Drum and Bass | Dubstep | EDM
CRITICAL MATTER GUEST MIX
Born in South London, the man behind Critical Matter began his music career in pirate radio and the underground dance music scene. Knocking about his estate with a Korg MS2000 and Yamaha DJ100, music production was his thing and at 18, he began working in a full studio environment. With strong influences from Hip-Hop, Drum & Bass and Electronica, the Critical Matter creator worked with several producers and DJ's before being plucked from anonymity by UTeck talent scouts.
Now Critical Matter has an extensive schedule of refreshing single releases forthcoming this year on Enkrypted Beatz Recordings. With new release available to purchase on iTunes and all major platforms, Critical Matter is set for a busy 2012.
Welcome to Futurednb Critical Matter, Introduce yourself? Where did the name Critical Matter come from?
Yea hi there. I'm Jay, 34, from South London now living in Chelmsford, Essex. I have had an exciting and varied music journey over the years. I have been fortunate to have played my music alongside some of my major Influences that got me loving the scene in the first place, and had some real great Dj experiences from that.
The name Critical Matter came about just last year after a whirlwind five years of my life. From the age of 16, my Dj name was always “ Destine”, and that name always followed me onto all the different music productions that I have done, across a platform of different genres.
Since having a few years break from the scene, I decided the past was the past and the way I wanted to represent now, needed a fresh approach from all angles - from the way I produce to the way I play my live sets – and it felt right to change my artist name to represent this musical change in my life.
‘Critical Matter’ stands for being a whole situation not just an artist. I knew that I wanted to have an impact in this D&B scene that I love, and it was critical that the way I approach and represent myself as an artist, needs to be something fresh - rather than just blending in and being another Dj/Producer. I am very keen for Critical Matter to be more than just an artist. I hope it will end up standing for more than just being a person in the music scene.
What first got you into music and mixing?
I have been lucky to have had a very wide range of musical taste around me from a young age. My mum was always playing motown music around me when I was growing up and my older brother has always had the most varied music taste you could wish for and is definitely a major influence to my love of all good music.
Djing for me came about solely because of the estate I grew up on. There was a lot of kids on that estate in the early 90s who got on the whole Dj buzz so I was always around a pair of 1200’s. The next thing I knew at 15, I had one soundlab deck and one which didn’t even have a pitch, and some oldskool mixer and a few records, and that became my love learning how to mix.
Whats the Drum & Bass scene like in South London?
To be honest, from what I first went out raving to in South compared to the last venue I played down there and what I see now - it has changed a crazy amount, but so has the music. It’s the evolution of things, but the vibe still has that same intense energy that has always been there and is why I love this music and what it gives people.
You say you've played along side DJ's like Jumping Jack Frost, Kenny Ken and Nicky Blackmarket, what was that like?
Well when all this occurred I was only 20, so part of me back then was just thinking that yea this is how it should be,because everything was happening so naturally back then that I don't think I took in what was actually going on. But the rest of me can look back at those times and remember the pure buzz of having Skibba on my set waiting for Nicky Black to come on playing to a big crowd.
Do you play or host any regular events?
The last year for me has been locked away in the studio finishing my E.P, and adapting my production to what I want Critical Matter to represent to this scene. I played Factory 65 last year with J.J Frost which for me, was an opportunity to test my new Dj set up and to try something different with the way I mix and entertain people these days.
What equipment are you using for mixing, do you mix live vinyl or mp3's?
I now mix and perform on Native Instruments S4 console and Native Instruments Machine groove pad. All my vinyl is now in storage. Last year when I had the big change around, one of the hardest decisions I made, was to pack away my Vinyl. But for me I felt that the music and technology has changed and adapted so much from when I started, that I needed to embrace the way to approach mixing.
I had never even touched a Cdj before, so when I was looking for a new setup, I tried out some of the new tools available and was really excited by them. The advantages of having a setup that offered 4-deck mixing with live effects, combined with Maschine and the S4 looping capability – that could also let me use my productions skills to offer the crowd hopefully a different experience out of Dj set – was truly mind-blowing. I feel there is no boundary now to what you can do with music, and people’s expectations are high. I think it’s important for an audience to keep seeing artists evolve, and to be continuing to offer new experiences to them.
Do you prefer DJing or making music?
For me that is a really hard question to answer. I don't think my passion is different for either mixing or production because they both involve music and that's my passion. All I can say is being self taught everything about mixing and production, I found production to offer me a massive challenge that I have loved battling with over the last 15 years. Including how fast music production is evolving and how much great talent there is out there producing Electronic music.
But the Djing has always felt natural for me even when I changed over from the 1200s. The feeling is always the same for me when I mix and its something I know I will never stop enjoying.
How long have you been making beats, explain your genre and style of music?
I have been into music production for the last 15 years. I would say the last 12 years have been the serious years where actually I knew that I wanted to write and produce. The work I am doing at the moment will be all things D&B in large, but I definitely can’t put Critical Matter in to a genre overall. Over the years I have produced pretty much all kinds of Electronic music, as long as it has the vibe I love I don't worry what tempo its playing at.
I have really loved the path that production has taken me on. It really is a full circle situation. I started producing D&B when I was about 18 and spent those years pretty much getting to grips with the whole knowledge side of all things production. When I was 21, I was approached by a very talented and good friend of mine who asked if I was up for producing a UK-Hip Hop cross D&B album with him and a host of rising talent. I jumped on that opportunity, and it was to be a great and testing experience for me. We were lucky to be approached by Sony to work closer on some of our tracks.
It was about that time, I realised the pressure side involved in the music industry and had an intense four years but the knowledge I gained from that time is invaluable. After that, I spent a few years changing my studio setup and production techniques. I did a few Dance remixes in that time and also put out a Dance E.P called Audioism. It was shortly after that I decided to go back to my roots and take little bits from all that I had done and mould that into, what is now, ‘Critical Matter’ and the ‘Abstrakt Total E.P’.
Tell us about your recent release 'Abstrakt Total' did it take you long to produce? Where can we listen or buy this?
This E.P took me about six months to finish. I ended up writing so many tracks for this before I whittled it down to the four tracks that are on that E.P. When I decided to write this E.P, the thing I knew I wanted it to represent was everything I have loved about Drum & Bass. Right from when I bought my very first Jungle tune to some of the Nasty ass basslines that have graced us over the years. That is how the name Abstrakt Total came about in the end. Four songs that could not be any more different in sound and feel but still represents the one Genre of music. You can now grab this E.P either direct from iTunes
Or you can go straight to my Facebook Fan Page where you can listen to the full E.P and grab a few freebies from there.
Any other projects you would like to talk about?
My aim for the rest of this year will be at least two more single releases on Enkrypted Beatz Recordings - the label I am signed to. And I would like to be doing my live playout set and Dj sets off the back of these releases.
Tell us about your guest mix?
I really love the music and mixes I have come across on your site. When I was accepted for the guest mix, I wanted to give a set that took you on a journey of high energy drums and dark twisted basslines, fused with some deep layers and keys. I do try to make my sets take people on journey, that I know can be listened to in head phones or listening at computer. I try to give periods for the songs to breathe and also have those high energy quick drop moments to keep the set moving along at a good pace. I know personally that is what I like to listen to if I am sitting there checking out a mix.
Thanks for stopping by Critical Matter. Anything else you would like to add, messages, shouts etc?
Thank you. I would just like to say thanks to all who have been supporting me this year and who have bought and promoted my E.P. Also thanks to all the true D&B lovers who share this passion I hope you all like the Mix.
To get more music from Critical Matter check out his links..
Leave a Comment