There's been alot of debate about us on a few music forums recently. Theres some really intelligent discussion especially at Dissensus.
(Disclaimer: To the average Hadouken fan. Please don't feel the need to go sign up to the forums to defend us in any way. Its perfectly healthy discussion.)
Although we have accounts with the various forums, won't be replying to any of these posts, basically because if we start we could be there all year responding, and we know how forum debates can sometimes go.
First off I guess I pre-empted this reaction the moment I realised our first single was going to be a sucess. First off I have never wanted to have been seen to press ourselves on the Grime scene. I'm not talking about taking influence. I feel I have every right to take influence from anything I want, be it punk of 76, jungle of 95, uk garage or grime. But the scene itself I understandably don't feel part of. Thats why I have told our radio plugger not to push our beats to urban shows, and thats why you wont be hearing any Grime remixes, or collaborations despite the suprising offers we have had from a few known grime acts. We put out our single on our own little indie label on un-dj-friendly 7inch. We let it be downloaded for free for six months (no concerns about jingle free radio rips) and it sold out on personal pre-orders.
Grime production is in my blood. If something like That Boy That Girl, listens as an ironic pastiche of Grime, then this is disheartening to me, because if anything it was intended to be a nod, to pay homage to the genre that I am massive fan of. The tracks you have heard were sequenced and made in a bedroom on fruityloops. Since then we have managed to expand our sound and get some fully live recordings done. All I can say is that the album will make more sense, and will probably be less offensive to the grime purists in terms of direction and influence. I will be posting up a live clip on the myspace in the next couple of days, check it if you care.
I have no problem with anyone on the underground who hates the music for what it is. If you think its shit then it is shit. My flows can't compete with the Grime boys (and girls) who have established themselves with years of experience and graft on the pirate circuit. I havent had that and I never will. It will feel diluted to a purists ears. But nothing in our sound was compromised. Maybe I have it in me to come out with pop, some of my grime edged towards this (Not Wise anyone?) The reason its getting support? No major label has touched us yet so its not corporate sponsorship. I'd put it down to a good radio plugger, decent management, and the buzz of myspace.
It is out of my hands if the trend/mainstream press pick up on it all. If it means I can make music for a living then I'll carry on sending them my tunes. Even some of the style bible magazines that picked up and ditched grime so quickly have published articles that are quick to write us off and dismiss us as the white kids from Watford who don't have a clue. But I'll get over it.
So I cant compete with the flows. However I do feel I can compete elsewhere on a level, with the four highly competent musicans who back me on duel synths, guitar and bass guitar and full drumkit and triggers as supposed to a stale set of two CDJs or an instrumental dubplate. They are the reason we have been getting gigs, not because we are white. If one of the big dogs in grime could clock this 'live music' potential then I am sure they could make far bigger waves than us. Gigs sell records in the indie world. They also account for a far larger proportion of an artists incomings, especially in these days of the mp3. Maybe grime shouldnt concern itself with uploads and piracy when its key demographic doesn't actually buy music now anyway regardless of genre. How about a grime act going on stage at 8pm in a live venue rather than 2am in a club when everybody is pissed up and ready to kick off? This is not for want to change grime for what it is. Just a suggestion to ways of drawing capital which is essential for its survival.
If anyone ever came out with the statement that JME had catted my flow I would be the first person who would have to swallow-back vomit. But thankfully I don't see that happening as of yet. I've lost count of the ammount of Boy Better Know teeshirts I've seen young, white 'indie' kids wearing at our gigs. Hopefully thats well deserved revenue in his pocket. I'm thinking of the 14 year old Welsh kid who came up to us wearing one after a gig in Manchester.
One day I will be able to reveal all of how our story happened. I'm keeping a diary of every movement we have made in the music industry since day dot. I can't reveal for the time being until we are finally signed. I can accept that institutional racism is still rife within british society. However, the only thing that united the typically creative, maybe liberal industry a&r men (of various colour and probably sexuality) was the fact that they liked our tracks and the fact that we were doing something ever so slightly different to other bands. Slightly different... something we had originally set out to do.
James Hadouken! (annoying front man)
Dr Venom (Ex-grime producer)
James Smith (Garage/Grime/Dubstep/Indie/Punk/Metal/Pop fan)