News

Drum & bass don Spirit has died

Drum & bass DJs such as Randall and Andy C and many others have been paying tribute to stalwart DJ/producer Spirit, who has died following a cardiac arrest.

Feeding quality dancefloor tracks into the scene for over 20 years, Spirit – real name Duncan Busto — began his music career working in the Redeye Records shop in Ipswich in the East of England. This somewhat unlikely hub also spawned Photek, Klute and Paul Arnold’s Certificate 18 Records, and it was with Klute that Spirit made his first track.

Teaching himself his craft as a producer, Spirit went on to record on labels like Timeless and CIA before starting his own label, Inneractive.

His sometime partnership with Digital, following the ‘Phantom Force’ project, and increasing acceptance of his music by scene bigwigs allowed him to go full time just before the Millennium.

Full story at DJ Mag

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Grime artist Stormzy has launched a scholarship for black students in a bid to tackle the chronic lack of diversity at the UK’s top universities

  • UK grime artist Stormzy has just announced the Stormzy Scholarship.
  • With the help of YouTube Music, he will fund two black students to go to Cambridge University this year, and two more in 2019.
  • There is a chronic under-representation of black students at the UK’s top universities.
  • It comes down to a number of factors, including a lack of support in applying, the fear of not fitting in, huge competition for places on certain courses, and racism.

Grime artist Stormzy has just announced he will fund two black students this year and two in 2019 to go to Cambridge University, which is currently ranked the 2nd best university in the UK, and the 6th in the world.

The Stormzy Scholarship will pay for tuition fees and money the same value as a maintenance grant for up to four years on an undergraduate course at the university.

“It’s so important for black students, especially, to be aware that it can 100% be an option to attend a university of this calibre,” the rapper said.

Stormzy will fund one student per year himself, and the rest of the funds will come from YouTube Music.

Both Cambridge and Oxford — the top two universities in the UK — haven’t got the best reputation for giving places to students of colour.

A Business Insider investigation found that the number of black students applying for, receiving offers from, and attending Oxford and Cambridge universities is chronically low. Only 40 black students were accepted out of 2,210 placed UK applicants to Cambridge in 2016. And only 35 black students were accepted out of 2,210 placed UK applicants to Oxford.

Full story at Insider

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Opinion: UK Garage is the best genre ever

This isn’t even a debate

Patrick Hinton – Mixmag.com

There’s an inclination among the human race to muse on difficult questions. What’s the meaning of life? Would you rather? Should I go out for the third night in a row despite being four figures overdrawn and bordering on coma-levels of tiredness? All are the subject of deep thought.

In the underground dance scene this urge translates into a toss-up between the two leading genres. Pick one: house or techno? They’re the most popular styles, and there’s a weighty crossover in the fan bases. It’s a query that can be posed absentmindedly and then spiral out into a brain wracking analysis that has discussers looking like Charlie Kelly.

House is uplifting, soulful, but techno is gritty, powerful, and each can be left feeling lacklustre or overbearing in comparison, depending on your varying mood. Committing absolutely to one and sacrificing the other for eternity is tough. If this is a question that has ever plagued your consciousness then have no fear because I’ve solved it. Don’t worry, it’s not tech-house, which is neither here nor there. The answer to deciding your favourite in the near-existential question of “house or techno?” is: UK garage, which is actually the best genre ever.

Full article on Mixmag

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SoundCloud Accepts $170 Million Rescue, Taps New CEO to Replace Alex Ljung

Kerry Trainor, formerly of Vimeo, will lead the beleaguered service. Founder and outgoing CEO Alex Ljung predicts a “strong, independent future for the company.”

The SoundCloud death watch has ended.

The struggling digital music service today secured a fresh round of funding that assures SoundCloud will remain independent, even as a new executive team takes over to steer the service into the future.

The Raine Group, a boutique merchant bank, joined with the Singapore-based investment company Temasek, in leading a $169.5 million investment round that infuses SoundCloud with much-needed cash.

Former Vimeo CEO Kerry Trainor succeeds founder Alex Ljung as chief executive, and Michael Weissman, another former executive at the video platform, was named SoundCloud’s chief operating officer.

“All of this together — the capital, the capital partners — with Kerry and Mike joining our team — it puts our company in a really great position to stay strong and remain independent,” Ljung said in an interview with Billboard. “We see a strong, independent future for the company.”

Full story at Billboard

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Zed Bias announces new album for Exit Records, Different Response

The album, which features collaborations with DRS and Zoë Violet, is out in September.
Zed Bias’s next album, Different Response, will come through Exit Records.

The LP follows the Driftin EP, which was the UK producer’s debut on dBridge’s label Exit Records. Like that record, Different Response features the vocalist Zoë Violet, along with other guest spots from Harleigh Blue, Bahia, Nasrawi and drum & bass MC DRS. The label calls Different Response “modern UK soul delivered in the 160 BPM format.” It’s his first LP since 2013’s Boss, which came out on Swamp 81.

Full story and sample at ResidentAdvisor

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Marcus Intalex aka Trevino has died

The cause of death is unknown

Manchester producer Marcus Intalex, aka Trevino, has passed away.

Details surrounding his death are not known, but fellow artists have been paying tribute to him on Twitter.

DJ Zinc posted “RIP Marcus Intalex. So sad.” Chase & Status wrote “such devastating news, another legend” and Boddika has said he is “truly heartbroken”. One fan said that he “inspired a generation”.

He was due to play at his Soul:ution party in London tonight (May 28), but promoter Ovation posted earlier today saying the night at The Pickle Factory had been cancelled.

Real name Marcus Kaye, he mainly released on his label Soul:r, also releasing on Ingredients, Metalheadz and Exit Records among others.

Full story at MixMag

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The new Gorillaz album is a “party for the end of the world” following Trump presidency

Pusha T claims the band predicted the reality TV star’s election triumph.

Gorillaz unveiled their new Pusha T and Mavis Staples collaboration ‘Let Me Out’ yesterday – the next track to be lifted from their new album Humanz.

Pusha T later dropped into Zane Lowe’s Beats 1 show to chat about the collaboration, during which he discussed some of the ideas behind the album, explaining that when Albarn initially asked rapper to contribute last year, he told him “to conceptualize the album, you know, like the album’s a party for the end of the world, like if Trump were to win.” This was spring 2016 – Trump’s presidency was barely even an imagined horror at that point, let alone a reality.

Full story at factmag.com

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Metalheadz to release Burial remix of Goldie’s ‘Inner City Life’

The 12-inch also includes a new, unreleased version of the track from Goldie himself.

Metalheadz will put out Burial’s remix of “Inner City Life” by Goldie, as part of a Record Store Day special release this month.

Full story at Resident Advisor

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Happy VD everyone!

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Classic ‘90s rave culture movie Human Traffic is getting a sequel

Nice one bruva.

Hot on the heels of Trainspotting 2, the follow-up to ’90s club culture classic Human Traffic is now also being written by the film’s original writer and director, Justin Kerrigan.

Rumours about the movie started a few months ago when a Facebook page emerged called Human Traffic: The Revolution, accompanied by the description: “Friends reunite to have fun in Ibiza!”

Danny Dyer, who starred in the 1999 film as Moff, teased the sequel release on Twitter yesterday (May 16), writing: “Moff. One of my favourite characters ever. That’s all I’m saying on the matter.”

The British-Irish movie centered around five rave-loving twenty-somethings and a drug-fuelled weekend in Cardiff and was famed for its use of archival footage in creating social and political commentary. The soundtrack was a seminal document of its time, featuring some of dance music’s biggest names, including Fatboy Slim and Carl Cox.

Full story at FactMag.com

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