For a bass head like me, any show with Rusko on the lineup is a must-see. As one of the progenitors of modern-day dubstep, the founder of so-called ‘brostep,’ and one of the guys still keeping the wobble alive, Rusko is even more entrancing when on stage.
He’s playing tomorrow at Life In Color in San Diego, so we caught up with him to get his thoughts on the current state of dubstep, including trends and faults, as well as what he’ll be playing this weekend.
I’ve always got to ask you, as one of the pioneers of dubstep, what do you think of the current state of dubstep? A sort of “State Of The Union” address, if you will.
Haha it feels a long way away from what we used to call dubstep. It’s basically just trap and riddim now and it’s increased from 140 to 150 bpm. It’s essentially the same ingredients but it’s getting further away from its origins and evolving like all genres really. The good thing for me is, my sets are full of either old school classics or new stuff by myself and the few producers still rocking the original style. So when I’m on a line up of 2017 riddim and trap my set really stands out cos it sounds so different now and that’s a cool feeling.
What trends within dubstep have you seen come into popularity in the past year?
Lots of phasers and Flangers on bass lines – which sounds really cool. And , thankfully, a bit of a resurgence of the original dubstep style and a new appreciation developing I guess. It’s cool and I’ve been writing lots of tracks to capitalise on that!
The last track you dropped was “WALALANGLENG,” a dirty track with plenty of that classic wobble feel. How do you keep an “old” style sounding fresh?
Yeah that track and 4 others are coming out in June actually on my EP.
I think it’s mainly just having better tools and cooler, sharper sounds but keeping the same mindset as before. Also it’s all about groove with dubstep, creating a groove rather than scatter gunning it in people’s faces. For me anyway.
Anything more planned with Caspa?
Yeah, the plan all along was to keep it a special thing and a fun thing, so we did a bunch of touring and interviews and tunes last year and it was the best but to keep it fun and fresh this year we’ve both got tons of our own tracks so we’re just doing our own thing for a bit, that way when we’re both back home after the summer we can catch up and get excited again.
What do you think sets an event like Life In Color apart from other festivals?
Interactivity I think, people really feel part of one big experience when they are covered in luminous paint! I’ve played it before and for a DJ it’s the coolest thing to see and the crowd just goes crazy, so then I go crazy and it’s happy days.
What kind of set do you have prepared for the event?
As I mentioned before, it will be lessons in classic wobbly dubstep mixed with exclusive new tracks like walalanleng and a ton of cheeky remixes delivered with grace and humility by yours truly.