When Bristol’s music scene is brought up in casual conversation, it doesn’t take long for names such as “Tricky”, “Portishead” and “Massive Attack” to enter the conversation. A city globally renowned for incubating a variety of motifs emanating from multiple ethnic origins, Bristol’s only musical rule was not to follow any.
As we fast forward two decades, the trip-hop greats of yesteryear are largely out of the mainstream psyche. However Bristol’s “anything goes” mentality still serves as a cornerstone for a multitude of burgeoning artists, Sam Binga being one of them.
While Binga enjoyed a stable career as a breaks producer (Baobinga) throughout the entirety of the ‘oughties, as that scene collapsed he sought to find stable ground elsewhere. Dialing the tempo to drum and bass speed came natural, albeit unconventional in a time where many breaks heads made lateral moves into the realm of dubstep. In perhaps signature Bristol form, Binga discarded the rule book in favor of extracting influences from across the pond in his new formula. He worked with Addison Groove to channel the spirit of Chicago juke into his work, while also infusing hip hop elements (via MC’s such as Rider Shafique and Redders) as well as trap.
In essence, Binga created an American-derived formula without adhering to the crippling conformity that plagues most contemporary dance and rap on this side of the Atlantic. If that isn’t the true essence of what Bristol’s music scene is about then I don’t know what is!
In support of his highly-awaited debut LP Wasted Days, Binga plays his debut show in Boston this Thursday at Elements (512 Mass Ave, Cambridge). As one of the few drum and bass producers right now to attract a bit of buzz outside the scene without sounding too predictable, this will definitely be an important show for Boston.
And thanks to the Elements crew, we’re giving away a free pair of tix to this. All you have to do is “like” Beantown Boogiedown and Elements on Facebook and leave your name and email in the comments section below. I draw the winner at 5pm tomorrow. Good luck!