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EM411 Profound positivity

Hello EM411 community, I felt compelled to share something this you. My name is Rob (aka Ekstrak) and I am an on-and-off musician who once upon a time, spent a considerable amount of time on this website. The reality is, I loved this website, I loved this community. It was a place I grew up in and it utterly changed some fundamentals of how I view the world. I miss it. It is likely that what I really miss is the early internet, my twenties and a host of other factors- however, the statement about EM411 changing how I view the world are unchallenged, that much is fact.

I arrived in electronic music fresh off the 'metaller who found dance clubs' train and couldn't trade my bass guitar in for a studio filled with exotic analog fast enough. This was the mid nineties and we're in London, naturally it was Jungle (aka DnB) which was the constructive gravitational centre for electronic creativity. Geography counts for a lot so let's sprinkle in a little small-island mentality to the mix.

The result is an LSD-fuelled, excited creative with an education in dark warehouses and a quest for insight into the dark arts of filling them with rhythm and bass. The culture of this culture was akin to nothing short of Shaolin martial arts. The secrets of building monolithic bass and crispy snares was very much the domain of bibles buried deep underground, access only to the chosen vanguard. This is how I was brought up, ergo, this is how I showed up.

One day I happen to stumble across Em411. I am greeted by a website filled with humans not only sharing their own work but openly revealing the hallowed texts of their technique. Granted, this might seem trivial now but at the time this was earth-shatteringly futuristic. My poor, small-island mind was blown. I'd not been searching for it but I'd discovered the exact thing I'd been inadvertently looking for. Not only could I read about how others were achieving their sonic storytelling, I could talk about my own. Holy fuck!! This is liberation! I was hooked and spent the next few years engrossed in every atom of activity on this domain.

I recount this important moment in my life because I've hung on to it's lesson ever since. Nowadays I make much less music than I'd like to but I carry the learning into every situation I find myself in.

We're better together, us humans. Sharing knowledge and passion with others wherever we can makes us great. I don't live in the UK anymore but I see a country divided by hate and whilst it upsets me, it also strikes me as the only logical conclusion for a collective who's culture actively enforces a 'us and them' mentality in its children.

What I have is yours,

Thanks for listening

Rob / Ekstrak

1441 Apr 2019

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