When I write, I usually try and avoid words like “vibe” and “groove”. Not because they don’t fit the music we post here at The Astral Plane, but because they don’t really tell the listener anything they don’t already know. God damn though this new Skips heater takes vibin’ and groovin’ to another level. Everyone knows Johnson, Hawkins, Tatum & Durr’s classic “You Can’t Blame Me”, but not like this. With every new release, the Leeds native shows another side of his already impressive repertoire. This dude is most certainly on the up and up. Stream and download the remix below.
A while back, we interviewed a young Leeds producer by the name of Skips. It was brief and honestly we could have done a far better job asking Q’s. Kind of wish we had a do over. We’ve both come a long way since though. Skips has continued to develop his house stylings over the past few months and transformed into a commanding presence behind the boards. We’ve gotten slightly better at this whole writing deal (at least in our own minds). Skips’ newest track “Gravel Pit” demonstrates his investment in the house trade. With a slight nod to Chicago house, this track is as deliberate as they come. Simple and direct, “Gravel Pit” represents the more overt side of Skips’ production dichotomy. It’s not often that I laud simplicity, but Skips possesses the maturity with regards to arrangements to make a track like this immensely succesful. Stream “Gravel Pit” below.
Earlier in the week, I wrote that there has never been a dearth of producers coming out of London. While this is undoubtedly true, what I should have said is that there has never been a dearth of producers coming out of the United Kingdom. Whether it’s London, Glasgow, Brighton, or Manchester, the grime, dubstep, house and bass music worlds are centered in the UK. In this case, we’re going to focus on on artist coming out of Leeds, Yorkshire. Skips aka Martyn Woolley makes a wide variety of sounds that most would classify as house music. Most of it hovers around 128 BPM’s, but Martyn refuses to confine his tunes, instead referring to Mala’s excellent take on genre limitations at the Red Bull Music Academy in 2008. Skips started making music in 2006 after attaining a copy of Logic and has not looked back since. He originally began making music after encountering the Leeds dubstep scene and became enamored with DMZ records soon after.
Stream: Skips – “Curse”
While Woolley refuses to be classified, most would consider his music a form of deep or minimal house. That’s too simple though. Woolley incorporates elements of disco, funky and acid basslines into his tracks with ease. Skips’ music is airy and effortless, yet driving at the same time. Every kick, snare, or organ feels perfectly placed and meticulously arranged. While Skips isn’t associated with any label at the moment, he has been working with friend James Welsh for some time and has built a steady following. Expect to hear more from this North England producer soon. We’ve certainly got our heads cocked for the next release. Find the full Skips interview transcript after the jump and more tunes at his Soundcloud.