Gerra & Stone‘s new Unbreakable release seems to magically augment itself with each listen: new stems, fissures, cadences and colours seem to sprout & unfold from nowhere and develop with each listen, revealing more and more. Case in point being the amazing ‘Plates’. Spellbinding!
Hi Gerra & Stone, have to say that ‘Plates’ is awesome. As is the EP in general. Can you take us through the tune?
With that track we wanted to pay homage to some of our older influences inside D&B, but – hopefully – still keep it modern in sound.
About the older influences: when I listen to you I think of elements of Photek and all sorts of things, but mostly the MYSTERY that D&B can bring. What keeps you in love with D&B as time progresses?
Glad you think so. We’ve said it before but the main thing that keeps us in love with D&B is the way it can draw influence from pretty much every other music genre out there, from Metal to R&B to classical music, it’s all in here somewhere!
… and who does the guitar?
Dave is the guitarist. Although a part time instrument, guitar does seem to be appearing more in our music recently. We just signed another track which it features on again so look out for that!
Can I ask how the linkup with Lucy Kitchen and Stephen McCleery happened? Lucy’s voice is fantastic on ‘Unbreakable’
Harry was working with Stephen when we were living in Southampton and we had been discussing getting him in the studio together for ages, we managed to find the time almost exactly a year ago.
We had a great session with Steve and in one afternoon we had tons of material to work with. Lucy is actually Stephen’s finance and we had talked previously about getting her on a track so it seemed the natural thing to do!
To ‘Release My Soul’. It has an amazing vibe and one which I think is quite rare in D&B…
This one started off as a loop based around the vocal sample sometime last year.
We sent it as a demo to Ant TC and didn’t think much would come of it until we got a message from him telling us that a certain artist we really look up to was digging it. This spurred us on to pursue the idea further as we felt it had more potential.
We’ve always been into the more soulful/ melodic side of D&B but have only recently started to articulate it into our work. As with the rest of the EP the idea was a fusion between the whole ‘liquid’ thing, and our sound. We guess we’ll leave it up to the critics to decide if it worked out that way!
OK, what D&B is killing you right now?
Spectrasoul The Mistress
Lenzman ft DRS ‘Can’t Take’ (dBridge remix)
Break ‘Give It Up’
Icicle ‘Will You Be Mine’ ft Sarah Hezen (Ulterior Motive remix)
Halogenix ‘All Blue’
What about non D&B?
Dave: Been getting back into indie/ rock music again recently. New bands like Unknown Mortal Orchestra have been on the iPod a lot, as well as rinsing some classic radio head albums! They are timeless…
Harry: Yeah I’m always exploring different styles of music; I have a very strong love for techno.
Artists like Ben Sims, James Ruskin and Skudge are on constant rotation at home.
Other records I’ve picked up recently are Nicolas Jarr, Paul White and Rhythm & Sound.
What producers do you love? Old and new. Any genre too.
Dave: Geode is absolutely killing it for me at the moment, his recent album is gold. The way it fuses jazz with electronic sounds pushes all the right buttons.
Harry: Man, I could be here all day but one artist that always nails it for me is Marcus Intalex.
Whether it’s his D&B output or his other guises Trevino and Sideways, he owns all those styles with such class and quality.
Back to the ep: what inspired both the creation of ‘Almost U’ and the title?
That tune is a homage to certain jazz artist. We’re unashamed to say the large majority of elements in the track are sampled from a particular track of his, and the title is tied into that. We’ll see if anyone gets it!
So what’s in store from you over the next few months in terms of travelling and releases?
Gig-wise we are reasonably busy over the summer with some EU shows, Germany, Belgium, Netherlands, Austria, and Croatia are on the agenda as well as the usual UK standards like London and Bristol.
Release-wise we have another three track single on Dispatch Ltd soon after this which will be:
‘Backhand’ (DLR remix)
‘Too Deep’ VIP
We’ve also just signed quite a few more tracks with the Ram/Program guys: details will be around soon!
Finally there are some collaborations nearly completed with our friends Amoss and Cern amongst others.
Any shouts, G&S?
Big shout to Ant TC1 for allowing us the freedom to experiment with this EP!
Gotta shout Ray and Jim at Ram also, as well as Tom and Alex over at the Bassic Agency.