#66 - Tap Throw
Phone lines are on London! It’s time to step up to the (dub)plate as Luke Williams unveils his new Tap Throw alias for EPM Podcast 66. Route 66 that is, as Williams rides the rude boy riddims across a barrage of classic, old school Jungle featuring the likes of Ray Keith, Tic Tac Toe, Nasty Habits, Micky Finn, LTJ Bukem, DJ Trace & Ed Rush, DJ Hype, Randall, DJ Flow, Johnny Jungle and more plus a dash of brand new Tap Throw material from Luke himself.
Luke Williams has released an extensive catalogue of electronic music under his Quinoline Yellow and Tatamax pseudonyms which are predominantly found on SKAM, his own imprint Uchelfa and more recently on Touchin’ Bass. In the not so recent past he has been delving into numerous remix projects for a variety of producers.
With a momentarily pausing of his much coveted ‘Quinoline Yellow’ and ‘Tatamax’ aliases, Williams substitutes his open toed-wellies and hill jogging inclines for a backward nod, forwarding facing four hit combo, of vintage jungle. Expect to encounter enduring sample spotting relapses, back seat panel busting beats and a sonic dexterity accustom to his regular pseudonyms.
Tap Throw’s ‘Dip Switches’ is coming soon on Modified Magic.
Q&A with Tap Throw
1. Several years ago you dropped Podcast 45 for us as Quinoline Yellow. Tap Throw is quite a change. What brought that on?
Several years!? Was only 2013, hahaha. I suppose it is quite an acute change of direction from my usual output. In short, it is a project I promised myself I would do at some point. Pay my respects as it were.
2. Did Jungle play a big part in your musical upbringing? Were you a raver driving around trying to find mad parties?
School yard tape swapping, one ear a piece Walkman listening sessions and pirates were how I listened and got actively involved with music then. It is obviously tinted somewhat with my misty nostalgia goggles (as it is for a lot of people) but I did appreciate that time and tunes as a teenager. Rave and Jungle were very different from what you’d hear at home, commercial radio and all the typical guitar band pap from that era. Early on, radio more than raves for me, partying came later. Pirates always had a mystifying, ethereal presence to me, broadcasting sporadically and at odd hours. I thought it was daring and magical as an early teen. Don’t forget this was a time when mass, instant communication systems didn’t exist. Shops, flyers, radio ads and postal newsletters trumped all. Blimey.
3. In an interview last year Aphex Twin described Jungle as the ‘ultimate genre’. Would you agree?
The genre allows within its typical constraints the choice of unrestrained beat and drum break arrangement if so desired. Its flexibility is something to be cherished, break beats and their grooves trump house 4/4 tracks any day. For me personally, Jungle is my Hip Hop. In the sense of its nub being formed from shoddy kit, heavily laden samples and pinched beats formed from a bedroom/D.I.Y aesthetic. When I began to write music, my mantra was to be original as you can with your choice of sounds and raw materials. Sampling other people’s tracks was a real no-no and deemed as cheating in my head. This Tap throw release is the complete inverse of that philosophy if you like, being as it is, entirely sampled based.
4. Do you feel that Jungle gets overlooked in terms of its musical and cultural impact?
I’m not sure, maybe. You might say Jungle gets ridiculed sometimes due to people shunning the early production techniques and often its rudimental and perhaps naive output on occasions. Personally, early jungle experiments and the way they are produced in particular are for me, the intrinsic components to why the genre remains so loved by me. I always tell people who might stop to listen, that less is often more anyway. Learn the tools you have and try not to dick about all day with one loop running, baked, previewing a million stolen reverb plug-ins. Perhaps that thought is even more poignant now due to the wealth of choice and accessibility of electronic music making tools.
5. If Jungle came about today would the Internet have killed it?
The Internet can quickly take the fun out of anything, so yeah, maybe, hahaha. I’ve said before that the technology around at a particular time often dictates how tracks can be made. Obviously Jungle in its infancy would never have sounded like it did if it had come about today. That is a good thing for dance music as a whole, hahaha. The nice thing about Jungle and other pre Internet formed genres is that they were given every chance to mature and blossom away from the scrutiny of the masses and/or Internet mutants. You could argue that Jungle only got tarnished when it flirted with popular and mainstream culture and when commercial labels came calling, fishing for their own slice of underground profits. I can’t speak for anyone, I was only there looking on as a young consumer and music lover. Around late 96, I wasn’t really listening to what had become more drum and bass anyway. I was purely into the more experimental electronic music stuff that people would most likely associate with me and my recording aliases.
6. When we last spoke you mentioned that your dream line up would involve ‘all the old Kool FM DJs and MC’s playing early nineties jungle sets.’ Do you still have old tapes from those days?
I have a few, some ripped, some not. The great thing is that the Internet has an archive of loads, other people’s captures in time, shared with the world. They have such a great feel and several layers of cozy that would be hard to replicate today. Tunes via decks into a mixer, to an amp and then on through some biscuit tin or what not. For it then to be captured in a bedroom straight onto cassette with glitches, jumping needles and radio interference included as standard. It was like warm transmittable rude boy hug.
7. Your various aliases go from experimental to electro, techno and now drum n bass/jungle. Do you know what ‘hat’ you will be wearing before you get to the studio or do you just see what happens?
Perhaps not so much with the other stuff, but most definitely with the Tap Throw moniker. This project was a real labor of love where anyone involved with its output process will sanction for you. You could say it is a pure homage and thank you to a genre style that is very dear to me. The entire sample gathering, arrangement, artwork and cut have been lush as, go buy it, it’s wicked!
8. Are there any new producers that have caught your eye?
New and old producers whom I stumble upon, plus the occasional demo that I get sent continually keep me listening. I do try and discover new music when I can but I shall not be talking about anyone here though.
9. What are your production plans for 2015?
Once my new studio is complete I’ll be finishing a new Quinoline Yellow E.P and hopefully compile some new Tatamax which I’ve promised myself I’d do since forever. Don’t be too alarmed either if we see some Tap Throw remixes. Look out for some new ‘Modified Magic’ releases as well.
10. As you know we like a top 10. So it would seem apt to get your all-time top 10 Jungle tracks…
This one changes all the time as well, in no fixed order I’d have:
‘Work The Box’ by Potential Bad Boy, Remarc’s original R.I.P, ‘Babylon’ by Splash, Ron’s remix of ‘Information Centre’, ‘Breakage#4’ by Noise Factory, Andy C’s ‘Dark Stranger’ remix, Either Foul Play version of ‘Finest Illusion’, Hype’s ‘Roll the Beats’, DJ SS’s ‘Rollidge’ and I do like a solid dose of Krome and Time’s remix of their own track ‘License’.
Tic Tac Toe – Ephemerol (DJ Flow 2013 Remix)
Dance Conspiracy – Dub War (DJ Diplomat Remix)
DJ Ron – Dangerous/Cannan Land
Inta Warriors – Dreams Of Heaven (The Silence Mix)
Neuromancer – Pennywise (Micky Finn 2 Twisted Mix)
Nasty Habits – Here Comes The Drumz (Remix)
DJ Splix – Parsley (Strawberry Mix)
Es Pee Dee & DJ Distroi – Untitled A1
150 Volts – Hi, I’m Chucki (Wanna Play)
Timebase – Fireball
Apollo Two - Atlantis (I Need You) L.T.J Bukem Remix
D-Livin – Why
Wots My Code – Dubplate (Ray Keith's Simply Rolling Remix)
Johnny Jungle – Flammable (Tango Remix)
DJ Buz/DJ Kane/Nico – Slave
D.O.P.E – When I Was Young (DJ Easy B & T-Bags Revisited Mix)
DJ Trace & Ed Rush – Clean Gun
Noise Factory – Breakage #4
DJ Hype/Cool Hand Flex – Weird Energy (Hells Bells Mix)
Hyper On Experience – Lord Of The Null Lines
Potential Bad Boy – Untitled C1
Tap Throw – Fiebings (BSP Mix)
Family Of Intelligence – Learning From My Brother
Randall & Uncle 22 – Calling All Cars
The Good, 2 Bad & Hugly – A Fistful Of Dollars
Noise Factory – Can You Feel The Rush
Kemet Krew – Missing, The Box Re-Opens
Uncle 22 – 6 Million Ways to Die (DJ Hype remix)
Tap Throw – Well of Souls
The Noise Of Art – Rollin’ Deep (Smokey Joe Remix 2)