When it comes to the American drum & bass scene, you can't deny what Dieselboy's done to not only make sure we sit at the table in the discussion, but to continue the progression of the scene from our side of the Atlantic. As a DJ, producer, and label head, he's been a constant force during times barren and plentiful. His "Beyond The Black Bassline" mix from last May was one of my favorite mixes of 2013, and in typical Dieselboy fashion, he's back with another opus. "The Destroyer," his new mix, hits you from every angle with a great new theme: the '70s grindhouse era of film making. The artwork up above intrigued me on its own, and I wanted to explore this particular mindset with Dieselboy.
You said this mix is based on the Blood, Sweat, and Bass tour you went on with Downlink, with a '70s grindhouse theme. Talk to us about how that idea came together, and how you ended up executing it throughout the tour.
Well, the first thing that manifested was the name. When I knew I was going be touring with Downlink I immediately started trying to brainstorm a cool / original tour name. “Blood, Sweat and Bass” was one of the first things that popped into my head, but our agency wasn’t feeling it. After about a month of raking my brain trying to come up with something better our agency relented and decided that the name was, in fact, fine. Once the name was locked, I started thinking about what I would do for a tour intro. The words “Blood, Sweat and Bass” reminded of the title of like, some unmade '70s grindhouse movie. I thought about the Tarantino and Rodriguez collab movie Grindhouse and was like yeah… it’s me and Downlink. We are like a double feature presentation. So maybe we could make companion intros to fake grindhouse movie trailers? I then thought about what voice would best represent that style of intro and of course I thought about the guy who did the Machete movie trailer. Super gritty and heavy. So I tracked him down and we hired him! During the tour Downlink and I discussed the idea of doing mixes based upon our tour concept and intros. They were originally supposed to come out the same day, but Sean wanted to get his out a little earlier to help out with a Destroid project release. I then spent an extra couple months getting my mix right.
You extended that grind house look and feel to the artwork for your new mix. Was there a certain movie poster or theme you were going for?
I basically wanted to come up with artwork that would have really pleased my 14-year-old self. I’ve always loved '70s fantasy sci-fi painted imagery (comic book covers, movie posters, etc.) and really wanted to showcase that exact aesthetic for once. I worked very closely with all of the designers and made sure that my vision was carried out the exact way I envisioned it. You should have seen all the notes I gave to the artist that painted the main image. I’m sure I ended up annoying the hell out of him.
Was there a certain style of tune you were looking for when building the actual mix? Do you feel that the music properly represents the main theme?
I just wanted to push a good blend of modern drum & bass. Of course I had to make sure that the first minutes of the mix were super heavy / intense, which is my usual style. But there are moments in the mix where it gets quite melodic and light. Overall, though, I feel that this thing really bangs hard.
What do you have going on release-wise, both as a producer and label head?
I have a new release coming quite soon on Project 51 called MDMX. It is a long overdue collaboration with Gridlok that was originally supposed to be featured way back on my Substance D CD. I also have a new project in the works with my boy Mark The Beast called Faces Of Def. It’s 175BPM music that incorporates elements and styles of other forms of dance music. So far we have done a remix of Sinister Soul’s track “Tuh Tuh Duh” on PRSPCT as well as a collab with Counterstrike entitled “Blvck Celebration” (coming soon on Subhuman) and another mega collab with Mayhem and Downlink called “Carcosa” which is something I am super proud of. All of these tracks are featured in "The Destroyer". Label wise, I have taken a step back for a bit to focus on getting more drum & bass signed.
Are you hitting any tours in the near future? Where can fans expect to find you?
I am going to be doing my usual drill of constant solo touring for awhile. And then we have Planet Of The Drums shows coming later in the year. I’ll be all over the place thought. Always check my Facebook for tour updates.
I recently saw that you spent some time as a guest chef, and I know that your love of food (both eating and prepping) is next level. Do you look at making food the same way as making music/building your sets?
100%. They are quite similar. Taking unique ingredients and combining them in a way that makes something greater than the sum of its parts. I actually spoke at a prestigious food event in NYC called Star Chefs last year and discussed a very similar idea. I’ve used the cooking / DJing analogy many many times in conversation. It’s probably one of the main reasons I am so drawn to cooking. It hits a very similar area for me both mentally and creatively.
Finally, do you have any favorite grind house movies that the androids out there should check out?
Heres a quick top five:
and even though it is not conventionally considered “grind house,” my most watched movie of all time is the early 80s animated film Heavy Metal. Too good! I can quote every line.
Dieselboy - The Destroyer (Feature Presentation)
Ajapai - Bass Godzilla // ROTTUN [CLIP]
Koronis - Collision // DUB [CLIP]
Phace + Misanthrop - Nordwand // NEOSIGNAL
Emperor - Precursor (Mefjus Remix) // CRITICAL MUSIC
Audio - Heads Up // RAM [CLIP]
Knife Party - L Rad (The Prototypes Bootleg) // DUB
DJ Fresh Vs Jay Jay feat Ms Dynamite - Dibby Dibby Sound // MINISTRY OF SOUND [CLIP]
Hive - Neo (Audio’s Let It Roll Edit) // RAM
Optiv + BTK - Ground Shaker feat Nuklear MC // VIRUS [CLIP]
Mikal - Killa Soundboy // METALHEADZ
Misanthrop - Deadlock // NEOSIGNAL
Misanthrop - Catch 22 // NEOSIGNAL
Counterstrike - Rotterdam Sangomas VIP // PRSPCT
Frankee - Gully // RAM
Ulterior Motive - MIR // METALHEADZ
Camo + Krooked - Armageddon // HOSPITAL
Delta Heavy - Apollo // RAM
Spor - Kingdom // LIFTED
I Am Legion - Make Those Move (Teddy Killerz Remix) // DIVISION
Mefjus - Dissuade // CRITICAL MUSIC
Neosignal - Sequenz (Mefjus Remix) // DIVISION
Noisia - Oh Oh // VISION
Prolix + Mob Tactics - Transmission // TRENDKILL
Enei - Mosquito // CRITICAL MUSIC
D Minds - Blacker feat Strikez // D STYLE
Rockwell - Detroit // SHOGUN
Rockwell - 1 2 3 4 // SHOGUN
Mercedes - Full Tilt (Ulterior Motive Remix) // ASHLEY WESTLAKE
Subfocus - Druggy // RAM
June Miller - Empathy // RAM
The Prototypes - Pale Blue Dot // VIPER
Phace - The Set Up // CRITICAL MUSIC
State Of Mind + Chris SU - Above Earth // FATE
Enei - The Artefact // CRITICAL
TC - Into The Jungle // DONT PLAY
Maldini - Amazon // C4C RECORDINGS
Concept Vision + Sigment - Meteor // BLACKOUT MUSIC
Black Sun Empire - Don’t You (State Of Mind Remix) // BLACKOUT MUSIC
DC Breaks - Proton // RAM
Neonlight - Heavy Bettie // BLACKOUT MUSIC
Chris Lake feat Jareth - Helium (Rene Lavice Remix) // ULTRA
Rawtekk - Photone Recruits (Phace Remix) // HOSPITAL
Noisia - Stamp Out // VISION
Phace - Shitstorm // NEOSIGNAL
Jubei + SP:MC - State Of The Art // METALHEADZ [CLIP]
Noisia - Running Blind // VISION
Current Value + Nanotek - Code Of Chaos // PRSPCT
State Of Mind - No-Operative // BLACKOUT MUSIC
Lynx - Take Back The Night feat Newsome // RAM
NC-17 - The War Master // VIPER
Culture Shock - Ohrwurm // RAM
Break - Love So True // SYMMETRY
TC - Vegas - DONT PLAY
Original Sin + Koo - Running Man // PLAYAZ
Cue - Rainbow Dub (Sub Zero Remix) // MOTION SENSOR
Funtcase - Out For Da Milli (Annix Remix) // CIRCUS
Noisia + Prolix - Asteroids // VISION
Critical Impact - The Illa feat Jakes // CLEAR SKYZ
Silent Witness + Break + Prolix - Haunted Stars // TRIPLE SEED
Wilkinson feat Becky Hill - Afterglow // RAM
Phace + Misanthrop - Sex Sells // NEOSIGNAL
Dimension - Pathogen // CYANTIFIC
S.P.Y. - Brooklyn Dub // HOSPITAL
Delta Heavy - The World Is Yours // RAM
Original Sin - Screamers // PLAYAZ
Rockwell - Back Again // SHOGUN
Gridlok + Prolix - Metalbrane // DUB
Emperor + Mefjus - Void Man Void // CRITICAL MUSIC
Black Sun Empire - The Rat (Gridlok Remix) // BLACKOUT MUSIC
Limewax - Arch Noisyum // PRSPCT
Loadstar - Eat My Tears (Rene Lavice Remix) // RAM
Mikal - Strictly Rockers // METALHEADZ
Dementia + Rregula + Disphonia - Doom Loop (Mefjus Remix) // CITRUS
State Of Mind - Fast Life // BLACKOUT MUSIC
Koncept - Breathe In // VIPER
Rise At Night - The Monumental feat Nikita Esco (Mediks Remix) // FIREPOWER
Ill Skillz + D Kay - Codename Zero // SMOG
Faces Of Def + Counterstrike - Blvck Celebration // SUBHUMAN
Gridlok + Prolix - Revenge // PROJECT TRENDKILL
Audio - Airbourne // VIRUS
Audio - Botfly // VIRUS
Hybris - Garbage Truck (Misanthrop Remix) // INVISIBLE
Teddy Killerz + Nphonix - Burnin // BAD TASTE
State Of Mind + Nymfo - Put It On // BLACKOUT MUSIC
Prolix + Misanthrop - Transcendent // TRENDKILL
Fred V + Grafix - Purple Gates // HOSPITAL
Sinister Souls - Tuh Tuh Duh (Faces Of Def Remix) // PRSPCT
Enei - Get Low // CRITICAL MUSIC [CLIP]
Gridlok + Dieselboy - MDMX // PROJECT 51
QO feat Nuklear MC - Killcode // EATBRAIN
Mayhem + Downlink + Faces Of Def - Carcosa // SUBHUMAN
Dieselboy - Blow This Motherfucker To Kingdom Come (End Credits)