It’s becoming more and more common in drum and bass to feature the vocalist as much as or more than the producer, but in the case of Anna Ross, her team is really pushing the pop angle of her debut single, “First Day.” It’s a strange phenomenon for drum and bass, but one the other factions of EDM have been embracing for years now.
“Drum and bass” in this track is also a bit of a confusing term. “First Day” definitely has a dnb beat, produced by a somewhat behind-the-scenes producer named Matt Catlow, who works with both Endell Studios in London and a not-for-profit called Mungos.org. The beat on this track is a very slowed down jump up beat, but it’s drum and bass nonetheless, and it’s an interesting pairing with Ross’s soulful vocals.
Ross herself is also based in London, and to say “First Day” is her first single is a bit of a misnomer. She’s also got a track out with Snowboy and which has been remixed several times called “Girl Overboard”, and she’s toured extensively with huge acts at huge festivals like Live Aid and Coachella, having worked most notably with Duran Duran and Tina Turner. In fact, “First Day” has been remixed by John Taylor of Duran Duran in partnership with Charles Scott. The remix will be, surprisingly enough, a halftime/dubstep fusion. It’s not only surprising due to John Taylor’s being involved with EDM in any way, but also because the pop-style vocals of Ross are a surprising pairing with dance music.
The fusion definitely works contained in both mixes of “First Day” definitely works, and no matter what style she comes out with next, Anna Ross definitely has some great taste when it comes to production and the producers she wants to work with.