Dec 4, 2007
“And you’ll never hear music like this again”
- MC GQ (AWOL tape, 1993)
Originally posted at Deeptime blog
It’s time to revive ‘Forward Sound,’ though maybe in the plural. Circa 2003 that was the open-ended term that used to describe what eventually became dubstep, along with a tangle of threads that split off or got left behind. Just like house first meant “what they play at the Warehouse,” it was a reference to the club night itself, the only place where you could hear as yet unnamed new mutations of the garage machine, whether in the form of Ghost, Landslide, Menta, kode9, Plasticman, Hatcha, Slimzee, etc, etc. And of course it was hardly a ’sound’ at all. Virtually every artist operating under that banner was a sound unto themselves and the Forward style could only ever be a snapshot of those trajectories out of UK garage that happened to be coinciding on a given Thursday night or in narrow bands of pirate ether.