Ahead of our Massive Levelz Takeover show this coming bank holiday Sunday at The Black Swan we wanted to give you the opportunity to get to know the crew.
Hailing from Manchester, LEVELZ are a 14 strong crew of Producers, DJs and MCs with a their roots firmly planted across many scenes including UK Hip Hop, Drum & Bass, Dubstep, UK Bass and Grime. With such a diverse range of musical output as individuals, what seems to unite Levelz as a crew is their collective penchant for tearing up dance floors and bringing a unique and unavoidable party wave to whichever city they arrive in.
Roles within the crew are somewhat blurred but broadly speaking the dj and production backbone of Levelz consists of Biome, Chimpo, Dub Phizix and Metrodome. MC talent includes Black Josh, Chunky, Fox, Skittles, Sparkz, T-Man and Truthos Mufasa. Whilst completing the lineup on selector duties are Jonny Dub and Rich Reason.
Ahead of the long awaited LVL08 Bristol show at the Black Swan this coming Sunday here is a quick intro to each member of the crew who will be appearing on the night:
The man behind the original beat for Levelz first official release LVL07 (https://levelzmcr.bandcamp.com) Biome has been quietly building himself a rock solid reputation as a producer for some time now.
Having first broken into the Dubstep scene around 2007 with heavy hitting tracks such as “State of Emergency and “Sonic”. Biome has gone on to hone his dark yet energetic productions into a raft of releases taking in both the dungeon sound end of Dubstep, as well as more recently showcasing some more experimental 170bpm material.
With innumerable sought after dub plates under his belt aswell as devastating official releases on labels such as Macabre Unit, Black Box, Dubstep for Deep Heads, and Tempa. Biome’s tunes are characterised by razor sharp production and continue to be championed by the likes of Icicle, Youngsta, Kryptic Minds, Mala and many more..
A founding member of APE CULT (alongside Truthos Mufasa, Mr Smee, Lyricalligraphy, Metrodome & Dyslexis). Black Josh lays his distinctive UKHH vocal flows over all kinds of hip hop beats from new school, old school, 90’s-esque boom bap and more. His album #blahblahblackjosh was released on Blah records in August last year, and he sites among his influences “Weed, Money, Women, Food, Weed, Porn, Psychedelics, Documentaries, Films.”
A regular face behind the decks at the Blast and one of our most highly rated DJs / Producers of recent years, Chimpo is a proper old skool all rounder and in our opinions one of the most underrated talents in the UK right now.
His production has seen releases on a diverse range of labels including Contagious, Stripes, Soul:R, Exit and most recently Metalheadz alongside Fracture. With several weighty solo tracks under his belt as well as strong collabs with the likes of Dub Phizix, Skeptical and Fracture + who can forget 2012’s massive “Gaza” with legendary MC Trigga on vocal duties.
When he’s not behind the decks or pushing buttons in the studio, Chimpo also likes to get on the mic himself. Having lent his unmistakable Mancunian Baritone to the “Buzzin” collaboration with Dub Phizix & Skeptical as well as Enei’s massive “Headtop” on Critical Records (one of our anthems of summer 2013)
Chunky first picked up a mic as a teenager and it wasn’t long before he became Resident MC and Manchester’s Hit & Run and Hoya:Hoya. Outside of the city he calls home Chunky is also Swamp81’s head mic man for their shows across the UK and beyond and he has become the go-to host of choice for everyone who’s anyone in the extended UK bass-music world from Jackmaster to Oneman, Ben UFO and Loefah. To put it bluntly, Chunky’s unique vocals are pretty much inescapable at all the best raves.
However Chunky is also more than just a mic man – having released the self titled “Chunky EP” on Swamp81 in 2012 to widespread acclaim and leading to a string of DJ sets at Swamp81 events + appearances for the likes of Fabric, Soundwave Festival, Hoya:Hoya and more.. Off the back of this Chunky went on to set up “MCs in the Mix” giving well known MCs the opportunity to showcase their selection skills as a DJ both in the club and online via sites such as Get Darker and Boiler Room.
Compared to some of the younger Levelz members Fox is a relative veteran of the UK music scene. As a recording artist he has lent his distinctive Jamaican / Mancunian vocals to tracks as diverse as Dub Phizix’s ‘Never Been’, Mouse Outfit’s ‘Built In A Day’, Drs’s ‘Soul Remember’ and recently, My Nu Leng’s club monster ‘Masterplan’. Whilst as a Host he is a resident at Swing Ting, Hoya:Hoya and HotMilk as well as a regular at Soul:ution, Hit&Run, Metropolis and many more.
Founder and promoter of Manchester’s legendary Hoya:Hoya monthly events and their offshot Hoya:Hoya label. Johnny Dub is a dj / selector with huge tried and tested pedigree behind the decks. As a teenager growing up on the outskirts of Manchester Jonny found a love of Hip Hop and turntablism and has progressed from there to become one of the sharpest and most eclectic selectors in the game.
Currently a resident at The Warehouse Project, Hit & Run and Fabric Live (quarterly), as well as of course at his own Hoya:Hoya events. More recently Jonny has also turned his hand to production and we hear there are plenty of treats in the pipeline so watch this space…
Metrodome is very much an all rounder – DJ / Producer / and multi talented live musician . Allegedly he can play any instrument you put in front of him and this prodigous talent has apparently been DJing in clubs since the age of 10. He is part of APE CULT (alongside Black Josh, Truthos Mufasa, Mr Smee, Lyricalligraphy & Dyslexis) and affiliated with / released on Room2 Records, Hyperdub, Red Laser Records, Estate Records and more.
Metrodome has a new live project called Project Apex alongside Dyslexis, and has also been working closely with legendary producer Zed Bias on a multitude of styles and tracks soon to come. Judging from his recent Fabriclive x Hit & Run mix Metrodome’s set on Sunday could go in any direction but is guaranteed to be an interesting one!
Dj / Promoter / Producer and the creative force behind Manchester’s weekly Monday night Hit & Run events. It has been said that Levelz form like Voltron and Rich Reason happens to be the head…
Having toured Europe from a young age as a Dubstep / Grime MC, Skittles has gone on to make his very unique mark on the world with a prolific output including his very own self-released album “Poor with £100 trainers” which gained support from DJs including Sir David Rodigan, Mista Jam, Mary Anne Hobbs, Charlie Sloth, Toddla T and dBridge.
As a recording artist he has collaborated with the likes of Camo & Krooked on their Hospital Records release “The Lesson” (featured on Fifa Street 2012) as well as the huge Dub Phizix produced “Creator”. He also recently formed his own live band “Skittles n That” and is heavily involved with Manchester label Estate Recordings. Its safe to say that every time Skittles is in the building you’re in for a pretty mad and entertaining night!
T-Man first started to make his name as part of Manchester Grime and hip-hop crew “Meeting Martin”. Getting himself recognised in workshops working under the likes of Fallacy, Virus Syndicate and Chimpo, T-Man stood out as a hard worker with a real commitment to honing his craft. Off the back of this he was spotted by the Hit & Run team, and quickly added hosting to his arsenal. Week in week out his was sharing the mic with some of the best in business, in the form of Strategy, Chunky and Tonn Piper. However it was Dub Phizix and Skeptical that saw his talent as recording artist, asking him to spit fire on the follow up single to “Marka” – “Run It Like President”.
By now T-Man was ingrained in the fabric of Manchester’s increasingly prestigious MCing and clubbing community, hosting for all manner of nights such as P13 (who he recently travelled to NYC with) and Rum & Bass. He was then invited to be part of the Estate Recordings mob as well as the LEVELZ Collective. It is T-Man’s voice that rings out first on their debut track “LVL 07”, and is the only MC of the 8 that has 2 verses on the track.
As well as the above artists T-Man has also brought his unmistakeable gravelly baritone delivery to tracks with, Leadbelly, The Mouse Outfit, Thelem, Foreign Concept and Gremlinz, and there is more in the pipeline..
Anarchistic singer/songwriter, rapper, producer, drummer, beatboxer. Truthos Mufasa is part of APE CULT (alongside Black Josh, Mr Smee, Lyricalligraphy, Metrodome & Dyslexis) and is a regular collaborator with Sparkz & Dr Syntax’s group The Mouse Outfit..
Last but not least we have our mighty special guests and Manchester/Levelz affiliates, who should need no introduction…
Catch the full crew on stage on bank holiday Sunday May 3rd at The Black Swan with The Blast and local party starters Psyched and Durkle Disco.
LVL07 Video on Youtube
Tickets available at: http://www.residentadvisor.net/event.aspx?681206
Check the event out at: http://www.facebook.com/events/892906844073963/