JDNB Interview - Skankage
Six years ago, aged 15, Benjamin Reggers aka Skankage, from Liege in Belgium, started his quest on a drum and bass journey. With a lot of hard work and time perfecting his sound, today he finds himself having his debut EP released on the legendary New York record label Liondub International.
'Liondub Street Series Vol:51: The Vibe' is five diverse drum and bass tracks, ranging from the heavy bass ‘Rollin since’ 99’ to the mesmerising smooth sounds of ‘Broken Wings’. And of course you can't go to Belgium and not have some high energy jump up., So you get ‘Over The Horizon’ ‘Feel The Vibe’ and ‘C2H6Cd’ thrown in for your little friday night jump up fix.
We caught up with Benjamin a couple weeks back and asked a few questions?? Here's what he had to say:
Thanks for talking to us. How have you been keeping yourself occupied during the Covid-19 Pandemic?
I 've been making some music, playing old video games and calling my friends. I think it's important to stay surrounded by friends during that kind of time, otherwise I think I would have gone crazy!
Tell us a little bit about where you're from and where you get your musical background from?
I'm from Liège, a really cool city in Wallonia, Belgium. A city with a very good atmosphère! People love to make parties here! I never did any music before i started my drum and bass journey in 2014, so I had to learn from the start. I'm still improving and I still have so many things to learn!
What would you say first got you into drum and bass?
When I was 15 (2014), I entered a boarding school, and a lot of my new friends were listening to Jump Up. In fact, almost half of the school was listening to Jump Up and I had never ever listened to something like that before. I directly started loving that kind of music and started listening to Jump Up all of my time. Then I started listening to other drum & bass genres such as Liquid. At the break, we were all blasting Jump Up in the court, I still have nice memories of that period. Guv, Hedex, Natural Error, Hizzleguy, it was the vibe!
Describe the style of drum and bass you produce?
Well, I'm producing different styles of drum & bass. I started with jump up, then I 've started making more rolling drum & bass style, jungle and finally liquid!
What does your studio/DJ setup consist of?
I produce on my computer with 2 monitors, I can say it's convenient and makes me earn time. I have a Focusrite 2i2 as a sound card, a Keystep (Arturia) as a midi keyboard which is very cool when I produce liquid. I use my HD25 (Sennheiser) because my studio monitors aren't the best!! I should buy new ones ! And when I wanna spin the decks I use my 2 Pioneer CDJ 350 with a DJM 350. It works fine.
How long have you been producing, and where do you get your inspiration from to make tunes?
I’ve been producing since 2014, but i could not achieve the music I wanted to make. But with time and a lot of learning, I started to make some cool tracks which I was happy with! I don't really have ways to find inspiration, I like just playing around with Serum, Massive or Phaseplant and try to get a result I like. Then I'm thinking about a cool rhythm that could fit with the synths and drums I've made. Sometimes when I'm outdoors, I have good melodies or rhythm ideas popping in my head and I have to record it on my phone if I don't want to forget it. But most of the time it's very awkward to re-listen to it!
Do you have any gigs coming up or live streams where people can hear you play?
Not at the moment. I don't usually do live streams and all the clubs are closed, so we will have to wait ! F***ing SARS-CoV-2 !!!
What would you say has been your biggest achievement so far within the drum and bass scene?
At the moment, I think it's my Street Series release on Liondub International. I was very happy when Erik told me that we will release my EP on Liondub. I was not expecting a release like this when I started production 6 years ago.
Your first outing on Liondub International is on the legendary ‘Street Series’. Describe the moment you found out you were having ‘The Vibe’ EP come out?
I was very happy! It motivated me a lot and it pushed me to produce more tracks. It's already a big achievement for me to be released on Liondub International, and it makes me want to try to send my stuff to even bigger labels. It's been a bit more than 1 year now that the ep is finished and my production has evolved a lot. Let's see what will happen in the future!
Name your top 3 Liondub International tracks?
Cool Hand Flex - Sight & Sound
Jayline - No More Tears
Macky Gee - The Hood
Anything else planned to come out on Liondub International?
Yes! A free jungle download track that we will use to promote the EP ! And I am thinking about making more deep stuff for Liondub, it would be a totally different style than my Street Series.
What do you like doing in your spare time away from music?
I love to spend time with my girlfriend and my close friends. I like to play video games such as Counter Strike, Tekken and Resident Evil.
What would be your top 5 tunes at the moment?
Motiv - Skyscraper: This one has got an amazing atmosphere! You know Motiv worked a lot on it when you hear that unique vibe.
Minos - Illusion: So soulful.
Gino - The Cursed Stuff: I love that agressive style!
Fanatics - Wizards: Fanatics is making clean stuff, he got his very own style. Sick track.
Hizzleguy - Say What: That tune is just in my top 5 because of that Intro/buildup! I love those piano notes! So vibey!
What would you say you like most about the www.jungledrumandbass.co.uk website?
I really like the different categories on the top of the website. You know you can easily find what you are looking for! Simple and efficient. Good job guys!
Thanks for your time. Lastly any thanks or shoutouts?
I would like to thank all the people who have been supporting me since I started my musical journey! It pushed me to make more and more content. Thank you to Erik who has given me the opportunity to sign to Liondub International! Big shout to my producers/dj friends Owls Of Filth, Fanatics, Natural Error, Oktez, Claws, Sedativ, Hydrolikz and all the others! Much love to you guys!
Thank you for the interview !
You can download or stream Liondub Street Series Vol 51: The Vibe now from all your favourite platforms via the following link: Download / Stream Here
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Interview And Edited By: Chilla