This week saw the release of a brand new single from Chroma, we caught up with the Newcastle based trio to find out what they've been up to.
Q: Welcome Chroma, good to have you back on the label! First things first, lets find out about how you guys linked up and started Chroma....
A: Thanks for having us! We've be friends for a lot of years, long before we started producing together. We all met from the local D&B scene, attending the same nights etc. It's quite a close knit community in the scene up here so everyone kind of knows everyone. As we became closer acquainted we began sharing tunes and having days in the studio together. I guess it was natural progression from collaborating to go on to form what's now Chroma. However we don't really see ourselves as an ‘act', we merely just meet up to have a laugh in the studio and write tunes (eat takeaways).
Q: You guys are all based in Newcastle, how is the scene up there at the moment?
A: There has been a good quality local scene up here for many years. I guess at the moment it is in a bit of a transition. The main night up here for the last 15 years is Turbulence, which we are residents at. At the moment it is taking a break, which has resulted in lots of smaller nights springing up. This is great as its bringing a good variation of artists to the region you may not usually see, as opposed to the usual ‘headliners'.
Q: With 3 members in the group, how do you work together in the studio? Are you all in the studio together or do you work separately on ideas for example?
A: It can go one of two ways, we do work on ideas separately but lately some of the best stuff we've been doing has come about with us all being in it from the start. I guess each member gets more buy-in to the track using that approach which certainly seems to reflect well. We all have different influences and sometimes trying to get them into a track can be tricky. However when one of us catches a vibe in the studio we all pretty much adapt to whatever it is. I guess that's why our tunes can vary quite considerably in style.
Q: How long have you all been producing?
A: Phobia has been producing drum and bass the longest as you well know. Sato has been producing for as long but only started writing drum and bass about 10 years ago. Tyrone is the relative newbie in comparison, but by no means is he a slouch - in fact he is probably the most active in terms of new techniques, ideas and keeping up to date with new software.
Q: What's your current studio set up?
A: Sato and Phobia set up a studio together when their better halves wanted their spare rooms back. It was actually a great move. We've got an ever growing selection of hardware (Sato is a gear-slut & Tyrone loves his synths) centred around a lovely desk Tyrone and Sato built out of a giant piece of plywood.
Q: Name your 3 essential production tools that you can't be without.
A: Cubase, Adam AX8 monitors, Juno 106 (and Chop suey rolls)
Q: What do you prefer, making music of djing?
A: Sato - I got into drum and bass from the DJing side and I do still love it but making sounds has always been my thing starting back when I was about 12 at school.
Tyrone - I've been dj'ing since I was 12 so it has been part of my life a lot longer than producing. For me nothing beats the feeling of a crowd reacting to what you're doing. However my energy is definitely directed more towards pushing myself as a producer these days.
Phobia - I've stopped DJing these days due to various reasons, but it's always been the studio for me really.
Q: Who can you see making a mark on the d&b scene this year?
A: Tyrone - I think Ivy lab are making incredible music at the moment, I'm particularly keen to see what's next from them. Also hugely looking forward to Lenzman and Ulterior Motive's albums, I've always been a huge fan of theirs.
Phobia - As Tyrone says Ivy Lab are definitely making some great music, Mefjus & Emperor are dominating the more techy sound and are going from strength to strength - 2014 will be huge for both of them. Really like a lot of Ed:it's music too, I think this year will be big for him.
Q: Most memorable moment in Chroma's career so far?
A: Sato - when I bumped into my music teacher from school and she told me she liked the ‘So Alone' video...I think she's in her 70s now!
Tyrone - Watching Andy C drop 2 of our tracks at Turbulence and the room kick off, was a bit of a tear jerker.
Phobia - Same as Tyrone probably
Q: Tell us a little known fact/secret about Chroma.
A: Between us we have degrees in Computer Science, Physics and Zoology
Q: Whats your favourite Hardware track?
A: Sato -Future Forces Inc - Dead By Dawn
Tyrone - Konflict - Roadblock (Matrix Remix)
Phobia - Konflict - Beckoning (Usual Suspects Rmx)
Q: What's next for Chroma?
A: We've got 12's coming on ProgRam and Commercial Suicide along with a remix of ‘Whoonga' we did for Total Science & SPY. Other than that, write more tunes, play more gigs and Sato's got his eyes on a Yamaha string synth.
Q: Any shouts?
A: Just to everyone who has supported us so far, it means a lot to us!
Chroma's new single: Territories / Brain Strain is out now on vinyl and digital download. Check out the previews below and get your copy HERE.