Emmerald: You started your music career in UK drum-n-bass. How did you get into that style of music?
Domu: Around 1991 I was into U.S. and British hip-hop and acid house and techno from Europe, the U.K. and U.S. I noticed a lot of artists merging styles like Nightmares on Wax, Genocide II, 4Hero, Guy Called Gerald, The Exorcist and Acen and Dice--all were early examples of this music. I followed it from the start, Jungle in 92, Reinforced through 93, Bukem stuff into 94, then the big Ragga comeback in 94, then Techstep. I saw all the fads come and go. I lost interest when Ed Rush and Optical and Bad Company become really popular.
Emmerald: Are you still making DnB music and how involved are you in that scene?
Domu: Only through Reinforced and open minded cats like Calibre, Marcus Intellex and Total Science. Drum and Bass is a very small minded world generally, and I often wonder why bother to put out records that none of the kids will buy.
Emmerald: Elaborate on that a bit. When you say none of the kids are buying the records, are you talking just about sales in general or kids' taste in DnB music? Either way, couldn't you say a similar thing about broken beat? It seems to me that overall, DnB has a greater following than broken beat, which is still pretty well underground and appeals to a very specific set of listeners.
Domu: Thats partially true; only mainstream DnB has a larger following. The DnB I like, Paradox, Fracture and Neptune, Cartridge, etc is really hard to play out cos it aint 2-step, and as such sometimes sells less than broken beat, or at least as much as. So my negativity over making it now stems from the fact I lived and breathed it since 92 and had to move on, as I feel so personally about how bad some of the music has gotten.
Emmerald: Whats your take on the DnB movement in the U.S.?
Domu: I know the U.S. has established artists now and will grow at a different rate than the U.K. scene. It doesnt matter that the U.S. wasnt into the very beginning of the scene, because no one here in the U.K. seems to remember it either. When people use a breakbeat now, it is just straight Recycled Think or Amen or Apache. I love Paradox, Fracture and Neptune, Beta 2, Cartridge people who really know how to chop a break.
Emmerald: Youve got a new album coming out, Return of the Rouge. When is it due out and on what label?
Domu: It is coming on Archive Records and will be out end of July. The first 12 is ready now and is called Let Me Be, with remixes from Mark de Clive Lowe and Rima. The second single will be Its You with a remix from Wajeed of Platinum Pied Pipers fame.
Emmerald: With whom did you work on this album? Youve got a couple of singers and an M.C. What about
other producers, if any?
Domu: Just peeps I find on my travels who are willing to work. The MC is an old friend Ive known for 10-12 years who lives in Bedford. Yolanda, one of the vocalists, I met whilst she was MCing for me in Bristol. And Rasiyah is from the scene, having sung for DKD and Bugz in the Attic. Its quite organic hooking up with folk; if it doesn't work you wont hear the record. I dont work with any other producers for Domu, but I collaborate on loads of other stuff like Bakura, Rima, Yotoko etc