my hand at sound design more, and although my sound design is still pretty basic, it’s definitely got better through my exposure to techno and its weird sounds.
Q: Release wise, what do we have coming up to look forward to from yourself?
Movement: My most exciting release is coming on Southpoint in October, which is my nod to classic UKG sounds whilst using updated production, and I can’t wait to see what people think of it. I’ve also got a Jungle EP coming out on Boomsha in autumn which i’m excited about too.
Q: Any shout outs before we let you go?
Movement: Shoutout to my Tropicale boys, Marko (Baloo) and Rikki (RVB), my Dissident Sound co-founder Adam (Blends) and everyone who’s supported us. Shouts to the Southpoint crew as well because they’re pretty much the only reason I’m able to release music!
You can catch Movement on the following platforms: