All Roads is a collective of music producers, DJ's, visual artists, videographers, photographers and a record label. Envisaged by K-aze, aka Lemon D of legendary Valve Recordings and Valve Sound System fame, All Roads sets out to showcase electronic music, culture and art by some of the coolest creatives from across the world. Based in London and L.A. the foundations are being laid for what’s sure to become a bastion of now with the label providing a soundtrack of footwork, garage, house, disco and UK bass.
After taking over 36 months out and working on different genres , producing under a constant studio regime experimenting with different tempos and collaborating various musicians K-aze’s begins to see the light from the studio doors. It's a complete amalgamation ... experimenting with 4 to floor Jungle, Dubstep, R&B , House and more.
With a whole host of new music lined up from house, garage to footwork and beyond, plus a compilation album nearing completion, all eyes now turn to the first EP from brand new artist, Shawn T. Hailing from Birmingham UK, Shawn has been developing his production skills over the past 4 years dabbling in R&B, grime, house and jungle. Discovered by K-aze and now working closely in the studio together to create his sonic identity, he’s signed exclusively with All Roads. Listen to a snippet of his Country Livin’ EP, which packs seven tracks of bass hungry, footwork jungle hybrids with full vocals from an entourage of newly signed lyrical talent and musical structures ready to re-write the rules.
We sit K-aze down for head to head below as he gears up for the label’s launch party in Hoxton, East London on April 5.
DJM: What inspired you to work on this project under a new pseudonym?
K-aze: "It's been a plan of action for last five-six years. I needed to phase myself out slowly from the DnB scene to really focus on the project 100 percent. I played with a few things over the years but then reverted back to my name as I felt this entire shift had to be an extension of me, my mind, music, art and character basically."
Any current artists that motivated you to take this on?
"Oh man! I'm a beat head so I don't know if I can cover [them all] because I feel I would love to mention all of them. But I'm all over Shawn T for obvious reasons, one of our singers Abbee is so inspiring. DJ Earl, DJ Spinn, Rashad Heavee - Tre , TMO, Footmerc. For producers out there I love a guy called ARCA too. Om Unit has really shone through on the electronic music scene. Kaytranada as got me hooked on his swing too."
In your opinion what are the similarities/differences between the L.A. and London underground music scene?
"The UK scene is coming out of it's infancy and more and more people are discovering say 'Footwork' and it's hybrids daily. We are getting interest daily - DJ's producers and promoters enquiring. I'm blown away because we have done hardly anything over in UK and it's all genuine poise feedback and sport.Most of our interest is in States and then UK. The scene is finding itself - everyones finding everyone and it's super positive as with anything on the cusp of breaking out. The are no boundaries or rules just complete creative freedom. Something you find hard now with a lot of 'Dancefloor music ' being made. The Footwork thing is open just as Jungle was in the ‘90s before it spawned DnB."
You’re crossing the Chicago footwork/ UK bass divide...In your own words, how do you describe your sound?
Well I would say both the genres are very similar in DNA not far off by a few percent if you would measure it that way but the sound is pure fusion non predictable music unlike a lot of electronic dance today. As long as it grooves and the sound it good on the ears then thats our blueprint to work with. I don't want myself or artist to fall into that same ole same ole void. People know I'm a bass head! I own a 96,000 watt touring sound system. When it comes to creating a signature sound we don't play."