Six months into the chaos that 2020 has become, not many things are looked at as a certainty at this point. But one thing that is sure to stick around is the resurgence of Drum & Bass in North America. Whether you’re just now getting into DnB or consider yourself an original basshead one thing is for sure, the time has come for artists across the modern-day bass scene to embrace its DnB roots. This year we’ve seen many big-name artists take a dip into DnB that almost came as a surprise, take Flume and Zeds Dead for example. Now its time for the underground to do its part, which is why it’s our honor to premiere ‘Depths,’ a collaboration between two of our favorite up-and-comers from two completely different corners of bass music.
We’ve come to love the Acrillcs boys for their fresh and exciting take on trap music over the past few years. They’ve consistently raised their bar in terms of production, and this time team up with New Zealand-based dubstep producer Noughts. This young New Zealander has been taking SoundCloud by storm recently with his aggressive no-nonsense approach. ‘Depths’ while being the title track to Acrillcs EP, is also the common ground where these two styles converge, and the result is impressive, to say the least.
‘Depths’ begins by introducing us to this ominous vocal sample that later becomes the centerpiece in the track. Soon after we’re lead into this suspenseful build-up full of marching drum patterns and eerie horns. All of this leads up to a drop full immaculate percussion elements all centered around that vocal that was introduced in the intro. We can’t forget to mention the basses in this section; dark and hard-hitting they become the meat of the breakdown section immediately after this. After a quick build-up, we’re met yet again by another high-energy drop similar to the first, but this time was a variation in arrangement.
We were able to catch up with Acrillics and Noughts and get a little bit of insight into the details and process of this track. We asked Noughts what it was about DnB that brought the two projects from separate corners of bass music together.
“The fact that myself and one half of Acrillics are based in New Zealand where DnB is especially very big, When I saw that this collaboration opportunity opened up, I thought it would be the best way to spread the DnB genre since Acrillics has a following all over the world. I’m sure I’m not speaking for myself when I say this, but it is always fun to venture off into different genres and try something new.”
With Noughts giving this answer, we had to ask, what was the process like during the making of this track?
“Even though myself and the Acrillics boys have a pretty different style of music that we focus on, the knowledge and goal that we are trying to reach are still pretty similar, music knowledge in the EDM scene is pretty universal. These days artists can tackle any genre and make something decent. This track started off as an idea I just quickly wrote down for fun to try a different genre, after showing the Acrillics they liked it and after that, we just sent it back and forth making small changes. The project didn’t take too long to finish since we had a pretty similar idea in mind so we got the result we wanted pretty quick.”
Taking everything into account, DnB truly does look to be on the rise in North America, but to what extent? We asked the Acrillcs boys what they think needs to be done for DnB to get the spotlight it deserves, and more importantly, what can we as the underground do?
“I think just in general we need to see both established DnB artists and underground ones pushing the scene in the U.S. & Canada. Obviously, because of Coronavirus, it’ll probably take a bit longer than expected until Drum and Bass reaches the larger festivals but looking at the presence of the genre across the online festival circuit, I think we’re all hoping to see amazing growth in terms of both listeners and artists.”
“I think the role of the underground is paramount in the movement. Underground artists are much better in building loyal fan bases since fans see their growth through the years and I see this as a parallel to the growth of the DnB genre in North America. That being said, seeing more established names, labels, and blogs play tribute and support the up and coming DnB artists is super important. Just from our limited experience, Noisia, Mad Zoo, and Street Ritual are prime examples of how to support the growth of the genre. Essentially, I think all that is needed is support for the underground and a little bit more time until we see proper DnB on the festival circuit, but it’s happening and we’re all super hopeful for more.”
Drum & Bass was undeniably birth from the spirit of the underground, and we’re glad to take the reigns for the underground in the present day.