Kumarachi has got himself a lot of attention since bounding onto the scene in 2016. He was quickly scooped up by Critical for their Binary series shortly after he released his first singles on Hocus Pocus and Audio Addict and the rest, as they say, is history. Drum and bass history to be exact, as Kumarachi has really become known for his deft incorporation of the bygone eras of jungle and drum and bass. For a producer who’s relatively young, that sort of style definitely made the label heads stand up and take notice, and everyone else as well.
Since Binary, Kumarachi has released on even more labels, sort of taking up residency mainly with Audio Addict and Deep In the Jungle but also adding Drum&BassArena to his release roster. His latest EP Saturn’s Return just came out on Deep In the Jungle, and once again he’s surprising old schoolers with how well he understands classic DnB and jungle structures while adding modern elements to his work to come up with a style all his own.
Your EDM caught up with Kumarachi recently between projects and before what sounds like a massive tour to find out what inspires him, how he creates his perfect blend of old and new DnB and what else is next for the youngest old schooler out there.
How did you decide to release Saturn’s Return on Deep in the Jungle?
I’ve released quite a bit through Deep In The Jungle. Alex/DJ Hybrid mentioned about doing an EP a while ago so I worked on it from then.
You have a lot of jungle elements in this EP like snare-heavy beats and classic jungle samples but also a lot of darkstep elements. How was it to marry those two bits?
Yeah there is, I love both those sounds. It’s a case of trying things until they work most of the time. Veak put a lot of extra samples in the tunes we did on together on there; he got them to bring some mad energy into the tunes.
Your style is definitely influenced by classic DnB and jungle. What interests you about that era of bass music?
It takes you somewhere else and is really other worldly and spacey, I really like that, and they just work so well in tunes.
How do you get those classic elements you use to work with modern DAWS? Do you use any vintage equipment?
DAWS are so powerful now. You can emulate anything really or there’s a plugin that can. I have a few bits of hardware I use like an Emu 6400 sampler, synths, and a few bits of outboard too. I like to get sounds out of the computer and through something external as much as possible.
How did you come to work with Veak on “Nebula” and “Saturn’s Return”? What did you like about his style and how it interacted with yours on those tracks?
We were in touch about doing a collab as he’s been putting tunes out on Deep In The Jungle too. He had started “Nebula and I had started “Saturn’s Return,” so we swapped the files and ended up with both tunes. We’ve got another one on the way too. His style’s quite different to mine. It’s wicked and has a real rawness so I think our sounds work together well on them.
How did the collab with Sl8r happen on “Freeze”? It’s a really cohesive track. How did you guys get it to sound so uniform even though two of you were working on it?
Thanks, I’m really happy that one came out. I had the main break and bass and sent it to Connor (Sl8r). He then sorted the intro and added more in and sent it back. I added some extra edits and that was it. The tunes I’ve done with him have all come out well, even though we’ve not been in the studio together. He’s properly switched on and I think we’ve managed to get both our sounds in there without stepping on each other’s toes. He’s definitely one of my favorite producers out there at the moment.
Was there a theme you had in mind for this EP?
No there wasn’t really a theme, just to see where the tunes went. I see now though the titles kind of point to one.
Was there a tie-in to the theme with the title and title tracks? If not, how did you come up with that title?
It was the title of the original project file luckily. Tunes can be a pain to name sometimes (Laughs) so it was picked out from one of the track names.
Obviously you’re focusing on the EP’s release currently, but do you have anything else coming up that you can speak of? Any more collabs?
Yes, there’s plenty of things coming up. I’ve got a single coming on Skank & Bass this month and several tunes on compilations on Locked Up Music and Audio Addict.
Then there’s plenty of studio time to sort out and finish off some more tunes. There’s a few more collabs in the works too with the likes of DJ Hybrid, SL8r, RMS and Veak.
Any plans to tour or play shows coming up in the fall?
I’ve got more shows being booked all the time at the minute, all over the UK as well as heading to Germany in October and over to Canada in November, so lots coming up to look forward to.