Head honcho of the popular London parties, James Benenson talks to us about his involvement in a new series of music events this autumn
A pioneering new season of progressive music is set to launch this autumn. For thirteen nights Hidden in Vauxhall will host some of the most exciting bass heavy music from the underground electronic scene covering sub genres like dubstep, 2-step, house and garage. The ::FOUND series will offer a platform for leading DJs, performers and promoters to showcase their music and connect with one another. Each event features artists chosen by legendary promoter Will Paterson and Urban Nerds promoter James Benenson.
As part of one of one of the biggest, if not the biggest, bass brands in the UK it makes sense Benenson was an intrinsic part in putting the Found series together. With collaborations with top bass music venues like Matter and Fabric, and a stronghold on the underground bass music movement, Urban Nerds have managed to stay ahead of the curve when it comes to pulling off impressive roadblock events. Dazed chatted to Benenson about the forthcoming series and attempted to find out what surprises he has up his sleeve...
Dazed Digital: How did you end up getting involved with the ::Found event?
James Benenson: ::FOUND calls Vauxhall venue Hidden home and I've had an affiliation with the club for a few years through Will Paterson and his warehouse spaces, which have become synonymous with the Urban Nerds brand. Will and I have a shared interest in well-considered programming, grade A production and professional promotions. A mutual knowledge of underground electronic music eventually spawned FOUND, with a programme that feeds from my awareness of the UK bass scene but that also touches on Will's house background and the ethos that's driven events such as the mighty Eastern Electrics. When it became clear that we wanted to combine these different corners of dance in a way not seen before, FOUND was the natural outcome.
DD: What was it like working with Will Paterson on the project?
James Benenson: My five years experience in London promotion is often overshadowed by Will's 14+ years in the game and a depth of knowledge that spans genres, trends and a myriad of different club shows, from hard dance to drum 'n' bass, Shoreditch house and the rest. For me, it's a privilege to have access to that, and every day is very much a positive learning curve. I'm yet to meet another individual who's as dedicated to what we do and the line-ups, creative look and the overall presentation of FOUND are so because of the amalgamation of Will's commitment to using the best possible practices with our shared love of the music.
DD: Any artist/s on the rise that you recommend we keep our eyes and ears open for this autumn?
James Benenson: Keep an eye on Rustie and his forthcoming LP on Planet Mu which promises to be special. In FOUND terms you could possibly take that as a hint. My lips are sealed. Also on a bass tip, Numbers signed producer Redhino is definitely on the rise with an eclectic mix of dancefloor-worthy goodness and usually deep, hard-hitting drops. In terms of artists on the rise, I'd urge people to open their ears to the many support acts on the FOUND billing - we've spent months programming for a reason and it's because we wanted to seek out the very best DJs on the up, with people like T. Williams, Hot City, Nightwave, Funkineven, Lone and LV & Joshua Idehen showing great promise this autumn with huge releases across UK bass, house, 2-step and deeper, progressive styles.
DD: What up and coming projects are you working on with Urban Nerds?
James Benenson: Having just recovered from our annual pre-Notting Hill Carnival knees up, we're about to reveal exciting Halloween rave plans - one for the dubsteppers. After that it's destination NYE as we return to the Hearn Street Car Park in Shoreditch for our first and only warehouse event of 2011 and a jaw-dropping line-up. Can't say any more on that at the moment but we're looking at some exciting label showcases and will be joining forces with another London club night with big clout in the bass game. Watch this space.
DD: What's next for FOUND?
James Benenson: We're full steam ahead for the launch show with Justin Martin's epic three-hour set and support from the inspirational Instra:Mental, house scene one-to-watch, T. Williams, A1 Bassline's Tighten Up Records and a whole lot more. The excitement is building and we're itching to launch the series in clubland and show off Hidden, a new space for many people heading to FOUND but a club that certainly won't disappoint after some drastic changes to the interior in preparation for the new Friday programme. It's a manic autumn ahead for us – each one of the 13 nights has its own musical flavour that we genuinely feel will be a great asset to London's world-renowned nightlife. There's talk of a second series for early 2012 but we'll let the hangover settle from part 1 first I think!
::FOUND, 30 September - 23 December 2011, Hidden, 100 Tinworth Street, Vauxhall, London SE11 5EQ. For further information visit: www.foundseries.co.uk / www.twitter.com/foundseries / www.facebook.com/foundseries