He’s not just another killer deejay. The music of Lorin Ashton, a.k.a. Bassnectar, is rooted in a deeply textured, low frequency bass vibration that makes speakers crackle and gasp. When he performs, he bounces to the rhythm and flips his long hair around in a rockstar dance style as distinctive as the “Bassnectar whomp” of his signature sound.
His thick, chunky beats wobble, bounce, squelch and reverberate with a funky syncopated rhythm that propels you deep into the chambers of the groove. He prides himself on creating healthy “vegan music”—remixing existing tracks but removing all the cheesy vocals and fatty lyrics.
Bassnectar opts instead to expand his fans’ social awareness by mixing in intelligent and provocative vocal samples from political activists Saul Williams, Noam Chomsky and Mumia Abu Jamal. These unexpectedly interspersed sound bites inspire listeners to take action against the many injustices within our current political regime.
But he’s also a master wordsmith. His creatively titled tracks—“The Wicked Twitch of the West,” “Force of Suction” and “Inspire the Empathetic,” for example—are designed to arrest the attention and intrigue the mind. His semi-frequent news updates on his bassnectar.net site, and his postings on tribe.net and myspace.com, are enlightening and further showcase his wordskilletry and verbal flexibility.
Bassnectar has been creating music since he was 12 years old. And after more than a decade of studio production and remixing, his list of collaborators reads like a “best of electronica” lineup, including Sound Tribe Sector 9, Spearhead, String Cheese Incident, Cheb I Sabbah, Bucket Head, Karsh Kale, HDC & KRS One, FreQ Nasty, Landslide, Crash Berlin and Perry Farrell.
His latest production, Mesmerizing the Ultra, is a double disc that will captivate your conscience with deep beats and powerful political messages. Disc one contains 18 previously unreleased original Bassnectar tracks, while the second disc is a selection of re-mastered tracks from the Bassnectar Labs, including a bonus song featuring HDC & KRS One. Throughout both discs, Bassnectar delivers a satisfying dose of innovative electronic music that appeals to all beat-loving junkies.
Lorin’s earlier CD releases, Diverse Systems of Throb and Motions of Mutation, were clever, well-designed albums that became instant underground classics. But the September release of Mesemerizing the Ultra broadened the spectrum of Bassnectar fans. Distribution by Fontana Universal is bringing mainstream recognition to Lorin’s label Amorphous Music, a subsidiary of Organic Music.
In late October 2005, the new double disc topped the charts as best-selling electronic music at popular San Francisco retailer Amoeba Records. This marks a new era in the age of Bassnectar, in which his seductive bass lines meet ears both virgin and veteran, by way of big-name retailers like Amazon.com, Borders, Virgin Music, Tower Records and iTunes.
Coining coveted electronic music descriptors like, “throbbing grinding breakbeats, dreamy melodic downtempo, and heavy churning hip-hop,” it’s no small wonder the Bassnectar sound has a global fan club and a devoted tribe of “bassnymphos.”
For more info on joining the Bassnectar revolution, visit www.bassnectar.net. MTW