We caught up with NSB’s own DJ Chamber to talk about life, music, the Google technique of alias selection, Breakspoll victory and the future…
NSB: When did you first get into DJing?
CHAMBER: Glastonbury festival ’03! I was massively inspired by DJ sets from the Plumps and Erol Alkan (having had little exposure to electronic music before then) and knew straight away that this is what I wanted to do! Within a week of getting home, I had bought my first pair of decks (a rubbish pair of CDJ-10s) and was practicing daily.
NSB: How did you come up with your DJ alias?
CHAMBER: Back in the day (aged 14), I sort of thought that the way it worked in the music business was that your DJ name had to be “DJ” followed by a word. The way I got Chamber was by googling “DJ” and then every word I could think of. The only word I could find that wasn’t taken and sounded semi-cool (but still a bit rubbish) was Chamber.
NSB: How has your style changed from 2003 to now?
CHAMBER: I started off playing a lot of hip-hop and big beat. Nowadays its anything with a big filthy bassline, mainly the tearout end of the breaks spectrum, but plenty of DnB, a little bit of dubstep, garage and hip-hop when appropriate (and plenty of scratching). I still do drop the odd tune from 03/04 though, plenty of timeless breaks classics from that era.
NSB: How long has Bass Kitchen been running?
CHAMBER: The first Bass Kitchen night happened in 2008 at the Croft in Bristol. The night went well and was very memorable for us, although somehow we never got round to charging people to come in! Soon after doing that night, we started running tiny (100ish capacity) nights for free at a bar called Hush Hush). This taught us a lot about promotion and I’d definitely advise anyone thinking about getting into it to start off small and work your way up. Before long, we were doing mid-week nights at Timbuk2, which soon turned into weekends (when we started booking big names like Cut La Roc). 18 months ago we were basically playing to a few supportive mates in a bar, nowadays we are regularly ramming out one of the biggest clubs in Bristol and booking our heros. We also have very successful international Bass Kitchen nights in Taiwan.
NSB: What was it like to pick up ‘Best Small Club / Event’ at Breakspoll?
CHAMBER: Amazing! We could’nt believe it! Bass Kitchen being read out as the winner is a moment that I’ll remember for the rest of my life! The acceptance speech was crazy though, I’ve never done a speech to more than about 10 people, suddenly standing on stage in front of a packed Fabric main room crowd was pretty nuts! I’m still not entirely sure what I was actually going on about in the speech. I do remember having a big list of people to thank if we did win, forgetting all of them and ending up just thanking mates I spotted in the crowd instead… smooth.
NSB: You were also nominated for the ‘Breakthrough DJ’ award. Were you happy to see it go to Richie Balboa?
CHAMBER: Absolutely, I owe my NSB show to Richie, and if it wasn’t for that then I’m sure I wouldn’t be doing all the crazy stuff I’m doing today. He works hard, smashes dancefloors and is definitely one to watch! So much so, we have him and Will Streetwise booked for a b2b set at Bass Kitchen in June.
NSB: What does the future hold for you and Bass Kitchen?
CHAMBER: I’m currently awaiting the release of Digit on Composure Records (scheduled for mid 2010) as well as my remix of Afghan Headspin’s Skets. I’ve recently been in the studio with fellow Bristolian breaks and bass music bad boy Kraymon, keep your ears peeled to hear what we’ve come up with soon.
Now is a good time to expand the UK branch of Bass Kitchen so we are running a new Bass Kitchen night in Taunton starting in May. We are also planning a Bass Kitchen in Southampton (alongside fellow NSB DJ, Ali Mobius). Eventually, we will take over the world! In April I’ll be touring Taiwan, playing gigs in the 3 major cities (Taipei, Kaoshiung and Taichung). The Taipei gig is a Bass Kitchen night so I really can’t wait to see how they do it over there!
Finally, I want to quickly plug the Bass Kitchen Vs NSB Radio night, Friday June 11th at Timbuk2, Bristol. NSB DJs on the night will be Richie Balboa, Will Streetwise, Ali Mobius, Morphosis, Fat Harry and myself. The night will be broadcast live to the world on NSB Radio.co.uk. More specifics will be announced nearer the time.