Kolectiv: Immortal Kombat
London-based D&B crew Kolectiv are an enigma: a mysterious, ever-shifting entity. To deepen the enigma, they were given quite a challenging proposition by Diffrent boss, Dexta regarding their new ep Immortalis: devise something unexpected. Why a challenge? Because that’s what they organically do!
Time to discuss the ep… a little ‘Diffrently’. After all they went in pretty deep: so should we.
What was the first thing/word/idea that came to your head when this brief was put to you?
We felt that it was a license to explore the 170bpm spectrum a little.
Meaning we could fuse elements of hip hop, old school and of course D&B. We also felt we could use dark and light textures which would be the perfect foils for one another which in turn would enable us to create a sound which could be enjoyed in all settings: at home, in the car or on the floor.
And yet it needed to fit the Diffrent style too?
We know what it takes to make a record for Diffrent but it’s the uncertainty in doing something unexpected which gets us buzzed.
We never know how Dexta will react and we aren’t even sure how we will react to the finished pieces. We think he gets the same vibe from us – we surprise each other which makes for a great team.
OK, let’s talk ‘random’: if one of the tracks was chosen at random – eg ‘Sleeper Cell’ – what would it make a good soundtrack for? It could be a drama on TV, it could be a documentary about your favourite cafe, pub, venue, shop… anything.
Believe it or not we already had some discussion about the ideas they evoke. To take two tracks as examples…
‘Sleeper Cell’ would definitely be something of a space age battle epic. The intro serving as a calm peaceful existence before the storm of an extinction level event.
‘Killer Instinct’ would work great in a dark noir style thriller for a revenge montage sequence. Psycho-esque tension.
The EP title Immortalis makes me think about how long things last, especially in places like London, which is always being destroyed and rebuilt… So what’s a favourite spot of yours now demolished?
The End night club was the one we all agree on. When it closed we heard originally it was due to be demolished and turned into luxury flats but when the funding fell through it got refurbished by new owners and renamed The Den. I think that speaks for itself. A half-baked idea which has tarnished the legacy. We’ve been to the venue once after it reopened and to say it was a shell of the place it once was would be an understatement.
Shouts out to Mr C for co-creating the place and vibe we all loved.
RIP The End.
Other places which were all fond of include Herbal and the Velvet Rooms, where Swerve was first held. All such great places with great memories now gone but not forgotten.
If something is destroyed can’t it just be rebuilt? I mean shops, towers etc, they’re not rainforests or oceans, they’re manmade.
Ahh well this is an interesting question which to answer in a word, Yes.
To expand on that; anything can be rebuilt when it is man made, but sometimes things have a finite purpose and belong to an era. I think we have to sit on the fence on this one because somethings lose their vibe and no longer have a use in the present. They might be manmade but it depends who built the original and who is doing the rebuilding.
There’s still a passion and a vibe of the creator which needs to be retained and this can be lost when something makes a comeback.
There are of course exceptions and this is why we must play devils advocate.
Continuing the theme of permanence on the music front, what music shops and stores do you like?
In terms of record stores we can’t play favourites and to say “one”: it would be unfair as it would be such a sad day to see any of the W1 shops to go so, gotta send big ups and shouts to BM Soho, Sister Ray, Revival, M&V_X_CNG., Sounds Of The Universe and any other shops still standing… good luck! Live long and prosper!
And other retail haunts?
We all have our personal favourites, for example (Kolectiv member) Kalm has a not so secret love of Nando’s, whilst Carera loves chicken and good old battered sausage.
Keza has a love of all things All Saints, H&M and Zara.
Kolectiv is an enigma in D&B. Where do you actually produce?
We have a space we all link up at to jam in North London. It can be complicated for everyone to get together but we find a way, whether that be through working on an initial idea in pairs or solo and then meeting up to finish the track. Currently we’re working on a new set up which is exciting.
Lastly what was it like to work with Dexta, in one sentence?
‘Diffrent to the usual studio session with the premise being composition, creativity and fun’.