Dj Spookz - No Hats No Hoods

Youtube Sessions: DJ Spookz

Grime has been kicking up a fuss lately. Whilst the amount of quality active MC’s has arguably lessened in recent years, the genre’s instrumental branch is undoubtedly in rude health as producers from the length and breadth of the country and beyond continue to breathe new life into the music. Alongside labels like Butterz and Big Dada, No Hats No Hoods have established themselves as one of the premier outlets for Grime’s beat driven renaissance, with their latest offering from DJ Spookz confirming its continued relevance.

The 23 year old Essex Producer makes his first foray in to production with the release on 19th August of his ‘Bring the Beat Back’ EP. As with much of the current wave of Grime, the release shows a healthy amount of inspiration from other genres, with 2-Step, Rave, Dubstep and House all audible next to more traditional sounds. For his YouTube Session DJ Spookz selects 10 Grime classics that have influenced him heavily over the years that he still holds close to his heart.

DJ Bossman – Bongo Eyes

“Kicking off with this one, absolute classic! If you go to a Grime Rave and don’t hear this, get your money back! It takes me back to when there would be 30 of us in my mates room, a set of decks, a mixer and a mic. On a Friday night we would all plan to meet at his house and clash. Before the youth club had decks it was his room everyone would flock to to drop beats and bars. Sometimes we had to turn people away because you physically could not get anyone else in and at the time this was one of the tunes that MC’s could not spit on without it being reloaded.”

Jon E Cash – Champagne Hoe

“I picked this because to me it represents the true sound of Grime: Dark catchy melodies laced with a dark deep dungeon bass with basic drums with the skippy claps battering through.”

Davinche – Buzz Lightyear

“This tune smacks it on all levels from the intro to the vocal. Me and my mate used to get 2 copy’s of this and double it up to create a crazy live remix on our radio shows and the phone line use to go bonkers! In fact we should of recorded it and sent it out as a bootleg remix.”

Alias – Warrior 

“This was one of the first tunes that inspired me to pick up the headphones and “try to mix”. I used to get this track and another one and would spend hours trying to mix the two together on some old battered belt driven turntables. Practice makes perfect.”

Geeneus – Dump Valve Recordings

“Not many people I knew at the time had heard of Geeneus and Dump Valve Recordings, but for me this tune is right up there with the classics. Unfortunately I lost this vinyl due to my mum putting the heating on and warping my whole collection…”

DPM Recordings – DPM Recordings

“On to this one “DPM RECORDINGS” this was another one of them tunes that couldn’t get past the first drop. I would love to hear a 2013 mix of this re-vamped up. The amount of times the needle at the youth club would have to be changed once this had been played! Tooooo many reloads.”

Ruff Squad – Pied Piper

“Every time I hear this Tinchy Stryder’s vocals come echoing back from the days I used to listen to recordings on tape of Da Ja sets with Ruff Squad and co. The sounds in this track could be called Classic Grime sounds, you do hear a lot of producers using or trying to re-create these sounds nowadays but not to full effect as Ruff Squad.”

Skepta – Autopsy

“I have not heard this played out for a long time. The last time I heard this in a rave I nearly passed out due to the reaction of the crowd: sheer energy! This is another one of them tunes you were lucky to have. I always look forward to hearing this in a rave with a bag of MC’s goin H.A.M. over it.”

Big Shot – License to Stomp

“This track was a big inspiration for me. When I heard this it made me  want to stomp about like a Elephant, absolute craziness. I then wanted to know more about how to make music, so my mate showed me what he had made (big up NDK). I jumped on my PC and got some software (some sort of garage maker ). I then gathered it was a bit more complicated than it sounded, but that gave me more encouragement to sit there and work things out and I am still doing that to this day.”

D Double E – Frontline

“And finally last but no means least,  D Double E – Frontline. I wanted to leave you all with a classic grime vocal. I remember when the DJ’s use to warm up the set with vocals this was the one that would get the most reaction. People screaming D Double’s bars out with the DJ cutting out the track here and there to hear everyone going nuts. I seen the same result many years later at Fabric, when D Double done a live P.A. of Woo Riddim.”