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Best Of British 2010: Best Compilation - Fabriclive 50: Autonomic

Independently Minded - The maverick mixology of dBridge & Instra:mental

If one trend has defined 2010’s electronic music scene more than any other, it has to be the complete erosion of traditional genre barriers in favour of a constantly morphing, merging and interacting musical landscape.
Try to describe just about any definitive 2010 record and outdated singular terms like house, techno, drum & bass and even dubstep simply don’t cut the mustard.
Instead, the scene is alive with a mutant promise that defies easy categorisation. For our money — and seemingly lots of yours — no compilation captured this hybrid energy with more class than dBridge and Instra:mental’s ‘FABRICLIVE 50: Autonomic’ CD for fabric.
“Personally, I would just like to think of it as ‘electronica’,” ventures dBridge, when pressed on how he would describe the Autonomic sound that first came to prominence through their genre-bleeding podcasts that eventually earned them up to 60,000 downloads a time.
 “The thing we were trying to do with the Autonomic series is to remove restrictions and just bring it back to making music for the love,” he explains. “We all have a history in the drum & bass scene, but grew disillusioned because a lot of it lost a lot of artistic expression and became all about the dancefloor. Now we just experiment and make music that inspires us. We’re not really defined by tempo as such. We’ve done everything from 125 bpm to 145 bpm — it’s just electronica.”

Somehow, though, ‘just electronica’ feels an insufficient description for the journey of the Autonomic experience.


From the sumptuous synth-pop darkness of Riya’s ‘Seems Like’ through the cinematic electro of Instra:mental’s ‘End Credits’ to the spacious dub techno of Scuba’s ‘Eclipse’, the 29 tracks that made up the Autonomic journey were among the most futuristic offerings around, but had a timeless touch that escaped much of the electric but ultimately disposable mutations that 2010 threw up.
At the same time, the Autonomic sound never lost sight of the dancefloor thanks to tracks like Skream’s skeletal jungle meets bleep techno missive ‘Fire Call’.
Covering the full circle of modern electronica/future bass/post dubstep/insert meaningless genre term here, the Autonomic experience was the complete package.

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  The Other Nominees

Scuba ‘Sub:Stance’Commix ‘Re:Call To Mind’Brownswood ‘Electr*C’King Cannibal ‘Way Of The Ninja’