When asked what he thinks typifies the best of Tectonic, he chuckles and admits; “I didn’t do that good a job of narrowing it down; there’s 40 tracks on there! I guess I was trying to cover as many bases as possible - It was difficult for me as I’ve loved everything we’ve put out.”
With this passion, Pinch has sealed his position in dubstep; emergent as a Bristol Godfather of bass and homing the dub-techno talents. It’s written into music history, and although he finds it “very comforting to be recognised... it’s about doing the next thing rather than dwelling on the past.” And with that it’s not difficult to see why he’s pushing the boundaries of an ‘expected’ Tectonic roster. One of the latest releases to do so is ‘Frantically Hopeful’, from Pursuit Grooves, and he’s been taken by how well it’s been received, despite it’s off-kilter, broken beat and hip-hop approach. “You always worry that if you start veering off the trodden path that no-one else follows you on the way,” he tells us.
“I’ve always really liked the white label techno ideas of buying into the music; they have a strength of following based on nothing other than being genuinely interesting."
Does he sense an unnecessary rigidity in the dubstep genre? “I think the majority of people do come into dubstep with rigid views, and their concept is a rigid template,” he says. “For me, dubstep was always a progressive and experimental school of music, and I feel it’s a bit of shame to not follow that spirit. Switching up tempos, changing grooves, and playing around with ideas is very much what dubstep is about.”
His not-so-secret collaboration with Distance as Deleted Scenes has recently been brought into Facebook existence, embracing the inevitable unmasking and alerting everyone else to their dub and sub powerhouse. “I’ve always really liked the white label techno ideas of buying into the music; they have a strength of following based on nothing other than being genuinely interesting,” he says, explaining his preferred anonymity.
Keep your eyes peeled for more DS material later this year, and Tectonic releases including Pinch-recommended Distal, who incorporates warehouse and spine-tingling acid, and a general diversification of bpm from the 140 standard to push sonic directions; the decree has gone forward - Tectonic is not a one-bpm label!
This interview was originally conducted for Clash magazine, and can be picked up in the Autumn back issues.