Peverelist
Forget Skrillex—this dubstep pioneer delivers the original Bristol sound
May 18, 2012 | Issue: 947 | No Comments | 1,656 views

Courtesy of Eleven

Long before Skrillex brought dubstep to the McDonald’s-quaffing American masses, the genre was born out of the underground melding of UK drum ‘n’ bass, garage and dub sound systems. Bristol record shop and label owner, producer and DJ Peverelist (Tom Ford) was part of it and returns to Tokyo next week to show punters how it’s really done.

Dubstep has blown up in North America. What are the pluses and minuses?

I don’t actually have any connection with that scene. I’ve never played in North America. I got asked to play there a couple of years ago but it was a corporate gig so I turned it down. There is a lot of talk in the mainstream media about dubstep now but when I listen to the music, I don’t recognize it as anything that I am involved in. What I do is completely different. I don’t really use that word anymore because it is misleading.

Tell us about a formative musical experience.

Hearing roots music on a sound system at St Paul’s Carnival in Bristol. Understanding the space and the bass and the treble.

What were the first events you spun at like?

I started out playing at house parties and little clubs and then moved on to second rooms at bigger clubs. When I started to take it more seriously I was playing as resident at club nights Context and Dubloaded and Subloaded in Bristol in 2004 and 2005. Always small events with mostly heads there to check out new music rather than parties if you know what I mean? Good sound systems and playing a lot of new music.

Tell us about the creation of Punch Drunk Records.

I started the label [Punch Drunk] in 2006. The roots of a dubstep scene in Bristol were planted by Pinch’s Context dances and they stimulated the imagination of a group of producers who were interested in doing something different and pursuing their own musical destiny, which was what we all saw dubstep as—not a sound, but an opportunity to do your own thing and be accepted for it. I started the label as a platform for those producers to promote their music to the wider world. It’s always been a grassroots thing. A Bristol thing. I have a new label now called Livity Sound, which is more focused on productions of myself, Kowton and Asusu.

What are the highs and lows of the current Bristol scene?

Highs: Idle Hands Records, lots of new vinyl only labels, Teachings in Dub (music in a club), Boundary Object (Music in a pub), Young Echo Radio, Livity Sound. Lows: The success of big events with bad music.

Tell us about a fresh production.

I am working on a remix of a producer called Alex Coulton who recently had a release on Idle Hands. It’s trippy, tribal, dark bass music I think?!?

What can punters expect at Eleven?

Listening to some quality underground UK music, new and old, doing a little dance and getting drunk.

Vinyl, CDs or laptop. Which and why?

Why would you play music off a laptop?! Madness. I play records because I always have and they sound good and I have thousands of them.

How will Peverelist be chilling in Tokyo?

I am coming to eat all the food and hang out with my Tokyo crew. I might get a chance to check some record shops, especially my friends Disc Shop Zero. Maybe I’ll stare at some synths too.

Eleven, May 25 (listing).

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