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Saturday, 28 May 2011


Mix from local North West DJ - Matter!!

A quickfire Hip Hop mix full of 90's classics, saw the tracklisting and had to post it!


Nas - Ny State Of Mind
Notorious Big - Big Poppa
Eminem - My Name Is
Big L - Street Struck
Nas - The World Is Yours
Notorious Big - Ten Crack Commandments
Mobb Deep - Temperature's Rising
Jeru - “Come Clean”
The Pharcyde - Passin' Me By
Gza - 4th Chamber
The Fugees - Ready Or Not
Wu Tang Clan - Cream
Gang Starr - You Know My Steez Remix
De La Soul - Itz Soweezee
Nas - It Aint Hard To Tell
Notorious Big - Unbelievable
De La Soul - Ooh
O.D.B - Brooklyn Zoo
High N Mighty Ft Mos Def - B Boy Document 99
The Pharcyde - Runnin' (Accapella)
The Pharcyde - Runnin'
Krs1 - Sound Of Da Police
Atcq - Midnight
Atcq Ft. Busta Rhymes - Oh My God
Notorious Big -Hypnotize
Cypress Hill - I Ain't Goin Out Like That
Gang Starr - Dwyck
The Beastie Boys - Root Down
Pete Rock & Cl Smooth - T.R.O.Y
The Beastie Boys - Live At Pj's
The Beastie Boys - 33% God
Odb Ft Kelis - Got Your Money

Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Crikey pt.2

trust the Brazilians to make everyone else look stupid...

Tuesday, 24 May 2011


Ground Release / Denmark from Ground Release on Vimeo.

what can i say... one of the finest walls i've ever seen produced

not a weak piece on there...

Tuesday, 17 May 2011

To dance or not to dance... pt2.

Been passed two new mixes today, at opposite ends of the vibes spectrum

firstly my boy Andy has truly laid down some fire with this Jungle mix

absolutely love the tunes he drops, such good selection each and every

Nuff Ruff Riddims by Dr. Breakenstein

and secondly my boy Josh sent me this today showing the lighter side of bass music, without a hint of irony titled his Future Yah Yah mix...

Future Yah Yah Mix by SWIMFINGERS

both bringing nice selections and nice blends


To dance or not to dance...

Just read a very, very good interview with Jackmaster here at Fact Mag. It was good for two reasons - firstly, because Jackmaster appears to be a very likeable, and very musically knowledgeable dude; pretty much essential traits if you're going to have to interview someone about music, for a music mag. Secondly, because of this line

When you get so overly involved in the music scene you kinda tend to dance less. You get to a club and you usually know the promoter or the DJ, and you end up socialising instead of going nuts on the dancefloor. It’s shit actually.

This is a thought i've often lamented over - usually during or immediately after a night out, and more since running and being involved with a few nights myself.

It sounds like a non-issue - sure, everyone goes to nights to socialise whilst listening to tunes. But there are definitely times when i look at the front of the crowd, and I see a few people really havin' it, and I mean completely immersed in the tunes they're hearing, and they're so happy to simply be there, hearing tunes out in a club that they play in there bedroom.

Last Friday I dropped this

and a couple people rushed to the front and flung their hands over the booth making that familiar ''reload'' motion - I didn't reload, but I did look up from that point on to see the same bunch of people fully going for it for the rest of my set. The same lot came over to me after I finished and thanked me for dropping that one tune. As much as that made their night, it also made mine aswell!

So why is it that at so many nights, promoters are often seen swanning about ignoring the dj's who are on, backstage mingling, in the smoking area posturing or sulking by the entrance; why is it that the people bringing you the music, appear to have the least fun out of anyone at their night....

Tuesday, 10 May 2011

The Perfect Anti-hero.

here's an interview the man did for Supreme

and here's the classic interview he did for Rolling Stone in full
JA • • •

KEVIN HELDMAN lives in New York. This is his first piece for "Rolling Stone." (ROLLING STONE,FEB 9,1995)

THE FIRST TIME I meet JA, he skates up to me wearing Rollerblades, his cap played backward, on a street corner in Manhattan at around midnight. He's white, 24 years old, with a short, muscular build and a blond crew cut. He has been writing graffiti off and on in New York for almost 10 years and is the founder of a loosely affiliated crew called XTC. His hands, arms, legs and scalp show a variety of scars from nightsticks, razor wire, fists and sharp, jagged things he has climbed up, on or over. He has been beaten by the police -- a "wood shampoo," he calls it -- has been shot at, has fallen off a highway sign into moving traffic, has run naked through train yards tagging, has been chased down highways by rival writers wielding golf clubs and has risked his life innumerable times writing graffiti -- bombing, getting up.

JA lives alone in a one-bedroom apartment. There's graffiti on a wall-length mirror, a weight bench, a Lava lamp to bug out on, cans of paint stacked in the corner, a large Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) sticker on the side of the refrigerator. The buzzer to his apartment lists a false name; his phone number is unlisted to avoid law-enforcement representatives as well as conflicts with other writers. While JA and one of his writing partners, JD, and I are discussing their apprehension about this story, JD, offering up a maxim from the graffiti life, tells me matter-of-factly, "You wouldn't fuck us over, we know where you live."

At JA's apartment we look through photos. There are hundreds of pictures of writers inside out-of-service subway cars that they've just covered completely with their tags, pictures of writers wearing orange safety vests -- to impersonate transit workers -- and walking subway tracks, pictures of detectives and transit workers inspecting graffiti that JA and crew put up the previous night, pictures of stylized JA 'throw-ups' large, bubble-lettered logos written 15 feet up and 50 times across a highway retaining wall. Picture after picture of JA's on trains, JA's on trucks, on store gates, bridges, rooftops, billboards -- all labeled, claimed and recorded on film.

JA comes from a well-to-do family; his parents are divorced; his father holds a high-profile position in the entertainment industry. JA is aware that in some people's minds this last fact calls into question his street legitimacy, and he has put a great deal of effort into resisting the correlation between privileged and soft. He estimates he has been arrested 15 times for various crimes. He doesn't have a job, and it's unclear how he supports himself. Every time we've been together, he's been high or going to get high. Once he called me from Rikers Island prison, where he was serving a couple of months for disorderly conduct and a probation violation. He said some of the inmates saw him tagging in a notebook and asked him to do tattoos for them.

It sounds right. Wherever he is, JA dominates his surroundings. With his crew, he picks the spots to hit, the stores to rack from; he controls the mission. He gives directions in the car, plans the activities, sets the mood. And he takes everything a step further than the people he's with. He climbs higher, stays awake longer, sucks deepest on the blunt, writes the most graffiti. And though he's respected by other writers for testing the limits -- he has been described to me by other writers as a king and, by way of compliment, as "the sickest guy I ever met" -- that same recklessness sometimes alienates him from the majority who don't have such a huge appetite for chaos, adrenaline, self-destruction.

When I ask a city detective who specializes in combating graffiti if there are any particularly well-known writers, he immediately mentions JA and adds with a bit of pride in his voice, "We know each other." He calls JA the "biggest graffiti writer of all time" (though the detective would prefer that I didn't mention that, because it'll only encourage JA). "He's probably got the most throw-ups in the city, in the country, in the world," the detective says. "If the average big-time graffiti vandal has 10,000 tags, JA's got 100,000. He's probably done -- in New York City alone -- at least $5 million worth of damage."

AT ABOUT 3 A.M., JA AND TWO OTHER WRITERS go out to hit a billboard off the West Side Highway in Harlem. Tonight there are SET, a 21-year-old white writer from Queens, N.Y., and JD, a black Latino writer the same age, also from Queens. They load their backpacks with racked cans of Rustoleum, fat cap nozzles, heavy 2-foot industrial bolt cutters and surgical gloves. We pile into a car and start driving, Schooly D blasting on the radio. First a stop at a deli where JA and SET go in and steal beer. Then we drive around Harlem trying a number of different dope spots, keeping an eye out for "berries" -- police cars. JA tosses a finished 40-ounce out the window in a high arc, and it smashes on the street.

At different points, JA gets out of the car and casually walks the streets and into buildings, looking for dealers. A good part of the graffiti life involves walking anywhere in the city, at any time, and not being afraid -- or being afraid and doing it anyway.

We arrive at a spot where JA has tagged the dealer's name on a wall in his territory. The three writers buy a vial of crack and a vial of angel dust and combine them ("spacebase") in a hollowed-out Phillies blunt. JD tells me that "certain drugs will enhance your bombing," citing dust for courage and strength ("bionics"). They've also bombed on mescaline, Valium, marijuana, crack and malt liquor. SET tells a story of climbing highway poles with a spray can at 6 a.m., "all Xanaxed out."

While JD is preparing the blunt, JA walks across the street with a spray can and throws up all three of their tags in 4-foot-high bubbled, connected letters. In the corner, he writes my name.

We then drive to a waterfront area at the edge of the city -- a deserted site with warehouses, railroad tracks and patches of urban wilderness dotted with high-rise billboards. All three writers are now high, and we sit on a curb outside the car smoking cigarettes. From a distance we can see a group of men milling around a parked car near a loading dock that we have to pass. This provokes 30 minutes of obsessive speculation, a stoned stakeout with play by play:

"Dude, they're writers," says SET. "Let's go down and check them out," says JD. "Wait, let's see what they write," says JA. "Yo -- they're going into the trunk," says SET. "Cans, dude, they're going for their cans. Dude, they're writers. "There could be beef, possible beef," says JA. "Can we confirm cans, do we see cans?" SET wants to know. Yes, they do have cans," SET answers for himself. "There are cans. They are writers." It turns out that the men are thieves, part of a group robbing a nearby truck. In a few moments guards appear with flashlights and at least one drawn gun. The thieves scatter as guard dogs fan out around the area, barking crazily.

We wait this out a bit until JA announces, "It's on." Hood pulled up on his head, he leads us creeping through the woods (which for JA has become the cinematic jungles of Nam). It's stop and go, JA crawling on his stomach, unnecessarily close to one of the guards who's searching nearby. We pass through graffiti-covered tunnels (with the requisite cinematic drip drip), over crumbling stairs overgrown with weeds and brush, along dark, heavily littered trails used by crackheads.

We get near the billboard, and JA uses the bolt cutters to cut holes in two chain-link fences. We crawl through and walk along the railroad tracks until we get to the base of the sign. JA, with his backpack on, climbs about 40 feet on a thin piece of metal pipe attached to the main pillar. JD, after a few failed attempts, follows with the bolt cutters shoved down his pants and passes them to JA. Hanging in midair, his legs wrapped around a small piece of ladder, JA cuts the padlock and opens up the hatch to the catwalk. He then lowers his arm to JD, who is wrapped around the pole just below him, struggling. "J, give me your hand, "I'll pull you up," JA tells him. JD hesitates. He is reluctant to let go and continues treadmilling on the pole, trying to make it up. JD, give me your hand." JD doesn't want to refuse, but he's uncomfortable entrusting his life to JA. He won't let go of the pole. JA says it again, firmly, calmly, utterly confident: "J give me your hand." JD's arm reaches up, and JA pulls JD up onto the catwalk. Next, SET, the frailest of the three, follows unsteadily. They've called down and offered to put up his tag, but he insists on going up. "Dude, fuck that, I'm down," he says. I look away while he makes his way up, sure that he's going to fall (he almost does twice). The three have developed a set pattern for dividing the labor when they're "blowing up," one writer outlining, another working behind him, filling in. For 40 minutes I watch them working furiously, throwing shadows as they cover ads for Parliament and Amtrak with large multicolored throw-ups SET and JD bickering about space, JA scolding them, tossing down empty cans.

They risk their lives again climbing down. Parts of their faces are covered in paint, and their eyes beam as all three stare at the billboard, asking, "Isn't it beautiful?' And there is something intoxicating about seeing such an inaccessible, clean object gotten to and made gaudy. We get in the car and drive the West Side Highway northbound and then southbound so they can critique their work. "Damn, I should've used the white," JD says.

The next day both billboards are newly re-covered, all the graffiti gone. JA tells me the three went back earlier to get pictures and made small talk with the workers who were cleaning it off.

GRAFFITI HAS BEEN THROUGH A NUMBER OF incarnations since it surfaced in New York in the early 70s with a Greek teen-ager named Taki 183. It developed from the straightforward writing of a name to highly stylized, seemingly illegible tags (a kind of penmanship slang) to wild-style throw-ups and elaborate (master) "pieces" and character art. There has been racist graffiti political writing, drug advertising, gang graffiti. There is an art-graf scene from which Keith Haring, Jean-Michel Basquiac, LEE, Futura 2000, Lady Pink and others emerged; aerosol advertising; techno graffiti written into computer programs; anti-billboard graffiti; stickers; and stencil writing. There are art students doing street work in San Francisco ("nonpermissional public art"); mural work in underground tunnels in New York; gallery shows from Colorado to New Jersey; all-day Graffiti-a-Thons; and there are graffiti artists lecturing art classes at universities. Graffiti has become part of urban culture, hip-hop culture and commercial culture, has spread to the suburbs and can be found in the backwoods of California's national forests. There are graffiti magazines, graffiti stores, commissioned walls, walls of fame and a video series available (Out to bomb) documenting writers going out on graffiti missions, complete with soundtrack. Graffiti was celebrated as a metaphor in the 70s (Norman Mailer's "The Faith of Graffiti"); it went Hollywood in the '80s (Beat Street, Turk 182!, Wild Style); and in the '90s it has been increasingly used to memorialize the inner-city dead.

But as much as graffiti has found acceptance, it has been vilified a hundred times more. Writers are now being charged with felonies and given lengthy jail terms -- a 15-year-old in California was recently sentenced to eight years in a juvenile detention center. Writers have been given up to 1000 hours of community service and forced to undergo years of psychological counseling; their parents have been hit with civil suits. In California a graffiti writer's driver's license can be revoked for a year; high-school diplomas and transcripts can also be withheld until parents make restitution. In some cities property owners who fail to remove graffiti from their property are subject to fines and possible jail time. Last spring in St. Louis, Cincinnati, San Antonio and Sacramento, Calif., politicians proposed legislation to cane graffiti writers (four to 10 hits with a wooden paddle, administered by parents or by a bailiff in a public courtroom). Across the nation, legislation has been passed making it illegal to sell spray paint and wide-tipped markers to anyone under 18, and often the materials must be kept locked up in the stores. Several cities have tried to ban the sales altogether, license sellers of spray paint and require customers to give their name and address when purchasing paint. In New York some hardware-store owners will give a surveillance photo of anyone buying a large quantity of spray cans to the police. In Chicago people have been charged with possession of paint. In San Jose, Calif., undercover police officers ran a sting operation -- posing as filmmakers working on a graffiti documentary -- and arrested 31 writers.

Hidden cameras, motion detectors, laser removal, specially developed chemical coatings, night goggles, razor wire, guard dogs, a National Graffiti Information Network, graffiti hot lines, bounties paid to informers -- one estimate is that it costs $4 billion a year nationally to clean graffiti -- all in an effort to stop those who "visually laugh in the face of communities," as a Wall Street Journal editorial raged.

The popular perception is that since the late 1980s when New York's Metropolitan Transit Authority adopted a zero tolerance toward subway graffiti (the MTA either cleaned or destroyed more than 6,000 graffiti-covered subway cars, immediately pulling a train out of service if any graffiti appeared on it), graffiti culture had died in the place of its birth. According to many graffiti writers, however, the MTA, in its attempt to kill graffiti, only succeeded in bringing it out of the tunnels and train yards and making it angry. Or as Jeff Ferrell, a criminologist who has chronicled the Denver graffiti scene, theorizes, the authorities' crackdown moved graffiti writing from subculture to counterculture. The work on the trains no longer ran, so writers started hitting the streets. Out in the open they had to work faster and more often. The artistry started to matter less and less. Throw-ups, small cryptic tags done in marker and even the straightforward writing of a name became the dominant imagery. What mattered was quantity ("making noise"), whether the writer had heart, was true to the game, was "real." And the graffiti world started to attract more and more people who weren't looking for an alternative art canvas but simply wanted to be connected to an outlaw community, to a venerable street tradition that allowed the opportunity to advertise their defiance. "It's that I'm doing it that I get my rush, not by everyone seeing it," says JA. "Yeah, that's nice, but if that's all that's gonna motivate you to do it, you're gonna stop writing. That's what happened to a lot of writers." JD tells me: "We're just putting it in their faces; it's like 'Yo, you gotta put up with it.'"

Newspapers have now settled on the term "graffiti vandal" rather than "artist" or "writer." Graffiti writers casually refer to their work as doing destruction." In recent years graffiti has become more and more about beefs and wars, about "fucking up the MTA," "fucking up the city."

Writers started taking a jock attitude toward getting up frequently and tagging in hard-to-reach places, adopting a machismo toward going over other writers' work and defending their own ("If you can write, you can fight"). Whereas graffiti writing was once considered an alternative to the street, now it imports drugs, violence, weapons and theft from that world -- the romance of the criminal deviant rather than the artistic deviant. In New York today, one police source estimates there are approximately 100,000 people involved in a variety of types of graffiti writing. The police have caught writers as young as 8 and as old as 42. And there's a small group of hard-core writers who are getting older who either wrote when graffiti was in its prime or long for the days when it was, those who write out of compulsion, for each other and for the authorities who try to combat graffiti, writers who haven't found anything in their lives substantial or hype enough to replace graffiti writing.

The writers in their 20s come mostly from working-class families and have limited prospects and ambitions for the future. SET works in a drugstore and has taken lithium and Prozac for occasional depression; JD dropped out of high school and is unemployed, last working as a messenger, where he met JA. They spend their nights driving 80 miles an hour down city highways, balancing 40-ounce bottles of Old English 800 between their legs, smoking blunts and crack-laced cigarettes called coolies, always playing with the radio. They reminisce endlessly about the past, when graf was real, when graf ran on the trains, and they swap stories about who's doing what on the scene. The talk is a combo platter of Spicoli, homeboy, New Age jock and eighth grade: The dude is a fuckin' total turd. . . . I definitely would've gotten waxed. . . . It's like some bogus job. . . . I'm amped, I'm Audi, you buggin . . . You gotta be there fully, go all out, focus. . . . Dudes have bitten off SET, he's got toys jockin' him. . . .

They carry beepers, sometimes guns, go upstate or to Long Island to "prey on the hicks" and to rack cans of spray paint. They talk about upcoming court cases and probation, about quitting, getting their lives together, even as they plan new spots to hit, practice their style by writing on the walls of their apartments, on boxes of food, on any stray piece of paper (younger writers practice on school notebooks that teachers have been known to confiscate and turn over to the police). They call graffiti a "social tool" and "some kind of ill form of communication," refer to every writer no matter his age as "kid." Talk in the graffiti life vacillates between banality and mythology, much like the activity itself: hours of drudgery, hanging out, waiting, interrupted by brief episodes of exhilaration. JD, echoing a common refrain, says, "Graffiti writers are like bitches: a lot of lying, a lot of talking, a lot of gossip." They don't like tagging with girls ("cuties," or if they use drugs, "zooties") around because all they say is (in a whiny voice), You're crazy. . . . Write my name."

WHEN JA TALKS ABOUT GRAFFITI, HE'S reluctant to offer up any of the media-ready cliches about the culture (and he knows most of them). He's more inclined to say, "Fuck the graffiti world," and scoff at graf shops, videos, conventions and 'zines. But he can be sentimental about how he began -- riding the No. 1, 2 and 3 trains when he was young, bugging out on the graffiti-covered cars, asking himself, "How did they do that? Who are they?" And he'll respectfully invoke the names of long-gone writers he admired when he was just starting out: SKEME, ZEPHYR, REVOLT, MIN.

JA, typical of the new school, primarily bombs, covering wide areas with throw-ups. He treats graffiti less as an art form than as an athletic competition, concentrating on getting his tag in difficult-to-reach places, focusing on quantity and working in defiance of an aesthetic that demands that public property be kept clean. (Writers almost exclusively hit public or commercial property.)

And when JA is not being cynical, he can talk for hours about the technique, the plotting, the logistics of the game like "motion bombing" by clockwork a carefully scoped subway train that he knows has to stop for a set time, at a set place, when it gets a certain signal in the tunnels. He says, "To me, the challenge that graffiti poses, there's something very invigorating and freeing about it, something almost spiritual. There's a kind of euphoria, more than any kind of drug or sex can give you, give me . . . for real."

JA says he wants to quit, and he talks about doing it as if he were in a 12-step program. "How a person in recovery takes it one day a time, that's how I gotta take it," he says. You get burnt out. There's pretty much nothing more the city can throw at me; it's all been done." But then he'll hear about a yard full of clean sanitation trucks, the upcoming Puerto Rican Day Parade (a reason to bomb Fifth Avenue) or a billboard in an isolated area; or it'll be 3 a.m., he'll be stoned, driving around or sitting in the living room, playing NBA Jam, and someone will say it: "Yo, I got a couple of cans in the trunk. . . ." REAS, an old-school writer of 12 years who, after a struggle and a number of relapses, eventually quit the life, says, "Graffiti can become like a hole you're stuck in; it can just keep on going and going, there's always another spot to write on."

SAST is in his late 20s and calls himself semiretired after 13 years in the graf scene. He still carries around a marker with him wherever he goes and cops little STONE tags (when he's high, he writes, STONED). He's driving JA and me around the city one night, showing me different objects they've tagged, returning again and again to drug spots to buy dust and crack, smoking, with the radio blasting; he's telling war stories about JA jumping onto moving trains, JA hanging off the outside of a speeding four-wheel drive. SAST is driving at top speed, cutting in between cars, tailgating, swerving. A number of times as we're racing down the highway, I ask him if he could slow down. He smiles, asks if I'm scared, tells me not to worry, that he's a more cautious driver when he's dusted. At one point on the FDR, a car cuts in front of us. JA decides to have some fun.

"Yo, he burnt you, SAST," JA says. We start to pick up speed. Yo, SAST, he dissed you, he cold dissed you, SAST." SAST is buying it, the look on his face becoming more determined as we go 70, 80, 90 miles an hour, hugging the divider, flying between cars. I turn to JA, who's in the back seat, and I try to get him to stop. JA ignores me, sitting back perfectly relaxed, smiling, urging SAST to go faster and faster, getting off, my fear adding to his rush.

At around 4 a.m., SAST drops us off on the middle of the Manhattan Bridge and leaves. JA wants to show me a throw-up he did the week before. We climb over the divider from the roadway to the subway tracks. JA explains that we have to cross the north and the southbound tracks to get to the outer part of the bridge. In between there are a number of large gaps and two electrified third rails, and we're 135 feet above the East River. As we're standing on the tracks, we hear the sound of an oncoming train. JA tells me to hide, to crouch down in the V where two diagonal braces meet just beside the tracks.

I climb into position, holding on to the metal beams, head down, looking at the water as the train slams by the side of my body. This happens twice more. Eventually, I cross over to the outer edge of the bridge, which is under construction, and JA points out his tag about 40 feet above on what looks like a crow's-nest on a support pillar. After a few moments of admiring the view, stepping carefully around the many opportunities to fall, JA hands me his cigarettes and keys. He starts crawling up one of the braces on the side of the bridge, disappears within the structure for a moment, emerges and makes his way to an electrical box on a pillar. Then he snakes his way up the piping and grabs on to a curved support. Using only his hands he starts to shimmy up; at one point he's hanging almost completely upside down. If he falls now, he'll land backward onto one of the tiers and drop into the river below. He continues to pull himself up, the old paint breaking off in his hands, and finally he flips his body over a railing to get to the spot where he tagged. He doesn't have a can or a marker with him, and at this point graffiti seems incidental. He comes down and tells me that when he did the original tag he was with two writers; one he half carried up, the other stopped at a certain point and later told JA that watching him do that tag made him appreciate life, being alive.

We walk for 10 minutes along a narrow, grooved catwalk on the side of the tracks; a thin wire cable prevents a fall into the river. A few times, looking down through the grooves, I have to stop, force myself to take the next step straight ahead, shake off the vertigo. JA is practically jogging ahead of me. We exit the bridge into Chinatown as the sun comes up and go to eat breakfast. JA tells me he's a vegetarian.

IF YOU TALK TO SERIOUS GRAFFITI writers, most of them will echo the same themes; they decry the commercialization of graf, condemn the toys and poseurs and alternately hate and feel attached to the authorities who try to stop them. They say with equal parts bravado and self-deprecation that a graffiti writer is a bum, a criminal, a vandal, slick, sick, obsessed, sneaky, street-smart, living on edges figurative and literal. They show and catalog cuts and scars on their bodies from razor wire, pieces of metal, knives, box cutters. I once casually asked a writer named GHOST if he knew another writer whose work I had seen in a graf'zine. "Yeah, I know him, he stabbed me," GHOST replies matter-of-factly. "We've still got beef." SET tells me he was caught by two DTs (detectives) who assaulted him, took his cans of paint and sprayed his body and face. JA tells similar stories of police beatings for his making officers run after him, of cops making him empty his spray cans on his sneakers or on the back of a fellow writer's jacket. JD has had 48 stitches in his back and 18 in his head over "graffiti-related beef." JA's best friend and writing partner, SANE SMITH, a legendary all-city writer who was sued by the city and the MTA for graffiti, was found dead, floating in Jamaica Bay. There's endless speculation in the grafworld as to whether he was pushed, fell or jumped off a bridge. SANE is so respected, there are some writers today who spend time in public libraries reading and rereading the newspaper microfilm about his death, his arrests, his career. According to JA, after SANE's death, his brother, SMiTH, also a respected graffiti artist, found a piece of paper on which SANE had written his and JA's tag and off to the side, FLYING HIGH THE XTC WAY. It now hangs on JA's apartment wall.

One morning, JA and I jump off the end of a subway platform and head into the tunnels. He shows me hidden rooms, emergency hatches that open to the sidewalk, where to stand when the trains come by. He tells me about the time SANE lay face down in a shallow drainage ditch on the tracks as an express train ran inches above him. JA says anytime he was being chased by the police he would run into a nearby subway station, jump off the platform and run into the tunnels. The police would never follow. KET, a veteran graffiti writer, tells me how in the tunnels he would accidentally step on homeless people sleeping. They'd see him tagging and would occasionally ask that he "throw them up," write their names on the wall. He usually would. Walking in the darkness between the electrified rails as trains race by, JA tells me the story of two writers he had beef with who came into the tunnels to cross out his tags. Where the cross-outs stop is where they were killed by an approaching train.

The last time I go out with JA, SET and JD, they pick me up at around 2 am. We drive down to the Lower East Side to hit a yard where about 60 trucks and vans are parked next to one another. Every vehicle is already covered with throw-ups and tags, but the three start to write anyway, JA in a near frenzy. They're running in between the rows, crawling under trucks, jumping from roof to roof, wedged down in between the trailers, engulfed in nauseating clouds of paint fumes (the writers sometimes blow multicolored mucous out of their noses), going over some writers' tags, respecting others, JA throwing up SANE's name, searching for any little piece of clean space to write on. JA, who had once again been talking about retirement, is now hungry to write and wants to hit another spot. But JD doesn't have any paint, SET needs gas money for his car, and they have to drive upstate the next morning to appear in court for a paint-theft charge.

During the ride back uptown the car is mostly quiet, the mood depressed. And even when the three were in the truck yard, even when JA was at his most intense, it seemed closer to work, routine, habit. There are moments like this when they seem genuinely worn out by the constant stress, the danger, the legal problems, the drugging, the fighting, the obligation to always hit another spot. And it's usually when the day is starting.

About a week later I get a call from another writer whom JA had told I was writing an article on graffiti. He tells me he has never been king, never gone all city, but now he is making a comeback, coming out of retirement with a new tag. He says he could do it easily today because there is no real competition. He says he was thinking about trying to make some money off of graffiti -- galleries. canvases, whatever . . . to get paid.

"I gotta do something," the writer says. "I can't rap, I can't dance, I got this silly little job." We talk more, and he tells me he appreciates that I'm writing about writers, trying to get inside the head of a vandal, telling the real deal. He also tells me that graffiti is dying, that the city is buffing it, that new writers are all toys and are letting it die, but it's still worth it to write.

I ask why, and then comes the inevitable justification that every writer has to believe and take pleasure in, the idea that order will always have to play catch-up with them. "It takes me seconds to do a quick throw-up; it takes them like 10 minutes to clean it," he says. "Who's coming out on top?"

Its definitely worth a read - I think it gives one of the best insights into the world of a prolific, world renowned graffiti writer, and does its best to remain impartial throughout. JA to me comes across as an intelligent, strong willed, wreckless and troubled guy, classic anti-hero material there for you!!

for those of you who dont know (probably a lot!) this is JA...

LOL creepy as hell or what??

Here's his section from State Your Name aswell

Personally I think he's one of those people who I would instantly dislike if I ever met him, but I also think he'd be one of the most interesting people you could ever meet in some ways - as I said, a perfect anti-hero.

Tuesday, 3 May 2011

Peter Pan...

and Robbo (by Panik)

Peter ATG and Robbo WRH WD PFB KOA KAOS inc UA from LDNGraffiti on Vimeo.

keeping on the with the graf theme this week, sending all best wishes to Robbo who unfortunately suffered an accident before the opening of his new show and is now recovering in hospital.

On the subject of graffiti artists doing shows, its seeming like Graf has gotten to a point now similar to where it was at late 70's into the 80's.

Every writer worth his salt and many who aren't seem to be doing exhibitions of work, be it original art or reproductions of graffiti, a mixture of both, graphic design, photography or all of the above.

This seems to be the way the movement is going, shifting from an underground artform/way of life to a hobby or career.

Neither is necessarily better or worse imo - what matters is the end product, people like Panik and the ATG crew are still doing both whilst turning a crew of friends into an empire of music, art and marketing - and you know what, good luck to em!

Bigup Lone aswell

Lone PBK Petey ATG

smashin it with the ATG boys doing full colour tracksides the way it should be!

Sunday, 1 May 2011


1000 trains in 1000 days....


cant wait to get a copy of this

Tuesday, 26 April 2011

Moombahton Pt. 2

Have a mix here from Liverpool's finest and most eclectic DJ. Furness.

No doubt that this guy would be onto this sound early, and it seems he was!!

Here's a mix which he put together in January and its a kaleidoscopic tribute to both slow house and tropical, reggaeton sounds all mashed together in one neat, naughty, steppy little package!


Thursday, 21 April 2011


Munchi - Gracias by Munchi

i really like!

this track especially, featured at the end of this mix

DAVE NADA - 108 & HEARTBREAK by davenada

and here in full

Munchi - Hope by Munchi

so yeh, plenty to listen to here!

i actually like the vibe and roll of these tunes, very much an end of the night lights off moody, melancholy but with just enough of an uplift to give variety and dimension to the tunes (or what i've heard so far anyway!)

i will do some searching and update when i find more, dont know how this hasn't spread over here fully yet, has a very accessible sound i think, like a polished up and slightly less quirky, downbeat Kwaito

Sunday, 17 April 2011

Saarim's Faux Pas...

First mix by Saarim Khokhar

We've all been there before (if you mix...), the highs, the lows, the mids...

Recording a mix is always stressful, I for one have broken knuckles punching walls when something in my mix doesn't go right and its standard procedure that everytime I record a mix I'm at mixing at least one level below what I'm capable of.

My good friend Saarim has been getting to grips with Ableton, samplers, new tracks and mixing techniques and he's come out with this little mix at the end of it... and its quite good!

He's been banging on to me about doing one for ages and he's got off his arse and done it now so I'm pleased for him.

Have a listen, the track selection is excellent which is the most important thing to me on a mix and i've got no idea how he actually did it using his MPD but either way I think its quite sick!

Any feedback would be great that i'll pass onto him, have a listen to his tracks aswell (if he still has them up), teaching yourself production is difficult I'm sure, and I know there's a few of you who'll read this blog post and be able to give him some really useful pro-tips!


Smash of Kahn...

Margeaux (clip) by • Kahn •

after the Punch Drunk EP, this is one of his next batch of tunes, really nice drums, subtle pads, ehtereal and floaty with summery splashes

blood sugar (clip) by • Kahn •

and another, a slower sounding track, carried by a *cringe* haunting vocal sample which sounds like it was perhaps borrowed from a Thom Yorke tune??

either way i enjoy his tunes

here's a mix from Dark Sky's Ministry of Sound radio show...

Kahn guest mix for Dark Sky on Ministry of Sound radio, broadcast on 27/3/2011 by • Kahn •


Wednesday, 13 April 2011

A Posh...

yes please...

if anyone else has any good Banksy fakes or pictures just taking the piss a bit please link me up!!

Tuesday, 12 April 2011

Bare blippy n shit

Lovely. If a little bit short, everything else is pretty much perfect and seems to respond to my criticism of Koreless as being if anything slightly too minimal, this track by Redinho released last year brings quirky, bubbling rhythms, a catchy melody and early, ambient AFX-twin style pads together to create just the right mixture of emotion, simplicity and elegance!

2 of the best...

A very nice tune, Koreless' style really shines through, the work on the vocal is subtle but well done and sounds real nice with the percussion giving a bit of definition to those droning chords in the back ground.

The pops and bubbles, float and bounce over and under each element of the track - as a whole its a satisfying listen if ultra minimal is your thing. The only problem i find is that all of his tunes sound pretty much exactly the same and there's only so long this sound won't be boring...

but thats a minor problem, the quality of production and the actual sound you get when you play his tunes off of vinyl is fantastic, as long as he carries that production through and brings a little more to the table i see this kid doing very big things - he's only 19 after all!!

Sunday, 10 April 2011

Zed Bias

some of the best drums in the business

Friday, 8 April 2011

Ace of Paste...

Pasteman - Find You (Spectrum EP) by Pasteman

Leeds dj/producer and Cut'n'Paste comrade, Matt 'Pasteman' Bridgewater has seemingly been putting in the hours in the studio, not only reshaping his sound, but honing his skills.

This is one of a new bunch of tracks recently upped to his soundcloud, liking the way his sound is going.

Perhaps after some more time, he'll begin to find a sound that is truly his own, but technically i think these bunch of new tracks are really nicely done, and there's more than a few there i would like to have in my collection!

Anyway, here is his soundcloud and here is a link to the latest Hush House blog post concerning himself!

enjoy and comment.

Wednesday, 6 April 2011

The Future??!

if you squint your ears (somehow) this kinda sounds like Juke... goes OFF at 1minute 55seconds

btw im not taking the piss here, found this tune on my mates facebook from when he was India and i cant imagine the amount of jokes i would have caught when i first saw it, but i LOVE it its amazing...

thinking about cching joke at the expense of other countries cultures there were SEVERAL adverts in Thailand which i always saw that no matter what state i was in would result in me breaking down a fit of laughter/rude/inappropriate finger pointing... what the fuck is travelling for anyway?!? cant take everything seriously can you, who wouldn't crack a smile at Lederhosen clad, fat, red-face dr. robotnik moustache sporting german after all??

here's some funny thai commercials, unfortunately i cant find the one for thai brand squid sauce that has a CGI squid sticking to everyones face whilst they perform everyday tasks, that seemingly have nothing to do with squids or sauces, but whatever...

and one thats just funny but nothing to do with Thailand

Tuesday, 5 April 2011


BLACK FLY X RISK X SMASH 137 X MIAMI from Willie Toledo on Vimeo.

wouldn't it be brilliant if everytime i wanted to paint, i could fill up a car trunk with box after box of premium quality paint, so much paint in fact i could slash cans to create next new techniques on the wall...

we can only dream

anyway, enjoy the vid, and the wicked soundtrack...

a quote from Smash 137:

Smash: “As long as I can remember writers have always been criticizing the current state of graffiti. It’s almost as if good graffiti only ever existed in the past. But this shows me even more that only the best pieces can be timeless and the rest seems to get forgotten, which makes sense. What bothers me a bit these days is that fame used to be the only pay back for a writer’s sweat and tears. Nowadays that often comes sooner to those who know how to put themselves in the spotlight using new media rather than to the ones who deserve it the most.”

Thanks to Hurtyoubad for this vid/quote

Friday, 1 April 2011


...with the stars

Mosca and Ramadanman.

no more words from me, read the interview. its quite good.

Wednesday, 30 March 2011

Kiwi Dreams...

Kiwi dream by pixelord

A fantastic new track by Pixelord on Soundcloud. Combining elements of dubstep with a glitch-hop aesthetic, the beat grinds and slurs away moodily underneath a beautifully chopped up garage-style vocal that lends the ears of Burial and Clubroot fans. Pitch-hop? Glitch'n'Grind? Ok not seriously, but you get the idea. Wicked track from this producer who i'd never heard of before this morning, thank you Soundcloud and Facebook!

Spanish Kingdom

guy is too good...

Tuesday, 29 March 2011

140 show?

check out a friend of mine's latest podcast from his show HERE.

A monthly exploration of everyone's favourite ever-evolving, DnB, Jungle, future-bass and dubstep sounds, Node introduces a different guest each month to give you a little taste of whats poppin' off in their musical microcosm!

This month Node brings us some of the finest and most cutting edge futuristic bass music about, whilst Teutonic Boom keeps things cold and calculated with avant garde electronica, techno-inspired dubstep and hot... raw... sex!

enjoy people!


Teutonic Kaboom
1. Anstam - Brom
2. Objekt - Tinderbox
3. Boxcutter - Brood
4. Skream - Rollin kicks
5. Carsten Jost - a certain kind
6. Ikonika - Video delays
7. Planetary Assault Systems - x speaks to x (Al tourettes & Appleblim rmx)
8. Jimmy edgar - Hot raw sex (instra:mental rmx)
9. Icicle - Anything
10. Subeena - Picture
11. Scan one - Sub prime
12. Andrea Parker - Nintendo love (Scanone rmx)

1. Pearson Sound - Higher
2. Ital Tek - Babel
3. Tipper - Reality Harshness Defender
4. Kingdom - Bust Broke
5. Koreless - MTI
6. Gravious - Lodestone
7. Relocate - Origins
8. Jamie Grind - Without You
9. Cosmin TRG - Seperat
10. Instra:mental - When I Dip
11. Pearson Sound vs Hardrive - Deep Inside (Pearson Sound Edit)
12. Midland - Play The Game (Dexter Remix)

Mr. 67

Here is a mix from Mr. 67, otherwise known as Visionist, who you may remember from a certain Swamp 81 boiler room stream!

the mix itself is wicked, shows exactly what this boy is about!

aside from some snazzy dance moves and a semi-cult following, he's actually a badman producer from London outfit We Are Dubist and is now signed to Oneman's 502 label. 

all i can say is... Im the 67! COCAINE. POWDER!

Everything is OK.

I think everybody needs to see this video.

The reasons people need to see this are simply that when you are ever stopped by the Police, for anything, you are perfectly within your rights to ask the Officer the questions asked in this film.  You are also perfectly within your rights to film everything which takes place.  You are also perfectly within your rights to remain silent, and decline to answer any questions you wish.

Personally, i've been in a few situations where this information would have been extremely useful - not only when dealing with police but when dealing with anyone who is trying to enforce certain laws upon you.

In all seriousness, it might look like you're simply being a nob.  In actual fact, this behaviour is entirely necessary - without people doing things like this, we have an unchecked police force and unchecked private security forces who employ people who are seemingly incapable of performing their job correctly.  What this leads to is incidents like the one above, and incidents of escalated violence and breaches of human rights such as what happened to Ian Tomlinson 2 years ago.

I'll be posting up a few more of these video's, in my opinion the guy who does them is absolutely brilliant!!




for those that haven't ever seen this it is Mr. Malibu and some other 'geezer' back from 2002 with, well, one of the sickest video/track combo's ever.

apparently Mr. Malibu is still about today under a different guise, prizes for correct answers will be posted to the lucky few.

needless to say, Malibu isn't particularly fond of this musical excursion and apart from being very hard to find on youtube, it is almost nonexistent anywhere else on the net.


whaddawelike? champagne in the venue... thats what we fucking like!

Thursday, 24 March 2011

Monday, 21 March 2011