Hailing from the seaside city of Brighton on England’s southern coast, Joe Higgins, better known as Metrist, has made waves in the UK underground scene with his hybridised techno-come-drum’n’bass production and eclectic, energetic sets. Under this moniker, Higgins takes up an explorative character, constantly re-shaping his output and experimenting with sound on his conquest to compose dancefloor heaters. Loaded with hefty percussion, wild and raw melodies, and abstract details, Higgins’ output works to blend genres in synergetic fashion. It comes as no surprise, then, that some of the UK’s champion leftfield labels have given the young producer a platform upon which to present his work. Releases on Opal Tapes, Neighbourhood and Timedance demonstrate the scene-wide respect Higgins has gained, combining his finely tuned ear and sense of humour to great effect.
Despite performing on some of the UK’s biggest stages, such as at Freerotation Festival and the esteemed Corsica Studios in Elephant & Castle, Higgins is yet to grace the decks at FOLD. However, on the 30th November, Brighton’s own will be on closing duties at the new venue in Canning Town. Featuring the legendary DMX Krew, and Dekmantel-highlight Mama Snake B2B Solid Blake alongside the young producer-come-DJ, the night promises to be an absolute belter.
Ahead of his closing set, we caught up with Higgins to see what crunching cuts he has up his sleeve. Hardcore, another genre who’s production values sneak into the broken techno output by the Brighton producer, seems to be Higgins’ weapon of choice for the finale. Check out his 10 hardcore tracks that fit the big occasion below.
DJ VIBES – OBSESSION
Pretty blatant choice to begin with but I’m sticking with it – Terrordrome-esque kicks in the intro into sheer MDMA blissed out chipmunk vocals only to plunge back into darkness with some of the most terrifying rave stabs ever cooked. Masterpiece.
HYPER ON EXPERIENCE – THE FRIGHTNER
Hard to pick one Hyper On track for this, my favourite producers from the era. This one edges it for the pantomime foreboding intro alone. Weirdly, YouTube uploaders have decided to label this one as ‘Watchusnow’ which while being a better title is stil wrong.
HACKNEY HARDCORE – DINOMANIA
What it would sound like if you got Arthur C. Clarke on the buttons.
INTERNATIONAL RUDE BOYS – DRUM PROGRAMME [REMIX]
Some of these are going to teeter on the fence of Jungle, this one especially. Early signifier of Jungle and DnB to come and what Matrix went on to do with Optical and Virus Recordings. Terrifying and jaunty, like a custard tart on the turn.
URBAN SHAKEDOWN – DO IT NOW
I have a version of this containing an MC who takes no prisoners. Music to Windmill to vol.1
FOUL PLAY – FEEL THE VIBE (AGAIN)
Foul Play’s entry into the pantheon of the Metrist Hardcore youtube binge with ‘Feel The Vibe (Again)’ which stands as possibly being the most early 90’s name for a tune ever.
SY-KICK – HARMONIZER
If we are playing hardcore bingo this one ticks nearly every box.
Chipmunk vocal ✓
Foreboding terror stabs ✓
Donk Bass ✓
‘Ecstacy’ vocal sample whispered throughout ✓
SUNSHINE PRODUCTIONS – TAKE ME TO THE TOP
Wouldn’t be a UK Hardcore list without piano stabs which I’m normally not too hot on, but love a tearjerker breakdown so this one smashes through the french doors and into this list.
2BADMICE – WAREMOUSE
Who knows where the stab will fall.
FORCE & EVOLUTION – LOST IT
The Auld Lang Syne of UK Hardcore. Maybe the oddest choice of sample in this list taken from the Lost Boys OST but the damage it causes is plain to see.
You can catch Metrist on closing duty at Fold on the 30th November.
Grab your ticket here.