FatKidOnFire, is one of the UK’s leading digital culture publications, and for its 30 Minutes of BASS Education segment it featured none other than Mala. For this segment of 30 Minutes of BASS Education, FatKidOnFire provided a 30 minute mix of Mala remixes, Digital Mystikz productions and solo work by the man himself. The mix is available on SoundCloud and is up for free download.
For the sake of those who do not know, when referring to ‘dubstep’ in this article or blog for that matter I am not at all referring to that “Skrillexy” dubstep, what I am referring to is the deep, often dark, meditational-like sounds I’d rather refer to as Dub (however, each to their own with what term to use).
Mala is dub royalty, a world-renowned producer and dj, and one of the forefather’s and veterans of the dub sound.
Mala’s first real interest in music other than just listening, stems back to 1992 when he first heard Jungle. In an interview he did with Zoopersound in 2006, he states that although Jungle sparked his interest in writing music, everything in life influences him in his writing process. He states “I think the influences stem from all aspects of life, not just from music. There’s been so much music that’s influenced me over the years, so many different styles, so many different artists, different sounds and instruments, environmental sounds – everything, man! So, it’s just a mash-up of styles all the way from jungle to dub to jazzy stuff to world music. I can’t say that one particular musical style has influenced me more than another.” -If there was a secret to Mala’s brilliance, could this be it?
Mala’s partnership with fellow dub producer and dj Coki named Digital Mystikz, helped take the dub sound to new heights, as well as cementing both of their positions and influence within the UK dub scene, and world-wide.
Mala states that the reason why they started Digital Mystikz was because at the time they felt as though no label could really represent them accurately, or understood what the music was about. –“We started the label because we wanted to represent ourselves, we wanted not to be misrepresented.” So Digital Mystikz was born, a partnership and ultimately a movement. Some of the biggest dub classics come from this duo, and still have more of an impact than music being produced today.
Dub since its early days has been synonymous with meditation. Not so much traditional meditation, but meditation which is a result of the effect the music gives you. To some, this may sound frightening or strange, however dub is all about positivity and feeling an authentic connection to the music, ultimately losing yourself. It has also been linked to spirituality many a time. Mala states that “If people – whatever they may believe in or not believe in – feel about it in a certain way – as long as it’s positive, that’s what it’s about for me! That’s why I say meditate, because when it comes to our dance, that’s what I want people to do. I want it to be a positive meditation. I’m not into no madness, man!”
The influence Mala has had on not only the dub scene but on the BASS scene as a whole, worldwide as well as in the UK is almost immeasurable. When reading his interview with Zoopersound, the one thing that I concluded all the time was not only how humble he came across, but also how authentic. I think this could be one of the reasons he has had such an influence and is as revered as he is. Musical genres aside, whether dub gets you going or not, respect for this man is a given.
FatKidOnFire article: http://www.fatkidonfire.com/mixtapes/30-minutes-mala/