Imagine yourself floating in the sky in a utopian world, surrounded by beautiful clouds and sunny skies, and you are at peace. That’s exactly how we feel when we listen to Dogger & Mindstate’s music. It is otherworldly. Since they started making music together, the duo has been at the forefront of producing velvety smooth atmospherics and spine-tingling bass lines.
Dogger & Mindstate came together in 2019 with their favourite collaborator Liam Bailey on Alix Perez’s 1985 Music for the ‘Broken Home’ EP. Four emotionally moving and cosmically intense tracks saw their name put up alongside some of the finest acts in Drum & Bass.
Since their debut, they have had their music released DRS’ Space Cadet, V Recordings, Shogun Audio as well as a return to the label where they started; 1985 Music. Following the release of their infamous ‘No More Moshpits’ track featuring SP:MC last year, Dogger & Mindstate have returned for their first full release of 2021 on Lenzman’s North Quarter label.
The ‘Different Roads’ EP which is their concept release aims to bring distinctive, meticulous, and emotive Drum & Bass by merging the Northern and Southern regions of England where they built their penchant for music while listening to Hip Hop. Representing the North of England is Verbz from London and South England’s representation duties are taken over by Sleazy F Baby from Manchester.
We were keen to know their idea behind the ‘Different Roads’ EP, so we got the duo together for a candid chat with us about their origins and their latest release.
- From meeting at a skateboarding circuit to having releases on labels like Shogun Audio, 1985 Music and now The North Quarter. How would you like to describe your journey?
Dogger & Mindstate: I guess you could say it’s been a natural progression, Dave and I had spoken about making music for a long time during the early skateboarding years but wasn’t until about 10 years passed before we moved in together, built our own studio and then got to work and it all came together very effortlessly. Our Broken Home EP was the 1st batch of music we made together and now we are just continuing the journey and it’s going from strength to strength.
- You guys have had solo releases this year and then some tunes together as Dogger & Mindstate. How do you guys pull it off and get it right every single time?
Dogger & Mindstate: First of all, thank you, we are glad you think so. We both know our way around the studio, we bounce off each other really well when we work together and we both already know the end result of how the track should sound pretty early into the session. We both have a pretty wide range of music interests and what inspires us, it’s great to channel all this into the music we make. as for our solo stuff I guess that is just an extension of what we already do so well together but at the same time, there is a bit more freedom where we have a chance to do exactly what we want without having to please the other. We have been working within different BPM ranges too recently, stripped back hip-hop beats, some things at 140 and a range of other tempos. Our new ‘Different Roads EP’ is a prime example where you can hear some things at 87 BPM.
- No More Moshpits’ is absolutely wicked and I think it took everyone by surprise. Your thoughts?
Dogger & Mindstate: For us, that one was such a laugh to make in the studio with a funny back story. when we played it out for the first time people went mental, I don’t know if we were expecting that kind of reaction but people really dig it and it always goes off.
- Liam Bailey just seems to compliment your style perfectly every time you guys work with him. Isn’t it?
Dogger & Mindstate: To be honest some of our earliest Dogger and Mindstate sessions were with Liam in the studio so our music was formed around him, we complimented each other throughout the process. Our first EP was truly a 3-way collab.
- Now a full-scale EP on The North Quarter. Like the name suggests, you guys have taken ‘Different Roads’ that have congregated seamlessly in the EP. How was the experience while writing the project?
Dogger & Mindstate: The process started with a 172bpm instrumental we had written, Dave (Mindstate) had known Verbz for a long time and wanted to get him on it so we got him down to the studio, we also had a couple of 87bpm ideas that we played him during the session that he was diggin’ we recorded something as sort of an introduction to the main tune and then the concept was born. The main track was named different roads due to Verbz’ Lyrics and so the idea of north and south came into mind with me (Dogger) being from the north and Dave (Mindstate) and Verbz being from the south, made sense to get a northern rapper involved on another track and an intro tune.
Sleazy has been a mate for years, we were both born on the same day, and like verbz, he had never had a drum and bass release before so it made sense to have him involved. When Sleaze came down for the session it didn’t take long, he had never even heard the instrumentals before but during the session, he wrote and recorded both tracks and absolutely killed it. After the sessions with those guys, we polished up the songs, added some new bits and got some live drums recorded by Oscar Ogden on the intro tunes. it all come together quite effortlessly to be honest, once we listened to the finished project, we could think of no better home than TNQ. we sent them over to Lenzman and with no hesitation, he took them for the label.
- And a release on 1985 Music as well. Your association with the label keeps getting stronger with every release!
Yeah, obviously we have a history with 1985 and we continue to work with Alix and the team over there, they have a very consistent release schedule and we are happy we can continue to release with those guys too. We have some things scheduled in with them and can’t wait for people to hear.
- What’s next for Dogger & Mindstate as a duo and Individual producers?
We have had quite a decent amount of time during lockdown to write music so we are in a very good position material wise. We both have a bunch of music together, individually and we have some collaboration stuff that is starting to be heard here and there. As mentioned, we continue to work with 1985 as Dogger & Mindstate as well as Space Cadet where some of the tracks are D&M and some as individual artists We have also been building the Precinct Label, introducing some new and established artists to the release roster and starting to put on some label nights which have been really exciting. Obviously now the lockdown restrictions have lifted we are buzzing to be getting out again and playing live shows. We have some special gigs in the calendar, we have got some tracks that you can only hear if you come to one of our shows, we make sure we have the ammo to keep our gigs entertaining and exclusive, stuff you can’t see or hear anywhere else.
Buy/Stream Dogger & Mindstate’s ‘Different Roads’ EP – Here