KJ Sawka Puts the “D” in DnB

The summer of 2013 Destroid any preconceived notions of bass music, specifically the mainstream’s limited understanding of the genre’s complexity. The history of bass music goes is so much deeper than the commercialized post-Skrillex world where everything is dubstep until nothing is any longer. The idea that dubstep was dead and dying, cheapened to a passing fad soon to be forgotten. Menudo, slap bracelets, Flava Flav, and dubstep. If I would have listened to all the opinions of all the nay sayers, I’d still be floating lifeless in the darkness that breeds this raw, honest music.

I am a character written by Cameron Crowe. Jerry Maguire, no William Miller. Walking down the sidewalk of my hometown with Lester Bangs, except he looks a lot like Nappy or Aaron Ruxbin. Fast forward to the part that matters, where Lester turns to me, the aspiring young journalist, a lover of music and talented writer. My mother wants me to be something else, a lawyer, a housewife. Anything but this, she says. Lester agrees. He tells me, as he told William Miller, that rock & roll is dead. That dubstep is dead. That we missed the boat. It is time to pack up and go home.

But he could tell by the look in my eye that I wasn’t going anywhere. Everyone who experiences the onslaught of a musical movement, especially those as powerful as rock and roll, and now EDM; those there from the beginning feel some ownership over it, they want to remind everything that comes after them will never be as good. They want you to think dubstep is dying. They want you to think you are killing it.

Just don’t let anyone fuck your mind into believing that you have to believe anything that anyone tells you. This culture wasn’t founded on the noises that fill triplet drums, and it cannot be restricted to the recordings and the artists or the classifications imposed by outside entities, a bunch of mind fuckers trying to control and supress, commercialize bass music into some commodity, stick subliminal messages in trance and turn us all into the apathetic disaffected youth they wish we would have stayed to be.

I’m not buying it. Bass music lives. It soaks up all that is wrong with this cruel, dark world. It is harsh and sad, but it is real.

We are all Destroid.

We are Excision. We are Downlink. We are the future of bass music. We are robots walking around on moon rocks with bright lights and smoke everywhere. We have synthtars strapped to us and we have built them to play like electric guitar. We are stomping around and our metal dreadlocks transmit the sound to the speakers and we stomp around to the…live drums?

But wait, you ask, who is that dude in the back, and is that the actual pop of a snare drum. Did I feel the resonance of a deep kick, hard and heavy, like a robot foot tapping? You know Excision and Destroid. They are important, they are epic dubstep or Canadian brostep or something fucking step producers. But when is the last time you heard the live pop of a snare drum, felt the actual echo from a kick in your chest?

I have to laugh when I ask folks if they have seen Destroid live, and their response is something like, “well I have seen Excision and I have seen Downlink,” or, “isn’t that like Datsik and someone else?”

No.

If you haven’t seen this amazing live electronic experience, fucking robots playing fucking dark, gritty, futuristic dubstep, then the answer is plainly, “No.” Because, like I told the audience at Electric Adventure this year while the stage was being set up for this monstrous live production, remembering my own feelings before being BLOWN AWAY at echostage, this shit is like NOTHING you have EVER seen before.

Anyone who knows anything about a live band, about music in general, knows that it is the rhythm and percussion sections that control the rest of the music. The pace, the tone, the feeling you get. In bass music, drum n bass, dubstep, electronic music in general: the beat is everything.

The drummer is god, the creator. He said, “let there be light,” and controls the thunder and lightning, gives and has the power to taketh away. In Destroid, this creator is the least known of the three that make up this awe-inspiring, next level act. His name is KJ Sawka. He is a drummer that plays drum & bass music.

Here is a ‘smashup’ of some tunes from his live DJ Set.

This is the wave of the future. We are all DESTROID. They have three US tour dates remaining before they pack up their suits for regrouping, and come back out sometime in the future with what will be the future’s future when it hits.