Right from its formative years in the UK, Australian Drum & Bass has been fundamental to the genre’s rise on the global scale.
Acts like Pendulum, Knife Party, Royalston, ShockOne have had generational impacts on the Aussie Drum & Bass and in the last ten years, brothers Jeff and Jonathan Hansen aka Ekko & Sidetrack have added their name to the list of legendary names to have graced the scene down under.
With tracks like ‘Paper Birds’, ‘Let The Light In, ‘Melt’, ‘Synschronise’ on some of the biggest labels in DnB like Viper Recordings, Liquicty, and many more, they have built their name as one of the fiercest duos in Drum & Bass.
After a smashing remix on Axtone Records and their critically acclaimed single ‘Under Bright Lights’, Ekko & Sidetrack have returned to Viper Recordings for a tune called ‘Banish’ on the ‘Wizards Of The Aus’ EP which is the label’s endavor to promote seminal Drum & Bass talent.
Following the release of their banger, we spoke to the pulsating Australian duo about their thoughts on the tune, Australian Drum & Bass scene, their plans for the year and lots more.
Hey guys, how has the year been for you so far?
Ekko & Sidetrack: It’s been great, really feeling the world of music beginning to return to some semblance of pre Covid vibes. Putting out the Still Sleepless Remix and “Under Bright Lights” (our collaboration with Twerl) felt really good and sharing “Banish” with the world feels like we are showing musical diversity. Plus – We just landed in the UK for the summer so we’re really excited for the shows and festivals we’re playing here and in Europe.
We’re absolutely loving the vibe on your new tune ‘Banish’. How was the experience like while writing this tune?
Ekko & Sidetrack: The initial idea for Banish came together quite quickly but each time we’d revisit it we would change little parts to make it stronger. We wanted to make a something more aimed for the clubs, exploring 90’s rave influenced euphoria with a big switch up on the drop. We even changed the key of the song in the last few days before we gave it to the label to make it more menacing.
First VOE, then Solomon France, Blaine Stranger and now you guys. There is some serious heat in the ‘Wizards Of Aus’ EP. What are your thoughts on the overall release?
Ekko & Sidetrack: It really showcases the strength of Australian DnB, and the wealth of talent we have growing down here. It’s really exciting.
Australian Drum & Bass talent has always been fundamental to the wider Drum & Bass scene. How do you think Aussie DnB has progressed in the last ten years?
Ekko & Sidetrack: We’re are really seeing the next wave come through – off the back of the pandemic and the insane scene in New Zealand it appears the wave is heading west and engulfing Australia again. The scene has always had a strong foundation of artists and promoters and with newer artists like Luude really putting Australian DNB into people’s minds – the only way is up.
Having been a part of the Drum & Bass scene down for more than a decade and releasing music on the biggest imprints in Drum & Bass; how would you like to describe the Ekko & Sidetrack journey?
Ekko & Sidetrack: You ever seen Lord of The Rings ? Haha! We don’t think we are returning the ring of power but we are two brothers who like tasting many flavours, travelling and succeeding in a quest to share our music with people, explore and be inspired along the way.
What would be your dream collaboration?
Ekko & Sidetrack: There are too many. We would love to work with Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs or Hans Zimmer. Being asking to soundtrack a film for a Denis Villeneuve would be ridiculous. In the world of Drum & Bass working with 1991 would be fun, or Javeon (great vocalist). Of course working with our favourite Ruth Royall is a must do while we’re over in Europe.
What are the genres that you guys listen to or would like to make other than Drum & Bass?
Ekko & Sidetrack: We just make drum and bass atm, but we have done some non-DNB for film projects in the past. Check our website for them.
We listen to all sorts of music ranging from minimal house to classical. The only thing that doesn’t get played on our Spotify is super heavy metal or Country. We also listen to a heap of podcasts and have our own so if we aren’t listening to tunes or making them we are probably talking – check it out – HERE
How does the rest of the year look like for Ekko & Sidetrack?
Ekko & Sidetrack: We are in Europe and the UK for summer, playing festivals and a few club shows around so keep an eye out on our socials for more announcements. When we’re not DJing, we’ll be spending time in studios cooking up music with a variety of friends and drinking ciders in the sun.
5 tunes you guys are feeling at the moment?
Ekko & Sidetrack:
- Pendulum – Tarantula (Ekko & Sidetrack X ShockOne Remix)
- Grafix – CTRL
- 1991 – We All Need Someone
- Tourist – Your Love
- Sub Focus – It’s Time
Buy ‘Banish’ by Ekko & Sidetrack – HERE