TFword in Conversation With Sudley

Sudley’s debut release on ProgRAM Records led us to catching up with him to know more about the ‘Rapidash’ EP, his journey so far, and plans for 2023.

Hailing from one of the spiritual homes of drum & bass in Bristol, Sudley is steadily making his mark in the scene through his energetic style of music. After making his debut in 2020 on Right Good Records, Sudley has made some big moves, and his penchant for going for the jugular has led to releases on Hospital Records, Four Corners Music, Dazed Music, and Skankandbass, to name a few.

Now, as he gears up for another successful year, with a release on Hospital Records already in the bag, Sudley has landed his second release of the year on the mighty RAM Records’ sub label, ProgRAM Records. As the name suggests, the ‘Rapidash’ EP is a showcase of compact grooves, eerie synths and deceptive vocal elements, making the release a proper package of dancefloor-driven drum & bass.

We were keen to know more about the EP, and his expedition so far as a DJ and producer. So, we sat down with Sudley for a chat, and here is what he had to say:

TFword: Growing up in one of the meccas of drum & bass, how do you think Bristol’s culture has had an influence on your music?
Sudley: Moving to Bristol changed my life really, I met a whole heap of amazing people since moving here in 2016 and the club scene took me in like one of its own. The city has such a welcoming feel to it in terms of the people you’ll meet and the opportunities you’ll get will constantly inspire you to push yourself and succeed.

TF: After making your debut in 2020, you are steadily making a mark as one of the genre’s most prodigious producers. How have the last three years been for you?
Sudley: That’s very generous, I really don’t see it like that at all as I’ve been making music for over a decade now and it’s been a slow process for me getting into the scene, definitely more slow and steady than others but I’m happy with that. The last 3 years have really been where most of my key learning has happened, I realized at one point during lockdown that I wasn’t trying hard enough so really pushed myself to improve through lessons and learning.

Over time certain opportunities have presented themselves which I have taken to the full extent which has then led to bigger opportunities… etc etc. I’m really enjoying the process now though and I’m feeling really good about everything.

TF: A release on Hospital Records and now an EP on ProgRAM Records. Talk us through the experience of releasing your music on two of the most iconic label of the genre?
Sudley: Like I said before, as the process has been so steady and slow I feel like it’s built up to the time where working with these labels has become part of the natural progression. I’m really excited to become part of these historic labels histories but the timing feels right from the amount of effort I’ve put in to get to this stage. I’ve got a lot more music coming out on Hospital this year as well so keep your eyes peeled for that.

TF: We like how despite being a three-tracker, the ‘Rapidash’ EP offers a journey. What was your approach while writing the EP?
Sudley: To be honest with you all 3 tunes are quite old and they are quite far from what I’m making these days. Ghost Notes was made in 2021! I was going through a big tech / minimal phase during 2020-2021 so that’s the kind of influence that these tunes show. They represent about as far as I could push the techy side of drum and bass at the time of their conception and I feel like they all have different places they could be used in a DJ set.

TF: How does Sudley’s studio downtime look like?
Sudley: If you mean the time that I’m not in the studio, then you’ll find me playing PS5 with my dog and my missus and watching relentless hours of 90 Day Fiancé on Prime.

TF: What are Sudley’s plans for 2023?
Sudley: Basically, get all this music out that I’m sitting on! I’ve got 3 EPs and 5 singles that I’ve got penciled in this year including something very special in April with one of the biggest vocalists in the UK, so that’s extremely exciting.

TF: Five tunes you are feeling at the moment?
Sudley: Refracta – Cotopaxi
Disrupta – Tension
Friction, Pola + Bryson, Shells – Into The Night
T95 – Touch The Sky
Simula – Macabre

Explore Sudley’s full discography here:

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