Tags Posts tagged with "Grime"

Grime

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Aesthetic Kid shelling it down at his night, Yung held at The Nest in Dalston
Aesthetic Kid shelling it down at his night, Yung

It wasn’t that long ago when people were claiming that grime is dead. As per usual, the fickle nature of both public opinion and most of the media, both mainstream and niche gave way to such ridiculous claims. There really wasn’t much support for the music up until the last couple of years, but those at the centre of it kept strong. Here at DLTM, we’ve been listening to grime since before it was even given that genre label and we’re very pleased to see that people are finally giving the music the appreciation it deserves. Just recently we hit two events that have grime at their foundation, Yung and Jack’Em, here’s a little bit about both nights…

Yung:

Ducati Boi blazes a trail in the booth at Yung, held at The Nest in Dalston
Ducati Boi blazes a trail in the booth at Yung

Run by Aesthetic Kid, Yung is a fledgling event that focuses on grime, trap and wave, with an emphasis on the former. Only very recently launched, Yung is centred around a collective of musicians and visual artists, photographers and associates – all highly creative, technology-savvy and musically diverse in their tastes. The first event, a free-entry showcase, was held at Hub16 in Stoke Newington, with their ‘club nights’ taking place at The Nest.

Kareful laces the crowd with a mix of wave, trap and grime instrumentals
Kareful laces the crowd with a mix of wave, trap and grime instrumentals

Having the two public outlets allows Yung’s organisers to cultivate two different but intrinsically-linked events; the showcases allow for more experimental music, with an earlier closing time (11pm) and a more intimate atmosphere. Here we saw wave represented to the fullest, as well as grime.

The club nights are more energetic, with more of a focus on grime. At The Nest, heads like Ducati Boi, Glacci, Break and Vacant were joined by a gaggle of MCs who all pumped the space full of rowdy vibes; from more recent stuff to older classics. The crowd was young, fashionable and a good ratio of male to female, which was a surprisingly refreshing sight.

Vacant turns the atmosphere darkside at Yung
Vacant turns the atmosphere darkside at Yung

Still in its infancy, Yung definitely has the potential to grow into something a lot bigger. For the moment though, the heads behind it are allowing it to build organically, trusting in the power of the music and their creative energies to attract a strong following. The foundations are already in place, so we’ll be keeping a close eye on this little shindig.

Jack’Em:

Before the madness ensued at Visions in Dalston
Before the madness ensued at Visions in Dalston

Just down the road from The Nest and Hub16 is Visions, a basement club that has been open for about 20 years. One of those late-night places where you always wind up at about three in the morning, trying to squeeze a few more hours from your night out. It’s also the setting for a new night called Jack’Em being put on by 1Xtra selector Sian (pronounced Sigh-Ann) Anderson, a powerhouse within the grime world who’s been working like a trooper for a long time now supporting the scene, promoting artists, writing about them, and generally being an all-round don.

Jack’Em’s heart beats to the riddims of grime, though it will be hosted at different venues around the capital, the basement at Visions certainly felt like a home for the night. We were there to catch some of grime’s new breed in action, including the excellent Alia Loren, who warmed things up neatly. Other young bucks putting in the work at the party were Jack Dat, NTS’ A.G and Sian herself.

MCs Capo Lee, Nico Lindsay and Mic Ty get things hyped up
MCs Capo Lee, Nico Lindsay and Mic Ty get things hyped up

A few familiar faces were knocking around the venue while we were there including P Money, who got on the mic quite early on, and Maximum – DJ from the world-conquering Boy Better Know crew. Sadly we had to duck out early, though the night was on until 6am, but we could tell it was going to be a banger of a night from the few hours we spent there. Again, there was a good ratio of men to women, which we believe is crucial to the ongoing success of these nights… regardless of the music that’s playing, too much testosterone in a venue is never a good thing. This was not a problem at Jack’Em or Yung.

Alia Loren warming things up neatly at Jack'Em, held at Visions video bar, Dalston
Alia Loren warming things up neatly at Jack’Em

Nights like these are of huge importance to London’s club industry, particularly because grime events have been shut down time and again by the authorities over the years, limiting the progress of the genre, which is undoubtedly one of the main voices of London’s inner city. Now that it seems as though grime is being accepted by the mainstream media, DLTM hopes that the scene will flourish and nights like Yung and Jack’Em will become hubs for the DJs, MCs and ravers who make grime such an exciting form of music.

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BBC Late Night Proms at the Royal Albert Hall, London

Over the years the BBC Proms have always been full of pomp and ceremony. An occasion for the country’s upper classes to revel in the glory of good old classical music and to have a wonderfully patriotic evening at the Royal Albert Hall. Nothing wrong with that at all. In fact, it’s to the credit of the BBC that such an event occurs every year and we should be proud of the broadcaster for keeping it going. This year saw a new side to the Proms come forth, the Late Night Proms, which involved alternative forms of music that attracted very different audiences to those which normally attend the Proms we all know and love.

Because of the alternative nature of these Late Night Proms, and the fact that they were presenting most of their respective genres in a very different context, we thought it would be great to check out all four of them. So that’s exactly what we did…

Prom 8: Late Night With … BBC Asian Network

BBC Proms Asian Network Royal Albert Hall
Credit: Mark Allan

The plush surroundings of the Royal Albert Hall lent themselves perfectly to the delightful sounds presented by the BBC’s Asian Network. Bobby Friction presented, while the BBC Philarmonic orchestra, led by conductor Richard Davis, provided their expertise to support singers Benny Dayal and Palak Muchhal (pictured above). Though not quite as full as it was in the following weeks, there was still a warm buzz ever present throughout the show, which filled the Royal Albert Hall right up to the inside of its dome ceiling.

Special mention has to go to Naughty Boy who enthused articulately and passionately about the presence of the Asian Network at the Proms, bringing Emeli Sandé on to the stage, to perform their song ‘Lifted’, close to the end of the show. Her performance was the perfect way to close out the first ever Proms to support Asian-inspired music.

VIDEO HERE

Prom 16: Late Night With … BBC Radio 1

Credit: Chris Christodoulou
Credit: Chris Christodoulou

The second week of the Late Night Proms presented what was to be, in our eyes, the best of the bunch. Pete Tong hosted a tribute to dance music in honour of Radio 1’s 20th year of Big Weekend events in Ibiza. The ever-impressive Heritage Orchestra, led by the maestro Jules Buckley, turned in one perfect rendition after another, turning the Royal Albert Hall into an actual rave for one night only.

Looking around at the smiling faces, waves of emotion flowed through us as we witnessed some of dance music’s biggest hits recreated by a live orchestra. Dance music has always battled against snobbery from people who dismiss it because it’s made with computers, has a repetitive beat etc etc… But hearing all the elements of tracks like Daft Punk’s ‘One More Time’ or ‘Insomnia’ by Faithless played by real instruments certainly gave credence to the music and, hopefully, proved to some of the doubters that this music has just as much value as more traditional forms of audio expression.

VIDEO HERE

Prom 27: Late Night With … BBC Radio 6 Music

Credit: Chris Christodoulou
Credit: Chris Christodoulou

Infallible 6 Music presenter Mary Anne Hobbs curated this wonderful night, which involved performances by two of her faves; A Winged Victory For The Sullen and Nils Frahm. This was an event that was seemingly attended by many of the electronic music industry bigwigs. Managers, DJs, and plenty of those involved in the inner workings of electronic music were seen hanging around the bars at the Royal Albert Hall in anticipation of an evening of high brow neo-classical electronic performances.

Even a tube strike couldn’t stop the night from being a roaring success. We managed to grab a few minutes with a very emotional Mary Anne Hobbs not long after the event and here’s what she had to say: “It was 11 months in the making and a real labour of love. Nils and I chatted after one of his gigs in Manchester last September and we thought it would be possible to do something radical within the space at the Royal Albert Hall. Very special moments like this only happen once every decade or so. It’s been a really interesting journey for me, I first started to play Nils on my show two years ago, and Winged maybe a year later, I’ve been blown away with how the audience have mirrored my passion for them both back to me.

“In my heart of hearts I had so much belief in what the artists could deliver and the idea that the audience were ready for that, that goes for both the live audience and the online audience. There was such a magic about that night, I’m overjoyed, as you could probably tell!

“I felt we turned a page and made history that night. The Proms, in its absolutely glorious 120-year history, has never experienced anything similar to what went down in that room that night. I honestly feel it’s going to go down as one of my greatest nights on earth.”

VIDEO HERE

Prom 37: Late Night With … BBC Radio 1Xtra

Credit: Mark Allan
Credit: Mark Allan

We’re big time grime fans here at DLTM, following the music since before it was even really known as ‘grime’ – way back when Dizzee, Wiley, Slimzee and many others were tearing up pirate radio in 2001/2002. Almost 15 years on the music is still here, and it’s earned a place on stage at the Royal Albert Hall, bang bang! An all-star line-up of MCs, including Little Simz, Stormzy, Krept & Konan and Fekky, brought an uncompromising vibe to the stage, hyping up the crowd and probably making history with the amount of tracksuits and kicks that were present.

Wretch 32 delivered a more poppy side to proceedings, which to us, and no doubt a few others, was slightly disappointing. While we admire the direction he’s gone in and don’t hold anything against him at all, the night was billed as a ‘Grime Symphony’ and so having a bit of RnB-esque music to fill in the gaps between wasn’t quite what we expected. Nevertheless, it was a fun night and some absolute bangers were dropped on the Royal Albert Hall.

VIDEO HERE

Overall, a pretty much faultless run of events at the Late Night Proms. It’s events like this that really make you realise how important the BBC is to our nation’s cultural exports. Giving underground music a chance to breathe on a stage as prestigious as that of the Royal Albert Hall is something that not many other institutions in the UK could do. The BBC’s support of emerging genres and artists through its multitude of expert presenters is invaluable and feeds back into the music culture of our nation, which remains at the epicentre of global music trends.

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