YouTube Sessions: The Maghreban

The anomalous producer shares a selection of old school cuts, charting his musical heritage through dark, twisted bass.

In the wake of his re-awakening following a lengthy hiatus, and having opened his mind toward the house spectrum, London producer The Maghreban (aka Ayman Rostom) recently brought his venerable production style to Black Acre for Lose It/Wrong Move. Out now, the analogue-induced 12″ is packed full of nostalgic sounds, sourced from an array of recently rediscovered loops.

Twisted lead track ‘Lose It’ seamlessly blends Rostom’s atypical take on a house template with an inflection of music from his formative years: a mutated collage of churning bass and darkened effects, as the track’s intensive, four to the floor rhythms are masterfully driven by a pumping bassline, brought together with refreshing sound design.

In the spirit of ‘Lose It’’s injection of junglist nostalgia, Rostom has graced us with a collection of old school bangers charting jungle’s rise, from Lennie De Ice’s ‘We are I.E’, to the abrasive perfection of DJ Trace and Ed Rush’s ‘Clean Gun’, to The Ayman himself’s 1995 banger ‘Get Ruff’.

1. Lennie De Ice – We Are I.E

This track is the blueprint in many ways. Like a steppers reggae tune; dark dub bass line, but when that Amen drops…

2. Noise Factory – Be Free

I’m not an expert, but I credit these guys with a lot of the speeding up of jungle. This, along with ‘Breakage #4’ seemed way faster than most other stuff at the time. Me and my brother had this on the XL EP but I found the 12″ later on. So many good tunes from this lot.

3. Satin Storm – Think I’m Going out of my Head

This reminds me of listening to Home Counties pirates, really emotive music for me. Partly because of memories that are locked up with the music.

4. Satin Storm – Let’s Get Together

Wasn’t gonna put 2 in by him but the guy’s a genius. When I first heard this, christ. Super hard shit, still makes me screw my face up. The bass was so loud, it was super distorted on the 12” I bought… that 808.

5. DJ Trace and Ed Rush – Clean Gun

I only ever had this on a tape from my brother at the time. Trace playing it on the radio himself. Again, super hard shit. So many drops, when the half speed break drops into the full speed. I’ve always loved that break. Still not sure exactly what it is. Then when the Lyn Collins Break drops, then the Amen..

6. Nasty Habits – Here come the Drumz

Doc Scott, amazing tune. Super Dark. The Mentasm sample. Listening to all this stuff really taught me about drum programming, before I started producing, even. This is bringing back memories… the old trick of phasing the break by putting two notes on top of each other on your sequencer, so the Akai triggers two copies almost at the same time. Put a lot of man hours into chopping breaks.

7. XLR8 – Dubplate

Another one that was super fast when it came out. Pure stripped back, drums, dark descending dub bassline, other sounds in and out. I love this shit.

8. Boogie Times Tribe – Dark Stranger – Origin Unknown (Re Remix )

Similar. Dark. Rolling drums, dark descending dub bass line. Different dark samples in and out.

9. Subnation – Scotties Sub

Another one that seemed crazy fast when it dropped. This has been enlightening writing these down like this, ‘cos I’m definitely seeing a pattern. Another with rolling drums, dark descending dub bassline, dark samples.

10. Ayman – Get Ruff

The second record I ever released. More jovial than the above, but definitely influenced by them. Perhaps more of a soul / jazz influence in there but certainly rolling drums and dub bassline.

Lose It/Wrong Move is out now on Black Acre. Order it here.