Soundsystem roots explained

Bristol trip hop dons Massive Attack have spoken about their roots in the soundsystem collective The Wild Bunch.

A centre for immigration, Bristol's multi-ethnic population struggled to mix throughout the 80s. The decade opened with huge race riots, with a new generation of kids learning to dance together in the city's clubs.

Reflecting this, The Wild Bunch soundsystem was formed. Helping to spawn the careers of Massive Attack, Tricky and more the collective have been widely credited for revolutionising the Bristol music scene.

Speaking to American website Buzznet, Massive Attack producer Daddy G recalled his time with The Wild Bunch. "Being DJs as the Wild Bunch, we sort of made a name of ourselves for the crazy collection we used to have, and we would mash it all together - jazz, disco, hip-hop, reggae, punk."

"There’s a heavy reggae influence in Bristol, so we’ve always been drawn to the bass line. A lot of these bands we’re influenced by have that bass like TV on the Radio, Gorillaz, The Specials, Public Image Ltd. You can’t help being influenced by some of the musicians you love when you go back in to the studio."

Continuing, Massive Attack vocalist Daddy G claimed that the introduction of hip hop into Bristol's night life was an enormous step forward. "Hip-hop was the first thing that encapsulated what we did with The Wild Bunch. What we were doing with the sampler when we first learned it was definitely copying the way American hip-hop artists went into the studio to create beats that worked for them."

"Those techniques that they used are exactly the same techniques we employed originally, and I still do."

Massive Attack were recently given an Ivor Novello award.
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