Edinburgh’s newest drum and bass night Unity Presents has been going from strength to strength. Fresh on the capital’s music scene last September, its launch night boasted basshead favourites like Benny Page and Jinx in Dub. Now in its third session, Unity is showing the full range of bass music with liquid drum and bass producer Utah Jazz.
Luke Wilson is renowned for his love of jungle jazz, sampling soulful lyrics against pounding backdrops. He has perfected his own vision of drum and bass, a hazy mix that keeps driving you to stomp your feet. He is in La Belle Angele now to promote his new album The Music Factory, his fifth and much anticipated, which came out on Spearhead Records last year.
Utah Jazz live is as surprising and well-crafted as the progression of tracks on his latest release. His setlist is not linear but dips in and out of liquid and harder drum and bass throughout. You can hear a deep appreciation for the music as Utah Jazz takes you on an all-inclusive tour of his music repertoire. Funk, bass, jazz, hip hop – he picks apart samples from genres across the board and combines them with an attention to detail that surpasses most. Towards the end he also harks back to drum and bass’s heydey by slipping in classic jungle numbers like “Ready or Not”, only mixed in with the signature liquid sound that has established him as a key experimental producer.
MCs can be a bit hit and miss (having witnessed a few too many repeatedly pressing rewind over the past couple of years), but Random-K does deliver. He only asks for a rewind once, mostly allowing Utah Jazz’s music to flow undisturbed through the set. The combination of his rap with the music is an effective evocation of the sound on The Music Factory, which features lyrics from DRS, MC Fava, MC Tina, and Random Movement. The result shows a holistic approach to music, as Utah Jazz pairs new contemporary writing with his vintage brand of bass.