Well, kinda. They certainly get to share their understanding and appreciation of our scene, that’s for sure. And it usually harvests some really interesting results, allowing artists to explain a little more about their background, roots and influences. In the case of Killawatt it’s very interesting. A current ruler of the rich, deep, mind-bogglingly produced style of dubstep, it turns out he was a card carrying junglist for many years. And still owns an immaculate vinyl collection to prove it.
“Yeah I started off mixing and making jungle,” he explains. “I went to a lot of free parties in East Anglia where I grew up and the techno they played there really wasn’t my thing so I was drawn to the jungle side of things. I think my first experience before the free parties was one of those classic jungle drum & bass collections you’d see in HMV then a friend who was properly into it started playing me the real underground stuff. That’s where it started; I began spending ridiculous amounts on vinyl, started playing it out and began making it.”
This love continued for many years with Killawatt (real name Matt Watt) constantly digging online and in record stores, trying to unearth some of the classics that paved the way for both drum & bass and dubstep… A scene he didn’t get into until half way through his university degree in 2009.
“All my vinyl is jungle and old school hardcore and that kind of stuff,” he admits. “I’ve never bought any dubstep on vinyl! In fact I almost sold all the vinyl to pay for CDJs a few years ago. And I’m so glad I didn’t now! It’s worth a good few grand and it took me so long to build it up. Actually I’ve been thinking of playing a jungle set again. I do miss it. It’s such fun to mix.”
There you have it, one of deep dubstep’s most exciting, forward-thinking players is actually a massive jungle head. And it’s not just the mixing of it that he misses… He’s found one or two jungle elements have found their way into his productions.
“I’m gradually going back to more polyrythmic jungle influences,” he admits. “I’m kind of going full circle really.”
Catch Killawatt at This Is Dubstep 2013 launch party at Cable, London on February 1. In the mean time let’s find out his three all time favourite jungle drum & bass tunes!
Calyx & TeeBee – Confession
“The first techy D&B tune I heard. It blew me away with its epic intro and the way it breaks down into those mids. Sick.”
Rude & Deadly – Give Me A Dubplate [97 Remix]
“A remixed jungle tune. Very very rare. A friend gave it to me as a gift for converting his collection to MP3. Well worth the hard work.”
Bladerunner – Walk The Walk
“It’s got such a funky intro that drops into a rolling Aphrodite bassline. It evolves and rolls so well. I can’t fault it, really.”