Beating the drum ’n’ bass for world music 

Who: Suv from Reprazent and Full Cycle

Where: Garibaldi Lift Co.

When: Monday, Feb. 17

It’s a known fact in the world of electronic music that behind every great album is a great producer. The Reprazent collection is one of the most successful drum ’n’ bass offerings available and Suv, one of its integral yet invisible creators.

Suv, together with Roni Size, Krust and DJ Die – three of the biggest names in English urban music – pioneered many of the club sounds we hear today.

But after 15 years in the business, Suv has only just begun to raise his own profile.

"I’ve been really content to remain in the back room developing the music but this industry is like a double edged sword. You need a bit of fame so you can get out there to the people and introduce them to new sounds, and that’s all that matters to me, expanding people’s minds," said the softly spoken innovator.

Suv’s debut solo album, Desert Rose , is establishing him as one of the most forward-thinking producers around. Mixing drum ’n’ bass beats with Moroccan and Spanish sounds, his unique LP is making it into big-name DJs’ vinyl boxes, causing Suv’s club bookings to build rapidly.

A cross-Canadian tour brings him to Whistler, where he hopes to gather ideas for his second album, Follow The Sun , due for release in June.

"Each country has its own sounds, language and music and wherever I go I try to record some of that with my little Powerbook and microphone. I just got back from Chile and Brazil. I recorded vocalists and musicians and I’m going to introduce those sounds into the album as well."

Suv is a great example of acting locally but thinking globally, using the only language everyone understands – music.

"I am trying to connect cultures to bring us closer together," he said.

Half English and half Caribbean, Suv battled racism and ignorance while growing up in Bristol but rose above it to celebrate diversity.

"At school I was always settling racist arguments. I’d say ‘well I’m you and I’m you so shut up.’

"Musically I grew up with mixed tastes too. My mum would listen to David Bowie and Tom Jones while my dad was into Bob Marley, which had a huge influence on me pushing the boundaries today," he said.

On the dance floor front, Suv is well known for churning out tracks that get people moving but it’s world music blends that puts the fire in his belly.

"I try not to forget the audience knows me for the high energy stuff but what I want to make and what the people want me to make is something I am fighting with all the time. When you force people to listen to something new, they usually stand there with their mouths open going ‘huh?’ and then two weeks later, they’re like ‘I know this tune’ and all over it. It’s very hard to find that equal balance between music’s organic sound and digital simple stuff."

So open minded drum ’n’ bass fans are encouraged, says Suv.

"When you listen to my set, it will go up and down. I’ll play the stuff you love and something new. I want to take you all on a bit of a journey."

Whatever Suv decides to do, it’s clear he’s bang up for a good time.

"I’ve booked an extra day in Whistler to snowboard and get some good living to take back to the studio. During the show I want to dance a bit, meet the crowd and get intimate. I won’t be one of those DJs who just stands there nodding and you have no idea if the track has changed or even if they’re mixing it. I’m going to get amongst it."

Opening for Suv will be MC Stamina, considered one of the leaders of the new crop of U.K. rappers. He’s a regular at such legendary nights as "Movement" and had the smash hit L.K. (It's the Waaa-aa-aay) alongside XRS and Marky. Tickets are $15.


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