I’ve been wanting to do features on local artists for a while now, and when looking around the vast abyss of Soundcloud recently this producer has really stood out when compared to the rest.
If you take a look at the Leeds Dubstep Soundcloud group you’ll most likely be confronted with a lot of aggressive ‘wobble’ and ‘basslines that’d make your mother weep’ etc etc.. For me, you see, that’s not what Dubstep is about - that’s where Buzzlin (real name Benson Herbert) comes in.
His tunes are well constructed and use a mixture real-world samples and atmospherics to give that dark feel which brings me back to the days of the ‘heads down, hoods up’ dances a couple of years ago. The guy obviously has an ear for melody and his attention to detail with regards to percussion could be compared to that of Mala & the DMZ crew. For me it’s refreshing to hear something so well-crafted and interesting which retains the traits of some of the more ‘classic’ Dubstep tracks but without sounding dated.
Benson was kind enough to answer a few questions and send over a couple of fresh dubs, so read on if you’d like to hear what makes him tick.
First off, tell us a bit about yourself.. Yes my names Benson Herbert, recently moved up to Leeds, used to live in West London.
How long have you been producing for and why did you get into making this sort of music? [I’ve] been producing Dubstep now for about 2 years on and off. The reason I got into this music is because I went to the night DMZ at Mass in Brixton when I was about 17 and just loved the sound, been following it and producing it ever since.
On average, how long would you say it takes you to finish a track? Is there a certain process you follow? For me, if a track’s flowing well and it’s coming easy, I can usually finish it in 3 days, but some tracks don’t flow so well and doesn’t come so easy so I’ll keep leaving it and coming back to it. They can take me a month to finish.
[Usually] I’ll start by making, or sampling and changing a few sounds to try and get a feel for what sort of track I’m gonna do. Once I’ve got that I’ll usually make the rhythm and drum parts to the track. Then I’ll slowly keep layering and changing FX until there’s something I’m happy with. I then usually take the parts of the track I’ve just made and arrange it, adding or taking parts in or out along the way. When I’m happy with it finished, I’ll go back and do the mixdown, and hopefully end up with a track.
Do you DJ out in clubs, if so where can people catch your shows?
Unfortunately, I rarely play out in clubs at the moment, but hopefully that will change soon as I love doing it.
Do you think Soundcloud is an effective tool for getting your music heard? Yes I think Soundcloud is really useful for getting your stuff heard. It’s made it alot easier to send your tracks to labels and to artists. It’s also hooked me up with you, and allowed me to get feedback from labels and other producers, which are things that might not have been able to happen if Soundcloud wasn’t around.
Any producers signed or unsigned that have really caught your ear in the past year? So much good music came out this year, so many producers I could name but a few which particularly stand out to me are probably, Phaeleh, Lost, DJ Madd, DJ Rum, Pangaea, and Breakage - his ‘Foundation’ album this year has been listened to over and over.
Tell us something not many people know about you..? Something not many people know about me is that I’ve got a tattoo on my bum.
And finally, the classic desert island discs question - which 3 CDs/records/tapes would you take? Ahhh, it would have to be Notorious B.I.G - Ready To Die, Lauryn Hill - The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill and probably ‘Pure Garage Classics’ mixed by DJ EZ.
If you want to hear more of Buzzlin’s work then jump over to his Soundcloud.